Best Substitutes for Our Favorite Cheat Meals

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 Having cheat meals can be such a delight, but those pesky extra calories and guilt can be real buzzkills, right? 

 

But….here’s the good news for you – there are plenty of scrumptious alternatives that won’t sabotage your health journey!

 

Here are some really amazing alternatives to those irresistible cheat meals you’re craving for. 

 

These choices will definitely let you enjoy your yummy treats while saying goodbye to guilt and embracing a healthier lifestyle.

 

Let’s get into it!

Pizza

Most people like pizza as a cheat meal, but its high fat and calorie content raises certain questions. Fortunately, you can still have a delicious substitute by creating a handmade pizza with cauliflower crust. 

 

Cauliflower crust is lower in carbs and calories while still providing that satisfying crunch. 

 

Top it with your favorite veggies, lean protein, and a moderate amount of cheese for a guilt-free pizza night.

French Fries

Are you craving salty, delicious, and crispy french fries? Opt for sweet potato fries instead. 

 

You should eat sweet potatoes because they are really a healthier alternative to deep-fried white potato fries since they are loaded with nutrients like vitamins A and C and can be baked or air-fried. Season them with a pinch of salt and your favorite spices for a flavorful treat.

Ice Cream

Choose a bowl of Greek yogurt with fresh fruit and a honey drizzle when you’re craving creamy, cool ice cream. Greek yogurt has a creamy, ice cream-like texture and is high in protein. 

 

Additionally, the fruit’s and honey’s natural sweetness will satisfy your sweet craving without the extra sugars and fat found in conventional ice cream.

Burgers

Mostly burgers are a cheat meal, but many of us do not know that in burger there are many calories and saturated fats. Substitute a lean turkey or plant-based burger for the beef patty. 

 

These substitutes have a similar delicious flavor and have less saturated fat. Use a whole-grain bun and pile on a lot of vegetables to your burger for an added nutritional benefit.

Pasta

Use pasta made from healthy grains or legumes instead of conventional white pasta. Pasta made from whole grains has more fiber and nutrients, while pasta made from legumes gives your meal more protein. 

 

Add tasty tomato sauce on top, then top with lean protein, vegetables, and other ingredients for a filling meal without the guilt.

Crispy Chicken

Although fried chicken is a favorite of many, it is known for being high in calories and unhealthy fats. Excellent substitutes that deliver the same crispy texture with substantially less fat include chicken tenders cooked in the oven or chicken strips air-fried. 

 

To make it even healthier, cover it with whole-grain breadcrumbs or almond flour.

Bars of chocolate

Are you craving some chocolate? Compared to milk chocolate or candy bars, dark chocolate is a more rich nutrient option. There are really less sugar calories in dark chocolate. 

 

For the maximum health advantages, choose dark chocolate with a cocoa content of 70% or greater. To satisfy your want for chocolate, eat it in moderation.

Fried potatoes

Potato chips have harmful fats and a high sodium content. Instead, make your own baked vegetable chips. Vegetables like sweet potatoes, zucchini, or kale can be thinly sliced, seasoned with a little olive oil and your favorite seasonings, then baked until crispy. 

 

Without the guilt, you will get that delicious crunch.

Macaroni and Cheese

Creamy macaroni and cheese can be made healthier by using whole-grain pasta and a cheese sauce made from low-fat milk and reduced-fat cheese. 

 

Add some steamed broccoli or spinach to increase the nutritional value and give it a colorful twist. This way, you can enjoy this comfort food without the excess calories.

Donuts

Although they are a delicious, sugary treat, donuts are not good for your waistline. Donuts filled with protein or baked provide a healthy alternative. 

 

To develop a guilt-free substitute, look for or make meals that incorporate nutritious grains, protein powder, and natural sweeteners. Even while they don’t taste exactly like classic doughnuts, they can nonetheless sate your sweet tooth.

Soda

We all are aware of the fact that soda is full of sugar and useless calories. Sparkling water can quench your thirst without adding extra sugar or calories, especially when combined with a splash of natural fruit juice or a squeeze of lemon or lime. 

 

You’ll still experience the reviving fizz without the negative health effects.

French toast and waffles

Breakfast favorites like pancakes and waffles are frequently topped with sweet syrups and harmful ingredients. 

 

Choose whole-grain pancakes or waffles with oat or almond flour for more fiber and nutrients. For a wonderful and healthy substitute for syrup, top them with fresh berries and a dollop of Greek yogurt.

Tacos

Especially when stuffed with cheese and sour cream, traditional tacos may pack a calorie punch. Use black beans, lean ground turkey, or chicken as the protein for your tacos to make them healthier. 

 

For a better option, choose maize or whole-grain tortillas as opposed to fried shells.

Chinese Takeout

Chinese takeout food often has a lot of sodium and bad fats. Make your own homemade, healthier versions of Chinese classics. 

 

Lean proteins like chicken, shrimp, or tofu should be stir-fried with a lot of veggies and a low-sodium sauce. For a filling and healthy lunch, serve it with brown rice or cauliflower rice.

Cereal

Numerous cereals sold today are low in nutrients and heavy in sugar. Select whole-grain cereals with little to no added sugar and serve them with berries or fresh fruit. 

 

As an alternative, choose homemade granola made with nuts and seeds for a filling and nutrient-rich breakfast.

The Takeaway

Many people incorporate cheat meals into their diets, and the good news is, they don’t have to be roadblocks on your path to achieving fitness and health goals. 

 

When it comes to achieving your weight loss goals, staying on course is entirely possible while relishing your favorite flavors through clever adjustments and embracing healthier options.

 

Keep in mind, the golden rule here is moderation. These alternatives can serve as your covert ally in satisfying your cravings without leaving behind any of that pesky guilt.

 

So, the next time that cheat meal temptation strikes, consider these healthier options to satisfy your desires without the unwanted consequences. Your taste buds and your fitness journey will thank you!

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