It dawned on me today that I haven’t come up with a new healthy dessert recipe in awhile…which sent me into an analysis of my 10 favorite desserts. I love making these 10 desserts over and over and over again 🙂
What makes it OK to call these dessert recipes healthy? And how can you create your own healthy desserts at home?
Here are 5 Steps to Healthy Desserts:
#1 Step to Healthy Desserts: Zero Cane Sugar: With all that we know about the detrimental side effects of refined cane sugar, it’s important that our healthy dessert NOT contain any. Not only does refined cane sugar (and corn syrup) dramatically spike your blood sugar and set you up for fat storage, it also depletes your body of vital minerals and nutrients. There are many wholesome sweeteners available to use instead of refined sugar, so worry not, your healthy dessert will be sweet enough 🙂 My favorite wholesome sweeteners are: dates, bananas, coconut palm sugar, raw honey, pure maple syrup and stevia.
#2 Step to Healthy Desserts: Zero Grain: Traditional cookies, cakes and brownies contain refined flours made from grain. These flours contain high amounts of refined carbs which spike your blood sugar in the same way as refined cane sugar. To avoid this, all of the healthy recipes below use grain-free flours, which are lower in carbs and higher in healthy fats. This combination of nutrients keeps your blood sugar more stable and fills you up with usable energy. My favorite wholesome flours are: blanched almond flour, coconut flour, flax meal, arrowroot starch, egg white protein powder, and shredded unsweetened coconut.
#3 Step to Healthy Desserts: Fat: Remember how dietary fat was so feared back in the 90’s? I used to be such a sucker for fat-free desserts because I thought that it was the fat in a food item that would cause me to gain fat. Turns out we had it all wrong – drat! It was the refined sugar and grains, which fat-free desserts are especially packed with, that cause fat storage…not fat itself. And especially not healthy fat. Fat is so important to our health and in sustaining our energy throughout the day. It’s really vital to our brain functioning too, which is pretty darn important, I’d say! My favorite wholesome fats to use in desserts are: coconut oil and a variety of nuts.
#4 Step to Healthy Desserts: Fruit is the Star: When it comes to creating a healthy dessert, the best place to start is with some form of organic, fresh, seasonal fruit. Fruit is nature’s candy, a candy that comes with more benefits than you can imagine in the form of fiber, vitamins and minerals. The possibilities are endless in how to turn your fruit into a memorable and satisfying dessert. You could eat it fresh, dip it in dark chocolate, bake it into donut holes, frost it with young coconut frosting, use it as garnish or blend it into sorbet. The key is to start with flavorful, organic, fresh fruit in order to create a wholesome dessert with the flavor you’ll want to return to.
#5 Step to Healthy Desserts: Petite Portions: Alright, no one likes to hear this one, but it’s important so listen up. The healthiest dessert in the world can cause weight gain if you eat TOO MUCH OF IT! Sorry, but it’s true. The 10 desserts below are all healthier for you than any traditional dessert that you’ll find in restaurants or at the store, but if you stuff yourself with these desserts then you’ll experience unpleasant side effects such as weight gain, lethargy and irritability. Makes sense, right? Let’s indulge responsibly and savor each bite!
Here are my Top 10 Favorite Healthy Desserts, in no particular order because they’re all so tasty I can’t play favorites…