Holiday Party Eats: Do’s and Don’ts

Holiday party snacks are like a minefield for your waistline: step on (snack on) the wrong one, and you’ll blow up. Luckily, there are plenty of healthy options to keep you slim and satisfied, and armed with these tips, dodging mines will look like a cakewalk.



Cocktail Shrimp
High in protein and practically non-existent in fat content, naked shrimp are almost unbeatable health-wise when choosing bites. Each shrimp packs a measly 15 calories and a mighty 3 grams of satisfying protein. Add a big punch of flavor with cocktail sauce for a small count of 5 calories.

Best. News. EVER. Toast with a glass of bubbly (or two!) and only take in about 80 calories a pop! That’s far fewer than most wine, beer and spirit-based cocktails, and champagne barely has any carbs. Cheers to that!


Mushroom Tarts
They’re small, they’re veggie based, and they taste rich, meaning you’ll most likely get your fill after a few. Usually clocking in at around 70 calories each, enjoy a few guilt-free.

Candy Canes
Yes, the Yule Log looks lovely, as do the cupcakes, but if you’re looking for a more innocent sweet, grab a candy cane. At only 60 calories and12 grams of sugar, candy canes cure a sweet tooth craving for a small caloric intake. An added bonus? The peppermint in candy canes have health benefits, like improving memory and calming buzzy nerves.


If they’re deep-fried and sugar coated, skip ‘em. If they’re spiced or simply salted, go for a small handful or two and enjoy the crunchy texture and vitamin-and-healthy-fat packed benefits.


Egg Nog
It’s a holiday treat for a reason: it’s incredibly indulgent. Cream, eggs and full fat milk add up to a hefty 350 calories and 20 grams of fat per cup. Skip it and opt for a hot toddy instead.


Cheese and Crackers
An ounce of cheese, which is approximately the size of a pair of dice, is never enough and already packs over 100 calories for most cheeses. (and even far more calories for richer varieties). Add crackers, and a few bites can add up really quickly.

Spinach Dip
Yes, there’s healthy spinach, but it’s no secret there are lots of other not-so-secret ingredients in there, none of which are good. Cream cheese, mayonnaise, sour cream and any other cheese thrown in there add up to a seriously offensively fattening dip. Skip it and save an average of 100 calories and a whopping 7 grams of fat per tablespoon.

Pecan Pie
Nuts are high in good fats, but drown them in a super-sweet filling comprised of corn syrup and sugar, and then factor in the fatty, buttery crust and you’ve got one of the unhealthiest desserts on the table. Not such a slice of pie.

pecan pie

Crab Cakes
Crab itself is a pretty harmless pick, but when it’s smothered in breadcrumbs, mayonnaise and oil and then fried, it quickly becomes a snack to avoid. Even more reason? Crab cakes most certainly must be dipped into a sauce, which is almost always creamy and caloric.