Most of us look forward to dessert, me included! Desserts, being sweet, creamy, and delicious,
are some of our favorite comfort foods.
Unfortunately, desserts are usually high in calories and low in
nutrients. The trick is to save the rich
desserts for truly special occasions and to make other desserts a nutritious
part of your diet.
Fresh fruit in
season is a treat when dressed up with other nutritious additions. Try dipping it in nonfat vanilla yogurt
sprinkled with a little cinnamon.
Another idea is to peel and chop apples or pears, sprinkle with about a
teaspoon of sugar or other sweetener per cup of fruit, then microwave until
tender. Stir in a few raisins or berries
if you like, but don’t add water – the fruit creates its own delicious syrup as
it cooks. Enjoy the fruit warm by itself
or sprinkle with a crunchy low-fat granola cereal to make a fruit crisp. I also enjoy adding some chopped walnuts or
Cakes and cookies
are usually made with white flour, but you can add fiber and nutrients by
substituting whole wheat pastry flour.
Try replacing half the white flour at first, but many recipes are delicious
when made entirely with whole wheat pastry flour. Also look for recipes that use oatmeal.
Most desserts are
high in sugar. You can omit 25% of the
sugar in most homemade baked goods. For
puddings, icings, and pie fillings, you can use non-nutritive sweeteners such
as Splenda. Reduce the fat content of
dessert by using skim milk or other low fat dairy products. Replace part of the oil with prune puree (use
a jar of prune babyfood) or buttermilk.
Here is an easy,
low fat low sugar desert that is high in calcium and beta carotene – both
important protective nutrients.
Easy Pumpkin Pudding
1 cup canned pumpkin or pumpkin puree
1 package (4-serving size) sugar free nonfat vanilla pudding
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 ½ cups skim milk
Mix all ingredients together. Place in individual bowls or glasses and
chill until set.
Makes 4 servings.
Each 2/3 cup serving : 77
calories, 0 grams fat, 2 mg cholesterol, 380 mg sodium, 15 grams carbohydrate,
2 grams fiber, 4 grams protein.