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Simple Ways to Make Desserts Healthier (and Still Delicious)

by Stephanie Koathes Mar 11, 2019

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Healthy chocolate pudding dessert.

If you’ve got a sweet tooth, but are trying to keep your waistline in check or to be a little healthier overall, it can be a challenge. These simple tips can help you satisfy those sweet cravings without sacrificing health.

Switch white for whole wheat

A plastic container of whole wheat flour.

Use whole wheat flour when whipping up pancakes, cupcakes, and other flour-based desserts. Whole wheat flour is less processed and will give your desserts a hefty dose of dietary fibre.

Make it dark

A stack of broken dark chocolate pieces.

Privilege richer, less processed, and more flavourful ingredients such as dark chocolate. Dark chocolate (with at least 70% cacao content) has antioxidants and its richness means that you don’t need to each as much to feel satisfied. You won’t miss any of the calories you may have cut in a dessert if you use more flavourful ingredients.

Less is more

A general guideline to keep in mind is the less processed an ingredient is, the better. Natural, no sugar added peanut butter is a better option than a highly processed kind for example.

Time for tofu

Cubes of tofu in a wooden bowl.

You can substitute silken tofu for butter in many recipes.

On the topic of butter…

Coconut oil is a healthier oil option full of good fats. You can replace butter with coconut oil when making dessert. Yes, it’s still a high fat food, but not all fats are created equal.

Unsweetened applesauce

Unsweetened applesauce contains only around 100 calories. Swapping out the oil in your recipe for applesauce significantly drops the fat content. This works best in muffins, cakes and quick breads.

Keeping the fruit theme

Use fruits to help sweeten your dishes rather than adding in loads of sugar. Mashed bananas for example, add sweetness and nutrients to cookies and brownies. Pureed dates also add great sweetness and richness.

If you’re looking to lighten the calorie load in your sweet treats, these ideas are a good place to start. Happy baking!

Sources: Fitness Magazine, Health, Simple Most