Free Soul Food Recipe Sites Pushing Healthier Eating

Increasing numbers of free soul food recipes continue to reflect a more balanced diet while sounding the drum for healthier eating. The evidence is in the number of menu changes, ingredients and cooking methods used to prepare the recipes. As public demand builds, more industry insiders are heeding the call for dishes that are healthier than traditional southern dishes have been in the past.

Traditionally known for rich tasting and filling dishes, but loaded with fat, calories and sodium, soul food is changing its ways thanks to a group of creative cooks, publishers and website owners. "If we don't change our menus we may run out of customers to serve." Claims one soul food restaurant owner, who wished to remain anonymous. That's the feeling of many people in the industry.

"It's not just a profit motive, but a genuine concern for our customers, because most of my customers are friends and family." Claims Chef Richard Booker, Executive chef for a famous Las Vegas Casino restaurant specializing in healthy soul food.

More consumers welcome the healthy changes after they taste the food. At the start of this healthier menu movement many consumers balked at the possible changes. It was especially hard winning over the older consumer who is used to the traditional way of cooking, seasoning and preparing soul food recipes.

But the new school way of cooking healthier continues to win more converts who turned their noses at the idea of eating their favorite southern dishes with low or even no salt. Before they would have never believed they could enjoy chicken without it being deep fried in animal fat, or lard to be more exact. In addition, most would have thought cooking black eye peas or collard greens in anything but fat back as worst than blasphemy.

Eating is believing. To the surprise of many food critics and experts, the tasty but healthier dishes continue to win even the harshest critics. After all, who can argue with the fact many people are overweight and experience other health issues because of bad diet, especially African Americans. In addition, with the high cost of medical care, more people see the handwriting on the wall and are starting to change their eating habits.

Experts and insiders see healthier soul food recipes as the answer to those who love the robust taste of southern cooking.

Here's some of the popular secrets to keeping food tasty and healthy at the same time,

1. Use Creative Substitutes

For example, replace salt with natural herbs and spices, such as onion and garlic powder, chili peppers, lemon and lime juice, apple cider vinegar and more.

2. Healthier Way To Cook Collard Greens and Other Southern Vegetables

The traditional and most unhealthy ways to cook southern style vegetables have always been to flavor with fatback or ham hocks. However, these high fat and sodium seasonings have proved to contribute to high blood pressure, obesity and other ailments. A healthier substitute for flavoring vegetables and beans is smoked turkey. It contains low or even no fat if you remove the skin. In addition, the sodium level is often a fraction of fatback or ham hocks.

3. Salt Less and Marinate More

A key component in making meats more flavorful has always been salt. However, a healthier alternative many creative cooks use is to marinade meat. This gives it flavor and tenderness, many have learned to love better than salt. A good natural marinade is apple cider vinegar, olive oil, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.

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