How to host a healthy dinner party

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I absolutely love to cook – so it’s probably no surprise that one of my favourite things to do is host a healthy dinner party. I love planning out a menu, decorating a table, and inviting my nearest and dearest over for some great food and even better company. Especially during the holidays!

When I first started my healthy journey and decided to host a few dinner parties, my guests would often respond with “that sounds great…but is all the food going to be super healthy?”

One of the biggest stigmas about healthy eating is that all you can eat is veggies, options are limited, the meals aren’t satiating, and never taste that indulgent.

Well – from my experience this is definitely not the case. In fact, all you need is some killer recipes and cooking tips and tricks up your sleave!

Recently I have noticed people are becoming more and more conscious of the food they put in their mouths, and are more concerned about eating good quality food instead of fast food or supermarket ready meals. In fact, now when I invite people over for dinner they are often excited to try out new healthy recipes and are interested in learning more about healthy eating and cooking at home.

If you are planning on hosting a dinner party this holiday season, here are my top tips for keeping things healthy at home!

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Be smart about appetisers. Instead of passing around plates of cheese, crisps, roasted nuts or cured meats, try something different. Put together a big plate of sliced veggies with my Almond and Butterbean Dip, try Flaxseed Crackers with Avocado Dip, or Chickpea Flatbread with Yoghurt Dip. These are all delicious and light options to start of your night. They’re easy to share too!

Choose your drinks wisely. Stick to alcohol with a lower sugar content like red wine, vodka sodas with fresh lime, or try my Healthy Christmas Cocktail perfect for all year round. Make sure to keep a jug of water on the table throughout the meal to ensure you all stay hydrated. Jazz up your water by adding mint, sliced cucumber and lime.

Control portion sizes. Don’t’ go for a buffet option – it makes it nearly impossible to control portion size, and will ensure you don’t finish the meal feeling stuffed! Make sure you have exact measurements and numbers, so you can plate each course. This will also mean you don’t over cater – saving fridge space (from leftovers) and money too!

Say yes to natural flavours. Healthy food can taste so, so good! You just have to know what you’re doing! Cook with plenty of spices and seasoning, bake or grill your food, cook with coconut oil or good quality butter, dress your salads with olive oil, lemon or balsamic vinegar (or all three!).

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Don’t skip out on pudding! A healthy dinner party does not mean a dinner party without something sweet! In fact, pudding is pretty much everyone’s favourite part of a sit down dinner, right? If you’re hosting a Christmas themed party try out my Mince Pies or Raw Christmas Pudding. Sweet, indulgent and guilt free – what’s not to love!?

Are you planning a dinner party soon? What are your favourite ways to create a healthy dinner party at home? Comment below, and make sure to tag me in your dinner party pics on  InstagramFacebook and Twitter using #madeleineshaw #gettheglow

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