Over the past several years of following a healthier lifestyle, I've learned one of the best ways to stay happy and healthy is to enjoy the comfort foods you love.
Because what's the point of enjoying your healthy lifestyle if you're not happy?
BUT...here's the thing.
There are so many ways to recreate the comfort foods we all know and love into healthier versions of themselves.
And, by healthier versions, I mean ALL the same flavors, fragrances, and textures (basically: the look and feel), but without all those ingredients that aren't good for us.
What do I mean by "not good" for us ingredients?
Pretty simply, those types of ingredients fall into the following categories:
- refined sugars (think granulated white sugars and artificial sweeteners, more on that here)
- refined flours (think bleached flours, stripped of all their nutrients)
- high sodium (think loads of added salt)
- refined fats (think oils and fats that increase shelf life, like trans fats)
These are the main culprits that make the comfort foods we love what we shouldn't enjoy that often.
So, how do we turn our unhealthy comfort foods into healthier options we can enjoy more often?
Fortunately, it's shockingly easy.
The trick is to find high quality ingredients that replace the lower quality ingredients.
- replace refined sugars with more nutrient-rich, naturally occurring sweeteners (like pure maple syrup or raw honey)
- replace refined flours with higher quality flours, like quinoa flour, amaranth flour (like I've done in this recipe by using truRoots® Ancient Grains Organic Spaghetti <--- LOVE)
- reduce high sodium foods by removing unnecessarily added salt from manufactured foods and using fresh, whole ingredients
- replace refined fats with healthier forms of fat, such as olive oil and coconut oil
The more ingredients you replace, the better the health factor for your re-created healthy comfort food.
While it may sound a little daunting at first to figure out which ingredients are good or bad for you, the more you do it, the better you get until, one day, you just know and never even consider the unhealthier alternative.
Also finding some favorite ingredients you know you can rely on, like the pasta and chickpea flour in this easy chicken picatta recipe, will help you feel confident the more you use them.
Most importantly, take it step by step, day by day. Learning to eat healthier is a process that takes time, commitment, and repetition.
If you're looking for some great options for healthier comfort foods to get you started, check out the following right here on the blog:
- Sweet Potato Nachos
- Stuffed Spaghetti Squash Bowls
- Healthy Mac And Cheese
- Cauliflower Pizza Crust
- Baked Zucchini Fries
- Strawberry Frozen Yogurt
- Skinny Tuna Noodle Casserole
- Chocolate Banana Ice Cream
Feel free to leave in the comments any recipes you'd love me to make a healthier version of to kickstart your healthy eating journey.
Best of luck!
Easy Chicken Picatta
*This post may contain affiliate links for products I use often and highly recommend.
- 1 8 oz package truRoots® Ancient Grains Organic Spaghetti
- 2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
- 1 ½ tablespoon olive oil
- ½ cup chickpea flour
- 2 tablespoon lemon juice, freshly squeezed (about 1 lemon)
- 1 whole lemon, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup low sodium chicken stock
- 2 tablespoon capers
- Italian parsley, chopped (optional garnish)
- Fill a deep stock pot with water and heat over high heat. Once boiling, add the truRoots® Ancient Grains Organic Spaghetti. Cook just until al dente, about 7-9 minutes.
- Place chicken breasts between two sheets of plastic wrap or in a large Ziploc bag and pound evenly until approximately ¼-inch thick.
- Once flattened, season both sides with ½ tsp. sea salt and ¼ ground black pepper.
- Combine the chickpea flour, remaining ½ tsp. sea salt, and ½ tsp. ground black pepper in a shallow dish.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Take each seasoned chicken breast and dredge into the flour mixture, taking care to shake off excess each time.
- Once the oil is hot, transfer the dredged chicken to skillet and cook until golden-brown, approx. 3-5 minutes per side.
- Once golden on each side, add the lemon juice, lemon slices, chicken broth, and capers.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is reduced.
- To serve, plate chicken over the spaghetti noodles, and drizzle sauce over and around on the plate. Garnish with cooked lemon slices and chopped parsley, if desired.
This post contains affiliate links for products I use regularly and highly recommend.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of truRoots. The opinions and text are all mine.