Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Community News Network

December 13, 2012

10 healthful baking tips for the holidays

This time of year, your calendar is likely to be full of holiday parties, office gatherings, cookie exchanges and family meals.

The common theme of any of these events is delicious desserts, which are usually loaded with added sugars and unhealthy fats.

Take control this holiday season, and experiment with these healthful baking tips to benefit yourself and your loved ones.

The U.S. Agriculture Department labels solid fats and added sugars as empty calories, and recommends that these make up no more than 15 percent of your diet. However, most Americans consume about 35 percent of their calories from these empty calorie sources.

What are solid fats?

Solid fats are fats that are solid at room temperature (i.e. butter and shortening). Most are high in saturated fats or trans fats, which tend to raise "bad" LDL cholesterol levels and increase the risk for heart disease.

What are added sugars?

According to the USDA, added sugars are sugars and syrups that are added to foods or beverages when they are processed or prepared. This includes white granulated sugar, brown sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, raw sugar, honey and maple syrup. This does not include naturally occurring sugars such as those in milk and fruits.

So, the overall goal for healthful baking is to reduce the empty calories from added sugars and solid fats and replace them with more healthful ingredients. Besides, most recipes call for more sugar and fat than are actually needed for decadent flavor. To preserve the flavor of your recipes, the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends reducing the sugar and fat by 25 percent to 33 percent.

Healthful baking tips

1. When reducing sugar in your recipes, be sure to add spices for flavor. Try cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cardamom, vanilla bean or pumpkin pie spice.

2. Instead of solid fats such as butter and shortening, go for vegetable oils such as canola oil for less saturated and trans fat. Even better, unsweetened applesauce can replace half the oil in your recipe to help cut down on overall fat. The applesauce also adds natural sweetness and fiber. Canned pumpkin or sweet potato puree can also be used as a substitute for these solid fats while also offering health benefits from vitamins A and C.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • Ice bucket challenge trending up

    Internet trends are a dime a dozen these days. Everything from Tebowing to planking to the cinnamon challenge can cause a wave of social media activity that can last for weeks before fizzling out.

    August 19, 2014

  • Africa goes medieval in its fight against Ebola

    As the Ebola epidemic claims new victims at an ever-increasing rate, African governments in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia have instituted a "cordon sanitaire," deploying troops to forcibly isolate the inhabitants in an area containing most of the cases.

    August 18, 2014

  • Democrat? Republican? There's an app for that

    If you're a Republican, you might want to think twice before buying Lipton Iced Tea, and forget about Starbucks coffee. If you're a Democrat, put down that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and throw away the cylinder of Quaker Oats in your pantry.

    August 18, 2014

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

  • Can 6 seconds launch a career? A generation of Vine stars sure hopes so.

    A year ago, Shawn Mendes filmed himself singing a tentative acoustic cover of the Justin Bieber song "As Long as You Love Me" and put the results on Vine. He wasn't expecting much response. "I didn't really want anything to happen; I just kind of wanted to see what people would think," says Mendes, 16. "I posted that first Vine and woke up the next morning with 10,000 followers. That was pretty cool."

    August 14, 2014

  • Freshman.jpg 8 crucial tips for college freshmen

    With school starting back up around the country, no one has a bigger deer-in-the-headlights look than college freshmen.

    August 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • A night in Ferguson

    For the past week in Ferguson, reporters have been using the McDonald's a few blocks from the scene of Michael Brown's shooting as a staging area. Demonstrations have blown up each night nearby.

    August 14, 2014

  • weightloss.jpg The scales of injustice: Weight loss differs between men, women

    You're not imagining it: There really are differences between the way men and women diet, lose weight and respond to exercise.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Robin_Williams.jpg Williams among many who cracked jokes while fighting depression

    Robin Williams isn't the only comedian who has struggled with a disease suffered by an estimated 350 million people worldwide. Williams, a comedian known for his manic energy, committed suicide Aug. 11 at age 63.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drug dealers going corporate

    A top federal official on Tuesday said that 105 banks and credit unions are doing business with legal marijuana sellers, suggesting that federal rules giving financial institutions the go-ahead to provide services to dealers are starting to work.

    August 13, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Raw: IDF Footage Said to Show Airstrikes Police: Ferguson More Peaceful Raw: Aftermath of Airstrike in Gaza Raw: Thousands March on Pakistani Parliament Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan Fire Crews Tame Yosemite Fire Raw: Police Weapon Drawn Near Protesters, Media Raw: Deadly Landslides in Japan Raw: Explosions in Gaza As Airstrikes Resume Arrests Witnessed in Ferguson Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape Texas Gov. Perry: Indictment 'a Political Act' US Officials: Video Shows American's Beheading Video Shows Ferguson Cop Months Before Shooting Heavy Rains Flood Arizona Roads US Trying to Verify Video of American's Killing FBI Director Addresses Ferguson Shooting in Utah Raw: Police at Scene of St. Louis Shooting Police: 2 Calif. Boys Planned School Shooting NOLA Police Chief Retires Amid Violent Crimes
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.