But I Just Want A Doughnut!?!

Every year I celebrate Hanukah by enjoying the infamous holiday doughnut. Yes, I am a registered dietitian who’s telling you that it’s okay to eat a doughnut—can you believe it?! This doesn’t mean you have permission for a free-for-all indulgence, but if you really want a doughnut—then go for it using these tips.
Related To:
Mini Banana Beignets

100527_0274.tif

Food Stylist: Anne Disrude Prop Stylist: Amy Wilson

Every year I celebrate Hanukkah by enjoying the infamous holiday doughnut. Yes, I am a registered dietitian who’s telling you that it’s okay to eat a doughnut — can you believe it?! This doesn’t mean you have permission for a free-for-all indulgence, but if you really want a doughnut, go for it! Just use our tips to do it the smart way.

Nutrition Information

A typical store bought jelly doughnut (which is the traditional holiday doughnut) contains about 290 calories, 14 grams of fat (7 grams of which are saturated) and not much of anything considered healthy. Doughnuts are a junk food, but if you really want one (or two), then it’s important to choose something you’ll really enjoy

Choose Wisely

If you’re buying doughnuts, then go for the mini’s. Jelly-filled Munchkin’s from Dunkin’ Donuts contain 80 calories, 4 grams of fat and 2 grams of saturated fat. Eat 2 or 3 and supplement it with a side of fresh fruit. Once you’re on your fourth mini, you may as well have eaten a regular-sized doughnut.

To shave off a few calories, go jelly-less. I’m not a jelly fan and I’m able to save about 30 calories on regular-sized doughnuts by choosing a glazed one instead.  To save even more calories (about 70), choose a plain doughnut without icing or filling (but how fun is that?). Get the mini-doughnut recipe featured above.

Make Your Own

Store made and packaged varieties contain preservatives, but you can make your own using fresher ingredients. Be mindful of the doughnut size and use 1/4 less icing than the recipe calls for to shave off a few calories. Also the temp of the oil is really important so that the doughnuts don’t absorb too much excess oil. Always use a thermometer and fry in small batches.

Take It Easy

Plan in advance as to when you’re going to enjoy this holiday fave. Hanukkah lasts 8 days, choose one or two days to indulge in a delicious doughnut, then choose another dessert on the other days (like fruit and a few chocolate coins). If you know that you’re the type of person who just can’t stop eating doughnuts once you start, then just walk away.

Another thing to think about: What other fried foods are being served at the meal? If you know you’re going to be chomping on a fried doughnut for dessert, then stay away from, say, latkes, during appetizers. This will help reduce the amount of artery-clogging fat (not to mention calories) you’re eating at one time.

TELL US: What's your favorite Hanukkah recipe?

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby's full bio »

You Might Also Like:

Next Up

How to Buy a Knife

Learn the basics to make the best decision.

Homemade Churros

Churros (deep-fried, cinnamon-and-sugar-coated pastry sticks) aren't exactly the healthiest snack. But Robin Miller's lightened-up baked churros are a better-for-you alternative.

How to Make Blondies — Most Popular Pin of the Week

It's no wonder this recipe for blondies was pinned more than any other this week. It's a sweet-tooth-satisfying treat that turns out rich and chewy.

Your Weekend Cooldown: Frozen Peanut Butter Bites

If the summer heat has you bogged down, take refuge in this easy-to-make frozen dessert.

15 Valentine’s Day Desserts

These lightened goodies are the perfect way to show your sweetie you care without busting their waistline.

7 Treats for a Super-Sweet Cinco de Mayo

The highlight of any feast for sweet-toothed diners is dessert. Here are our favorite classic and creative takes on Mexican-inspired recipes for the dessert course.

These Easter Desserts Are Too Stinkin' Cute — Especially the Bunny Butts

These adorable Easter desserts are easy to make, but still super-impressive.

The Ins and Outs of a Showstopping Pumpkin Roll

Get the recipe for and learn how to make Food Network's Trisha Yearwood's Pumpkin Roll.

10 Healthy Thanksgiving Desserts

Planning your turkey day menu? We’ve got something for every kind of sweet tooth, filled with fall flavors.

Related Pages