15 Low-Fat Meals on the Christmas Table

Typically, it's the end of the year, the holiday season when we’re most likely to put on some weight. We’re not very active on cold winter days, anyway; besides, the family gatherings during the holiday usually include great feasts where you may as well double your normal calorie intake.  And that leads straight to excess weight. However, you can also prepare your holiday meals with a little more attention paid to ingredients and reducing the calorie content of your meals. We'll give you 15 examples.

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Delicious and low-calorie starter courses

There are a number of simple and low-calorie starter courses you can offer your guests at Christmas. They can be salty or sweet; you’ll love any them while talking around the table.

1.  Vegetable dippers (~100 calories / serving)

If you crave something salty, simple dippers made from raw vegetables are a great idea. Cut up some carrots, celery sticks, a variety of peppers, and in a small bowl, mix plain yoghurt with herbs to taste. You can put the dip in the middle of the table for everyone to use, but the veggie sticks are better offered individually. All this only contains about 100 calories and takes about 10 minutes to prepare.

2.  Oatmeal zucchini chips (~100 calories / serving)

If you want some roasted salty snacks, but in a healthy version, oatmeal zucchini chips are your best choice. You'll need some fine oats, zucchini, sliced, parmesan, seasoning and egg white. Dip zucchini slices into egg white and then the other ingredients, and put on a baking paper in a pre-heated oven. After 15 minutes of preparation, the zucchini bakes in 10 minutes; each serving (50 g zucchini when raw) contains less than 100 calories.

3.  Tomato salsa

Please your guests with some nice tomato salsa, which you can prepare in under an hour and contains only 50 calories.  All you’ll need is 2 or 3 medium-sized tomatoes, 1 onion, the juice of 1 lime, salt, pepper, chilli pepper, oregano. Finely chop tomato, onion and chilli pepper; you may as well use a vegetable chopper. Season to taste and serve with tortilla, for example.

4.  Meat balls with dip (~100 calories / serving)

If you have a little time, make some juicy meat balls! They’re not too difficult to make and don’t require too much work, but they’re very tasty. You’ll need some minced meat of your choice, about 500 g; about 150 g fine oats, 2 eggs and seasoning. Mix the ingredients and shape the mixture into small balls. On a baking paper, in a pre-heated oven, bake them for about 30 minutes. You can make the dip from tomato puree or plain yoghurt, with a little seasoning.

5.  Cauliflower pie (~50 calories / serving)

You may as well put some spicy cauliflower pie on the table. Clean and chop a medium-sized cauliflower in a vegetable chopper. Add two eggs, 150 g wholemeal flour, spices to taste, salt and pepper, and shape the mixture into small balls. Flatten the top, put a small slice of mozzarella on it and bake in a pre-heated oven for about 20-30 minutes. One serving only contains about 50 calories, so you may as well eat it during a diet.

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Enjoy traditional flavours in low-calorie versions for your lunch, too

What to cook for lunch which is not too heavy for your stomach, doesn’t add extra kilos to your weight and is still delicious? We’ll give you some great ideas!

1.  Cinnamon apple soup (~70 calories / serving)

Cinnamon apple soup is not difficult to prepare and it contains hardly any calories. You’ll only need a few apples, 300 ml low-fat milk, a sachet of diet pudding powder, lemon, cinnamon, cloves and some sweetener to taste. Put the cinnamon, cloves, lemon juice and sweetener in a litre of cold water. Add the peeled and sliced apples and start boiling the water. When it comes to a boil, turn down the heat a little, prepare the pudding and add to the soup to thicken.

2.  “Korhely” soup (~90 calories / serving)

For a traditional Christmas "korhely" soup, you’ll need 300 g sauerkraut, 1 litre cabbage juice, onion, low-fat sour cream, seasoning. Cook the sauerkraut in the cabbage juice. Chop and add the onion. Continue to cook for 30 minutes after boiling. Thicken with wholemeal flour or oat flour. You can make it even tastier with some smoked meat.

3.  Grilled salmon (~300 calories / serving)

Grilled fish is a great addition to your Christmas menu. During the holiday, perhaps you can allow yourself to please your family with some salmon, which is a great source of fatty acids, is very tasty and easy to prepare. Grill the seasoned slices until ready on a little coconut fat for 15 minutes. For a side dish, serve some slices of wholemeal bread and a large bowl of green salad. For the salad, cut some tomatoes, peppers and white onions.

4.  Chicken salad with fruits (~300 calories / serving)

The chicken salad with fruits combines sweet and salty flavours, and it’s a low-calorie, high-protein meal. You’ll need 2 chicken breasts, 1 orange, 2 apples, celery leaf, iceberg lettuce, and for the dressing, 1 plain yoghurt, 1 onion, mayonnaise and seasoning. First, cook the chicken breast until tender; meanwhile, cut fruits to cubes, clean and add the celery leaves. To prepare the dressing, mix the yoghurt with two spoonfuls of mayonnaise, add the sautéed onion, and then season to taste. Mix with the fruits and add the chicken breasts, cut into strips. Cool mixture for an hour, then heap on the iceberg lettuce and serve.

5.  Walnut crusted carp (~300-400 calories / serving)

Now, it’s a more substantial meal. It has more calories, but also lots of healthy ingredients. It contains about 300-400 calories per serving. You’ll need a few slices of carp fish, eggs, wholemeal flour, ground walnut, coconut fat and seasoning. Dip fish slices into flour, eggs and walnuts, then cook on coconut fat at low heat to prevent walnut from burning. While cooking, turn over the slices a few times and you can serve in about 15-20 minutes. For a side dish, sauté vegetables such as asparagus or broccoli, but a light salad is also a great choice.

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Low-carb, low-sugar desserts

1.  Low-calorie gerbaud cake (~200 calories / serving)

Low-calorie gerbeaud cake is a great favourite at Christmas. To prepare the cake, mix 350 g wholemeal flour with baking powder and 200 g coconut fat. Dissolve yeast in 10 ml low-fat milk, add flour, 1 egg, sweetener and 1 tbsp coconut oil. Cut dough into three; flatten one portion to the size of the baking tray, spread low-calorie apricot jam on it and sprinkle with ground walnut mixed with sweetener. Add the next and the third layer the same way, then put in the fridge for an hour. After letting it rest, bake in a pre-heated oven for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, melt high-cocoa chocolate and when the cake is ready, coat the top with chocolate. Let it cool and serve.

2.   Cottage cheese cream with fruits (~200 calories / serving)

What makes cottage cheese cream with fruits a holiday dessert is that you can smell orange in it. Slice some orange, kiwi, banana, nectarine and apple in a bowl and sprinkle with lemon juice. Sprinkle some sweetener powder on top, mix it and put it to a fridge. In a bowl, mix some low-fat cottage cheese, plain yoghurt, sweetener, add some lemon zest and sliced almonds. Cool it and serve on small saucers in layers of cottage cheese cream, fruits and cottage cheese cream again. Decorate top with a slice of nectarine each.

3.  Low-carb rollcake (~100 calories / serving)

You don’t even need to give up your Christmas rollcake - if you're craving for some, now there are great low-calorie options, too! Dispense some yeast, and then knead some dough mixing 500 g low-calorie (low-carb) cake flour, 250 g light margarine, 1 egg, a little salt and some sweetener. Let dough rise for 20 minutes. Cut dough into four portions to make four rollcakes. For the filling, you can use walnut or poppy seeds, and add some sweetener to taste; you may also want to add some lemon zest or raisins. You can make the filling creamy with some hot milk, but be careful not to make too thin. Press dough, spread oil over it, put the filling on top and roll it up. Brush the rolls on the baking tray with yolk and let them rest in a cool place. Then brush with egg white and let them rest again. Prick top with a fork and bake until ready at 200°C.

4.  Low-carb gingerbread (~80 calories / ginger bread)

Craving for some gingerbread? No problem, if it’s low-carb! Mix low-carb flour with a little fine-ground flour (altogether 500 g), add some sweetener, 1 tbsp baking soda, gingerbread spice blend, 2 eggs and 250 g honey mixed with agave syrup and 70 g margarine. Let the dough rest. If the dough doesn’t hold together, add some more margarine. Roll out the dough until a few mm in thickness and cut out any shapes you like. In a pre-heated oven, bake for 5-10 minutes, depending on thickness.

5.  Chocolate oat biscuits (~50 calories / biscuit)

Chocolate magic with oats is a very simple type of biscuit; you’ll need 100 g oat flour, 100 g wheat bran, 1 tsp baking soda, a little cocoa powder, 100 g butter, 1 egg and some sweetener. Beat egg with butter and sweetener until foamy, then add the other ingredients. Shape dough into disks and bake on a baking tray lined with baking paper at 180°C.

How to choose the best foods?

Go for a lot of vegetables in your starter course and main course, and choose low-fat meats and fish. It's important that cookies should have minimum sugar content, and you should rather choose slow carbs to make you feel full for loner. Avoid traditionally fatty and sugary meals, and when there are more than one courses, take only little portions of each. Go ahead and try each course, but don’t have as much of any of them that would make you feel full in itself. Think of all the effort you would have to make to get your pre-Christmas shape back! Instead, work on your next year’s shape right after the holiday!

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