Winter’s here in full force, and nothing keeps you warmed up when the temperature plummets like a mug full of a delicious hot drink. But with all the calories coffeehouse and fast food teas and coffees can have, it’s best to make your own so you can control calories and portions. Another great thing about hot drinks is that you have to sip them slowly, which gives your stomach the time to feel full, and may make you less prone to overindulge. Sippable soups are another wonderful way to warm up while filling up on fewer calories. Here are five creative ideas to spice up your mug and keep warm, too:
- Hot Apple Cider (90 calories): Simmer ¾ cup apple juice in a pan along with a cinnamon stick and a pinch of nutmeg. Pour and enjoy! Using two raw apples and a juicer lends an even fresher taste, if you have the time.
- Hot Toddy (Not) (50 calories): Substituting your favorite tea for the alcohol in a hot toddy can be a great way to enjoy its flavorful aspects while still keeping your head clear and the calories down. Simply make your favorite spiced or herbal tea, then add traditional hot toddy ingredients like 2 to 3 tablespoons honey, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and spices like cinnamon and cloves.
- Hot Chocolate (95 calories): If you’re looking for a more nutritious take on a bit of a splurge, try this: Heat ¾ cup skim milk and add 2 teaspoons Dutch chocolate powder and 1 teaspoon sugar. Get a host of bone-building vitamins and minerals along with a tasty treat for less than 100 calories.
- Miso Soup (60 calories): Soups can be a great way to warm up and fill up, and they can be easily sipped with one hand when you’re on the go. Miso soup is a great choice because it’s very flavorful, low-calorie, and widely available (many Asian restaurants and take-out places will have it on hand, as well as larger supermarkets). A 12-oz mug is only about 60 calories.
- Veggie Broth (20 calories): Once you find a veggie broth you like, it’s your weight-loss secret weapon. Unfortunately, broths can range from the great to the practically unmentionable. Try some store-bought brands (go for organic if you can), or experiment at home simmering veggies for your own custom-made broth. Often, farmer’s markets will also sell delicious homemade veggie broth, so be sure to ask. It’s a wonderfully nutritious way to fill up with virtually no calories.