Super Bowl Heart Healthy Snacks
Try These Heart Healthy Snacks For a Fun Super Bowl Time
In my house, we have 3 seasons - Spring, Baseball and Football; which means that Super Bowl Sunday is the culmination of a lot of weeks of binge-watching pigskin and making snacks. On a side note, I do believe I heard my husband actually say at the beginning of the season, "Hun, you're a widow for the next 16 weeks". And between fantasy football, college football and the NFL, I can feel the love AND am ready to have my husband back.
With any good sporting event, food and snacks are a vital component, and when we're talking about the Super Bowl, well... that's the BIG one and you don't want to disappoint. Now, no one wants to be that person that brings/eats cucumber sandwiches and tofu while the rest of the table has the other meaty, cheesy and football-y goodness. Admittedly, it can be a challenge to be creative with your health and football snacks while keeping in mind your jersey-wearing friends.
To the rescue in this situation, is American Heart Month, which falls during the entire month of February, and is a great excuse to make some healthier versions of Super Bowl snacks. In addition to healthier eating, American Heart Month promotes the awareness of heart disease, (which is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States), and different ways that you can prevent this ailment. These ways include:
- Healthy lifestyles; such as mental health, stress management and sleep quality/quantity
- Quitting smoking
- Physical activity
- Visiting your Primary Care Provider for age-appropriate screenings and tests
Ok, back to the snacks and healthier eating component of American Heart Month.
I've compiled some of my favorite fall football snacks that I would recommend, and many I have tried and have the approval of some hard-core football fans. I have included a few reasons why they are healthier, and hopefully it gives you the "oomph" to check them out.
For some of these suggestions, I have included the heart-healthy recipes--yum!
- Instead of Chips and Dip, try baked chips and salsa. Baked chips will have less fat and calories than normal chips with the same crunch and salt factor. Salsa has very few calories and vegetables that contain various vitamins and minerals.
- Skip the Nachos with beef, cheese and all the fixings, try sweet potato nachos. Salty, crunchy tortilla chips are a delight, but carry lots of extra carbs, sodium and calories. Swap out the chips and beef by using sweet potatoes, black beans and avocado for a tasty and nutritious treat. Bonus: by using light cheese, you will slash calories and fat without losing flavor. Check out the recipe here!
- Change-up your bacon wrapped little smokies for turkey bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers: In our family, little smokies wrapped in bacon and dredged in brown sugar are like gold! These modified poppers still have the meat component, but are going to have more nutrients due to the jalapeno pepper and less fat and calories with the turkey bacon and light cream cheese. See recipe here.
- Replace your cheese and sausage tray with some Caprese Kabobs. This recipe is my JAM! You have a whole flavor profile going on with the salty mozzarella (less calories than yellow cheese), the tart tomatoes and the summer-like basil. Also, let's be honest...anything on a stick is way more fun to eat too! Recipe can be found here!
- Chili with beef is always a staple at super bowl parties, but why not try chili with chicken and beans instead! It's filling and you can jazz it up with spices, vegetables, and low fat/cholesterol chicken instead of beef. Add beans for a hearty-factor and extra protein and fiber.
- Instead of deep fried wins/buffalo chicken try some saucy boneless chicken wings with red ranch sauce! Now since I'm a vegetarian, these recipes are not "tried and true" (I'm more of a buffalo cauliflower type of person.) However, both of these recipes are going to offer you less calories, fat and carbs while not sacrificing flavor. Yum! Recipe 1. Recipe 2.
- French fries are amazing this time of year. How about trying a baked potato instead? Baked potatoes have a bunch of great vitamins and minerals, and the sky is the limit for adding toppings. By trying broccoli, salsa, low fat sour cream, Greek yogurt and chives, you have yourself a great side dish or meal that will leave you feeling satisfied. (Just be aware of butter, cheese and bacon that can be calorie bombs!)
- Browns can be a very tempting dessert around Super Bowl Sunday, but why not try something like Sweet Tart Raspberry Phyllo Bites. This recipe utilizes light and flaky Phyllo dough, along with raspberries and strawberry jam to satisfy your sweet tooth. There's a touch of sugar in this recipe, but much of it is naturally occurring. Make your own Raspberry Phyllo Bites with this awesome recipe!
- Instead of sugar cookies with frosting, why not try a fruit pizza?! This one is a bit of a stretch, but when we add fruit to anything, it makes it healthy, right? I wish :) Roll out the sugar cookies thin, and use minimal topping (think low fat or fat free), and load those bad boys with a bunch of fruit for a few more vitamins and nutrients.
I don't know about you, but I'm ready for this upcoming Sunday... and for Heart Health Month. I'm a big advocate for the motto, "Everything in moderation", however, it is kind of fun to find recipes that you know are better for you, but still have great taste and flavor. If you make any of these recipes, tag Fort HealthCare on social media- it'd be great to see what you're doing for the Super Bowl.
Until next time!