Do you know what today is?
It's more than just March 14th, or 3/14…flashback to math class…
it’s Pi Day!
For those of us who love food, Pi Day is not about the mathematical formula (which happens to be the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter...just in case this trivia comes in handy today). It's about great food!
We all know many "pies" are the perfect paradise for sugars, "bad for you" fats, sodium and a variety of artificial ingredients for color, taste and texture. Fruit pies...cream pies...pot pies…and the most popular, pizza pies!
For example, here are the ingredients for a popular pizza pie, the Pizza Hut Meat Lover's Personal Pan Pizza, which contains 850 calories, 49 g fat, 18 g saturated fat, 69 g carbs and a whopping 1,950 mg sodium. And it’s personalized, so who doesn’t eat the whole thing?!
INGREDIENTS: Applewood Smoked Bacon: BACON (CURED WITH WATER, SALT, SUGAR, SODIUM PHOSPHATES, SODIUM ERYTHORBATE, SODIUM NITRITE), MAY CONTAIN: SMOKE FLAVORING, BROWN SUGAR., Beef: BEEF, SALT, SEASONING (MUSTARD, SUGAR, SPICE, SUNFLOWER OIL, NATURAL FLAVORS, GRILL FLAVOR [FROM SUNFLOWER OIL], NATURAL SMOKE FLAVOR), SODIUM PHOSPHATE., Cheese: MOZZARELLA CHEESE (PASTEURIZED MILK, CHEESE CULTURES, SALT, ENZYMES), MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, POWDERED CELLULOSE, POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, NATURAL FLAVORS, ASCORBIC ACID (TO PROTECT FLAVOR), Classic Marinara Pizza Sauce: TOMATO PUREE (TOMATO PASTE, WATER), SALT, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF THE FOLLOWING: SPICES, GARLIC POWDER, TOMATO FIBERS, OLIVE OIL, CANOLA OIL, CITRIC ACID, AND NATURAL FLAVORS., Italian Sausage: PORK, SEASONING (SPICES, PAPRIKA, SUGAR, GALIC POWDER, SALT, SPICE EXTRACTIVES), WATER, SALT., Pan Crust (Personal): DOUGH: ENRICHED FLOUR (BLEACHED WHEAT FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, NIACIN, FERROUS SULFATE, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), WATER, YEAST. CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: SALT, SOYBEAN OIL, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP OR SUGAR, VITAL WHEAT GLUTEN, SODIUM STEAROYL LACTYLATE, DATEM, ENZYMES, ASCORBIC ACID. PAN Oil: SOYBEAN OIL, TBHQ ADDED TO PROTECT FRESHNESS. PAN SPRAY: SOYBEAN OIL, SOY LECITHIN, NON-CHLOROFLUOROCARBON PROPELLANT., Pepperoni: PORK, BEEF, SALT, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: SPICES, DEXTROSE, LACTIC ACID STARTER CULTURE, EXTRACTIVES OF PAPRIKA, EXTRACTIVES OF ROSEMARY, SODIUM NITRITE., Seasoned Pork: PORK, WATER, SALT, SPICES, SUGAR, CORN SYRUP SOLIDS, AUTOLYZED YEAST EXTRACT, NATURAL FLAVORS., Slow-Roasted Ham: HAM, CURED WITH: WATER, SALT, SODIUM LACTATE, SUGAR, SODIUM PHOSPHATES, SODIUM DIACETATE, SODIUM ERYTHORBATE, SODIUM NITRITE.
There’s a lot going on in that pie!
But, REAL food lovers can rejoice! Pie-inspired foods can be very nutritious…and delicious!
If you use whole grains for the pizza crust, and then top it with a great-tasting combination of vegetables, lean meats, fruits and nuts, you will get an amazing combination of nutrients.
Plus, you will find yourself saying, “this tastes so much better than takeout!” Enjoy the Spinach Artichoke Pesto Pizza on a whole-wheat pita…the whole pizza has 390 calories, 13 g fat, 2.8 g saturated fat, 51 g carbs and 640mg sodium.
But, it’s not so much about these numbers as it is the fact it provides a fantastic balance of nutrients for our bodies.
Here are some more incredibly good – and good for you – pizza-pie ideas:
Get creative and make a vegetable crust! You can also amp up the nutrition by using vegetables as the crust…zucchini, summer squash and portobello mushrooms are excellent options. If you haven’t already, give these a try:
Some people have success using cauliflower for their pizza crust, but we are still trying -- we have not found a way to make a “website-worthy” cauliflower crust.
If you have found a successful way to do this, please let us know!
What about Pot Pie?
“Pi Day” is, of course, the perfect day to enjoy other pie-inspired sweet treats!
The Mason Jar Fruit Crisp is a delicious pie-inspired dessert that is good for you! The fresh fruit filling, combined with the streusel topping, will definitely satisfy your sweet craving. The Homemade Apple Pie Granola and Apple Pie Overnight Oatmeal are also great choices!
Celebrate Pi Day with this flavor-filled Strawberry Pie!
This Strawberry Pie with Walnut Oat Cookie Crust is a great way to prepare your taste buds for the spring flavors that are right around the corner. And, keep it REAL and top it with REAL whipped cream...see our "Cool Whip or Cruel Whip" coaching tip for more ideas!
You don’t have to give up your favorite foods — even pies…that is the beauty of REAL food! Even better, we get to enjoy flavor-bursting and healthy versions of these foods!
So, celebrate π Day in style and spread the word!