Condiments are the double-edged sword of a healthy meal. On one hand, they’re delicious. On the other, they’re arguably the most unhealthy part of any meal. Look at the nutrition label before you pour ketchup on your fries, or add mayo to your burger. Unless it’s a well-made condiment, it’s probably packed full of fillers, added sugars, and carbs. Ingredients may even include some things you can’t pronounce or colored dyes – a huge red flag to any clean eater. This is not what you want to be putting into your body; yet, you shouldn’t have to suffer a condiment-less meal when they add a great deal of color and flavor to any meal.
Basically, there are two ways to make condiments healthier. Buy a trusted, clean-label brand at the grocery store or online – something organic, natural, and low-calorie. Or, make your own at home. Surprisingly enough, just about every fruit or veggie can be turned into a delicious healthy-alternative condiment.
Buy Better Condiments
Your local grocery store may not offer healthy condiments. Or, their so-called healthy options may be masquerading as organic when in reality they’re just as unhealthy as traditional brands. You don’t want Frankenstein condiments. Look for dedicated health brands you can trust, such as Chosen Foods, which offers a healthy mayo. This non-GMO mayo is high in Omega 9 fatty acids and heart- healthy fats. It’s good for you, and it comes in several flavors so the sky is the limit for recipes that will delight your taste buds!
When shopping, be sure to look at the label. The nutrition facts and ingredients will tell you everything you need to know. The calories are at the top but don’t stop reading here. Calories aren’t the only thing that matter, especially when added sugar is one of the leading causes of obesity. Sure, sugar lends flavor to condiments, but it’s not the only way to get the flavor and it’s far from the best.
You’re not limited to tomato-based condiments. Of course, you can and should make your own ketchup (if you love ketchup), but there are other condiments to consider. Train yourself to try new things, such as new flavors of barbecue, pesto, or horseradish spreads. Some recipes won’t be your favorite, but It’s all about finding what you like.
The Daily Burn offers 13 Amazingly Easy DIY Condiments Recipes. These include a spicy roasted red pepper dip, healthier ketchup, kimchi, and more. Make sure to save your condiments in easy to transport containers, so you can bring them with you to restaurants and dinner parties.
Check out my recipe for a Turkey Burger Bowl that includes a recipe for DIY sriracha mayo. It’s spicy, low-carb, and delicious. Best of all, it’s good on lots of things. Not into the spicy flavor of sriracha, that’s okay. Sub one of the other condiments you’ve bought or made for a flavor you like. It’s all about recreating the flavors you love and are used to without too much hassle.
Being healthy shouldn’t be about deprivation. It should be a tasty and sustainable lifestyle choice. The best thing about switching to healthy condiments is that they’re not empty calories, like traditional condiments are. They should give your system a nice boost and fill you with energy. That energy boost will keep you fit and active, and not sluggish. It’s a win-win with healthy condiments!