Up your grain game this festive season
Author: Uncle Tobys Nutrition Ambassador, Kathleen Alleaume
19th December 2022
Tis’ the season to enjoy family, friends, and delicious food. While there is always place for the beloved mince pie, why not try some alternative treats to up your grain game this festive season for a healthier and tastier Christmas feast.
Start with breakfast
Christmas just isn’t complete without the humble pav for dessert; however, one single slice can add up to a whole meal’s worth of kilojoules, especially when topped with layer upon layer of whipped cream.
Why not try switching those traditional favourites to a delicious and nutritious breakfast like this Coconut Mango Pavlova Oat Bowl, a healthy breakfast alternative that still gives you that pavlova flavour to enjoy during the festive season.
Festive soirées mean entertaining platters and charcuterie boards filled with an abundance of cured meats, dips, cheese, and crackers. But unfortunately, many options are laden with saturated fat, excess sodium, and are low in fibre.
Swap in protein-rich varieties, such as hummus, tzatziki or vegetable-based beetroot or guacamole.
The ‘vehicle’ for the dip is also important. Water crackers, rice crackers or oven-baked options contain highly refined carbohydrates, so opt for crackers made with whole grains, such as this oat cracker made with seeds. Team the crackers with some extra virgin olive oil and oat dukkah for an added fibre and antioxidant boost.
Crisp and salty snacks are so easy to mindlessly munch whilst sipping on a glass of bubbles or waiting for your next course, but they also contain high levels of saturated fat and/or salt.
Instead, nibble on some unsalted nuts or plain popcorn. Popcorn is a low-kilojoule wholegrain option bursting with low fibre, while nuts contain healthy fats and plant-based protein – two essential mood-boosting nutrients.
For many, a Christmas menu is not complete without Turkey or Pork with obligatory stuffing. Instead of breadcrumbs or packet mix which may be high in salt andlow in fibre, experiment with different whole grains like ground rolled oats, quinoa, buckwheat, or bulgur to boost the plant-based protein and fibre content. For a flavour-boost, mix the grains with fresh herbs, spices, and dried fruit so to not compromise on the delicious stuffing flavour.