Welcome to another entry in our “Oklahoma Favorite Foods Made Healthier” series, where we tweak some of Oklahoma’s favorite comfort foods so you can enjoy them in a better-for-you way. You’ll still get the great flavor that made the foods favorites in the first place, but limit the parts (like grease, lard, bad fats and refined sugar) that aren’t so healthy. Small changes like the tweaks in these recipes can eventually produce big results and help build momentum to establish other healthy food habits.
Whether we bake them, fry them or fill them, Oklahomans love pies. In fact, pecan pie is featured as the delicious finale in Oklahoma’s official state meal. But since this comforting dessert is usually loaded with a ton of corn syrup, sugar and butter, traditionally prepared pecan pie has about 600 calories per serving.
There is good news, though. Pecans are packed with protein, fiber and heart-healthy fats. With the tweaks in this recipe (courtesy of Shape and Chef Justin Keith of Food 101 in Atlanta) this healthier version of pecan pie has almost half the calories and fat of a traditional recipe.
Chef Keith’s pecan pie recipe doesn’t use corn syrup or butter but tastes just as good as your grandma’s favorite recipe (with a deep apology to all our meemaws for that statement).
1 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon 2% milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*1 heaping cup chopped pecans
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, beat eggs until foamy, and stir in coconut oil. Stir in the brown sugar, white sugar and the flour; mix well. Last add the milk, vanilla and nuts.
3. Pour into an unbaked 9-inch pie shell. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until done.
Nutrition score per serving:
Saturated Fat: 7.6g
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30 to 40 minutes
*If you want to slash additional fat and calories and increase your intake of whole grains (which are packed with nutrients and fiber and have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and obesity) substitute rolled oats for a quarter or half the pecans, and replace the three eggs with one egg and four whites.