Authors: Registered Dietitians
(HealthCastle.com) The Vancouver Christmas Market is in full swing, open daily until Christmas Eve at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza. For many people, a visit to this German-style market is not complete without indulging in some of the tasty treats available from the many food vendors. We've looked at the food options available at the market and chosen six of the healthiest treats for you to enjoy so that you can indulge in the holiday spirit guilt-free.
Top 6 Healthy Treats at the Vancouver Christmas Market
1. Roasted Chestnuts
Roasted chestnuts are a classic Christmas staple (chestnuts roasting on a open fire, anyone?), and they are wonderfully warm and delicious on a cold winter day. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C, copper, and manganese, as well as providing plenty of fibre. Unlike other nuts, roasted chestnuts are not served salted, so they are low in sodium. You can find fresh roasted chestnuts at the Coffee & Nuts booth, run by two local families of Italian heritage.
2. Baked Apple
Stuffed, baked apples are a traditional German Christmas dessert. The ones at the Vancouver Christmas market are made from local Okanagan apples. The apples are stuffed with healthy fillings like walnuts, pecans, raisins, cinnamon, and cranberries (plus some sugar, of course), and then baked into a warm, delicious sweet treat. The apples provide loads of fibre and Vitamin C, the nuts offer protein, and raisins and cranberries provide antioxidants. The apples are served with vanilla or chocolate sauce, which significantly ups the calorie count. If you're planning on indulging in other treats as well, you can skip the sauce to save some room in your calorie budget. Baked apples are available at the Das Apfelhaus booth.
3. Chocolate Fountain
At the Powers Chocolate booth, you'll find a five-tier chocolate fountain. The melted chocolate is served over cut fruit, which makes a delicious and healthy treat. The fruit provides vitamins and fiber, while the chocolate is a source of antioxidants. For the healthiest version, choose dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate, and skip the powdered sugar or whipped cream toppings.
4. Grilled Fish
At Captain Randy's Seafood from the Source booth, you can try a traditional steckerlfisch - smoked mackerel on a stick - or some less traditional but equally delicious wild salmon skewers. Both of these fish are high in protein and offer healthy omega-3 fats. Smoked fish is always higher in sodium than fish that has not been smoked, so keep this in mind when choosing which type of fish to enjoy. If you're still doing your Christmas shopping, you can also pick up some smoked salmon in a cedar box to take home.
5. Yogurt and Hazelnuts
In addition to various cheesy treats, The Farm House Natural Cheeses from Agassiz will be offering fresh yogurt topped with Fraser Valley hazelnuts and honey. Yogurt provides calcium, protein, and Vitamin B12, while hazelnuts offer Vitamin E, copper, and manganese. You can do some Christmas shopping here, too, from their selection of cheese baskets.
6. Kettle Korn
Popcorn is a whole grain and a very healthy snack! The sweet and salty Kettle Korn sold at the Christmas market by Langley's Canadian Kettle Korn Extreme actually has fewer calories per serving than buttered popcorn - just 57 calories per cup - and contains no artificial additives or preservatives.
Tell us: Will you be trying some of these treats at The Vancouver Christmas Market? Or have you already? Let us know in the comments.