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20 Lighter Alternatives To Your Favorite Comfort Foods

Lighten up your dinner, but don't lose any flavor.

Hannah Wong/BuzzFeed

Whether you're trying a new diet, cutting back on carbs, or just want to try some new recipes, here are a handful of better-for-you versions of your favorite comfort foods to make this fall.



1. Lasagna Soup

A Pinch of Healthy / Via

This comforting recipe takes what you love about lasagna — noodles, ground meat, veggies, and creamy cheese — and combines everything in a creamy bowl of tomato soup. Get the recipe.

2. Orange Sesame Cauliflower

Pretty Practical Pantry / Via

This take on sesame chicken calls for cauliflower florets that get coated in a mixture of garlic, green onions, orange juice, soy sauce, and vinegar. You can fry the cauliflower so it gets nice and crispy or bake it in the oven from start to finish. Get the recipe.



3. Portobello Mushroom and Kale Stroganoff

Bev Cooks / Via, Bev Cooks

This vegetarian take on classic beef stroganoff calls for kale and tender mushrooms in a creamy sauce made with sour cream and vegetable broth. Get the recipe.

4. Low-Carb Eggplant Pizza

Eating Bird Food / Via

Satisfy your pizza craving without all the carbs. You can get creative and dress up these cheesy baked eggplant slices with all your favorite toppings. Get the recipe.



5. Lighter Cauliflower "Alfredo" Pasta

Crystal Hatch/Tasty / Via

There's no cream added to this rich pasta sauce. It's made from cauliflower, almond milk, parmesan, sautéed onion, and garlic, but it still tastes totally decadent. Get the recipe.

6. Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Merle O'Neal/Tasty / Via

Making gnocchi from scratch really isn't difficult — it just takes a little bit of patience. This version calls for sweet potato instead of regular potato, and the gnocchi are then tossed in a two-ingredient butter and sage sauce. Get the recipe.



7. Drunken Zucchini Noodles

Kirbie Cravings / Via

This recipe calls for chicken, but you can add whatever protein you like best, such as shrimp or tofu. Get the recipe.

8. Mushroom and Cauliflower Mash Shepherd's Pie

Delicious Everyday / Via

This meatless shepherd's pie still tastes like a total indulgence thanks to a rich filling made with mushrooms, red wine, and tomato paste and a topping of creamy mashed cauliflower. Get the recipe.



9. Pumpkin Mac 'n' Cheese With Roasted Vegetables

Skinny Taste / Via

This better-for-you version of classic mac 'n' cheese features roasted vegetables and a veggie-packed sauce made with pumpkin purée, milk, broth, and butter. Get the recipe.

10. Twice-Baked Chicken Fajita Sweet Potatoes

Cafe Delites / Via

Looking to shake up your next fajita night? Lose the tortillas and opt for sweet potato bowls instead. Get the recipe.



11. Lentil and Quinoa Meatballs

Stacey Homemaker / Via, Stacy Homemaker / Via

These grain-based meatballs taste surprisingly similar to the classic version. Toss them in marinara sauce and serve them over spaghetti, grains, or even a salad. Get the recipe.

12. Spaghetti Squash Chow Mein

Little Bits Of / Via

This spaghetti squash is loaded with cabbage and chopped vegetables, then tossed with a sweet-and-savory sauce made with coconut aminos (or soy sauce), garlic, coconut sugar, and ginger. Get the recipe here.



13. Zucchini Noodles With Tomato and Coconut Broth

Healthy Nibbles and Bits / Via

You can never have too many noodle soup recipes in your arsenal. This fall, shake things up with this Thai-inspired recipe made with spiralized zucchini noodles and tofu in a broth made with diced tomatoes, onion, coconut milk, and vegetable broth. Get the recipe.

14. Kale and Coconut Fried Rice

Cookie and Kate / Via

Before you order that greasy takeout, try making fried rice in your own kitchen. It's incredibly easy, and this version is full of vegetables that'll fill you up and make you feel good. Get the recipe.



15. Roasted Carrot Soup

Well Plated / Via

Step away from the canned soup that's packed with sodium. Making soup from scratch tastes worlds better, and you can make an extra big batch to save for lazy nights. Get the recipe.

16. Zucchini "Ravioli"

Kahnita Wilkerson/Tasty / Via

Zucchini ribbons are filled with spinach and ricotta, then baked with marinara sauce and even more cheese until they're little pockets of bubbling, golden-brown cheesy perfection. Get the recipe.



17. Dairy-Free Broccoli "Cheese" Soup

Healthier Steps / Via

You won't believe this rich soup is totally dairy-free. The secret ingredients? Cashews, sweet potato, and nutritional yeast. Get the recipe.

18. Three-Cheese Zucchini Lasagna

White on Rice Couple / Via, White On Rice Couple / Via

There are no noodles in this low-carb lasagna recipe, but it still packs all the flavors you crave from a comforting and hearty Italian dinner. Get the recipe.

19. Easy Vegetarian Ramen

Umami Girl / Via

When the nights get cold, ramen is here to warm you up. Try making this vegetarian version at home. The broth is simmered with dried shiitake mushrooms and tamari, which make it taste extremely deep and rich. Get the recipe.

20. Pulled Mushroom Tacos

Lazy Cat Kitchen / Via

If you like carnitas tacos, you'll love this meatless alternative. King oyster mushrooms are cooked in tomato, adobo paste, soy sauce, and lots of spices until they're crazy tender and mimic the texture of pulled pork. Get the recipe.







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