Today is a very special day in the world of food. Today we celebrate not just one, but two summertime staples: hot dogs and vanilla ice cream. That’s right – July 23rd serves as both National Hot Dog Day and National Vanilla Ice Cream Day! So in celebration of this ultra special day (and what may even qualify as holiday to some), we are bringing you a recipe roundup that features ways to spice up both of these summer classics.
While neither of today’s highlighted items tend to scream “health,” there are ways to avoid going overboard while still enjoying these summer treats. When choosing the perfect hot dog, look for lower sodium or “lite” options. Chicken, turkey, and vegetarian hot dogs have can have significantly less calories and fat than traditional beef or pork franks. Also beware the bun – instead of going for a classic roll, opt for low-calorie wraps or tortillas, or try using lettuce as a carb-free alternative. When it comes to ice cream, there isn’t too much you can do to escape the ingredients. Cream and sugar are, after all, what makes the frozen treat delicious. Fat-free frozen yogurt is a great alternative, but once in a while it’s okay to indulge – just make sure you pay attention to portion sizes!
So before your next summer barbecue or other outing, make sure you check out these ways to make these delicious All-American favorites even tastier and healthier!
1. The California Hot Dog from EatingWell
Topping your dog with sprouts, avocado, and other veggies adds a nutritious boost to your meal. Swap out the bun for a tortilla or lettuce wrap for an even bigger health benefit!
2. Banh Mi Dog from Big Girls Small Kitchen
Turning a hot dog into a Vietnamese sandwich is a playful (and tasty!) spin on the classic frank
3. Gyro Lamb “Hot Dogs” from Food52
Tzatziki made with Greek yogurt adds flavorful zing to these lamb “hot dogs”
4. De-Pudged Pigs in a Blanket from The Food Network
A party classic gets a slimdown – four of these adorable bite-sized goodies only add up to 134 calories!
5. Carrot Dogs from Vegan Victuals
Using a roasted carrot in place of a hot dog is an entirely new spin, and it’s vegan friendly!
Vanilla Ice Cream:
1. Vanilla Bean Ice Cream from Cooking Light
This lighter version of the classic dessert sacrifices calories and fat, but not flavor
2. Four-Ingredient Ice Cream from Chocolate-Covered Katie
Sometimes simple is better – this no-fuss ice cream is healthy and delicious, and can be made in any flavor
3. Low-Fat Vanilla Bean Frozen Yogurt from Skinnytaste
Greek yogurt adds creaminess and richness without piling on the fat and calories
4. Pear Vanilla Sorbet from Food52
Sorbet can be a light and refreshing alternative to ice cream on a hot summer day
5. Vegan Cake Batter Ice Cream from Munchin with Munchkin
Frozen bananas serve as the base for this decadent – but still healthy – vegan treat
What are your favorite healthy ways to serve up hot dogs and vanilla ice cream?