12 Tips For Making Your Favorite Recipes Healthier

brown eggs and some milk closeup on wooden backgroundOne of the things I love about the Amish is their cooking. Delicious, yet very rich. This is fine for them; they work more-physical jobs than the average American. Most of us get our exercise at the gym instead of our normal workday.

It’s a new year with new (or maybe the same) resolutions. If you’ve vowed to lose weight or just eat healthier, here are a few substitutions to help you continue to eat your favorite Amish recipes and still keep your promises to yourself.

♦Replace whole eggs with egg substitute products. One egg is equivalent to 1/4 c. of egg substitute.

♦Use skim, 1%, or 2% milk in recipes in the place of whole milk.

♦Use cooking spray to coat pans instead of oil or butter. If food starts to stick, add a little water.

♦Replace heavy cream with  2 TBS of flour whisked into 2 cups of non-fat milk.

♦Sour cream can be replaced with plain, non-fat Greek yogurt or plain, non-fat yogurt.

♦Watch your labels—replace ‘regular’ with low-fat (cheese, milk, cream).

♦Use tuna packed in water, not oil.

♦Not all oil is created equal. Olive oil can be substituted in many recipes and is a more “heart healthy” replacement.

♦Replace standard meats with the turkey variety, such as turkey ham, turkey bacon and ground turkey for ground beef.

♦Even if you replace half for half (replacing only half of the called for meat with a low fat alternative) your recipe will be lower in fat and still maintain most of it’s original flavor.

Close up of spices on white background♦Add a TBS of  beef bullion to ground turkey or venison to smooth out the flavor. Be sure to cut back on salt if you do this.

♦For sautéing, check the amount of oil called for in the recipe. Most times this can be cut in half with the same results.

♦Bump up the spices. Not salt, spices. Sometimes when adjusting to lower fat recipes, the taste can fall a little flat. Add a kick of heat (crushed red pepper, Tabasco sauce, or fresh jalapenos) or a little bit of extra flavor (dry or prepared mustard, cooking wine, or fresh herbs) to add more depth to the dish.

Happy cooking!

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Amy Lillard (52 Posts)

Amy Lillard is an award winning author who loves reading romance novels from Amish to contemporary. These two genres meet in her debut novel, Saving Gideon. Born and bred in Mississippi, she now lives in Oklahoma with her husband and their son. She loves to hear from readers and can be reached at amylillard@hotmail.com.


  1. Great ideas! I really like the recipes from Carlisle Press, Keepers at Home magazine. They are Amish recipes that are healthy.

  2. Another substitute in baking is to use applesauce in place of most the oil. I do this frequently and it tastes better in my opinion. Coconut oil is a great sub for olive oil when cooking at high heat points, because it doesn’t degrade and cause some not so healthy compounds. Like you said above, olive oil is great for dressings and sauteing over medium heat. Love this post and sharing it. Thanks!

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