Here we go. The official holiday season is just starting and already our fridge and pantry is filled with fudge, zucchini bread and cookies. Add pumpkin pie to the mix and you have a recipe for disaster when it comes to healthy eating. So, how do you stop yourself from completely de-railing over the holidays? It’s tempting to say, “What the heck. I already blew it, so why not continue inhaling everything with butter and sugar that’s in sight?” Tempting, yes. But is it necessary to be an all-or-nothing kind of gal? Of course not. I have a plan. It involves starting the day with a healthy breakfast, such as this yogurt parfait with blueberries and granola, and focusing on eating whole grains, fruits, vegetables and lean proteins the rest of the day. This will help to balance those decadent dinner parties and piles of holiday treats.
With packed schedules during the holiday season, I find it helpful to have extra meals in the freezer. Dishes such as our favorite Smoky Turkey Chili and Hearty Chicken Stew with Butternut Squash and Quinoa can be easily doubled or tripled and frozen in containers. For lunch, I turn to recipes such as Spaghetti Squash with Apples & Toasted Pecans and Healthy Shrimp Wrap with Curry Yogurt & Spinach. The variety of flavors stop me from becoming bored (boredom always leads me to mindless snacking) and the high-fiber dishes keep me satisfied until the next meal.
So, let’s step back to breakfast. If you’re someone that eats on the go, try these Whole Wheat Pumpkin Muffins or a Make-Ahead Egg Wrap with Ham, Avocado & Salsa. For a healthy sit-down breakfast, try Whole Wheat Waffles with Blueberry Sauce or a Caprese Frittata with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Mozzarella & Basil.
This yogurt parfait is something I eat two to three times per week. Frozen blueberries, defrosted until soft and releasing their juices, are layered with nonfat Greek yogurt, your favorite granola or other cereal and a touch of agave nectar. Is it some elaborate, earth-shattering recipe (if I can even call it that)? Nope. But it is quick and easy, satisfying and tastes darn good. That’s exactly what I need this time of year.
Place the frozen blueberries in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on the defrost mode (about power 3) until the blueberries are soft and have released some juice, about 3 minutes.
In a small glass or bowl, scoop some of the blueberries and juices into the bottom.
Layer with the Greek yogurt, granola, agave nectar, and more blueberries.
Serve. Stir together before eating, if you wish.
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- 1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 cup granola (your favorite kind)
- 1 tsp agave nectar
- Place the frozen blueberries in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on the defrost mode (about power 3) until the blueberries are soft and have released some juice, about 3 minutes.
- In a small glass or bowl, scoop some of the blueberries and juices into the bottom.
- Layer with the Greek yogurt, granola, agave nectar, and more blueberries.
- Serve. Stir together before eating, if you wish.