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How to Go Veg

Going Low-Fat: Low-Fat Cooking Methods

  • Grill or oven-roast for a delicious, low-fat alternative to deep-fried foods.
  • When oil is absolutely necessary to prevent sticking, apply a light coating of nonstick vegetable oil spray.
  • Instead of sautéing vegetables in oil, heat a small amount of water, vegetable stock, wine, or other liquid in a large pan or skillet. Add the ingredients to be sautéed and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until tender (about five minutes for onions and most other vegetables). Add more liquid if needed.
  • For cream soups, thicken soups with a potato instead. For soups that will be puréed, simply cook and purée the potato with the other soup ingredients. For other soups, cook a peeled and diced potato in enough water to cover it. When the potato is fork-tender, purée it in its cooking water in a blender and add it to the soup. You can also make bean or pea soups creamy by puréeing half the soup and mixing the purée back into the remainder.
  • For sauces and gravies usually prepared with fat, flour, and liquid, eliminate the fat by toasting the flour in a dry pan until lightly browned. Whisk in the liquid to remove lumps, then cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until thickened.
  • Replace oil in salad-dressing recipes with rice vinegar or any mild-flavored vinegar, vegetable cooking liquid, juice, or water. Use puréed soft tofu for a creamy base. If desired, use cornstarch to thicken the dressing.
  • For baked goods, mashed banana, applesauce, cooked pumpkin, or prune purée can often replace all or part of the butter, vegetable oil, or shortening, with no change in taste or texture. Experiment with your recipes, adding a bit less fat each time and evaluating the results. When you cut the fat, you may need to add extra liquid to achieve the desired consistency. Replacing eggs with cholesterol-free, egg-free substitutes also cuts the fat significantly.
  • Cooking without dairy products will also help to keep fat low.


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