When most people think of healthy eating, they picture boring salads and being hungry all the time. It can be hard to get motivated to go on a diet when all you want to eat is pizza and chips. However, you don’t have to cut your favourite foods out completely; all you need to do is replace them with something slightly healthier.
You can still eat most of your naughtiest junk food meals, you just have to make a few tweaks to transform them from high-fat, high-calorie disasters to delicious healthy alternatives. Here are some of our favourite substitutes for your favourite foods:
Pizza: Add a cauliflower crust
There’s nothing quite like a good slice of pizza, but your typical takeaway will serve you something dripping in grease and full of fat and carbs. One way to make it healthier is to cook it yourself, using a crust made of cauliflower.
Put a head of cauliflower in your blender until it has a consistency like rice. Wrap it in a teatowel and squeeze as much of the water out of it as you can, then mix it with two beaten eggs, 100g of ground almonds and about a tablespoon of dried oregano.
Bake it at 200C for about 15 to 20 minutes – the crust should be starting to crisp at the edges – then top with plenty of vegetables, tomato sauce and some low-fat cheese. You’ll be amazed at how tasty it is!
Ice cream: Freeze some bananas
There’s nothing better than a nice scoop of ice cream on a summer’s day. However, it’s usually loaded with sugar and fat. Again, you can make your own at home, and it’s amazingly simple. All you need is some bananas; one per serving of ice cream you’re planning to make.
Chop them up, put them in a ziplock bag and freeze them overnight. Once you have your frozen bananas, all you need to do is blend them for delicious banana ‘ice cream’. If you want a different flavour, there are a few things you can add to the blender: cocoa powder, for example, or frozen blueberries. Experiment with some healthy ingredients and see what you can create.
Fish and chips: Bake it
The classic British seaside meal, fish and chips might taste nice but it’s entirely deep-fried, so not good for your health. You can make your own in the oven that’s just as delicious, but with far fewer calories.
For one serving, you need a fillet of white fish like cod and about 200g of potatoes. Heat your oven to 220C, then chop your potatoes into chips. Drizzle them with about a teaspoon and a half of olive oil, then put them in the oven.
For the fish, mix a small amount of breadcrumbs – about 15g – with a tablespoon of chopped parsley and the zest of half a lemon. Coat the fish with the mixture, then drizzle another teaspoon or two of olive oil over it. Once the chips have been in the oven for around 20 minutes to half an hour, add the fish and bake the lot for another 15 minutes, then serve.