Here at Carleton Dining, one of our favorite parts of the holiday season is the delicious baking that comes with it! There’s nothing like spending a winter afternoon getting cozy in the kitchen whipping up some baked goods to share with family and friends. It’s definitely possible to keep a balanced diet while still indulging a little bit in your favorite holiday treat. Here are our top 3 healthy baking swaps to slash the saturated fat, sugar and calories of your fave holiday dessert without losing out on flavor or texture.

Swap #1: Replace Sugar with Apple

Apples contain natural sugars that are great for adding sweetness to recipes. Replacing white sugar with grated apple or unsweetened applesauce adds fiber and reduces calories. Make sure to keep the peel on the apple to maximize its fiber content!
Conversion: Use 1 cup unsweetened applesauce or shredded apple for 1 cup sugar. With this swap you’ll need to fine-tune the amount of liquid in the recipe. Typically, reducing the liquid (milk, water, etc.) by ¼ cup will do the trick. If the recipe calls for no added liquid, there’s no need to adjust.

Swap #2: Replace Butter or Oil with Greek Yogurt

Swap the oil or sour cream in your recipe for Greek yogurt for a high-protein, nutritious alternative! Not only will your dessert get a boost of protein, you’ll also be adding calcium and vitamin D to the recipe. Choose plain unsweetened Greek yogurt for a lower sugar option.

• 1 cup sour cream = 1 cup Greek yogurt
• 1 cup butter = ½ cup butter + ½ cup Greek yogurt
• 1 cup oil = ¾ cup Greek yogurt
• 1 cup heavy cream = ½ cup heavy cream + ½ cup Greek yogurt

Swap #3: Replace Flour with Black Beans

Try replacing some of the flour in your recipe with black beans! You may be nervous to add beans to a dessert, but we promise that you’ll hardly even notice that they’re there. Black beans add fiber and protein to the recipe to make it a more filling and nutritious choice. If you replace all the flour in the recipe with black beans, it can also help to create a gluten-free option! Black beans work particularly well in chocolate recipes – puree them first to achieve a smooth texture!

Conversion: Use 1 cup black bean puree (about one 15-ounce can, rinsed and drained) for 1 cup white flour

Black Bean Brownie Recipe1

• 3 cups black beans (500g after draining)
• ¼ cup cocoa powder(20g)
• 1 cup quick oats (40g)
• ½ tsp salt
• 2/3 cup maple syrup
• ¼ cup white sugar
• ½ cup vegetable oil (80g)
• 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1 cup chocolate chips

Black Bean Brownies Recipe: Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine the black beans and oats in a food processor and blend until smooth. Add in the rest of the ingredients and stir, then pour into a greased 8×8 pan. Optional: sprinkle extra chocolate chips over the top. Cook the black bean brownies 15-18 minutes, then let cool at least 10 minutes before trying to cut. If they still look a bit undercooked, you can place them in the fridge overnight and they will magically firm up! Makes 9-12 brownies.

We hope you enjoy these holiday baking tips! See you with another wellness blog in 2019!


Monday, December 17, 2018 in , ,
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