Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Fill your jacket potatoes with something healthier


Think about jacket potatoes and it’s hard not to allow the thought of those dreamy textures and creamy flavours of butter, cheese and coleslaw to whet your appetite.  As tasty as a baked potato with these fillings may be, they are simply laced with calories and saturated fat.

Not great news for those popping their ready baked jacket potatoes into the microwave at lunchtime, particularly when you bear in mind that quite often, we introduce them into our diet as a healthy alternative to something else.

Jacket potatoes themselves are ideal staples and probably one of the most popular crops in the UK.  They’re high in fibre if you eat them with the skin on, and provide a healthy supply of vitamins and minerals, and not to mention the volume of carbohydrates that are present in these giant spuds provides plenty of energy to see us from one meal to the next – ideal if you’re trying to lose weight.

The toppings, on the other hand, are where many of us let ourselves down. But by selecting carefully what we fill our jacket potatoes with, we can still enjoy a really delicious meal that’s much healthier.

So what tasty toppings can you fill them with instead, that are free of guilt? 

One of the most popular toppings is cheese, so if you still want to enjoy that creamy, cheesy flavour, try cottage cheese instead as a much healthier alternative.

You could also give vegetarian chilli a go for a nutritious and super tasty meal.  Use crème fraîche or natural bio yoghurt on top, which is far healthier that butter, cheese and coleslaw.

And if you love the crunch of coleslaw on your potato, why not have a go at home making a healthier version, with all the same ingredients as the standard coleslaw you’ll find on the shelf, with the exception of mayonnaise, which you can replace with crème fraîche or natural yoghurt.  A satisfying dish that you’ll finish with feeling smug instead of guilty.

For an altogether alternative topping, sauté some mushrooms with oil and garlic and pile them on the potato.  Garnish with parsley to add a bit of colour and taste to the dish – a scrumptious, healthy meal that takes just ten minutes.

It’s all about experimenting - other flavours you can fill your potato with could range from old healthy favourites, like tuna to other types of fish like prawns and salmon.  Or even cook up a stir-fry with soy sauce and whack it on.

There’s so much scope when it comes to your jacket potato, so time to get creative and adventurous.