Written By Reggie Moore / Reviewed By Ray Spotts
There are many healthier protein alternatives to fried fast foods. Fried fast foods are high in calories and fat, and they often contain trans-fat. Trans fats can cause heart disease by raising "bad" cholesterol levels and lowering the "good" cholesterol levels.
When trying to lose weight, avoiding fried fast foods is the best way to do it. Another reason to avoid or limit fried food is that it might have been prepared in unhealthy oils. Healthier alternatives include lean cuts of beef, chicken breast, and turkey without skin. These meats can be grilled, baked, or broiled for a healthier alternative that tastes just as good as fried fast food.
Here are some great alternatives that are packed with protein and better than fried fast foods.
Pan-Seared Chicken Breasts
Pan-seared chicken breasts are a great healthier alternative to fried chicken sandwiches at a local fast-food restaurant. They are easy to prepare, and the chicken is just as tasty, if not better. They can be seasoned with herbs or spices, and they are sure to be a family favorite.
Enjoying a pan-seared chicken is a great way to avoid trans fats like those found in fast-food chains, and always check for trans fat on any food products purchased.
Shredded Chicken Burritos
Try making shredded chicken burritos at home instead of buying from a local Mexican restaurant. The best part about this recipe is that they satisfy everyone from kids to adults, and it makes mealtimes more convenient when buying precooked shredded chicken breasts at supermarkets. Shredded chicken can also be used for other meals like salads, tacos, or soups, instead of using ground beef.
If chicken fingers are a family favorite, they can still be enjoyed at home and avoiding the trans fat that comes with fried fast-food restaurants.
First, cut fresh chicken breasts into strips or breast fillets if they are available in the local supermarket. Coat strips of chicken breast in the flour along with seasonings. Dip the strips in beaten eggs before frying them until golden brown. If wanting to avoid oil altogether, bake the chicken instead of frying it, but either way will cut the calories by more than half compared to restaurant offerings.
The white meat is higher in protein per serving than dark meat when both are cooked using similar methods; therefore, there is no reason to not enjoy a crispy piece of chicken at home instead of buying it from a fast-food restaurant.
Pan-fried Tilapia Fillets
Tilapia is a great fish that has lots of healthy fats, and it is easy to prepare. Use cornmeal, bread crumbs, or other flours as seasonings to pan-fry tilapia fillets, just like with fried chicken fillet sandwiches. This recipe is typically served in restaurants, but you can enjoy them at home all the time without worrying about trans fats and unhealthy oils.
Salmon burgers are another healthy alternative to traditional burgers with beef patties. If the kids love hamburgers, they will be thrilled to see these on the dinner table, even if serving the salmon burgers with a side of sweet potato fries. The best thing about these burgers is that they are full of protein, and they will satisfy any craving for a juicy burger without getting weighed down.
Carne Asada Tacos
Instead of ordering carne asada tacos from Taco Bell every time, make them at home by preparing steak (carne) and grilling it on a barbecue or frying it in the kitchen. Then add some cheese and other ingredients for a delicious meal that is sure to become a regular item on your dinner table.
Instead of quesadillas with beef and cheese, make them with chicken to avoid unnecessary fats. Just like preparing a regular quesadilla, add shredded pieces of chicken and other ingredients like cheese or vegetables before frying it or baking it in the oven. The advantage of preparing a quesadilla at home is that they can be made healthier, and they are convenient for everyone, from kids to adults.
Grilled Salmon Steaks
One of the tastiest ways to prepare salmon is by grilling it on a barbecue or frying it in a pan till it gets a nice golden color. Salmon steaks are delicious, so keep an eye on them since they can easily dry out if not prepared correctly. If you want to eat salmon for dinner, grill some fish and add lemon slices, onions, and dill for added flavor.
It is just healthier to prepare meals from home. Do what you need to do to take your health back into your hands, and don’t be afraid to try something new. Get a good barbeque. Try a kebab machine. Whatever you need to get healthy eating appealing to you.
The healthy proteins above are all easy to make when shopping for healthy ingredients at the local supermarket, and all of them will taste great on your dinner table. It's worth it to spend more time in the kitchen preparing meals from scratch if it means getting to eat more nutritious food without regretting it later on because they were not as nutritionally satisfying as other options.
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Reggie Moore is a freelance writer and proto-entrepreneur. When not trying to tinker with a new process or idea, Reggie can usually be found saying the words “Well, actually…” to an unsuspecting bystander.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.