Celebrate the Holidays, Texas Style, With These 10 Recipes

Healthy holiday recipes you're sure to love

With the holidays right around the corner, you might be looking for the perfect new holiday recipes to spice up your usual menu of holiday foods. Making the same dishes every year can get boring, and a new dish can break up the monotony. But, sometimes, it’s daunting to think of new and healthy holiday recipes to add to your holiday spread. 

While the holidays are the perfect time to indulge, many people look for holiday recipes with healthier ingredients that they can still savor. Here are 10 recipes that are delicious and good for you, as you and your loved ones celebrate the holidays, Texas style.

Texans love hearty, healthy holiday foods.

1. Texas-Style Chili

One of the greatest comfort foods is a nice bowl of chili, and nobody does chili like Texans do chili. There is something so heartwarming about curling up with a big bowl of this wonderful concoction of flavors and getting lost in the sauce—literally. This holiday season, try this healthier take on classic Texan chili recipes. The leaner meat and inclusion of more fresh vegetables takes a Texas staple we all know and love, and makes it better for our stomachs and our consciousness.

2. Empanadas

Pumpkin empanadas are one of the staples for Texans around the holidays. Their rich and sweet pumpkin filling makes for the perfect addition to any holiday lineup, whether at the beginning, middle, or end of the meal. There is always a good reason to break out the flavors and spices of these sweet treats. This holiday, try this lighter version of traditional Texas style pumpkin empanadas—the lighter ingredients and focus on spices rather than sweetness give a healthier take on these favorites.

3. Cornbread

A tradition and comfort all wrapped into one, cornbread not only has massive ties to Texas, but the south in general. While it is absolutely mouth watering, this healthier alternative to the typical southern comfort food has less calories due to its whipped egg white ingredient and it uses a whole wheat flour to give additional health benefits.

4. Kolaches

A staple in bakeries and Texas homes, especially around the holidays, kolaches are a great addition to any holiday menu and are actually a healthier dish to bring out for your guests. Still packed with all the sweetness you would want in a holiday treat, they contain fewer calories than most desserts, and can be made with fresh fruits in order to add even more beneficial nutrients to your dish. Here’s a great kolache recipe to try out this holiday season.

5. Tamales

These corn-wrapped delicacies are sure to make your family’s mouths water at the sight of them. Tamales are a very popular dish, especially around the holidays, and with the season spanning from the end of November to early January, that can be quite a long time to be filling up on such fattening foods. Try this tamale recipe to help cut down on fat while still enjoying the delicious holiday standard.

6. Sweet Tea

Just by its name, you can already guess that traditional Texas tea is sugary and satisfying. Sweet tea is a staple, not just during the holidays, but year round, and over time, the amount of sugar intake can become unhealthy. If you’re someone who just can’t get behind unsweetened tea, fear not, there are other options! Here’s a healthier sweet tea recipe that will still satisfy your sweet tooth without the refined sweeteners.

7. Cowboy Caviar

A great way to get people socializing around your holiday table is by whipping out a big bowl of cowboy caviar for an appetizer and letting the masses feast. While many cowboy caviars call for store bought Italian dressing, this one offers a much healthier homemade Italian dressing recipe that replaces the traditional jam-packed with preservatives, store-bought kind. Happy scooping!

8. Sopapillas

Everybody loves a sweet treat at the end of a holiday party, and Texans love their sopapillas. They are a sugary dessert that tastes like you stepped right into a sugar cloud. Instead of the traditional high-in-sugar-and-fat sopapilla recipes, try this low-fat version to leave your guests feeling happy with their dessert and happy with their diet choices too.

9. Pecan Pie

A must-have in your holiday spread is this traditional Texan dessert. Typically, it is filled with store-bought ingredients and a boat load of sugar to give it that mouth-watering effect everyone knows and loves. This holiday season, you can enjoy that same sweet treat without sacrificing your healthy eating options with this pecan pie recipe.

10. Barbecue Brisket

We can’t forget about one of the most famous Texas foods of all time: the barbecue brisket. It is no surprise that brisket is one of the most delightful and savory staples, and with the holidays coming up, you’ll want a recipe you can sink your teeth into. Here is a barbecue brisket recipe that doesn’t sacrifice the flavors you love, or your commitment to healthy eating.

Be sure to show your teeth some love too!

When indulging in these delicious and healthy recipes this holiday season, don’t forget to keep up with your oral health! It is important to focus not just on your overall health, but your teeth’s health as well. Make sure you are still keeping up with brushing and flossing regularly, as simple practices such as this can help reduce the risk of gum disease, cavities, and other oral hygiene problems that might arise. 

A fast fact about tooth brushing that many people don’t know is that it is best to wait 30 minutes after eating to brush your teeth, so make sure you’re not brushing and flossing immediately after indulging in these treats. If you have any questions about how you can keep up good oral hygiene throughout the holiday season, you can contact us at Davis Family Dental Care and schedule an appointment with our staff.