Enjoy your favourite winter comfort foods guilt free with these handy recipe makeovers for pasta, curries, hot pots and more!
Pasta Bolognese:
  1. Choose extra-lean, or ‘heart smart’ beef mince. This will save you 11g of total fat and 250kJ calories per 100g, compared with regular beef mince. Plus – if you substitute ¼ of the extra lean beef mince in your recipe with tinned lentils, you will save a further 5g of total fat, and add 6.5g of dietary fibre
  2. We suggest use fresh and tinned tomatoes for the bulk of your pasta sauce, and adding additional fresh or dried seasonings. However, if you’re choosing a bottled pasta sauce – check the Nutrition Information Panel to make sure it has >5g of total fat and >10g of sugars per 100ml.
  3. Substitute half or all of your spaghetti with spiralised zucchini (i.e. ‘zoodles’) and save 200 calories and 40g carbohydrates per cup of pasta replaced. You can buy a spiraliser (i.e. Veggetti), or buy the zoodles pre-made from the fresh fruit and vegetable aisle in Coles or Woolies.
Chicken Pot Pie:
  1. Replace cream with evaporated milk and save a whopping 30g of total fat and 200 calories per 100ml.
  2. If using bacon, use the middle rasher and trim off all the fat. This will save you up to 40g of total fat per 100g!
  3. Replace frozen regular puff pastry with frozen regular filo pastry. This will save you 13g of total fat per 100g. Alternatively, use sweet potato or cauliflower mash to top your pie!
‘One pot’ casseroles and slow cooked meals:
  1. Choose recipes that use lean cuts of meat. By choosing lean beef (i.e. diced beef blade or chuck steak) over lamb shank and osso bucco, you will save yourself 12g of saturated fat per serve. Alternatively, opt for fish or vegetarian proteins like chickpeas, and cut down saturated fat to <2g per serve.
  2. Avoid using large quantities of added fat from butter or oil. Often, you can scale back significantly on what the recipe recommends, without changing the overall result. For example, use only 2tsp of oil to grease the pan instead of ¼ cup, and save yourself 400 calories per recipe.
  3. Use stock or water instead of wine, and save yourself 70 calories per 100ml.
Thai green chicken curry:
  1. Use chicken breast fillets instead of chicken thigh. This will save you 4g of saturated fat per 100g.
  2. Replace regular coconut milk and cream with Nestle Carnation Evaporated Milk with Coconut Essence. This will save you 15g – 30g of total fat per 100ml, respectively! Alternatively, cook your curry without the cream, and add a dollop of natural yoghurt at the end.
  3. Serve your curry with quinoa instead of white rice, and save 15g of carbohydrate whilst boosting your protein and fibre intake. Alternatively, try ‘cauliflower rice’ or Slendier’s low-cal rice made from Konjac root – both of which are low in calories and carbohydrates.
Don’t forget the vegetables!
Once you’ve made the above recipe modifications, take a moment to consider vegetables! Using vegetables to bulk-up your recipe will reduce the calorie content per serve, and provide an additional range of nutrients and colours!