We’re firm believers in the importance of having a balanced diet; a diet that’s filled with a lot of fresh fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean protein, and the occasional sweet treat. Yes, friends, we really said that! There are plenty of ways to snack responsibly and in moderation that won’t derail you from reaching your fitness goals. For instance, one great way is to swap all-purpose flour or heavy cream in your desserts, for gluten-free almond flour or almond milk. Small changes can make a big impact!
But remember these words: the key is moderation. Over-indulging in sweets and other sugary things can lead to more than just gaining weight. It can have serious effects on your health such as increased risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, poor heart health, and even heart attack.
With risks like these, it can seem like cutting sweets completely from your life can be a great way to lose weight and maintain a healthy diet, but then the question becomes: is that really sustainable long-term? For most people, it’s not—could you imagine Halloween or Valentine’s Day without any chocolate? And as long as you choose healthier treats that are low in sodium (salt) and sugars, you shouldn’t have to eliminate them completely.
If you’ve been looking for a few healthy dessert ideas to satisfy your sweet tooth, while making sure you stay on track in your health journey, let us lend you a hand with these 9 must-make recipes for you!
These wholesome, yummy muffin bites are the perfect grab-and-go breakfast or snack option for people who are short on time. Thanks to the fresh berries and hearty oats, this recipe is a healthier alternative to typical muffins from the store that are packed with flour, sugar, and oil. Plus, did we mention that these are dairy-free AND gluten-free? Yes, please. Whip up a batch and keep them in the fridge for easy access, or freeze them for longer storage!
Move over PSLs, these healthy pumpkin bars are here to stay! Whether it’s fall (or even if it’s not—we don’t judge), these festive, better-for-you bars will be the star of your next fall gathering; each guest will love them! Typical pumpkin bars are weighed down with white sugar and oil, but these bars are not. This recipe uses a combo of all-purpose and whole wheat flour for a light, fluffy texture, while still providing the heart-healthy benefits of whole grains. For an extra benefit, add chunks of walnut or pecan for added heart boost! Instead of butter or vegetable cooking oil, you can substitute with melted coconut oil or olive oil. You’ll use brown sugar, a bit of vanilla extract and a handful of spices for sweetness and flavor. Oh, and did we mention that this recipe calls for REAL pumpkin?
No matter what time of the year, apple crisp is one of the most popular fall desserts; it’s also an easy-to-make spin-off of apple pies, with the same flavor! In less than 30 minutes, you can make this healthy-take on traditional Apple Crisp from scratch that tastes like it came right out of Grandma’s oven! This recipe uses a few healthy substitutions (that you’ll likely have in your kitchen), like coconut oil, a bit of maple syrup, and old fashioned oats to make a sweet, crumbly crust. Use apples, or other fresh fruit like berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries) mangos, cherries, peaches, or oranges for a summer treat! A bowl or a scoop of vanilla ice cream is optional, but recommended.
Is there anything worse than having a serious sugar craving and finding absolutely not a thing to suffice in your cupboards or fridge? You’re dreaming of peanut butter cups, a brownie, or maybe even both, but all you can seem to come up with is a jar of peanut butter and chocolate chips? Well, lucky for you, we have just the recipe!
This quick and easy Personal Peanut Butter Mug Cake uses simple ingredients that you likely already have, including: flour, peanut butter, an egg, brown sugar, and baking powder. Mix the batter right in the cup (no need for a bowl) heat it up in the microwave (not even the oven!) for less than 60 seconds, and voilà! A delicious, one-serving dessert to satisfy any sweet tooth. You can even make a basic glaze with just milk and powdered sugar to drizzle on top. Don’t forget the garnish!
Indulge (guilt-free!) in these delicious, protein-packed Dark Chocolate Cherry Snack Bites that are made from whole ingredients! The mixture of dark chocolate, almonds, dates, and cherries serve a good source of vitamins and antioxidants, and can help lower the risk of heart disease. Plus, these no-cook bites come together in less than five minutes, and will hold up in the fridge for a quick grab-and-go snack (or breakfast) all week long! Sounds like a no brainer, right?
Would you believe us if we told you that you could make gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan-friendly brownies? Probably. But what if we also told you that you could make gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan-friendly brownies from sweet potatoes? Say what?
This healthier version of fudgy brownies uses sweet potato in place of eggs to help bind the batter, while also keeping the texture moist. The chocolatey goodness comes from a mixture of cocoa powder and almond butter, and is enhanced with a natural sweetener of your choice: honey, maple syrup, or stevia drops. This recipe also gives you three decently healthy options to make a yummy chocolate frosting to spread on top from: coconut milk, protein powder, or cream cheese, depending on your diet plan. We’re telling you, friends, this recipe is #goals! The reviewers agree.
Who says it needs to be a hot summer day to indulge in a cold treat like popsicles or ice cream? Definitely not us!
These simple popsicles are made with three healthy ingredients: fresh fruit, yogurt, and honey. Just combine the ingredients in a blender, pour the mixture into a popsicle tray (here’s our favorite) and stick them in the freezer. That’s it! No juice, artificial sugar, or additives needed.
Any type of yogurt will work, but we recommend using low-fat yogurt or Greek yogurt as there is more grams of protein per serving and they go light on the sugar. Pro-tip: use vanilla Greek yogurt for a rich, creamy consistency.
For all of our chocolate-loving people out there, try swapping cocoa powder in place of fresh fruit instead. Mmm!
This gluten-free carrot cake stays true to the spiced flavor that we all know and love, while swapping typical ingredients for more wholesome alternatives like almond flour, coconut oil, almond milk, and pure maple syrup. If you prefer, you could use whole wheat flour in place of almond flour to get a serving of whole grain and fiber with every slice. From prep to cook time to clean-up, this recipe takes less than one hour—and we promise it’s worth every minute. Don’t forget to garnish with walnuts or pecans!
Have a problem with eating cookie dough from the bowl and licking the batter off the spoon? Yeah, us too. That’s why we love these no-bake cookie dough bites! These bites are dairy-free and made with almond flour and oats so they’re safe and meant to be eaten raw (or you can heat them up if you choose). Make a batch and stick ‘em in the fridge or freezer for an easy, protein-packed bite that will satisfy your sweet tooth, while keeping you fuller, longer! Have them for dessert after dinner, or when you’re short on time in the morning, grab one on your way out the door for a quick pick-me-up. Because who said you can’t have cookies like these for breakfast?
Do you have healthy dessert ideas? What’s your go-to favorite better-for-you snack? Tell us!
For more healthy meals, snack ideas, workouts, and other information for weight loss, head over to Coach. Care. Connect.