Healthy Comfort Foods: How To Lighten Up 8 Wintertime Favorites

Lighten Up! Healthier Versions Of 8 Winter Comfort Foods

There's nothing like a heaping plate of mac and cheese, a steaming mug of hot chocolate or a crispy grilled cheese sandwich to take the chill out of the long winter season. (In fact, there's a scientific explanation for why we crave these foods during the colder months.) Comforting or not, though, those classics are typically loaded with butter, milk, heavy cream and refined carbohydrates, piling on pounds that can stick around long past the winter thaw.

But you don't have to give up on your favorites just yet. We spoke to three nutritionists -- Cheryl Forberg, R.D., a James Beard award-winning chef and the nutritionist for The Biggest Loser; Heather Bauer, R.D., author of Bread is the Devil and founder of; and Dawn Jackson Blatner, R.D., author of The Flexitarian Diet -- to get simple tips and recipes to lighten up your favorites.

Read through, then tell us: How do you make your favorite recipes healthier?

Mac And Cheese

Healthier Versions Of 8 Winter Comfort Foods