Plain yogurt (I prefer greek) is a fantastic substitute for sour cream and mayonnaise. You can use it as a direct swap for sour cream, and as a substitute for mayonnaise just mix 1/4 of mayo to 3/4 strained yogurt for whatever amount the recipe calls for. You’ll save a ton of fat and calories, but even my husband can’t tell the difference in the taste. Just make sure you get the plain yogurt – trust me when I say that accidentally getting using vanilla yogurt in place of sour cream or mayo will make for an interesting (errr…) flavor sensation.
Cauliflower is a healthy, yummy alternative to mashed potatoes. Steam/boil cauliflower and add in your usual potato seasoning (milk, butter, salt, pepper, cream cheese, horseradish, etc.) for a light alternative that does not taste “diet.”
Quinoa is a grain that acts like a protein. Sound too good to be true. It’s not. I use it in place of rice in all my mediterranean and asian dishes, and it gives a lovely nutty flavor that is nice without being overpowering. I’ve made quinoa cakes by adding egg to cooked quinoa and then frying patties in a bit of olive oil. Last week I even used prepared quinoa in place of breadcrumbs in meatloaf.
I recommend these substitutes with the disclaimer that they should not be used as an excuse to overeat. They aren’t calorie free, they are simply good alternatives to less nutritious/higher calorie options. I hope you try them and like them.
As always, I believe you should play with your food and enjoy your food. The more you pay attention to what goes in, the better understanding you’ll have of what you get out of your body.