Healthy Eating Tip: Festive Holiday Appetizers
Most of us entertain over the holidays, and it can be difficult to find a successful, healthy snack to share. Here are some nutritious FESTIVE snacks to serve your guests or to bring to a party.
1) Festive Veggie Tray– I also added cherry tomatoes to this green pepper and radish Christmas tree, lined the outside of the wooden cutting board with carrots, and used a whole grain cracker for the trunk. Occasionally we put a yellow sweet pepper as the star of the tree but it kept getting eaten!
2) Variety of Specialty Cheeses and Whole Wheat Crackers– make a design of a Christmas tree, snowman or wreath with the cheese, use veggies for embellishments.
3) Fruit bowl– everyone loves a colorful fruit bowl.
4) Healthy Spinach Dip – 10 oz frozen spinach- squeeze liquid out; 5-10oz water chestnuts (cut into small pieces); 8oz container lowfat (1%) cottage cheese blended in blender; 1 packet ranch dressing- mix all ingredients together and serve with whole grain crackers or veggies! Keep posted for a post on this healthy spinach dip.
Got this idea from: http://www.lindseyisham.com/2012/02/15/secretly-healthy-spinach-dip-for-parties/
5) Mixed Nuts– Mix one “salted” mixed nut container (pecans, walnuts, Brazil nuts, cashews, pistachios, almonds…) with one “no added salt” container. This way everyone can still enjoy the salty flavor however with 50% less sodium. Serve in a holiday bowl.
6) Kale Chips-chop 1 bunch of kale leaves, remove the stems, and wash. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil and salt over leaves. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes at 300° until crispy. Turn chips every 5-10 min. Sprinkle cooled chips with grated Parmesan cheese (or nutritional yeast!)
Got this idea from: http://www.kiwimagonline.com/2012/01/easy-cheesy-kale-chips/
7) Baked Tortilla Chips with Homemade Spicy Guac! Chop 4 avocados, 3-5 garlic cloves, 1-2 jalapeno peppers (remove seeds to lessen hotness), 1-2 tomatoes or (10-20 cherry tomatoes), 1 green pepper. Squeeze one lime halve, salt and pepper to taste. Mix together and serve. Keep posted for future post on guac recipe and pictures.
8) Homemade Granola Bars– See homemade granola bars post for recipe. Wrap each granola bar in green or red plastic wrap.
9) Homemade Peppermint Popped Popcorn! Melt a handful of chocolate or white chocolate chips and pour over popcorn (popped in a popcorn maker with cooking spray instead of added oil or butter), mix to coat the popcorn. Sprinkle crushed peppermint candy canes over popcorn- See Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn post for more pictures and detailed recipe.
10) Hummus and Vegetable Tray– Use green and red vegetables to surround hummus container. Ideas for veggies: radishes, green and red peppers, cherry tomatoes, diced tomatoes, sugar snap peas, celery, fresh string beans, red sweet peppers, broccoli, cucumbers…
Hopefully you can use some of these ideas as you go to or host your holiday parties this season! Happy Holidays!
Let’s Be Robust!