Most of us have a sweet tooth and can’t wait for dessert, but the effect on our waistlines can be dramatic. There are a few tips and tricks that can make those desserts a little less damaging healthwise while still tasting great and loved by all the family.
1. Cut out the sugar
You don’t need as much sugar as you think you do to make a dessert taste great. Using low-calorie sugars and those mixed with Stevia can be a good way of achieving this, but simply reducing the amount of sugar used in a recipe can work too. Try cutting down to half the amount initially, you might be surprised that the taste really isn’t all that different.
2. Use natural sweeteners
Keeping blood glucose levels stable is the key to making a dessert healthier, so natural sweeteners are a better way to go than the processed sugar you’re used to using. Stevia is super sweet so you often need to add far less than you would with processed sugars when it comes to baking, but other natural sweeteners to try include xylitol, coconut sugar and palm sugar.
3. Only use natural fats
Margarine and processed fats generally aren’t good for you. Although there is some debate around the use of fats in cooking and baking, a good rule of thumb for making your desserts healthier is to opt for natural fats instead. Good alternatives you can try include butter, coconut oil, olive oil and palm shortening.
4. Opt for whole grain flours
There’s a wide range of flours you can try out there, each with a slightly different flavour that can improve the taste of your baking. If you’re unsure, try swapping out a third to a half of the called for flour with a whole grain alternative.
Good alternatives to white flour include:
- buckwheat flour
- coconut flour
- oat flour
- nut flours
- spelt flour
- whole wheat flour
As with any substitutions in baking, it’s never an exact science, and each of these flour types have a different texture, so it’s going to take some trial and error to find the right combination for your favourite recipes.