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Best (and Worst) Thanksgiving Pies for Weight Loss

Piece Talk

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Passing up pie on Thanksgiving? Sacrilege! Instead, learn how your favorite Thanksgiving pies stack up and easy ways to dial down the decadence.

Plus, find out just what a 200 calorie slice of your favorite pie looks like here.

Pecan Pie

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Though nuts are a great source of healthy fats and protein, too much of a good thing can kick this southern treat into the diet danger zone. Slash 60 calories and 9 grams of fat per piece with a tip from Betty Crocker kitchens manager Shirley Dolland: sub rolled oats for half the pecans, and replace the three eggs most recipes call for with one egg and four whites.

Cherry Pie

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A can of cherry pie filling contains 133 grams of sugar—as much as in 10 doughnuts! To make your own (and shave off 75 grams of sugar), Anthony Stewart, the executive chef at the Pritikin longevity center + spa in Miami, says to simmer 4 cups frozen cherries with 2 tablespoons Splenda, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons cornstarch (dissolved in 3 tablespoons cold water) for 15 minutes.

Apple Pie

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Skip the top crust and sprinkle those braeburns with a mixture of 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour, a heaping cup of crushed Kellogg’s special k cereal, 6 tablespoons applesauce, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and a pinch of brown sugar instead. The crumb topping, courtesy of Manuel Treviño, executive chef of Marble Lane in New York City, contains three times as much fiber as a typical pie crust—and way less fat!

Lemon Meringue Pie

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Nix the crust (plus 100 calories and 7 grams of fat per serving) in favor of cookie crumbs. Elaine MaGee, R.D., author of Comfort Classics: Hearty Favorites Made Healthy, recommends spritzing your pie dish with cooking spray, pouring in 1∕2 cup crushed gingersnaps, and tilting the pan to coat it before adding the filling.

Pumpkin Pie

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Because of its starring ingredient—naturally creamy, high-fiber pumpkin purée—this holiday classic is the best of the bunch. But Michele Stuart, author of the new cookbook Perfect Pies, suggests making it even healthier by using nonfat condensed milk instead of the full-fat version. The switch won’t affect the taste at all, but it will save you 4 grams of fat per slice (3 of them saturated).