Flavorings such as sauces, dressings and other condiments are the easiest way to make a healthy plate of food go overboard on calories. Often times, when trying to lose weight and be in a caloric deficit, the assumption is the food is bland. This does not have to be the case. There are options to add flavor with minimal calories.
You will notice all of my suggestions are low in fat. When you’re eating lower calories, it’s often a fair trade to minimize flavorings higher in fat to include foods with greater volume. The volume will be what satiates you and, if you’re doing it right, those will also have plenty of micronutrients.
However, excluding foods higher in fat indefinitely is not necessarily the best route. We have long since debunked claims that foods with high cholesterol will have you drop dead of a heart attack. Foods like butter (yeah..butter!), coconut oil, olive oil, flax, eggs, nut butters, etc. all have amazing health benefits and are high in fat.
The issue here is moderation. Fats have twice the caloric content as protein and carbs, so less is more, literally. Fats are also the least thermogenic macronutrient, so they will also keep you satiated for quite a long time as well. These foods just don’t give you that stuffed to the brim feeling that a huge bowl of veggies will. That feeling, however is short term compared to fats.
Low Calorie Flavor
1. Coconut Aminos
Don’t be fooled by the name, this is essentially a FAR superior substation for soy sauce. If you haven’t made the switch yet, it’s highly recommended. Click the picture for an amazingly detailed description of all the benefits coconut aminos have over soy sauce. Here’s a brief list:
- 10 calories per teaspoon (which gets your pretty far)
- Free of soy, GMO’s, and is 65% lower in sodium
- Increased amino acid intake can aid in muscular recovery, as well as increased immune support, energy levels and brain function
2. Honey or Dijon Mustard
Mustard is a crazy versatile condiment that you can put on more than just your hot dog! I personally like to add a bit of sweetness to everything, so I go honey mustard. Combine the first three ingredients on this list and you have a dressing for any and all vegetable combinations! Why I like this one:
- 10 calories per teaspoon
- Organic and GMO free with only 7 ingredients
3. Liquid Stevia
I know this isn’t technically a condiment or dressing, but we’re talking about adding flavor here. The list just would be complete without it. Most powdered stevia sweeteners have a few fillers to make it take its granular form. However this zero calorie, all natural sweetener is free of fillers and blends really well in drinks, dressings, cooking mixtures, etc. I keep a bottle with me everywhere I go.
4. BBQ Sauce
Barbecue sauce is another one I can’t live without. I use barbecue sauce on salads more often than salad dressing. It has a stronger flavor and, of course, has the sweetness that I love. I’m recommending Annie’s again because:
- 35 calories per 2 Tablespoons
- Organic and GMO free
- Low in sugar (4g)
5. Bolthouse Yogurt Dressings
Bolthouse Farms yogurt dressings are the only actual dressings I keep in the fridge. You can find these in the refrigerated section, often times in the produce area. The brand has a wide variety of flavors to substitute for that high calorie one you used to use.
- 35 calories per 2 Tablespoons
- Free of preservatives, artificial flavorings, and gluten
These are just my top 5 go-to sauces and condiments, among a long list. Where can you get these items? The first four are all available at thrivemarket.com. I am not in any way affiliated with Thrive, however I love what they stand for and what they have to offer the health-food-seeking population. They are a membership based site, but the prices offset that by a long shot. My favorite part: they offer free shipping on most orders and give away memberships to families in need. These items should also be available in most big box grocery stores as well.
Eat Well and Share the Love
If you use any of these products, what is you favorite flavor or brand? If you have other items in your top 5, what are they? Share any extras favorite you have with our community below. Also please feel free to share this article to grow our community and spread all the healthy and happy feels!
Pin For Later!