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Nutrition Corner

Recipe Modification: Adapting Your Favorite Dishes


By Michelle Mamis, RD, LDN
Bariatric Dietitian at BIDMC

Who isn’t bombarded daily with pictures of foods and recipes via social media posts, commercials and advertisements? bowl of noodle-shaped zucchini and vegetablesSeeing these every day can sometimes make us crave our favorite foods or dishes. While indulging every once in a while can work, these foods often don’t fit into our regular eating routine when trying to lose weight.

Ever thought about modifying your favorite recipes for a healthier option? There are many recipe tips and adjustments out there that can allow us to enjoy our favorite foods while still maintaining a balanced diet.  Check out these ingredient swaps and give your favorite recipe a makeover!

Ingredient Modifications/Swaps


Instead of: oil or butter when baking

Try: applesauce, mashed banana, or canned pumpkin

  • Reduces fat and calories while increasing fiber, vitamins and minerals 

Instead of: traditional baked goods made with flour and oil or butter

Try: baked goods made with nut butters, oats, black beans or chickpeas

dish of spaghetti squash topped with marinara sauceInstead of: pasta

Try: zucchini noodles (make these using a spiralizer or veggetti) or spaghetti squash

  • Increases fiber, vitamins and minerals

Instead of: fried rice (or any rice dish)

Try: “cauliflower rice”

Instead of: sour cream-based dips

Try: non-fat or low fat Greek yogurt

Instead of: cream-based sauce

Try: sauce made with cauliflower

Above content provided by the Weight Loss Surgery Center Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. For advice about your medical care, consult your doctor.

March 2016

Contact Information

Weight Loss Surgery Center
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Shapiro Clinical Center, 3rd Floor
330 Brookline Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
617-667-2845
617-667-2866 
wls@bidmc.harvard.edu

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