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Ingredient swaps: Get creative and healthy at the same time

Caulifower 'rice' is super-easy to make and is far, far healthier than its starchy counterpart. ISTOCK

Ingredient swaps: Get creative and healthy at the same time

Looking to make the healthier choice when it comes to your cooking? These ingredient swaps are an easy way to make small changes with big benefits – without ever having to sacrifice on flavour.

Ingredient swaps: Get creative and healthy at the same time

Swap white rice for ‘cauliflower rice’

If you’re looking to cut down on carbs, this is the perfect swap for you.

Cauliflower is easily made into 'rice' by blitzing or grating. ISTOCK

Cauliflower is easily made into ‘rice’ by blitzing or grating. ISTOCK

Low in calories and high in fibre, cauliflower rice is super easy to make (simply chop up a head of cauliflower, pop it in a food processor and process until finely chopped) and adds a subtle yet delicious flavour to your meals.

Great to serve with curries, stir-fries, or pretty much anywhere you’d use white rice.

Try our recipe: Prawns with Mexican cauliflower rice

Swap sour cream for Greek yoghurt

Thick and tangy, Greek yoghurt is a great alternative for sour cream in both savoury and sweet cooking.

Greek yoghurt is delicious with pork or lamb souvlaki and flat-breads. ISTOCK

Greek yoghurt is delicious with pork or lamb souvlaki and flat-breads. ISTOCK

It’s easy to make a straight substitution in cold dishes like dips and salad dressings, and it can even be used in your baking. Just use wherever the recipe calls for sour cream for a big reduction in fat, plus an added boost of protein and calcium.

Try our recipe: Lamb and mint yoghurt pizza

Swap butter for avocado

We all know that avocado is delicious on sandwiches in the place of butter, but did you know you can also use it in your baking?

It may not look like it but this creamy chocolate mousse is made up of avocado. ISTOCK

It may not look like it but this creamy chocolate mousse is made up of avocado. ISTOCK

Simply mash ripe avocado flesh, and use it instead of half the butter in your cakes and muffins (you can swap out all the butter for avocado if you like, but the results will be flatter and the texture won’t be quite the same).

In doing so you’re reducing the amount of fat and calories, and adding all those great nutrients avocado is known for.

Try our recipe: Raw chocolate and avocado tart

Swap pasta for spiralised vegetables

We’re all on board the spiralising trend, and for good reason – it’s another great way to cut processed carbs from your diet.

Spaghetti squash produces pasta-like threads when baked, making it a perfect substitute for spaghetti itself. ISTOCK

Spaghetti squash produces pasta-like threads when baked, making it a perfect substitute for spaghetti itself. ISTOCK

Whether you prefer to use zucchini, carrot, sweet potato or something else as your ‘oodle’ base, it’s a great way to cut down on calories and boost your intake of essential vitamins.

Try our spiralised veggie recipes

Swap sugar for spices

Try nutmeg, cinnamon or vanilla with your coffee in place of sugar for a sweet, healthier surprise. ISTOCK

Try nutmeg, cinnamon or vanilla with your coffee in place of sugar for a sweet, healthier surprise. ISTOCK

It’s no secret that we all consume too much sugar. Lower your intake by replacing sugar with cinnamon in your coffee and on your breakfast cereal – it adds a hint of sweetness without the calories. If you don’t like cinnamon you can also use nutmeg or vanilla.

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