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Holiday baking tips help make meals fun

As the holidays approaches us fast, think of little changes you can make this holiday season to create healthier meals for everyone to enjoy!
Tip 1: Many holiday foods include dairy products. Enjoy these foods during your celebrations, but use skimmed milk and other ‘low’ or ‘no’ fat dairy products in your recipes whenever possible.
Tip 2: Use recipes with unsweetened applesauce or mashed ripe bananas instead of butter.
Tip 3: Try cutting the amount of sugar listed in recipes in half or even try Splenda, stevia, or fruit sweeteners as a substitute.
Tip 4: Use spices to add flavor such as cinnamon, allspice, or nutmeg instead of salt.
Tip 5: Use 2 egg whites or ½ cup of egg substitute per egg instead of whole eggs.
Tip 6: In place of chocolate chips, try dried fruit.
Tip 7: For nuts, try using ½ of the amount required in a recipe.
Tip 8: Make sure half your grains are whole grains. Incorporate whole wheat flour for your baking needs.
Tip 9: Try using a graham cracker crust instead of the traditional pie crust for your favorite pie dishes.
Tip 10: Go to to improve holiday recipes and get healthier results.
Use these quick and easy tips to decrease the amount of fat and calories in your holiday desserts and many other dishes. As you can see, many ingredients such as fat-free dairy and other low calorie food products make excellent substitutes in your favorite baked recipes!

Holiday Recipe
Applesauce Loaf Cakes
1/2 cup walnuts (chopped)
1 1/2 cups applesauce
1 egg
1 cup sugar
1 ½ tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour (all purpose)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (ground)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (ground)
1 cup raisins

1. Wash hands well with soap and warm water.
2. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 (8x4x2 inch) loaf pans.
3. Toast walnuts in an ungreased skillet pan. Stir while heating on medium-low heat for 5-7 minutes. They are done when they are brown and smell nutty. Set aside to cool.
4. Mix applesauce, egg, sugar, oil and vanilla in a large bowl.
5. Mix flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a smaller bowl.
6. Pour flour mixture into applesauce mixture.
7. Stir in raisins and cooled toasted nuts.
8. Pour half of the batter into each greased pan. Bake for 45-55 minutes.
9. Remove cakes from the oven. Cool for 10 minutes. Remove from pans to finish cooling. For best taste, let cakes cool a few hours before serving.

Brittney J. Seay is the Associate Area Nutrition Agent-EFNEP Supervisor Morehouse, Richland, East and West Carroll parishes.