Recipe Swaps for a Healthier Hanukkah

flamesIt’s almost time to light the menorah, spin the dreidel and of course, indulge in some of your favorite healthy Hanukkah recipes. If there is ever an occasion to indulge, a holiday is certainly a good one. Though it’s reasonable to help yourself to small portions of your favorite dishes on a day of celebration, you can also create lighter alternatives.

Instead of Beef Brisket…make Spiced Pot Roast. Brisket is a notoriously fatty cut of meat. To trim calories and get more bang for your nutritional buck, purchase the flat “first-cut” section and prepare it with plenty of fresh herbs and spices instead of in a sauce with added fat.

Instead of Noodle Kugel…make Sweet Potato Kugel from Cheap, Healthy, Good. Kugel, which some liken to a “Jewish casserole” is traditionally made with noodles cooked in a creamy base with raisins, nuts or fruit. A healthier version is made with sweet potatoes, which are full of Vitamin A, fiber and potassium.

Instead of challah with butter…make Ima’s Whole Wheat Challah from Not Derby Pie. Whole wheat flour will give a nutty flavor and delicious texture to this traditional braided bread. Skip the butter and use a gingered apple chutney to save calories, fat and saturated fat.

Instead of fried potato latkes…make Zucchini Latkes. “A healthy take on potato latkes substitutes shredded zucchini for shredded potato,” said Kate Brown, recipe developer, trainer, and healthy living writer for DailyBurn. “Instead of serving with sour cream, serve them with a dollop of plain nonfat Greek yogurt.”

Brown shared her recipe for this veggie-packed spin on a Hanukkah classic.

Zucchini Latkes

2 cups shredded zucchini
1 tablespoon grated onion
3 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup peanut oil for frying
1 cup plain nonfat greek yogurt


In a medium bowl, combine the zucchini, onion, eggs, flour and salt. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil until hot. Place large spoonfuls of the zucchini mixture into the oil, while pressing down with a wooden spoon to form thick patties. Brown on one side, turn and flip brown on the other. Let drain on paper towels. Serve hot with a dollop of plain nonfat Greek yogurt.

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