Pie: Tips & Recipes for Healthier Pies (cont.)
Creamy and custard pie fillings usually call for evaporated milk -- not to be confused with sweetened condensed milk, which pops up in fancier pies like Key lime and Kahlua cream pie. You can use evaporated skimmed milk in recipes that call for evaporated milk, and fat-free sweetened condensed milk in recipes that call for sweetened condensed. Either switch will trim about 25 calories per slice (if you get eight slices per pie), and in a pie, every little bit helps!
Cream cheese is another creamy filling ingredient that can be replaced with a lower-fat variety. I personally I find the color and texture of fat-free cream cheese unappetizing, so you may want to go for low-fat or light cream cheese instead. If your filling calls for an 8-ounce package of cream cheese, you can shave about 37 calories and 5.5 grams of fat per serving (when 8 servings per pie) by using light cream cheese.
Tips for the Pie Topping
Now for pie toppings! You didn't think I was going to stop at filling, did you?
When it comes to topping options, you're basically looking at more crust, whipped cream, meringue, crumb topping, whipped toppings (such as Cool Whip), and then, of course, there is the a la mode option (with ice cream).
All of these toppings will cost you calories. Some are high in sugar, and some are high in fat. You can switch to a lighter option, like fat-free or light whipped topping. Or you can use half as much of the real thing (your best option if your topping is whipping cream).
Here are some more light topping options:
This completes our "pleased as pie" trilogy; we've covered pie crust, filling, and now the topping. Let the pie season begin!
Crumb Topping for Fruit Pie
3/4 cup quick oats
Yield: Enough topping for one 9-inch round pie
Per serving (if 12 servings per pie): 90 calories, 2.5 g protein, 13.5 g carbohydrate, 3 g fat, 0.8 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 1.2 g fiber, 102 mg sodium.
Light Canola Pie Crust - No Rolling Required
3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (or regular whole-wheat flour)
Yield: One 9-inch, deep-dish single pie crust
Per serving (if 12 servings): 111 calories, 2 g protein, 12 g carbohydrate, 6 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 1 g fiber, 151 mg sodium.
Light Cinnamon Whipped Cream Topping
8 ounces light whipping cream (liquid)
Yield: About 4 cups of topping (about 16 servings)
Per 1/4 cup serving: 70 calories, .5 g protein, 7 g carbohydrate, 4.5 g fat, 2.8 g saturated fat, 16 mg cholesterol, 0 g fiber, 10 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 59%
Published November 10, 2006.
Recipes provided by Elaine Magee; © 2006 Elaine Magee
Elaine Magee, MPH, RD, is the "Recipe Doctor" for the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic and the author of numerous books on nutrition and health. Her opinions and conclusions are her own.
©2006 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.
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