Two All-American Comfort Foods Made a Little Healthier
Dish Up Americana
Meatloaf and tuna casserole are some of the most popular searches on Allrecipes. They're nostalgia in a dish and can be thrown together on a busy night. Whether you're seeking cheesy indulgence or a lightened-up version, we have a recipe for dinner tonight. Read on to get the classic versions and to see how we make easy ingredient swaps for the lighter versions.
By Caitlyn Diming, RD
Meatloaf: Indulge vs. Go Healthy
Indulge: Cheeseburger Meatloaf
COOKINGMOM says, "To prevent the cheese from oozing, let the loaf rest 15 minutes before cutting." CHRISTIE adds, "I glazed the top of the meatloaf with a mixture of ketchup, apple cider vinegar, and brown sugar."
Go Healthy: Turkey and Quinoa Meatloaf
"I always found turkey meatloaf to be quite disappointing. The flavor is usually lacking as well as the texture. Well, I have developed this version that has a great texture and a surprisingly good flavor (my brother couldn't even tell that it wasn't beef)! The secret is the quinoa, which adds wonderful texture and is much nuttier than breadcrumbs." — Andrew Benoit
- Replacing ground beef with lean turkey lowers fat, including unhealthy saturated fat.
- Using a little of strong-flavored ingredients — such as hot sauce, tomato paste, and Worcestershire — instead of relying on gobs of cheese adds flavor without excessive sodium and calories.
- Swapping in quinoa for bread crumbs adds protein and fiber. And quinoa is gluten-free! To make the entire recipe gluten-free, look for a gluten-free Worcestershire, such as Lea & Perrins.
Tuna Casserole: Indulge vs. Go Healthy
Indulge: Quick Tuna Casserole
"This is simple and perfect for a single mom like me to put together after getting home late," says MSTAMMI. KINSEY BURKE says, "I added two stalks of sliced celery and sauteed them with the onion and garlic before adding to the pot."
Go Healthy: Healthier Tuna Noodle Casserole
"Opting for low-fat Alfredo sauce and sour cream lightens up this weeknight-friendly tuna casserole that packs plenty of veggies alongside whole wheat pasta, keeping it hearty enough to take to your next potluck. Garnish with fresh dill." — Betty Soup
- Opting for light dairy products, such as sour cream and Alfredo sauce, keeps this dish convenient without the calories and fat skyrocketing.
- Reducing the amount of noodles and adding vegetables cuts calories but not portion size.
- Using whole-wheat bread crumbs, lemon wedges, and fresh dill instead of salty potato chips adds texture and flavor without the sodium.
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This article originally appeared in the August/September 2019 issue of Allrecipes Magazine.