Healthy holiday appetizers

By: Health Local Staff Dec 12, 2012
christmas appetizers

Appetizers that are actually beneficial to your health rather than a detriment to your waistline.

The dinners and desserts are already calorie-laden enough. Do the appetizers really have to be 300 calories a bite too? Here is some good news for you: it’s more than possible to come up with delicious yet healthy holiday appetizers that are actually beneficial to your health rather than a detriment to your waistline.

Kale Chips
Kale is renowned for being one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet, and now you can enjoy it as a chip! This recipe is quick, easy, and delicious. All you need is:

  • 1 bunch of kale (10oz)
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt

Place the rack in the centre of your oven and preheat it to 375 F.

While waiting for the oven to heat up, pull off the rib from each kale leaf and then wash and dry them (a salad spinner works well). You want the kale leaves to be as dry as possible, so pat them dry to remove any water droplets.

Spread the dried kale leaves on baking sheets, and then drizzle 1 Tbsp of olive oil on each sheet. Toss the leaves so that they are coated with the oil.

Now it’s time to bake! Place one baking sheet of leaves in at a time and keep them in there just before the kale becomes crisp (this usually takes 8 to 10 minutes). Once done, sprinkle the kale with salt, transfer them to a platter, and voila! You have tasty – yet healthy – chips to serve your guests.

Skewers of Spicy Shrimp
These zesty little appetizers can also be served on top of salads to give any holiday salad some extra flair. To put this appetizer together, gather up:

  • 1 tsp of grated, fresh ginger root
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • ½ grated lime zest
  • Juice from one juiced lime
  • Salt & ground black pepper
  • 16 to 20 deveined and peeled raw tiger shrimp
  • Chopped fresh mint
  • Sweet chili sauce
  • Bamboo skewers

Start off by counting a bamboo skewer for each shrimp you’ll be preparing, and soak them in water for 10 to 20 minutes.

While the skewers are soaking, mix the ginger, garlic, lime zest and lime juice all together in a large bowl. Season the mix with salt and pepper.

Now add the shrimp and toss them until they’re all coated in the seasoning. Cover and place in the fridge for 5 minutes or so.

To cook the shrimp, either heat up a ridged griddle pan or get the broiler ready. Take the shrimp and thread them, lengthwise, on the end of each bamboo skewer. Once done, set the shrimp up so that they are along either the griddle or the broiler pan and then cook them for 1 minute on each side (the shrimp will turn pink).

Once done, move the shrimp onto a platter and sprinkle with chopped mint. Throw some sweet chili sauce on the side for dipping, and you’re sure to have a great holiday hit.

The Health Local Staff is a team of writers and experts dedicated to bringing you the latest health, nutrition and lifestyle information at