I hate stereotypes; in fact I detest them. However I absolutely adore desserts, like every other stereotypical woman in the world. Put some bread pudding in front of me, and I will devour not only mine but everyone else’s. Once I finished college and didn’t have the luxury of taking fitness classes every day, my clothing started to get a little tighter–and not in that cute and sexy way. So I decided to take action and make a stand against the post-college fluff that was slowly creeping up my thighs. There was absolutely zero chance I could sacrifice my nightly ritual of partaking in a tasty treat, so I had to think outside the box. And where does any logical and creative person turn these days for ideas for healthy munchies? Pinterest, of course.
Pinterest is teeming with lifehacks on how to create delicacies that are big on taste but small on your waist. I was able to filter through dozens of pictures of desserts–ranging from sugar-free to vegan–and compiled a board that would satisfy my sweet tooth while ensuring I was not consuming my daily calorie intake in five bites.
TOP 10 FINDS
Currently I have over 200 pins of sweets waiting to be tried and tasted. Here are the most effective sweet tooth cures I’ve found so far.
1. Bananas With Honey And Cinnamon
This was one of the best recipes because all you need is a banana, some cinnamon, and honey. I just tossed all three into a pan and cooked the banana slices till they had browned a bit. Healthy, sweet, and filling.
2. Skinny Puppy Chow
Puppy chow is usually 365 calories per cup, but I was on a mission to find a way to make this sugar-filled treat with half the calories and half the fat. You’ll need 2 cups fiber-enriched honey square cereal, 4 tablespoons butter substitute, 2 tablespoons peanut butter (you can’t skimp on this goodness), 2 packets artificial sweetener, 1 package fat- and sugar-free vanilla pudding mix, and 2 squares reduced-sugar chocolate. After you melt the ingredients and drizzle the mixture over the cereal, sprinkle your pudding packet over the whole thing. Get this: One cup of this treat is only 100 calories! There’s no way you can beat that.
3. Angel Food Cupcakes
Coming in at only 60 calories for one cupcake, this recipe caught my eye immediately. The desserts use 1 box angel food cake mix, some cool whip for the icing, and a strawberry garnish on top. They’re easy and delicious!
4. Coffee Popsicles
I’m a sucker for coffee ice cream, chocolate-covered coffee beans…really anything coffee related. So when I found this recipe my heart did a little flutter of joy. I haven’t enjoyed a popsicle since I was a kid, but when I saw there were only three healthy ingredients involved I was sold. Just blend together 1 can coconut milk, 3 tablespoons maple syrup, and 1 cup brewed coffee. Pour this milky goodness into popsicle molds. Once they’re frozen, enjoy a cool summer treat.
5. Peanut Butter Cups
With 1 bag chocolate chips, 3/4 cup almond milk, and 3/4 cup peanut butter you have a healthier version of Reese’s cups. Melt the chocolate chips and almond milk and stir until smooth. Then pour the mixture into muffin pans, filling the cups halfway. (You should save a little of this mixture for the end of the recipe.) Pop the trays in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Pull them out and place a dollop of peanut-buttery deliciousness into the center of the hardened chocolate. Next, drizzle the remaining chocolate on top and slide them back in the freezer. Once they’re set you’re left with a low-calorie sweet treat.
6. Watermelon Granita
Mmm, granita. This was one of my favorite treats while I was in Italy. Light and sweet, it’s the ideal refreshment on a sunny day. I’ve been trying to master the perfect balance between fruit and sweetener, and this is as close as I’ve gotten. Blend together 4 cups watermelon, 2 tablespoons sweetener, and juice from a lime. Pour this mixture into a shallow dish and freeze. Once it’s hardened, scrape the top with a fork and place these shavings in a dessert dish. Quick, easy, healthy–and absolutely satisfying on those 77-degree days.
7. Skinny Ice Cream Sandwiches
I absolutely love ice cream sandwiches. Remember going to the ice cream truck as a kid and grabbing those ginormous ice cream goodies? I always chose the sandwich that was loaded with dozens of tiny chocolate chips. These days I’d rather throw my calories toward a glass of wine instead of an overly processed ice cream sandwich, but I still have occasional cravings. So I decided to get creative and came up with this easy and cute substitute. Grab a banana, slice it up, and throw it in the freezer. Once the slices are hardened, toss them into a food processor, blend them until smooth, and freeze them again. Take this sweet mixture and spread it between two vanilla wafers. Roll the edges in some colorful sprinkles and you’ve got yourself a gourmet sweet.
8. Chocolate Brownies
Brownies are the best sundae ingredient in the universe. Right when they come out of the oven, if you’re brave enough, cut some hefty warm gooey pieces and mix them with a bowl of ice cream…this is quite possibly the closest thing to heaven I have ever encountered. This recipe involves a few more ingredients than the others, but it’s still a snap to make. While you’re preheating your oven to 350 degrees, mix together 3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup cocoa powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. In another bowl, whisk together 1 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce, 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, 2 ounces milk chocolate, 2 eggs, and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Combine the ingredients of both bowls and stir till they’re glistening. Dump your batter into an 8″x8″ greased pan and top with some more chocolate chips. After about 30 minutes you should have a delicious skinny brownie. Go ahead, take two.
9. Cinnamon Apples
When fall comes around I adore heading to the nearest orchard. Although it’s about an hour trek to get there, making homemade applesauce and pie is so satisfying that it’s worth it. Apples are inherently sweet and make a great snack that you never have to feel guilty about. These microwave apples are quick, easy, and do the trick when you have a late-night sweet tooth. Cube three apples and add 1 to 2 tablespoons butter to a microwave-safe container. Microwave for roughly 2 minutes and then mix the butter and apples together. Add about 2 tablespoons cinnamon and 2 tablespoons sugar substitute to the container and microwave for 2 more minutes. Voila, now you have some tender spiced apples, ready to be devoured!
10. 30-Second Chocolate Cake
Chocolate cake may be the greatest gift this earth has ever received. The rich and fluffy texture is enough to make me want to forgo all the wines and breads in the world and feast on chocolate cake for the rest of my life. If you’re anything like me, there’s no way an entire cake will last more than a few days. Fortunately for me (and soon to be you too!) I found this single-serving recipe that’s both healthy and easy. Grab a small bowl and mix together 2 teaspoons cocoa powder, 5 teaspoons flour, and 1/8 teaspoon baking powder. Add 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, 2 teaspoons maple syrup, and 3 tablespoons vanilla soymilk. Once you’ve mixed these ingredients into the bowl, stir in 1 tablespoon dark chocolate chips. Place your bowl in the microwave for about 30 seconds, and before you know it you’ll have a individual-sized cake that’s absolutely delightful.
HAPPILY EVER AFTER
So those are my top-10 foodie finds. Although you can never go wrong with a cheesecake smothered in berries and sauce, it’s all about moderation. Some people may prefer their desserts over their nightly wine, but I’m the type of girl who will have her cake and eat it too. If you have recipes to share, comment below because I’m always eager to try anything sweet!