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5 Christmas recipes less than 500 calories

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Quality time with family and friends, exchanging gifts, and of course an abundance of food and drinks are what makes this time truly special.

While you shouldn't feel bad about a little indulgence over the holidays, you probably don't want to be stressing about potential weight gain either. So if you're looking for some balance in your Christmas menu, consider cooking a side dish or dessert that doesn't contain as much fat and calories as the traditional holiday versions.

You can make a Christmas ham that is both tasty, low-calorie, and lower in sodium with the recipe we've provided below. This festive dish is complemented with a flavorful glaze made of mustard and jam.

Even desserts – such as the chocolate cinnamon bread pudding we found – can use low-fat milk and egg whites for a nutritional boost.

So enjoy the holidays and treat yourself and your loved ones to these healthy and festive recipes below:

1. Glazed ham with blackberry sauce

If you're hosting a dinner, consider this ham for your main course. It has one-tenth of the sodium of a traditional cured ham, and is complemented by a flavorful glaze made from Dijon mustard and blackberry jam.

Per serving: 337 calories 12g fat, 25g carbohydrates, 31g protein, 0g fiber

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2. Spicy Moroccan chickpeas

Here's a tasty vegetarian side dish that is full of fiber, which means it can help keep you feeling full longer! This spicy dish blends the chickpeas with garlic, dried apricots, cinnamon, roasted almonds, and more.

Per serving: 406 calories 12.7g fat, 62.8g carbohydrates, 12.6g protein, 9.6g fiber

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3. Slow-cooked Provençal beef stew

Here's another main course to consider for the big meal! You'll get more than 200 percent of your daily Vitamin A intake in this protein-packed stew, which is loaded with beef and veggies.

Per serving: 351 calories 15g fat, 14g carbohydrates, 26g protein, 3g fiber

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4. Roasted garlic and butternut squash cassoulet

This take on the classic French dish uses squash as the main ingredient instead of turkey or ham, which cuts fat and calories tremendously! Butternut squash is rich in fiber, Vitamin C, and many other essential nutrients.

Per serving: 259 calories 7.7g fat, 38.8g carbohydrates, 9.5g protein, 8g fiber

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5. Chocolate cinnamon bread pudding with raspberry sauce

This low-fat bread pudding could be the perfect ending to your meal! The egg whites cut cholesterol, and the low-fat milk eliminates fat. You'll also get some fiber and heart-healthy antioxidants from the raspberries.

Per serving: 301 calories 6g fat, 38.8g carbohydrates, 9.5g protein, 8g fiber

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