30 Healthy Christmas Recipes That Still Have a Little Bit of Cheese
How to lighten up the holidays—with less butter and more vegetables.
Dieting during the holidays makes you feel like a Grinch at the dinner table, but don't worry—there's a happy medium between putting yourself into a food coma with buttery carbs and eating like a rabbit. Prepare for New Year's resolutions early this year with healthy-ish Christmas recipes, many of which still allow you to indulge in a little bit of cheese.
Skillet Phyllo Pie with Butternut Squash, Kale, and Goat Cheese
When overlapping the phyllo over the filling in this recipe, work carefully but quickly so the phyllo doesn’t dry out before baking.
Charred Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Oranges
Remember that thing about not putting acid on raw meat? This charred chicken recipe doesn’t abide by that rule, and now that we've tried it, we don’t, either.
Roasted Red Peppers and Cherry Tomatoes with Ricotta
This high-summer salad hits every note on the sweet (red pepper), sour (tomato), salty (ricotta and anchovy), and bitter (olive) scale.
New Potatoes with Parmesan, Black Pepper, and Gribiche Dressing
If you can’t find new potatoes at the farmers’ market, look for Peewee potatoes or very small Yukon Golds at the grocery store.
Spaghetti Aglio e Olio with Lots of Kale
You will think this pasta recipe calls for an absurd amount of kale, but it will shrink a ton when cooked.
Marinated Goat Cheese with Herbs and Spices
Looking for a throw-together app that seems way fancier than it is? Look no further than this gussied-up goat cheese situation.
Fattoush with Queso Fresco
Toasty pita chips, crisp romaine, and cool cucumbers make for a Middle Eastern–style salad recipe that comes together on the fly.
Roasted Cherry Tomato Caprese
The classic tomato and mozz summer salad gets a roasty cold-weather makeover.
Kale with Pomegranate Dressing and Ricotta Salata
Massaging the dressing into the kale with your hands helps break down some of the fibers so the greens are more tender.
Cut the amount of Parmesan down from half a cup to a light sprinkle to save more calories.
Ultimate Caprese Salad
Real talk: This is a dish to make when the tomatoes are peaking—at the farmers’ market, you should be able to smell them before you see them. The moment only comes around once a year, so make the most of it (which is to say, do very little with them). This is part of BA's Best, a collection of our essential recipes.
Carrot Salad with Feta and Anchovies
The marinated white anchovies make this carrot salad stand out by adding a nice vinegary bite (if you opt for regular anchovies, season with less salt), and those little fishes are good for you, too!
Corn & Chickpea Bowl with Miso-Jalapeño Tahini
This recipe will work long after corn has gone out of season. In winter, just sub shaved cauliflower or torn kale.
Roasted Butternut Squash with Spicy Onions
Make this roasted butternut squash ahead of time: It’s great at room temperature, and you’ll need the oven free to roast the potatoes.
Sausage and Escarole Over Toast
Be sure to get heavy color on the bread and sausage. Thank us later.
Spaghetti with Tomato and Walnut Pesto
Basil is a mere garnish in this nutty, cheesy, peak-season pesto sauce.
Clark's Oyster Bar's Cioppino
This cioppino recipe uses bottled clam juice, a smart shortcut to a robust bro
Pasta with Chopped Pesto
Technically, pesto should be pounded or processed to a paste, but sometimes shortcuts pay off. This chopped version yields a more varied texture and requires nothing more than a cutting board and a knife.
Corn Salad with Hazelnuts, Pecorino, and Mint
Because would it really be a barbecue without grilled corn?
Roasted Carrots with Creamy Nuoc Cham Dressing
This roasted carrots recipe makes extra dressing, which is good because you’ll want to use it on your next burger, over broiled salmon, or in a grain salad.
Buckwheat and Shiitake Mushroom Salad with Gouda
Buckwheat adds a unique flavor to this salad, but other grains, such as cooked barley, farro, or bulgur, would be good too.
Skirt Steak with Preserved Lemon Butter and Sesame Cauliflower
Skirt steak is one of our favorite cuts of beef—it’s flavorful, affordable, and quick-cooking. That said, it’s imperative to slice it thinly against the grain for the best texture.
Charred Buttered Plums with Cheese
Plums are summer’s all-stars. You should eat and cook with them only when they are peaking, plentiful, and widely available in many varieties.
Tomato Farrotto with Sardines
Fresh sardines are only sporadically available, so we’ve recommended using canned sardines here. Time-saving tip: Soaking the farro overnight (or at least during the day while you are at work) will give you a running start with this dish.
Winter Slaw with Red Pears and Pumpkin Seeds
Trimming a generous amount of the stem from the brussels sprouts makes it quite a bit easier to tease apart the leaves for this winter slaw recipe.
Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad
The dressing, kale mixture, and toasted almonds can be prepared 8 hours ahead—just toss everything together right before it hits the table.
Poached Cod with Tomato and Saffron
For this cod recipe, you want to cook it at a lazy simmer; it will make all the difference between buttery, flaky fish and rubbery, tough fillets.
Curried Butternut Squash Soup
For this butternut squash soup recipe, you need to toss the squash occasionally while it’s roasting so it doesn’t burn or stick, and to encourage as much caramelization as possible.
Roasted Carrots with Stracciatella and Buckwheat
The little sprinkle of buckwheat delivers a much-needed crunch factor. If you don’t have any, add some chopped toasted almonds or homemade breadcrumbs.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Chile Yogurt and Mint
This twice-roasted method allows for the sweet potatoes to get super-creamy on the inside while their skins get a little crispy.