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:
100527_0274.tif

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:

Keep Reading

Next Up

Pin of the Week — Blueberry Cheesecake Galette

For a sweet summer treat, try making Food Network Magazine’s galette. It’s a rustic fruit tart that blends the flavors of a blueberry pie and a cheesecake into one.

Mini Banana Beignets — Most Popular Pin of the Week

Laced with fresh banana and rolled in cinnamon sugar, Food Network Magazine's next-level doughnuts can be ready to eat in only 25 minutes.

10 Healthy Thanksgiving Desserts

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

8 of the Best Fall Desserts Ever

Enjoy the seasonal flavors of pumpkin, apple and warm spices in each bite.

Make and Freeze Pie Dough — Thanksgiving Tip of the Day

If you're using homemade pie crusts, make the dough now and freeze it in freezer bags for Thanksgiving.

Chocolate-Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies — Most Popular Pin of the Week

Learn why this Chocolate-Peanut Butter No Bake Cookies recipe is Food Network's Most Popular Pin of the Week.

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.

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 Buy a Knife

Learn the basics to make the best decision.