Brownies, Lightened Up

by in Cookies & Other Desserts, Healthy Recipes, Kid-Friendly, February 7, 2011
Ellie Krieger's Healthy Brownies Recipes
Ellie Krieger's Double Chocolate Brownies

I’m a brownie kind of girl — my friends and family can vouch for me. Luckily, you can lighten up this uber-chocolatey favorite easily. What’s the secret? Read on to find out.

The Nutrition Facts
Commercially-prepared brownies typically contain around 230 calories and 9 grams of fat each (for about 3 inches square). If you look at some store bought brands those numbers go up: Starbucks espresso brownies weigh in at 370 and 21 grams of fat, while their caramel variety has a whopping 580 calories and 36 grams of fat. The more gooey stuff you put on those brownies, the higher the calories go.

Go Simple
The goodness of brownies is all in the chocolate. So when you’re looking for a recipe, choose ones that call for the basics: flour, butter, sugar, cocoa powder and/or chocolate. Skip recipes with extra heavy ingredients like heavy cream and corn syrup. If you find a very simple recipe, you’ll find that it tastes even better than the boxed stuff where you’re paying more for a laundry list of additives and preservatives.

The add-ins also rack up calories — and fast: Keep mix-ins like peanut butter, nuts, caramel, chocolate chips, toffee, marshmallows to a minimum. If you must have one, choose heart healthy nuts or natural peanut butter and halve or quarter the amount listed. If you’re looking to enhance the flavor without calories, try espresso powder. It has minimal calories and a little goes a long way.

Cut The Fat
By popular demand, we’ve added some tips on how to cut fat (and add nutrition) to your favorite recipes.  These swaps will make your finished product a cakier, still-delicious treat.  Here are some easy ways to cut the fat in your favorite brownie recipe:

  • Trade half the butter for pureed fruits such as bananas, pumpkin, prunes or apple butter, or nonfat plain yogurt.
  • A half-cup of oil packs a whopping 960 calories, while applesauce has just 60 calories per half-cup, so replacing half the oil with applesauce can create huge fat and calorie savings.
  • Replace each whole egg with two egg whites or 1/4 cup egg substitute.
  • Get more fat-reduction ideas for all your baked goods >>

The Portions
Of course, controlling portions also helps you control calories. Prepare in mini muffin pans for perfectly portioned brownie bites or pre-slice into small (2-inch) cubes once the brownies have cooled. If you’ve made too much, freeze a batch for later (or share with friends or coworkers.)

Recipes to Try:

TELL US: How do you lighten up brownies?

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby’s full bio »

You Might Also Like:

More posts from .

Similar Posts

Hearty, Healthy Soups and Stews for Fall

When the air starts to turn chilly, there’s nothing quite like a stew simmering on the stove. These recipes not only ladle up comfort, they̵...

Comments (2,038)

  1. The Birch of the Shadow…

    I believe there could become a several duplicates, but an exceedingly useful listing! I have tweeted this. Lots of thanks for sharing!…

  2. Ativan says:

    valium…

    This really answered my problem, thank you!…

  3. ghutrew says:

    Cool sites…

    [...]we came across a cool site that you might enjoy. Take a look if you want[...]……

  4. tb3252820@3252820…

    I’ve said that least 3252820 times….

  5. Comment…

    Howdy! I just wish to give an enormous thumbs up for the great information you’ve got here on this post. I might be coming again to your blog soon….

  6. Comment…

    you might have an awesome blog right here! would you prefer to make some invite posts on my blog?…

  7. Comment…

    Once I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now every time a remark is added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any method you may remove me from that service? Thanks!…

  8. Comment…

    I like your way of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark website list and will be checking back soon….

  9. Comment…

    Rarely do I encounter a blog that’s both educated and entertaining, and let me inform you, you might have hit the nail on the head. Your thought is excellent; the difficulty is something that not enough people are talking intelligently about. I am very…

  10. Comment…

    When I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is added I get 4 emails with the same comment. Is there any means you possibly can take away me from that service? Thanks!…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>