4 Healthy Super Bowl Recipes

These make-ahead dishes are easy and tasty

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teal ceramic serving platter of lasagna with portion taken out sitting napkin on wooden surface Photo: Charles Schiller

Super bowl Sunday is as much about the food as it is the game. While it’s okay if you don’t want to skip the traditional chips and dip or chicken wings, it does make sense to play a little dietary defense.

More Healthy Recipes

Consider serving one (or more) of our healthy Super Bowl recipes. These are twists on old favorites—Buffalo chicken skewers, slow-cooker turkey chili, mac and cheese with cauliflower, and lighter vegetable lasagna. They’re richer in nutrients and lower in calories than their traditional counterparts, yet they’re winners when it comes to taste. And you won’t miss the game, because you can prepare them in advance.

Buffalo Chicken Skewers With Blue Cheese Dip

Chicken Skewers

Photo: iStock Photo: iStock

For the skewers
12 6- to 8-inch bamboo skewers
3 8-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1⁄2 cup Louisiana-style hot sauce (we used Frank’s)
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

For the dip
1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 scallions, chopped
¼ cup blue cheese, crumbled
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Cayenne pepper (optional)

12 carrots, sliced into sticks
12 stalks celery, sliced into sticks

Directions
1.
Soak the skewers in water for 60 minutes, then preheat oven to broil.

2. Cut the chicken into 12 lengthwise strips; thread each strip on a skewer.

3. In a small bowl, combine hot sauce, vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce; set aside.

4. In another bowl, combine yogurt, garlic, scallions, blue cheese, and pepper. Garnish with a sprinkle of cayenne pepper, if desired; set aside.

5. Place the skewers on a broiler pan. Broil 8 to 10 minutes, until chicken is cooked through. While the chicken is still hot, generously coat each skewer in the hot-sauce mixture. Serve immediately with the blue cheese dip and the sliced carrots and celery.

Makes 12 servings

Nutrition information per 1 skewer and 2 tablespoons sauce: 80 calories, 2 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 1 g carbs, 0 g fiber, 1 g sugars (0 g added sugars), 16 g protein, 360 mg sodium

Slow-Cooker Turkey Chili

red ceramic bowl of chili sitting on cutting board with white and green napkin and spoon next to it

Photo: Christopher Testani Photo: Christopher Testani

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 red bell peppers, chopped
2 cups frozen corn
1 can (28 ounces) no-salt-added diced tomatoes
1 can (15 ounces) low-sodium black beans, rinsed
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup fat-free sour cream
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 bunch chives, snipped

Directions
1. In large skillet, heat the oil and cook turkey, onion, and garlic over medium-high heat, stirring until the turkey crumbles and is no longer pink; drain.

2. Spoon the mixture into a 5-quart slow cooker; stir in the peppers, corn, tomatoes, beans, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, cayenne, salt, and cinnamon until well-blended.

3. Cook on high for 4 to 5 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours. Serve with sour cream, cheese, and chives.

Makes 6 servings

Nutrition information per serving: 300 calories, 10 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 36 g carbs, 9 g fiber, 12 g sugars (0 g added sugars), 24 g protein, 430 mg sodium

Mac and Cheese With Cauliflower

overhead view of bowl of mac and cheese on cutting board with 3 forks next to it

Photo: Charles Schiller Photo: Charles Schiller

1 box (1 pound) elbow-shaped pasta
½ medium head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into small florets
2 slices whole-wheat bread
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 ounces sharp cheddar, grated
4 ounces low-fat cream cheese
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup fat-free half-and-half
½ teaspoon each salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions
1. Heat oven to 350° F. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish.

2. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the pasta and cauliflower and cook according to the pasta-package instructions.

3. Meanwhile, pulse the bread, olive oil, and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Set aside.

4. After the pasta and cauliflower are cooked, reserve 1⁄2 cup of the cooking water. Drain pasta and cauliflower.

5. Place the cheddar, cream cheese, 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, half-and-half, salt, and pepper in the pot you cooked the pasta in.

6. Add the cooked pasta and cauliflower and stir until well-combined and cheese is melted. Add the reserved cooking liquid.

7. Place the mixture in a prepared baking dish. Top with reserved bread crumbs. Bake until mac and cheese is bubbling and crumbs are browned, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Makes 8 servings

Nutrition information per serving: 410 calories, 15 g fat, 8 g saturated fat, 51 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 5 g sugars (0 g added sugars), 17 g protein, 470 mg sodium

Lighter Vegetable Lasagna

white plate with a serving of lasagna sitting on blue napkin with fork next to it

Photo: Charles Schiller Photo: Charles Schiller

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, chopped
1 small zucchini, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 jar (25 ounces) low sodium marinara sauce
1 container (16 ounces) low-fat small-curd cottage cheese
1 egg white
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup parsley leaves
8 ounces part-skim mozzarella, cut into cubes
¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper
9 oven-ready lasagna noodles

Directions
1.
Heat the oven to 400° F.

2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, pepper, mushrooms, and zucchini. Cook about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft and liquid has evaporated. Add the garlic. Cook 1 minute, stirring. Add the sauce and simmer 20 minutes, partially covered.

3. Meanwhile, place cottage cheese, egg white, Parmesan cheese, and parsley leaves in container of food processor. Process until smooth. Transfer into bowl and stir in mozzarella, salt, and pepper.

4. Spread 1⁄4 of the vegetable sauce mixture into a 9x13-inch baking dish; spread to cover. Top with 3 noodles, 1⁄2 of the cheese mixture and another 1⁄4 of the sauce. Repeat the process one more time and top with remaining sauce. Spray aluminum foil with cooking spray and cover the lasagna.

5. Bake covered 25 to 30 minutes or until bubbling. Uncover and bake 5 to 10 minutes more. Let sit 10 minutes before serving.

Makes 9 servings

Nutrition information per serving: 250 calories, 8 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 26 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 8 g sugars (0 g added sugars), 17 g protein, 500 mg sodium

The Right Slow Cooker for You

When it comes to choosing a slow cooker, there’s a lot to consider: capacity, size, and a slew of new features. CR’s tests have found that models vary in performance. Here are a few that will set you up for slow-cooker success.