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3 Make-Ahead Holiday Appetizer Recipes

Avoid the last-minute rush with these healthy holiday appetizer recipes.
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Smoked Almond Goat Cheese Olive Appetizers

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as 2 olives

How can just three ingredients taste so good?

2/3 cup chopped smoked almonds

8 ounces goat cheese

32 Spanish green olives, stuffed with pimiento

  • Add almonds to a small food processor or a nut chopper and pulse briefly to chop. Pour into a small bowl.
  • Cut the goat cheese into 8 equal pieces, then cut each of these pieces into 4 equal pieces (each piece will be about 1/4 ounce).
  • Wrap each olive with a 1/4-ounce piece of goat cheese and shape into a small ball. Roll into the chopped almonds and place in a container. Repeat with remaining cheese, olives, and almonds. Once the container is filled, cover and keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Just place them on a serving tray and insert toothpicks.

Yield: 16 servings (if 2 olive appetizers per person)

Per serving (using low-fat milk): 80 calories, 4 g protein, 2 g carbohydrate, 6 g fat, 2.5 g saturated fat, 12 mg cholesterol, 1 g fiber, 263 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 67%.

Pesto Parmesan Cheese Bites

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as 1 serving of low-fat crackers OR 1 slice of bread

1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons water, warm or room temperature

1 1/2 teaspoons molasses

4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon fresh, finely chopped basil (or 1 teaspoon dried)

1 tablespoon fresh, finely chopped oregano (or 1 teaspoon dried)

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole-wheat flour

1 cup unbleached white flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 ounce (1 packet) rapid rise or bread machine yeast

6 tablespoons store-bought or homemade pesto

6 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese

  • Add water, molasses, olive oil, garlic, basil, and oregano to bread machine pan (unless a different order is recommended by manufacturer). Add both types of flour to pan, and add the salt in one of the corners. Make a well in the center of the flour and pour in the yeast.
  • Select the DOUGH cycle and press start. After a minute or so of mixing, look into the bread machine pan. If it looks like the dough needs a teaspoon or two of water, add that now.
  • When the dough cycle is complete, about 1 hour and 40 minutes, divide dough into 8 pieces. Cut each of these pieces into 6 small pieces.
  • Coat mini muffins cups with canola or olive oil cooking spray and press each small piece of dough into the muffin cup to make a bit of a shell. Spoon a slightly heaping 1/4 teaspoon of pesto into the center and sprinkle a slightly heaping 1/4 teaspoon of shredded Parmesan over the top of each.
  • Bake the bread bites in a 400-degree oven until crust is golden brown, about 12 minutes.

Yield: 24 servings (2 bites per serving)

Per serving (2 bites): 62 calories, 2 g protein, 8 g carbohydrate, 2.5 g fat, 0.6 g saturated fat, 1.5 mg cholesterol, 1 g fiber, 118 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 36%.

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