10 Healthy Swaps for Your Favorite Holiday Party Foods

10 Healthy Holiday Party Finger Foods Your Guests Will Love

Here’s something to celebrate: Research shows that we don’t pile on the 10-ish pounds we think we do during the holidays. But the one pound we do put on between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve tends to stick. So for every LB you add to your frame for the next decade, you go up a pant size. Still, we’re not about to suggest that the holidays should be about deprivation. Stick to these flavorful finger foods to cut calories and keep all the satisfaction.

RELATED: 12 Healthy One-Pot Meals Fit for the Holidays

10 Healthy Holiday Party Finger Foods to Feed a Crowd

Healthy Finger Foods: Vegan Queso Recipe

1. Healthy Vegan Queso

A typical restaurant portion of queso (a measly two ounces) packs more than 10 grams of fat, but not this skinny, veggie-rich dip. A half-cup serving of this butternut squash and nutritional yeast blend has less than half the fat, plus half your daily requirement of immunity-boosting vitamin A. Serve with whole-grain crackers and veggie sticks. Photo and recipe: Sarah / Making Thyme for My Health

Healthy Finger Foods: Brie-Stuffed Strawberries Recipe

2. Herby Whipped Brie Stuffed Strawberries

Consider a cracker with a piece of cheese on top, and then a fiber-rich strawberry with whipped brie. The same pick-me-up trick is at play here, except the low-calorie, vitamin-dense strawberry will keep you satisfied longer. Photo and recipe: Sarah Bond / Live Eat Learn

RELATED: Better Than Cheddar: 6 Vegan Cheese Swaps

Healthy Finger Foods: Cornbread Chicken Fingers Recipe

3. Cornbread Baked Chicken Fingers

Bye-bye, fried. These baked chicken strips taste even better than their oil-laden counterparts. They’re coated in sweet cornbread crumbs and salty Parmesan cheese before being cooked to crispy perfection. Dunk the chicken strips in cranberry mustard instead of ketchup to cut down on sugar — and crank up the polyphenols (and holiday festivity). Photo and recipe: Alexa Schirm / Simple Roots Wellness

Healthy Finger Foods: Easy Paleo Salmon Cakes Recipe

4. Easy Paleo Salmon Cakes

Trick picky eaters into eating more vitamins by stirring mashed sweet potatoes into salmon patties. These pan-fried appetizers cut down on calories and carbs by eliminating the bread crumbs. As an added bonus, they’re fitting for the gluten-free holiday revelers, too. Photo and recipe: Lindsay Cotter / Cotter Crunch

Healthy Finger Foods: Gluten-Free, Low-Carb Mozzarella Sticks Recipe

5. Gluten-Free Low-Carb Mozzarella Sticks

Speaking of appetizers without wheat, these gooey treats are coated in almond and coconut flour with Italian seasoning for a crunchy gluten-free crust. Start with store-bought mozzarella string cheese, then coat them with the flour mixture and bake for seven to nine minutes. Serve with marinara sauce for one of the quickest, lightened-up finger foods around. Photo and recipe: Maya/ Wholesome Yum

RELATED: 3-Ingredient Party Snacks That Are Seriously Delicious

Healthy Finger Foods: Purple Sweet Potato Crostini with Ricotta and Roasted Cranberry

6. Purple Sweet Potato Crostinis with Spiced Ricotta and Roasted Cranberries

Ditch the bread base and try this high-violet sweet potato “toast.” The handheld appetizer is lower in carbs and higher in vitamin A and fiber. Roasting cranberries makes them taste sweeter than tart and bursts their juices. And here’s a bite of party app trivia for you: One cup of ricotta cheese (the amount in this recipe) offers a whopping 28 grams of protein. Photo and recipe: Denise / Sweet Peas and Saffron

RELATED: 7 Disastrous Holiday Desserts (and Healthier Swaps!)

Healthy Finger Foods: Pigs in a Blanket Recipe

7. Adults Pig in a Blanket with Red Wine-Mustard Sauce

With 25 grams of protein and a reasonable 387 calories per serving, these sausage and lower-in-fat crescent rolls eats like a meal. If you don’t have time to sit down to have dinner before a cocktail party, this is a wise wine-balancing option so you don’t have a wicked headache the next day. To make this dish even healthier, use chicken sausage instead. Photo and recipe: Amanda Plott / The Skinny Fork

Healthy Finger Foods: Sweet Potato Crust Pizza Barbecue Chicken Pizza

8. Sweet Potato Crust Barbecue Chicken Pizza

Move over cauliflower crust! This sweet potato and almond flour pizza is satisfying and hearty and an ideal counterpart to the sweet and savory barbecue rotisserie chicken. Photo and recipe: Stacey Garska / The Soccer Mom Blog

Healthy Finger Foods: Taco Fries with Lime Crema Recipe

9. Loaded Taco Fries with Lime Crema

Here’s a brilliant hack for the crispiest baked fries ever: Coat potato sticks in aquafaba (the protein-rich liquid in a can of chickpeas). Dust with seasonings and bake in a piping-hot oven, and you’ll forget everything about their deep-fried cousins. In this dish, we top the fries with cashew lime crema, cooked chickpeas, tomatoes, red onions and fresh parsley. Photo and recipe: Katie Culpin / A Virtual Vegan

RELATED: 8 Delicious Takes on French Fries (Better Than Fast Food!)

Healthy Finger Foods: Baked Sweet Potato Bites

10. Sweet Potato Bites

Sweet potatoes FTW once more in these guacamole-topped treats. Each bite has 31 calories and plenty of heart-healthy fats from the avocado and a splash of olive oil. Pour up a skinny margarita or a mojito and you’ll be transported far from the “baby it’s cold outside” climate. Photo and recipe: Erin Clarke / Well Plated

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