Easter can be tricky if you’re working to develop healthy eating habits. On the one hand, it usually involves ham, which can be a lean meat, plus lots of vegetables, which are a great part of a healthy meal. Your Easter dinner plate can be healthy and delicious.
On the other hand, there’s Easter brunch.
Sweet rolls, doughnuts, biscuits and gravy, ham, sausage, bacon, cheesy casseroles made with cream, coffee cakes and the contents of the kids’ Easter baskets — it’s easy to go overboard.
Try a few alternative recipes. If you swap out just a few of your holiday favorites, your family won’t feel deprived. In fact, they may appreciate having some healthier alternatives.
Make some simple swaps:
- Season your ham with mustard, herbs, or fruit instead of a sugary glaze.
- Serve whole grains along with favorite white breads.
- Add an extra vegetable to your menu. If you usually choose vegetable dishes flavored with brown sugar and bacon, let your extra veggie be steamed or roasted.
- Cut dessert servings smaller than usual. People can take seconds if they feel the need…but maybe they won’t.
- Add fruit salad to your dessert offerings, either along with or replacing a baked dessert.
- Include sugar-free drinks like unsweetened iced tea or sparkling water.
Here are a couple of our favorite healthier Easter recipes.
Morning Glory Muffins
Whole grains, fruits, and nuts combine to make a high fiber treat.
- 2 c. whole wheat flour
- 1 c. brown sugar
- 2 t. cinnamon
- 1 t. ground ginger
- 1/2 t. ground cloves
- 1/2 t. nutmeg
- 1/4 c. canola oil
- 1/2 c. coconut flakes
- 1/2 c. applesauce
- 2 eggs
- 2 t. vanilla
- 1 large grated carrot
- 1/2 c. plain yogurt
- 4 oz. crushed pineapple
- 1/2 c. golden raisins
- 1/2 c. slivered almonds
- Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl. Combine the wet ingredients in a large bowl and stir in the dry ingredients. Bake in a muffin pan at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, till a fork poked into the center of one muffin comes out clean.
Hash Brown Casserole
It’s a little bit healthier than the traditional casserole, but just as delicious. It uses some convenience foods, so it’s quick to put together, too.
- 2 T. butter
- 2 T. flour
- 1/2 c. chicken broth
- 1/2 c. milk
- 1/2 c. sour cream or cottage cheese
- 1/2 c. Greek yogurt
- 1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese
- 1 package of frozen O’Brien Potatoes
Melt the butter and stir in the flour over low heat. Stir till the flour is thoroughly cooked, about 2 minutes. Gradually stir in broth and then milk, stirring constantly to keep it smooth. This is a traditional cream sauce.
Mix the sauce with the potatoes, sour cream, yogurt, and cheese. Stir in the potatoes and bake 1 hour at 350 degrees.