Healthified Cheetos

I think I have too many hobbies. Scratch that, I KNOW I have too many hobbies.

I’ve just always been a busy person. I thrive off of it. I relish a packed schedule with spontaneous bits of free time that always surprise me and make me feel alive. There’s too many things I want to do in this life and so little time to do it all! First off, there’s work, doctors’ appointments for my allergies, physical therapy sessions for my back, then I like to spend time with family and friends, and of course there’s this whole baking deal that calls my name 2-4 times per week…it’s all a little crazy.

Add in working out with my personal trainer, doing yoga at my studio, dancing because I love it…and most people would be overwhelmed. But wait, I’m not done. Let’s add into the mix the fact that I’m the Vice President of the Orange County Young Professionals of Costa Mesa Kiwanis and not so secretly the head of the baking department that makes little treats for every meeting and social :P…aaand that equals a very busy Vyvy. Busy but happy of course :)

I could sit here and make very heartfelt promises (that I actually believe) that I’m going to write in this blog everyday and deliver you constant new recipes, but I’m not going to. I realize, I can’t be one of those people that completely dedicates my time to my blog. I really do envy those that do…but alas, I realized I can’t be hard on myself when I haven’t written in awhile. I just have to write when I feel like it and because it makes me happy, but blogging (or the lack there of) should never feel guilty!! So, here goes! ;)

So, I can’t have cornmeal (hear me out), well I can but I’m allergic so I get stomachache/headache, it’s not too fun. Luckily, my allergies have improved greatly due to this diet I did to help heal my stomach. Anyway, I made “Healthified” Cheetos thanks to a recipe I found online! Well, my friends ate most of it because they liked the flavor so much but they insisted it tasted more like Cheez-Its than it did Cheetos. Go figure. Ah well, I’m happy either way! Cheesy-crackery-goodness in my mouth! :D

Healthified Cheetos

*Modified from this recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3 egg whites (room temperature if possible)
  • 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup freshly shredded cheddar cheese (frozen)
  • 1/4 cup (approx.) Parmesan cheese (grated)

Equipment:

  • Food processor/blender
  • Mixing bowl
  • Rubber spatula
  • Hand mixer/standing mixer
  • Cookie sheet
  • Parchment paper

1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

2. Put the Parmesan cheese in a food processor/blender and chop until very fine. Set aside for later use.

3. Once the Parmesan cheese is removed, place the frozen cheddar cheese in the food processor/blender and chop until very fine. The small the pieces, the better so that the cheese will be well incorporated and each bite tastes as good as the last.

4. Separate your egg whites. If you don’t have a fancy egg separator, just crack the egg carefully and let the egg white seep into the mixing bowl without breaking the yolk***. I accidentally broke it once, it wasn’t pretty.

5. Add the cream of tartar to the mixing bowl and whip the egg whites/cream of tartar concoction until VERY stiff peaks form. Using a hand mixer, this took me about 8 minutes. Have fun. Maybe set up a nice cooking magazine right there and a chair so you can relax or you can put on music like I did and dance around…in one spot :P If you’re still unsure as to when the egg whites are done, check out THIS site, super handy ;)

6. Sprinkle the chopped cheddar cheese on top of the egg whites. Then, with your rubber spatula, fold the cheese into the egg whites VERY CAREFULLY. Be careful not to disturb the fluffy whites, but thoroughly spread the cheese throughout. I sprinkled some on top of the fluffiness, folded it in, then sprinkled some more, and so on.

7. Carefully place the mixture into a large Ziplock baggie, cut a ¼-½ inch hole in the corner of baggie. I personally wouldn’t go as large as ½ inch because the mixture can come out a little too quickly and just make a big mess instead of awesomely lined Cheeto shapes.

8. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or grease the pan if you don’t have any, but if you can, just use the parchment paper because clean up was a breeze that way!

9. Gently squeeze onto the parchment-lined/greased cookie sheet Cheeto-like shapes, or whatever shapes suits you. I might suggest maybe even just doing circle shapes. Press the Ziploc bag opening against the cookie sheet and press, lifting upward, so that you have a nice circular dot form maybe an inch in diameter. I feel like these would cook more evenly and get that nice crispiness all around instead of just at the ends like with the Cheeto shape.

10. Lightly sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese, on top of each puff. I had a lot of Parmesan cheese left over, which is delicious on top of a toasted croissant with some garlic butter as a nice snack. Just sayin’…

11. Bake at 300 degrees, for 20-30 minutes. The longer you can bake them (without them getting too brown), the crispier they will be. Maria suggests that for even crispier puffs, turn off the oven, and leave them in the oven for at least 30 minutes. Mine took about 25 minutes to bake and I left them in the oven after I turned it off for another 5 minutes or so. I was impatient :D

12. Store in a tightly sealed, air-tight container. Makes approximately 6 servings. Or if you’re like my friends, one serving. I think I ate a total of 4 pieces before it got DEVOURED.

NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON (per serving)
Store Bought Cheetos = 160 calories, 15 carbs, 1g fiber
“Healthified” Cheetos = 45 calories, trace carbs, 0 fiber

My next take of this recipe would be attempting to make “Healthified” Hot Cheetos. If someone gets to it before me, let me know via comment or email! :) Also, I just have to say…sorry for the horrible photo quality! My phone got stolen in Madrid so I am used to an iPhone 3G. Not 3GS, just 3G. It’s sad, I know ;P

Happy Friday!! Until next time! :P

***As you may have noticed, I suck at separating the egg white BUUUT my aunt is awesome and linked me this amazingly easy way to remove the egg yolk!  All you need, is a freakin’ bowl and an empty plastic water bottle.  Yup, that’s it!  All you have to do is suck up the egg yolk with the water bottle and transfer it elsewhere.  NOTE:  I have no idea what she’s saying but she does a great job of demonstrating it! :) 

Super easy way to separate the egg whites

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Comments
3 Responses to “Healthified Cheetos”
  1. I am sop mad at u >:O not saving any for me!!!

    Like

  2. Jobeth says:

    I actually found this more eninatrinteg than James Joyce.

    Like

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