Iconic soul food dishes like fried chicken, mac and cheese, and shrimp and grits are often fried and filled with fattening ingredients. These recipes lighten up the fare without sacrificing the flavor.
Wild Rice Hoppin’ John
The classic Southern dish gets a colorful and nutritious boost from peppers, scallions, and whole-grain wild rice. Plus, it’s naturally gluten- and dairy-free, bursting with vitamin C, and chock-full of fiber.
Shrimp and Cauliflower “Grits”
Easily one of the best-loved soul-food dishes is shrimp and grits. This tangy version gets a healthy twist with cauliflower “grits” made with creamy coconut milk (so it’s dairy-free), plus a nutrient boost from mushrooms.
Oven-Baked “Fried” Chicken
There’s finally a fried chicken recipe you don’t have to feel guilty about. This super-tender-on-the-inside, crispy-on-the-outside chicken is baked in the oven to lighten things up, and it’s gluten-free so all your meat-eating friends can dig in.
Vegan Smoky Collard Greens and “Cheesy” Grits
There are few things more “soul” than good old-fashioned collard greens. This delicious recipe adds two more quintessentially Southern ingredients—slow-cooked black-eyed peas and corn grits—for a vegan version brimming with flavor.
Spicy Vegan Jambalaya
Classic jambalaya goes vegan in this easy recipe that gets a spicy kick from fresh jalapeños. Even better? It’s ready in under an hour, so it’s perfect for busy weeknights.