5 Low Calorie Drinks for the Holidays

Image copyright Marco Arment.

One of the biggest rules with healthy eating is… don’t drink your calories.  However, with the holidays in full swing you might be temped to indulge and do some serious damage. Here are 5 low calorie drinks for the holidays.

  1. Sparkling Cranberry Water – Pour a glass of seltzer water and add a dash or two of low sugar cranberry juice. Garnish with fresh cranberries or lime wedges.
  2. Spiced Coffee – I love pumpkin spice lattes, but they can be calorie bombs. Add a few good shakes of pumpkin spice seasoning (or any of the following cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, all spice) to a mug of steamy coffee. Add nonfat milk and lightly sweeten.
  3. Lady Grey Tea – My favorite tea drink for chilly nights. Tea can be a great center piece for a get together or a warm treat at the end of a long day.
  4. Apple Spiced Tea – Brew a cup of black tea, add a splash or two of apple cider and a cinnamon stick.
  5. Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa – Heat low fat milk on the stove and add dark chocolate cocoa powder, stevia or your favorite sweetener, and a handful of chocolate chips. Warm until chocolate melts but be careful not to scorch the cocoa. Add some peppermint extract if desired.

Drinks to stay away from or be diligent with eggnog, sugary sweet cocktails, punch, extra dollops of whipped cream, and lattes. You don’t have to over indulge to enjoy the holidays.

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Apple Butter | Recipe

Image copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

I love apple butter and this recipe is incredibly easy and can be made in your slow cooker all day long. This is a simple and delicious recipe.

  • 12 Large Apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 Cup brown sugar
  • 1 Cup apple cider
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract.
  1. Place apples in the crock pot. Mine filled pretty much to the top of my crock.

    Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

  2. Combine other ingredients in a small bowl or measuring cup.
  3. Pour mixture over apples and give them a quick stir to coat the apples.

    Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

  4. Cook on low for 16 hours. Stir occasionally and check the consistency.

    Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

  5. Uncover with 2 hours to go to achieve desired product.
  6. Allow apple butter to cool and store in the refrigerator.
  7. I would suggest freezing some of the results for later and using it as you use it.

Resist the urge to eat these apples or pull them out too soon. If you were to stop cooking at 10 hours, you will have apple sauce. Which I’m sure is delicious! However, let it cook and then let it cook some more. I had intentions to cook for 12 hours but I could tell that it just wasn’t done. Look for a deep brown color.

Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

I’ve also read that you can throw cinnamon heart candies to achieve a candy apple effect. I haven’t tried it but it sounds good!

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Oatmeal Berry Pancakes | Recipe

Image Copyright Lindsay Anny Loft.

I like incorporating oatmeal into breakfast foods. Its a sneaky way to make waffles and pancakes healthier while still having the fun of weekend food.

  • 1 1/4 Cups milk
  • 1/2 Cup uncooked old-fashioned oats
  • 2/3 Cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 Cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons packed light brown sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter
  • Blueberries and Strawberries
  1. Bring 1/2 cup milk to a simmer in small sauce pan. Stir in oats. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in large bowl.
  3. Combine egg and melted butter in medium bowl. Stir in oatmeal mixture and remaining milk.
  4. Add egg mixture to dry ingredient, stir to combine. If mixture is too thick to spoon, add more milk a few tablespoon at a time.
  5. Spritz a griddle or skillet with oil and heat over medium low heat.
  6. Pour desired size pancake to the griddle and arrange blueberries and strawberries as seen below.
  7. Resist the urge to flip your pancakes too soon, allow the bubbles to come up and break. Cook until the bubbles stop breaking. Keep the heat on medium lower and keep an eye on the bottom.
  8. Cook until done on other side.
  9. Serve with fresh berries or sy

Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

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Pumpkin Muffins | Recipe

Image Copyright Lindsay Ann Loft.

Welcome Fall with these great pumpkin muffins. Perfect with a steamy cup of coffee.

  • 1 3/4 cups bread flour
  • 1 Cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 Teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 Teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 Teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, optional
  • 1/8 Teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin, canned
  • 1/2 cup milk – I used coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly grease a twelve-muffin tin.
  2. Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin, soy milk, oil, and molasses. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix.
  4. Fill the muffin cups evenly.
  5. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick.

These muffins are about 150 calories a piece. If you would like, I think you can cut back even more on the sugar.

 

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Blueberry Peach Oatmeal Bake | Recipe


This Saturday I had a little time to put together breakfast and enjoy it as the rain was falling and a cool breeze was flowing through the house. I had some peaches to use so I decided to put them in a variation of my favorite apple oatmeal bake.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups rolled oats
  • 1/4 Cup raw sugar (sub brown if you don’t have raw)
  • 1 Teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 Cups milk
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 Tablespoons melted and slightly cooled butter
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 Extra large ripe bananas (almost black), sliced
  • 2 Peaches, diced
  • 1 1/2 Cups blueberries (prefer fresh but frozen will work too)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Combine all dry ingredients in one bowl.
  3. Combine milk, egg, butter, and extract in a bowl or measuring cup.
  4. Layer sliced super ripe bananas in the bottom of a buttered baking dish.
  5. Top with Peaches and 1 cup of blueberries.
  6. Sprinkle dry ingredients evenly over the fruit.
  7. Pour wet ingredients slowly over the dry, trying to mix evenly.
  8. Gently shake the baking dish to move around the liquid.
  9. Top with remaining blueberries.
  10. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes.
  11. Allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.
  12. Enjoy!

I love this dish because it is so versatile, you can make pretty much anything with your basic mixtures. Feel free to add walnuts or almonds to the dish for some added protein and flavor. Mix up blueberries for raspberries and have a peach melba effect. I also reduced the amount of sugar in this recipe because I believe that fruit is sweet enough. If you have a sweet tooth, by all means add more sugar to the mixture or sprinkle some on top when serving.

This could be a great dish to serve for a brunch or when you have company. I will be sure to make it the next time I have visitors. Which happens quite often. 🙂

 

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