It can be a challenge to use the words “healthy” and “desserts” in the same breath, especially when you’re serving up Thanksgiving dessert. Keep this one trick in your back pocket and you’ll be surprised at how sweet healthy desserts can really be: You can’t go wrong if you bake along with the season. All of these treats (all gluten-free) use your fall fruit favorites, like pumpkin, apples and pears — low in calories and high in fiber. Plus, cranberry is naturally bursting with antioxidants and vitamin C.
Quinoa is still all the rage. And it’s no wonder. It’s full of protein, easy to make and extremely versatile. Just how versatile? Well, recently I’ve started eating it for dessert. That’s right, quinoa in the pudding!
No need for a box of chocolates to signify Valentine’s Day this year. Instead, just look to your pantry for a sweet-salty idea that will melt anyone’s heart. This dessert combines comforting chocolate chip cookies and tempting dulce de leche, which makes up the molten center. The fact that these stuffed cookies also happen to be gluten-free — that’s the sweetest part of all.
True, true — honesty is the most important part of any relationship. But what’s a little white lie here and there? Or what about a dark, chocolate-smothered lie? It sounds sinful, but here’s the deal: All of these Valentine’s Day chocolate desserts are — wait for it — secretly healthy. They are also all suspiciously delicious, so who’s to know?
According to culinary lore, pound cake got its name because the original recipe called for a pound each of butter, sugar, eggs and flour. But that doesn’t mean every loaf has to pack on the pounds! Food Network Kitchens developed this healthier take by making a few simple switches to the classic. Here’s how to help this beloved cake slim down.
Instead of curling up with a pint of ice cream while watching a romantic comedy on Valentine’s Day, try a lower fat ice cream-alternative instead. This special sundae recipe uses low-fat ricotta cheese to lessen up the calories, while maintaining a creamy taste. Top your “sundae” with crunchy add-ins like KIND Healthy Grains Clusters along with a sprinkle of dried fruit and coconut flakes for a fun, crispy texture. (Save any extra granola and fruit for snacks later on during the week with milk or on top of yogurt.) A sprinkle of dairy-free chocolate makes this sundae gleefully indulgent. So go ahead, dig in all you want.
The perfect Valentine’s Day pair is chocolate and nuts. This homemade chocolate bark is super simple to make. Just combine dairy-free chocolate chips and your favorite nut: hazelnuts, pistachios, pecans, walnuts — whatever you like. Chocolate Love Bark is also kid-friendly; ask kids to help you choose the nuts and sprinkle them onto the melted chocolate. This dessert is perfect for bringing to a Valentine’s Day party or for gifting; it keeps well wrapped up in plastic wrap or in a container.
Twinkies had a last hurrah recently when its manufacturer, Hostess, declared bankruptcy. Along with stories of store shelves being emptied, were articles exploring the laundry list of highly processed ingredients including trans fats, processed sweeteners, preservatives and artificial colors. You know what we say to that —- avoid all the junk and make your own!
The Coveted Baking Pan
“Canoe” baking pans have been selling for as much as 100 bucks online. Instead of paying those inflated prices, I hit up a local kitchen supply store. My trusty shopkeeper had quite a few left in stock. If you’re unable to find this type of a pan, the cupcake version of this recipe isn’t quite as nostalgic, but just as tasty.
Perfectly portioned and finger-licking good. Bring some fresh fruit along too – we suggest watermelon slices or a bushel of juicy peaches.
Scratch the chocolate itch with these decadent delights. Bake a bunch and freeze for up to 6 months.