“I’m not a vegetarian, I’m a dessertarian!” ― Bill Watterson
To be honest, nothing tastes better on a hot summer night than a scoop of ice cream. I have many fond memories of evening visits to Dairy Queen with my family (where I’m from there is no such thing as a Grill & Chill…my hometown DQ’s only serve ice cream!)
Even though I still go out for an occasional scoop, most of the time I make dessert at home. My husband and I both have a sweet tooth, but we also have discerning tastes. In order to enjoy “sweet” flavors more often, I like to make healthier, and even nutritious, treats. You don’t need sugar for a dessert to taste good! As promised in my previous post, here are some of my favorites:
Although there are a lot of copycat recipes floating around the internet, I like Chocolate Covered Katie’s recipe the best. Sometimes I used half walnuts and half almonds. All in all, this woman has some of the best healthy desserts out there; I also really enjoy her chocolate chip (protein-packed) blondies. I also have copycat recipes for Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and Key Lime Pie.
Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
This recipe is even easier than the last one. All you need are a couple bananas and a big spoonful (or two) of peanut butter. I make this two ways with two results; for traditional ice cream, blend the bananas unfrozen with the peanut butter, and then stick in the freezer for at least a few hours. For a more soft-serve style, freeze the bananas first, and then blend with the peanut butter when you’re ready to eat. One thing I like to do is throw in some cinnamon!
Trail Mix Cookies
I adapted this recipe by using either oat flour (oats ground in a food processor or coffee grinder), a gluten-free flour, or another whole grain flour. I also substituted the sugar for a tablespoon of stevia. They taste absolutely amazing straight out of the oven, but what cookie doesn’t?
Speaking of trail mix…I’m also somewhat addicted to the recipe I created last summer. I like to mix Cinnamon Life, honey wheat pretzel bits, raisins, peanuts, and dark chocolate chips (or M&Ms) together.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 1/4 cups rolled oats, 1 1/4 cup oat flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 Tbsp baking powder, 1 flax egg (1 Tbsp flax + 3 Tbsp water), 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1 cup pumpkin puree (unsweetened), 1 tsp cider vinegar , 1 Tbsp agave, 2-4 Tbsp virgin melted coconut oil melted, chocolate chips. Mix dry, then add in wet. Mix in the chocolate chips (or whatever else you choose.) It helps to refrigerate the dough for about 15 minutes. Place dough blobs (technical term) onto a greased baking sheet, or, if you’re fancy, a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake at 375 for about 12 minutes. Try not to eat them all.
Dark Chocolate Chip Banana Oat Bread
I’ve already made a post about this because it’s so popular. It’s a classic and never gets old.
No-Bake Almond Butter-Cacao Bites
My mother-in-law first introduced me to this recipe. She now makes these almost every time my husband and I visit. They come together really quickly, and pack some nutrition along with taste. I’d recommend adding the oats half a cup at a time…I’ve never been able to get them sticky enough with the full amount. Also, I use about half the recommended honey.
Those are just some of the regulars in my kitchen. I’m almost always looking for new treats to try, whether that means finding a recipe that’s great as it is, or experimenting and substituting healthier ingredients*. You can see more of these on my Pinterest board, or even on my Instagram.
*Most often I sub out sugar for stevia, agave or honey. I also tend to use whole grains instead of white flour, because they actually have a positive impact on your health (think fiber and protein!) As well, I commonly use coconut oil, almond oil, apple sauce, or yogurt in place of butter or other oils. I also like to use flax eggs, because even though organic eggs do have Omega-3 fatty acids, flax is a vegan alternative, and easier to keep around.