We firmly believe in a healthy diet, but let’s face it, dessert is one of the best ways to end a delicious meal. For those who are trying to watch what they eat, it’s often forgone for healthier alternatives like fresh berries or sliced fruit. However, there are a few things you can do to cut back on fat and calories while still enjoying your favorite sweet treat! Read on to find out how you can indulge in the occasional dessert without feeling guilty.
Watch Your Portion Size
Whether you make your own dessert at home or enjoy a treat when you’re dining out, the portion size for dessert is often far larger than a single serving. Consider splitting dessert with a friend, asking for a half order of dessert or halving your recipe if you’re baking at home. A smaller portion size won’t reduce the flavor, but it will reduce the number of calories you’re eating.
Make Smart Substitutions
If you love to bake, why not get creative in the kitchen with clever substitutions? Baked goods such as cakes, cookies, loaves and squares are often high in fat and calories, but there are a few things you can do to bring the calories down and the nutritional value up. For example, Greek yogurt can often be used in the place of oil, pureed avocado can be used instead of butter and applesauce is a great substitute for white sugar.
Cut the Sweetener by a Third
If the idea of substituting sugar with another alternative doesn’t seem appealing to you, try reducing the amount of sugar you use instead. Cutting back the amount of sugar by a third will keep the sweetness in your recipe, but it will reduce the calories and allow the dessert’s other flavors to shine through.
Ask for a Lighter Options Menu
If you’re at a restaurant and you begin craving something sweet, ask your server if they have a lighter options menu that you could flip through. Some of these menus offer a whole separate dessert list for those who are looking for smaller, lighter choices and you may just find an option that suits you. If a light menu isn’t available, consider asking if you could order a dessert from of the kids menu. These desserts are often the same as the ones on the regular menu, but in a smaller portion size.
Include Ingredients With More Nutrients
You’d be surprised at how many delicious dessert recipes feature healthy ingredients! From zucchini chocolate chip cookies to quinoa chocolate cake, white bean coconut cake to cherry vanilla chia seed pudding, there are tons of tasty recipes that include healthy ingredients. Best of all, your friends and family will be none the wiser about your sneaky inclusions, since these recipes are just as yummy as their non-healthy counterparts!
If you’re watching what you eat, you don’t have to say goodbye to dessert altogether. With these tips and tricks up your sleeve, you’ll be able to keep both your waistline and your sweet tooth satisfied!