Meal planning can be very helpful when trying to eat healthy.
Having a list of go-to meals that are both nutritious and easy to make can save you time and money, especially when the recipes use pantry staples or long-lasting ingredients that you likely have on hand.
Here’s are 28 easy and healthy breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, including some kid-friendly and low budget options.
1. Overnight oats
Overnight oats are an easy breakfast option that requires no prep time in the morning. Plus, they’re made with basic ingredients that won’t break the bank.
Oats are also a good source of beta glucan fiber, which may help lower your cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart disease (1).
There are tons of overnight oat recipes on the internet, but I especially like these basic banana overnight oats.
2. Loaded avocado toast
Avocado toast can be a nutritious breakfast, as avocados are a good source of healthy fats and very filling.
Start with a toasted slice of 100% whole grain, rye, or sourdough bread. In a small bowl, smash together half of an avocado with some lime or lemon juice. Spread this on top of the toast.
For a protein boost, add one or two eggs, or smash white beans into the avocado for a vegan option. Top with crumbled cheese, chopped nuts, seeds, baby greens, or cherry tomatoes.
3. Broccoli and cheese egg bake
Eggs are an excellent source of protein, as well as several vitamins and minerals that are important for health.
Make this 12-serving egg bake in advance, and enjoy nutritious leftovers all week long for hassle-free mornings.
It’s a reader favorite on my recipe blog and highly customizable. Feel free to add sliced bell peppers, chopped spinach, or mushrooms, and sub any type of cheese or milk you have on hand.
Get the full recipe for my easy broccoli and cheese egg bake here.
4. Yogurt and fruit parfaits
Yogurt provides calcium, an important mineral for strong bones, making it a great addition to your breakfast (2).
Yogurt parfaits are enjoyable for both kids and adults, and you don’t even need a specific recipe to make them.
If you have some time in the morning, set out Greek yogurt, fresh fruit, granola, nuts, and seeds for your family to make their own parfaits. To keep the added sugar content low, use plain yogurt and granola that doesn’t contain a lot of sweeteners.
You can also prep the parfaits in advance. Put them together in individual jars and keep them in the fridge.
5. Chocolate cherry chia pudding
With only a handful of ingredients, chia pudding is a simple but filling option for breakfast. The best part is that you can put the recipe together at night and wake up to a creamy and delicious pudding the next morning.
What’s more, chia seeds are loaded with antioxidant compounds. Antioxidants help fight reactive molecules called free radicals, which damage cells and may lead to disease (3).
Chia pudding can be made in many variations, but this chocolate cherry chia pudding is one of my favorites.
6. Bell pepper egg cups
For a simple, veggie-loaded breakfast, slice bell peppers in half lengthwise and remove the stems and seeds. Place them into a greased baking dish and cook them for 15 minutes at 350°F (175°C).
Remove the dish from the oven and carefully crack an egg into each pepper. Bake them for an additional 15 minutes or until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Garnish with herbs, red pepper flakes, or cheese before eating.
Two pepper halves, each filled with an egg, comprise one serving. Not only will you get protein from the eggs, but bell peppers are a great source of nutrients that support immunity, such as vitamins A and C (4).
Note that cooking can destroy vitamin C. Therefore, a shorter cooking time is preferable when trying to preserve vitamin C content.
7. Peanut butter granola bars
Instead of settling for a store-bought option that might be loaded with added sugar, give homemade granola bars a try. Making them at home can save you money, too.
This recipe for peanut butter granola bars is easy to make and kid-friendly. Plus, it includes tips on making them vegan.
Studies suggest that the compounds found in peanuts can block the absorption of cholesterol from the diet, which may benefit those with high cholesterol levels that put them at an increased risk of heart disease (5).
8. Italian pasta salad
Pasta salad can be a balanced, nutritious meal. It’s often made with cooked pasta, non-starchy vegetables, and meat, cheese, or beans.
Plus, pasta salad is served cold and keeps well in the fridge and lunch boxes.
Check out this Italian pasta salad for a healthy, affordable option. Add diced chicken, mozzarella cheese, or white beans for some protein, and use 100% whole wheat pasta for extra fiber.
The olive oil in the dressing is also loaded with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats (6).
9. Slow cooker lentil soup
“Dump and go” slow cooker meals are an easy option for lunches. Make them on the weekend to eat for lunch during the week, or throw together the ingredients in the morning to have a hot meal by lunchtime.
This crockpot lentil soup is loaded with veggies and uses pantry spices and ingredients.
What’s more, lentils are a source of plant-based protein and fiber, which will help keep you feeling fuller for longer.
10. Peanut butter and banana roll-ups
Peanut butter and banana is a winning culinary combo, and these roll-ups are great for kids.
Bananas are also one of the best dietary sources of potassium, a mineral that contributes to healthy blood pressure (7).
Spread about 2 tablespoons (30 grams) of peanut butter on top of an 8-inch (20-cm) flour tortilla. Place a peeled banana toward the bottom of the tortilla, then carefully roll it up.
Slice it into bite-sized pieces. For a peanut-free option, use sunflower seed butter. If you want a little more sweetness, add a drizzle of honey on top of the peanut butter before rolling the tortilla.
11. Sweet potato black bean meal prep bowls
Taco or burrito bowls make a healthy lunch that’s easy to assemble.
Prepare the ingredients ahead of time, store them in separate containers in the fridge, and assemble your bowl when you’re ready to eat.
My sweet potato black bean meal prep bowls are made with nutritious ingredients and topped with an easy avocado lime dressing.
The healthy fats in the avocado will help you absorb more fat-soluble nutrients, such as the vitamin A carotenoids in sweet potatoes, from the meal (8).
12. Healthy tuna salad with cranberries
Canned tuna is a budget-friendly ingredient to keep in your pantry for quick meals.
It’s also rich in protein and healthy fats that will keep you full and satisfied.
This healthy tuna salad with cranberries has super simple ingredients and can be served on bread, crackers, or even lettuce cups.
13. Veggie quesadillas
Veggie quesadillas are one of the easiest recipes to make, and they’re a good way to get kids to eat more veggies. Eating vegetables is linked to a lower risk of disease and longer life (9).
You can use sliced onions and peppers, or any kind of leftover roasted or sautéed veggies that you have on hand.
Place a flour or corn tortilla in a skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle one half with shredded cheese, then add veggies and more cheese on top. Cook it for a few minutes, with the lid on the skillet, until the cheese is melted.
Fold the half of the tortilla without cheese over the other half. Remove it from the skillet, slice it into pieces, and enjoy it with guacamole, salsa, or sour cream. Feel free to add beans or chicken for more protein.
14. Fridge/freezer stir-fry
Making a stir-fry with ingredients you already have is an easy way to put a healthy meal on the table fast.
Stir-fries typically consist of protein, non-starchy veggies, and a carbohydrate, such as rice or noodles. Therefore, they’re balanced meals that will keep you full.
Heat a drizzle of oil in a large skillet or wok. Add diced chicken, sliced sirloin steak, shrimp, or tofu. Cook it for a few minutes on each side until it’s cooked through. Remove it from the skillet and set it aside.
Add 2–3 cups (300–450 grams) of veggies to the skillet with a little more oil. Cook it for a few minutes, and add the protein back into the pan.
For the sauce, whisk 1/4 cup (60 mL) of vegetable broth, 1/4 cup (60 mL) of low sodium soy sauce, 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of maple syrup or honey, 2 cloves of minced garlic, and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch. Pour the mixture into the skillet, and cook it until it thickens.
This should yield approximately four servings. Serve it with brown rice or whole wheat noodles if desired.
15. Baked potato bar with healthy toppings
Baked potatoes are one of the most affordable bases for a healthy meal. Plus, potatoes are incredibly nutritious, providing potassium, magnesium, iron, and vitamins B6 and C (10).
Since they provide energizing carbs, top them with a source of protein, some non-starchy veggies, and a healthy fat for a balanced meal.
Check out several ideas on how to build a healthy baked potato bar for a family meal.
16. Caprese chicken breasts
For a delicious meal that’s on the table in 30 minutes, try chicken breasts made with caprese salad ingredients — tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil.
This recipe includes instructions for making them in a single skillet. Make some pasta while they cook — or better yet, ahead of time — and you’ll have a balanced meal in no time.
The chicken provides filling protein. Plus, tomatoes are a source of lycopene, an antioxidant compound that boosts heart health (11).
17. Sheet pan pork chops and sweet potatoes
Sheet pan meals are the epitome of hassle-free cooking. Plus, they make cleanup a breeze.
This healthy sheet pan meal features pork chops, sweet potatoes, onions, apples, and pantry spices for a wholesome and balanced meal. The leftovers make a great lunch the next day, too.
Pork contains an abundance of nutrients, including selenium, an essential mineral that’s necessary for healthy reproduction and thyroid function (12).
18. Healthy mac and cheese (with veggies)
Mac and cheese is always a crowd-pleaser, and adding veggies to it brings the nutrition up a notch.
Making mac and cheese from scratch also means that you can control the ingredients and avoid excess sodium or unnecessary additives.
This healthy mac and cheese is kid-friendly and features both zucchini and cauliflower. It contains carbs from pasta, vitamins and minerals from veggies, and protein and fat from the cheese.
19. Taco salad
Taco salad is another recipe that you can prep in advance and assemble when you’re ready to eat.
Combine chopped romaine, cooked ground beef with taco seasoning, sliced cherry tomatoes, avocado or guacamole, shredded cheese, and pinto or black beans. Fun additions include sliced radishes, cooked corn, or crushed tortilla chips.
For a simple and healthy dressing, thin plain Greek yogurt with lime juice and drizzle it over the salad. Greek yogurt contributes some additional protein and calcium (13).
20. Slow cooker beef and broccoli
Beef and broccoli is a popular take-out dish that you can easily make at home with wholesome ingredients for a more affordable price.
Not to mention, it can be made in the slow cooker, which means there will be minimal cleanup.
Plus, beef is packed with iron, which is vital for red blood cells to transport oxygen in the body, and vitamin B12, which helps your body produce red blood cells (14, 15).
Check out this slow cooker beef and broccoli recipe served over quinoa for a healthy meal.
21. Easy chickpea curry
Homemade curry is an easy vegetarian meal that’s perfect for busy nights. It’s incredibly flavorful, and you may even have all of the ingredients in your cupboard.
Chickpeas, a source of plant-based protein, fiber, and micronutrients, may have a beneficial effect on blood sugar levels (15).
This is one of my favorite chickpea curry recipes to make for dinner. It’s ready in 20 minutes.
22. One-pot teriyaki chicken zoodles
You can’t beat a one-pot meal for an easy and healthy dinner, especially when it’s loaded with veggies.
These one-pot teriyaki chicken zoodles feature spiralized zucchini as a base, and they’re coated in a homemade teriyaki sauce.
Chicken breasts contribute filling protein, while pineapple chunks add some natural sweetness, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
23. Salmon burgers with slaw
Figuring out how to add more fish to your diet can be intimidating, but this recipe using canned salmon makes it a lot easier.
Salmon is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet. Omega-3s help boost brain health and prevent heart-disease-linked plaque buildup in the arteries (16).
Besides the salmon, these burgers have very basic ingredients and are easy enough for even the busiest of nights. Plus, they’re served over a cabbage slaw that counts as your veggies for the meal.
Check out the full recipe for salmon burgers with slaw here.
24. One-pot stewed tomatoes and eggs
Grab a can of tomatoes, some pantry spices, and a few eggs, and you’ll have a healthy meal in no time.
Tomatoes have several beneficial compounds that may help reduce the risk of obesity, heart disease, and even some cancers (17).
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add a diced onion, a few minced garlic cloves, 2 teaspoons of smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon of ground cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon of chili powder.
Cook it for a few minutes until fragrant. Pour a 28-ounce (790-gram) can of whole peeled tomatoes into the skillet. Cook for 10 minutes over medium-low until the tomatoes break down. Create wells for four eggs with the back of a spoon.
Carefully crack an egg into each well, cover the skillet, and cook until the eggs set. Enjoy warm with pita bread. This makes two servings.
25. Lentil bolognese
Pasta and sauce has always been a simple dinner combination, but I like to increase the nutrition of this meal by making a bolognese from lentils.
Eating lentils has been associated with a lower risk of diabetes and heart disease, thanks to the health-promoting bioactive compounds they contain (18).
Follow this recipe for lentil bolognese and serve it over pasta for a hearty, vegan dish. You can eat it with a side salad or steamed green beans for some extra veggies.
26. Make-ahead turkey meatballs
Turkey meatballs are a nutritious and versatile option to make in advance. You can serve them over pasta or on sandwiches or salads.
These easy make-ahead and freeze turkey meatballs use pantry staples, including old fashioned oats instead of bread crumbs, and they can be made with either fresh or dried herbs.
Turkey not only provides filling protein but also contains iron, phosphorus, zinc, and B vitamins (19).
27. Caramelized onion and spinach grilled cheese
An upgraded grilled cheese is ideal for an easy dinner that will satisfy the whole family.
I love to make this recipe when I have extra caramelized onions on hand (they freeze really well, by the way) and spinach that I need to use.
What’s more, onions are a source of quercetin, an anti-inflammatory compound that may help lower high blood pressure (20).
Spread butter on one side of two slices of 100% whole grain or sourdough bread. Place one slice, buttered side down, in a skillet over medium heat. Top with a slice of cheese, followed by caramelized onions, a few spinach leaves, and another slice of cheese.
Put the other slice of bread, buttered side up, on top. Cover the skillet, and cook for a few minutes on each side until the cheese is melted. Enjoy warm.
28. Easy black bean and rice skillet
For a satisfying dinner that never disappoints, break out the trusty skillet and make this twist on rice and beans.
With just a handful of ingredients, it’s easy and highly nutritious. Black beans provide protein, brown rice contributes carbs, and shredded cheese serves as a source of fat, calcium, and protein. Plus, it has tomatoes and red onion.
Check out the full recipe for this easy black bean and rice skillet here.
17 vegan pie recipes that are practically perfect
Plant-based desserts are just as important in our repertoire as their buttery, egg-like counterparts. Take those Genius chocolate chip cookies, that fudgy banana brownie cake, that richer mousse, those scotcheroos that’ll stick to your palate. . . in the right sense! They are one of our favorite desserts of all time.
Vegan pies deserve to be in this pantheon too – after all, how could we resist a flaky-crunchy pie filled to the brim with fruit, custard, chocolate, or all of the above? We have put together our 18 best plant-based cakes for our own edification and yours. All you need is a scoop of ice cream (without dairy products).
* * *
Our best vegan cake recipes
1. Perfect vegan cake crust
Before we dive into fruit fillings and creamy puddings, we need to talk about the perfect vegan pie crust. Ours is made with coconut oil (instead of butter or lard or shortening), which makes the crust super flaky and just a little bit sweet.
2. Vegan apple pie
This classic apple number is minimalist (maybe shocking?) – the filling is just apples, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, cornstarch and a pinch of salt. That means it has a lot of apple flavor and you should use the sweetest, tartest fruit of the season.
3.Ginger apple crumble pie (gluten and dairy free)
If you love the idea of the apple pie but are looking for a grain-free rendition in search of a grain-free rendition, your search can stop now. A tender sorghum-based crust and an oat-like crumble loaded with brown sugar accommodate a spicy ginger and apple filling in between.
4. Raw Mini Key Lime Pies
A grain-free, no-bake version of Key Lime Pie that’s perfect for the summer months. The secret of the creamy, dreamy filling? A ripe avocado.
5. Vegan clementine cake
Fluffy coconut whipped cream, juicy clementines and bittersweet orange jam combine to create a sophisticated dessert that can be put together in no time at all. If you’d rather have one larger cake than several small ones (but who can resist those little cuties ?!), you’ll need to adjust the baking time accordingly. Instead of clementines, summer fruits like peaches or plums would also work well here.
6. Rawsome Treats’ summer fruit cake
Cashew nuts work twice in this recipe, creating a nutty crust and creamy filling ready to be topped with your favorite summer fruit.
7. Vegan coconut lime ice cream cake
Velvety coconut milk ice cream, macerated strawberries and a touch of fresh lime sit on a thick, sweet graham cracker crust. As a shortcut (or if you don’t have an ice cream maker – yet!), You can use your favorite dairy-free ice cream instead of rolling your own.
8. Frozen vegan coconut chocolate almond bars
Coconut, chocolate, and almond. . . Tofu? Yes, you will find all four of the components in these frozen cake bars piled high on a sweet and salty graham cracker crust. This dessert tastes like your favorite hilly, blue-coated chocolate bar. . . catch my drift?
9. Raw, vegan pecan cake
Pecan cake like you’ve never eaten before – you don’t even have to turn on the oven (which is a real boon for Thanksgiving!). Medjool dates and coconut oil make a sticky, caramel-like filling that is peppered with whole pecans.
10. Vegan chocolate cake
Graham crackers and silken tofu come to the rescue again, this time with a deliciously rich, custard-like chocolate cake.
11. Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Tart
If you’ve been as big a fan of (sadly non-vegan) Reese peanut butter cups as I have been, this recipe is for you. It has a creamy, mousse-like filling and a shiny chocolate ganache backed by a crumbly, cocoa-rich crust.
12. No-bake pumpkin pie bars
Another Thanksgiving-ready recipe that doesn’t take up precious oven space. Dates and nuts are our best friends once again.
13. You won’t believe it’s a vegan pumpkin pie
Here’s a vegan pumpkin pie that you probably didn’t even know is vegan. A tender, flaky crust is topped with a thick cashew-based filling that goes wonderfully with pumpkin puree and warming spices.
14. Coconut rum cream cake
Let yourself be carried away to Margaritaville with this delicious coconut cake that happens to be vegan. The Biscoff biscuit crust is the work of the baking king and a few generous tablespoons of dark rum in both the filling and the whipped cream will immediately transport you to the Caribbean island of your choice.
15. Vegan pot pie with herb biscuits
You thought we were just talking about dessert pies, right? No, no, there are also hearty vegan pies for dinner, like this herb pot filled with a mixture of frozen vegetables (don’t judge! You will thank us later if you can easily find this recipe in the dead in winter).
16. Raspberry and white chocolate tartlets with cocoa crust
Instead of using gelatine, recipe developer Amy Chaplin had the super smart idea of using agar-agar flakes for the fruity filling in this vegan cake recipe. The flakes give the berry-chocolate mixture a lot of body and still make it an accessible dessert for everyone.
17. Vegan apricot and cherry galette
OK, it’s not a cake, but it’s not a cake. It’s like every square is a rectangle, but not every rectangle is a square. . . to the right? Ignore the math class and focus on this vegan cake recipe. Or galette. Whatever you want to call it, there is certainly no way to ignore the stunning division of sliced apricot wedges and pitted cherries on a gluten-free crust.
Gujarati chef Helly Raichura on challenging Indian cuisine stereotypes
— Discover the convenience of Indian home cooking with Adam D’Sylva, Helly Raichura and Sandeep Pandit on India Unplated, Thursdays at 8 p.m. on SBS Food and streaming on SBS On Demand. Visit the program page for recipes, articles, and more. —
People in the west can limit their experience of Indian cuisine by sticking to popular dishes like butter chicken, tandoori, and tikka masala. But India Unplated’s chef and co-host Helly Raichura is determined to redefine the taste of a plate of Indian food. Her company Enter Via Laundry, based in Victoria, offers curated home dining experiences that combine influences and flavors from different regions of India.
Raichura’s personal food journey began in Ahmedabad, Gujrat, a state in western India, where she belonged to a Vaishnav community.
“The food was the highlight of the day for me,” says Raichura. “When I look back, I feel like we were extremely spoiled and I’m happy that I grew up in a household that celebrated good food.”
Sitting together at dinner was a family tradition and a time to enjoy the delicious food her mother had prepared. Most evenings this included a platter of basic vegetarian Gujarati dishes such as chole bhature, khichdi, and bharthu, followed by a glass of chaas.
“When I was allowed into the kitchen in my early youth, I was given responsibility for the preparations,” recalls Raichura. “Me and my brother helped mom soak rice or dahls or cut vegetables or prepare the dough. We weren’t allowed to cook anything just to watch.”
Over the years, Raichura’s love for cooking grew and she dreamed of a career in catering. However, her parents encouraged her to move abroad to study at the university. This led Raichura to Australia in 2007, where she completed a bachelor’s degree and worked as a personnel consultant for the next ten years.
Raichura’s passion for food stayed strong all these years, and the extra time on her first maternity leave led her to start a small cake business. The excitement about this quickly subsided when she found that customers were more focused on the aesthetics than the taste of their creations. This caused Raichura to look for new ways to express her passion and so Enter Via Laundry was born.
At first, Enter Via Laundry was just a hobby and an opportunity for Raichura to cook for family and friends. She served food from a variety of cuisines, simply trying to recreate the atmosphere of family gatherings and celebrations at home.
Inspired to learn more, Raichura sought guidance from Gaggan Anand, owner of the now-closed, Michelin-starred Gaggan restaurant in Bangkok, and Shaun Quade of Melbourne’s Lûmé. These professional kitchens taught their discipline and the importance of making any course a theatrical experience. They also encouraged them to experiment with new ingredients and challenged their technical skills.
The first dish Raichura tried that defined the future of Enter Via Laundry was Khandvi. These silky so-called crpes made from chickpea flour batter were her favorite childhood snack and something her maternal aunt prepared for special occasions. Raichura was drawn to the level of difficulty required to prepare Khandvi and looked forward to showing a more technical side of Indian cuisine.
Khandvi is now Enter Via Laundry’s signature dish and has helped shape the message of the menu.
“Indian cuisine wasn’t represented the way it should be, so I switched from the cooking I learned to being pure Indian,” she explains. “It was more about doing authentic cooking and showcasing and sharing the heritage, influence and culture of Indian cuisine, rather than just being commercially viable.”
“It was more about being able to cook authentically and presenting and sharing the heritage, influence and culture of Indian cuisine.”
The menu at Enter Via Laundry is constantly evolving, as is Indian cuisine. Raichura uses ancient techniques and recipes and combines them with native Australian products such as lemon myrtle and finger limes.
“At the moment I’m just diving in and enjoying every little bit of learning the history and diversity of national kitchens at home,” she says. “Indian cuisine is so diverse, so varied and can still evolve to give way to many different ingredients and locals.”
Raichura dreams of opening a cooking school where she can pass these age-old techniques and educate people about the rich history of Indian cuisine. Now her children are happy students, and she loves that they are curious to learn about her legacy and interested in keeping these traditions alive.
Do you love the story? Follow writer Melissa Woodley here: Instagram @sporkdiaries.
Photos provided by Helly Raichura
Healthier Ingredient Swaps for Desserts: Tips and Recipes
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OK, we’re in favor of enjoying the most decadent, slimiest, richest dessert of your dreams in all of its greasy, sugary glory. But don’t indulge yourself often and keep your portion size moderate. Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it? Well, the last two suggestions aren’t easy for everyone, especially those of us with a daily dessert habit. Instead of discipline and willpower, we bring you healthy dessert ideas with some of our favorite ingredient swaps. Then you can not only post your you-know-what on Instagram, but also eat it.
“I try to feel like I’m not missing out when swapping ingredients,” says Sarah Galla, who started the recipe and wellness blog The Nourished Seedling from her Chicago home in 2015. She is a holistic nutritionist, recipe developer, certified yoga teacher and mother of three.
Galla doesn’t like to say no to dessert because she’s on a diet. That approach won’t work. She loves food too much.
“I don’t like restrictions. It makes me want to do it more, ”says Galla. “If I know that it is doing something good, then it will help me. I don’t feel like I’m depriving myself and I get all of these nutritional benefits. “
Galla keeps a jar of ground seeds – pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, chia, or flax – to add to her baked goods or oatmeal for added nutrients.
She trades fruit for vegetables, for example beetroot, which are sweet anyway when roasted. Instead of rapeseed or vegetable oil, she uses avocado and coconut oil. She’s also cutting down on sugar and looking for ways to use more natural sugar from fruits or maple syrup, which has the benefit of added vitamins and minerals.
With sweets, it’s always a good idea to increase the fiber as it will make you feel full and keep your blood sugar levels stable, which prevents the crash and the quick cravings that come back afterwards.
“It’s about balance,” says Galla.
These are some of our (and Galla’s) favorite ingredients in desserts.
The percentage refers to how much cocoa is in the bar of chocolate. Cocoa iron, magnesium, and calcium nutrients are the reason chocolate can be good for you. The lower the percentage, the higher the amount of sugar. And don’t use white chocolate if you can avoid it. White chocolate is simply chocolate that has all antioxidant benefits removed and all negative aspects left. Instead of chocolate chips, you can also make cocoa nibs.
If you want to do without eggs, you can still enjoy the cloud-like fluffiness thanks to the bean liquid, also known as aquafaba. Bush’s Beans gave us a recipe for a simple meringue that basically whipped 2 cups of whipped garbanzo bean liquid (this other name for chickpeas) with 1/3 cup of powdered sugar, ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, and 1/8 of a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Use the meringue as usual in any meringue dessert or simply top a spice cake with it.
Galla likes to soak her dried dates, then puree them and use them as sugar. The fruit is quite sugary by nature, but you are also getting more fiber and nutrients like potassium. You never need to add sugar or honey to a smoothie or non-dairy ice cream when you have a frozen banana on hand. Always keep some of them in the freezer, already peeled.
You can use whole wheat flour in a 1 to 1 ratio in some dishes, but it is better to use less whole wheat flour for pastries as it is heavy and won’t flake. It is usually good to swap about ⅓ to ½ of the white flour for whole wheat flour. Then you will get more fiber and nutrients. You can also get more protein and other nutrients by using all sorts of alternative flours, from beans and oats to quinoa and amaranth. (See our beginner’s guide to gluten-free flour.)
Try it in: Whole Wheat Almond Blueberry Muffins
And sometimes instead of some eggs and sugar. You should reduce the liquid in the rest of the recipe, if any, because of the liquid in the applesauce, or use a flour that holds well.
Some recipes call for full-fat or fat-free Greek yogurt, and the ratio is also up for debate, but often it’s a 1 to 1 up to 1 cup ratio. However, due to its thickness, the yogurt must be Greek.
This is such an easy swap for whipped dairy and fillings for people with lactose allergies, vegans, or anyone who wants a more tropical taste. Just chill your can of regular coconut milk and then skim off the heavy coconut cream that solidifies on top. Then beat it with an electric mixer for a few minutes in the same way as heavy milk cream.
Brownies and black bean cookies are a staple at Galla’s home. Take the beans out of a can, rinse and puree. Don’t necessarily make a 1 to 1 ratio with flour, but be sure to cut down on the other liquids in the recipe. “I always pay attention to the consistency,” says Galla.
See how you can incorporate these ideas (and more) into these healthy dessert recipes:
These damp blondies don’t look finished when you take them out of the oven, but resist gratinating. You definitely don’t want dried out blondes. With a little mottled darkness, like a bottle blonde whose roots are showing, but in an intentional ombré way. Style. Get the Recipe for Flourless Chocolate Chip Chickpea Blondies.
This rich, creamy, chocolatey dessert from The cookbook “The Love and Lemons” has so many exchange options. It’s sweetened with maple syrup instead of sugar, uses almond milk instead of milk, dark chocolate instead of semi-sweet or whole milk chocolate, and whipped coconut cream instead of whipped cream. Oh, and of course there is avocado puree to make it fluffy and silky without dairy. Get the Dark Chocolate Avocado Mousse with Coconut Cream recipe.
Like their traditional cousin, these cookies aren’t difficult to make. All you need is a good food processor or blender to puree the almonds and oatmeal, which are then mixed with spelled flour. Instead of butter or other oils, there is coconut oil. Maple syrup and cherry jam sweetened with fruits add their natural sugar. You don’t have to use a cherry. Go with whatever your jam is. Get the Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Biscuit Recipe.
Cake lovers, rejoice. Eat them in your hand using this recipe that includes a little over 1/4 cup of cane sugar, 1 cup of white flour, and 7 tablespoons of butter. But there are so many more nutrients out there, from the 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour to the 1/2 cup golden beets that are great for your liver. Get the recipe for apple, pear and golden beet sales.
This can be a great choice if you have crazy cookie cravings. We would know. It has lots of swaps in one, from applesauce and Greek yogurt to honey and whole wheat flour. There is no sugar, egg, butter, or white flour in this recipe at all – and you get oats, too. Get the Guilt Free Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe.
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