Delicious Ideas for Healthier Holiday Treats
From festive gatherings to family traditions featuring all of our favorite foods, what’s not to love about the holiday season? To help you make the most of this cherished time of year, we’re sharing recipes and ideas for holiday treats that also pack a nutritional punch. From incorporating wheat germ to taking advantage of seasonal produce, we hope these ideas inspire you to spend some time in the kitchen this season.
Holiday Baking Tips
Do you have a favorite cake, muffin or cookie recipe that typically calls for butter? Experiment with using coconut oil instead. The medium-chain fatty acids found in coconut oil are metabolized differently by the body and may help to raise good (HDL) cholesterol and lower bad (LDL) cholesterol. While all the potential health benefits of coconut oil haven’t been definitely proved, many bakers use it regardless for the hint of tropical flavor it imparts. It’s also a great substitute for butter when baking for vegan friends or family members.
When it comes to baking, you can also replace some of the all-purpose flour in holiday recipes with wheat germ. Our handy Wheat Germ Substitution Chart walks you through the substitution process and also gives you new ideas for pancakes, bread crumbs, salad dressings and more.
Our Favorite Holiday Treats
Ideas and recipes abound for holiday treats and baked goods — but not all of them offer added nutrition and incredible flavor at the same time. Try a few that do:
Wrap up some holiday goodies. Looking for an edible gift to give this year? Your friends and family will love this Chocolate, Pistachio, Dried Cherry and Wheat Germ Bark, which offers a palate-pleasing combination of flavors and texture. Nut lovers will rave about these Wheaty-Sweety Pecans and Spicy Holiday Nuts with Wheat Germ, while coffee drinkers will look forward to trying your Chocolate, Almond and Wheat Germ Biscotti, perfect for teacher or secretary gifts.
Be the star of the cookie swap. If you’re attending a cookie exchange party, bring a platter of these adorable Gingerbread Cookies made with our honey crunch wheat germ. Or break with the cookie tradition and make Dark Chocolate Truffles with Wheat Germ. Trust us, no one will hold it against you.
Offer to bring dessert. Serve this Oatmeal Nut Crunch Apple Pie at a family gathering or office potluck. Packed with whole grains and fresh apples, it’s not only delicious but also nutritious.
Make breakfast extra special. Treat out-of-town visitors with these Whole Wheat 30-Minute Mini Cinnamon Buns in the morning. For an added boost of nutrients, replace 1/4 cup of the whole wheat pastry flour with wheat germ. Guests will also enjoy waking up to these Pumpkin Waffles with Wheat Germ and Pear Ginger Muffins with Wheat Germ.
What is your favorite holiday tradition? Leave a comment below — we’d love to hear from you!