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What small things do you do to make your cooking healthier?

(79 Posts)
ferriswheel Tue 19-Sep-17 20:01:46

I've posted on aibu because I figure at one time or another we've all tried to tweak our cooking to make it healthier.

I guess aibu to ask you to share your tweaks?!!

Mine are...

When cooking rice I put in a handful of lentils.

Oil spray for frying and roasting.

Grill for sausages, try to replace real sausages with vegetarian ones.

Cut the fat off meat.

Any others I'm missing out on?

WildCherryBlossom Tue 19-Sep-17 20:05:49

I make porridge with cinnamon and ginger and sprinkle finely ground nuts & seeds on it.

If I'm having cereal I slice a banana on it.

If I'm giving the kids pasta & pesto I chuck frozen peas in.

When making cakes I sometimes replace half the flour with ground almonds. It's high calorie, but also a great source of calcium etc.

Valentine2 Tue 19-Sep-17 20:08:08

Bulk up with veg.
also make soups from leftover veg. No one knows what I am giving them so long as it's blended in.
Soups and curries diluted with milk. Pasta "fried" in milk for whiny times.
At least two days are meat free days.
Slowly replacing red meat with fish and white only.

AprilShowers16 Tue 19-Sep-17 20:10:50

Handful of lentils in mince

Grate a carrot and add when frying onion

Leave the skins on veg where possible

ShowMePotatoSalad Tue 19-Sep-17 20:11:23

Cutting visible fat off meat

Draining excess fat from mince after frying off

Not adding any salt to cooking if there are salty ingredients in already eg bacon, ham, parmesan, jarred sauces, etc

Reduce salt content of stock cubes by doubling the amount of water added to them or just using half

Someoneasdumbasthis Tue 19-Sep-17 20:25:31

Changed portion proportions. Half the plate now veg then rest either protein or half protein half carbs.

early30smum Tue 19-Sep-17 20:30:22

Spray oil or cut back on oil
Bulk out bolognese/cottage pie etc with as many vegetables as possible
Sometimes have chicken sausages instead of normal
Bagel thins instead of proper bagels
Homemade potato wedges instead of chips
Kids have to have fruit after their main course before having 'pudding' which means they are often too full to have pudding as well as main and fruit!
Use lots of herbs and spices to flavour stuff
Add as much salad veg to lunches as possible

HaudYerWheeshtBawbag Tue 19-Sep-17 20:31:29

None really as everything in moderation.

Grilledaubergines Tue 19-Sep-17 20:32:48

Cook sausages in the oven. The slower cooking releases more fat. And buying good quality sausages to start with.

QueenMortificado Tue 19-Sep-17 20:34:03

Just don't buy shit food in the first place. Then it's not in the cupboards.

Always just have meat, dairy, fruit and veggies in the fridge and that's it

SaucyJack Tue 19-Sep-17 20:35:05

I have salad with most things. Specifically rocket.

kshaw Tue 19-Sep-17 20:35:50

When making mash potato do half potato half swede or celeriac- good for Shepard pie toppings. Use potato slices instead of pastry for pies. Lots of veg to bulk out too. If using cream cheese for sauces always half fat. If soups call for cream always use fat free fromage frais

Thisisanotherusername Tue 19-Sep-17 20:39:23

Reduce salt content of stock cubes by doubling the amount of water added to them

How does adding extra water alter the salt content of a stock cube?

Ishouldbedoingsomething Tue 19-Sep-17 20:40:22

When making spaghetti Bolognese etc I add a chopped aubergine & chopped mushrooms with the mince - can't really tell when it's all cooked

Cauliflower rice instead of normal rice

Adding veg where possible

Pineappleandcheeseonsticks Tue 19-Sep-17 20:49:47

Add veg to everything that I can and then serve different veg or salad alongside.
Fruit salad is always great for using up fruit that has been sitting around for too long!
Make fermented foods (sauerkraut etc), as well as water and milk kefir to increase beneficial gut bacteria. It's very simple to do once you get started!
Add ground nuts and seeds to pancakes, muffins etc
Using a mix of grains and pseudo-grains instead of regular flour - so oats, quinoa, buckwheat etc when I can (in things like breakfast muffins, crumble etc)
If we are making potato wedges, we do a mix of sweet potatoes and normal. Same with jacket potatoes.

BahHumbygge Tue 19-Sep-17 20:50:26

Leave out the carb portion and replace with an extra pile of leafy veg

I don't put potatoes in soup, I use another non starchy veg like celeriac or carrot

Drizzle everything in olive oil, eg roasted veg, soup, salad etc

Use real butter instead of marge/industrial hexane extracted vegetable oils

Buy local grassfed beef and lamb from the butchers/farmers' market instead of factory farmed processed supermarket meat.

Eat oily fish like sardines or mackerel rather than cod.

Use full fat dairy products which have the full amount of fat soluble vitamins.

Try to eat a few portions of fermented foods per week like sauerkraut and kefir for gut health.

Turbinaria Tue 19-Sep-17 20:56:09

Use thick Greek yogurt instead I'd creme fraiche
Cut out one fifth of the sugar in cake and pudding recipes they still work and taste fine

Hayesking Tue 19-Sep-17 20:56:52

Make lasagne with butternut squash instead of pasta

Make green smoothies most days

Always chuck a handful of salad or rocket in everything

Make a plate of raw carrots celery and pepper and put it on the table so the dcs can pick it it while they are wandering in and out looking for food

TinklyLittleLaugh Tue 19-Sep-17 20:57:12

Buy good quality food and cook from scratch. I don't worry about a bit of fat or serving red meat a couple of times a week. We eat full fat dairy, and avoid sugar free stuff.

I do try to avoid serving empty carbs like pasta and bread too frequently, but everything in moderation.

Putyourdamnshoeson Tue 19-Sep-17 21:01:40

I make sure that I don't use processed crap like fry lite or nasty processed spreads.

I buy quality meat and eat the nutrient rich fat. Don't buy shitty processed veggie sausages.

Use full fat dairy. Fresh veg and add veg to EVERYTHING.

Don't buy breakfast cereal.

QueenMortificado Tue 19-Sep-17 21:03:07

Lolz at some of the "healthier" swaps on here actually being more unhealthy....

MaidOfStars Tue 19-Sep-17 21:03:33

Eat quinoa instead of rice!

fizzingwhizbee Tue 19-Sep-17 21:05:41

Only use lean mince
Remove all visible fat from any meat before cooking
Reduced fat cheddar for everyday things like putting on top of pasta etc
Whizzing up any old veg to chuck in bolognese
Fat free yoghurt

I also use an airfryer

Can’t think of any more!

honeyroar Tue 19-Sep-17 21:08:44

How does adding grated carrot to onion make it healthier? Both are veg..

I'd imagine adding more water to stock cubes means there's a lesser amount of salt in the finished product - ie, you get the same amount of salt in five portions of whatever you're cooking rather than the same amount of salt in three or four portions?

I try and cook everything from scratch. I chuck an extra can of chopped toms in chilli, bolognaise and curry to make it go further and increase the healthy bits. I'm veggie, so do a lot more veggie recipes that the whole family eat.

Mushybanna23 Tue 19-Sep-17 21:09:38

Rather than using fry light or eating processed food. I have real butter full fat yogurt, free range local meat lots of home grown or any veg. Allowing myself a treat would rather small portion of apple crumble on a Sunday than a shit ton or low fat somthing

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