But still enjoy the sweet stuff...
Talk to a nutritionist and they’ll probably tell you to cut the refined sugar from your diet. In fact, according to Authority Nutrition, added sugar is the single worst ingredient in the modern diet. It contains no essential nutrients, it’s bad for your teeth, it’s a leading contributor to obesity and it can contribute to cancer.
Not only that, it’s high in fructose, and too much of that stuff can overload your liver. And of course we’ve all known for years that sugar can cause insulin resistance – get that and you’re on your way to diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
It seems there’s never been more evidence that we should cut back on our sugar intake and the good news is that you can embark on a sugar free diet but still enjoy the sweet things in life.
Quitting sugar doesn’t mean you have to commence a strict diet regime or spend a fortune on superfoods – rather, it’s a lifestyle change where you ditch the processed food and just eat real food. Nothing too scary about that.
But let’s get back to the topic of this post – how to enjoy sweet treats without adding sugar. There are loads of helpful sites on the internet with some amazing recipes including I Quit Sugar, Sugar-Free Mom, Days of Fitness, Brit & Co and Deserts with Benefits.
Here’s a few of our favourite sugar free recipes:
Easy Peasy Chocolate Banana Pudding
This is ridiculously easy and super healthy – just blend together 1 avocado, 1 banana, 1 cup of unsweetened soy or almond milk, ¼ cup of cocoa powder, 2 tablespoons of agave syrup, 1 tsp of lemon juice and ¼ cup shredded coconut. Divide into 4 dishes and refrigerate for 1 hour until set. This easy dessert will definitely satisfy those sugar cravings.
Date and Coconut Bliss Balls
This is another easy recipe – just measure, blend and roll! Into your food processor, place ½ cup each of dates (soak in warm water for 10 minutes first), shredded coconut, rolled oats, almonds and sunflower seeds. Add ¼ cup of dried apricots or craisons, and 1 tbsp each of runny honey and tahini. Pulse until well combined and starting to stick together then roll into balls and toss in some sesame seeds to coat. Refrigerate for a few hours before getting stuck in (if you can wait that long!).
Banana Peanut Butter Blueberry Muffins
When you need to whip up a quick sweet treat, this diabetic recipe really takes the cake (or should that be muffin!). Just six ingredients, with no flour or sugar and super simple to make.
In a food processor, place 2 small bananas, 1 cup of peanut butter, 2 large eggs, ½ tsp of baking powder and 1 tsp of vinegar. Process until smooth then place into a bowl and add 1 cup of blueberries. Spoon into 12 muffin tins and bake for 10 – 12 minutes at 180oC.
Microwave Brownies – in a mug!
When that sugar craving hits and you need a fast low sugar recipe to get you through the afternoon, this one really hits the spot! In a small mug, just combine 2 tbsp each of almond meal and milk and 1 tbsp each of crunchy peanut butter, unsweetened cocoa powder, maple syrup and chocolate chips. Microwave for 30 – 40 seconds depending on the size of your cup and how gooey you like your brownie. That’s it!
Home Made Chocolate Bars
Yes you can give up refined sugar but still eat chocolate, and with this 3-ingredient chocolate recipe you’ll never want the high sugar, store bought variety again. Combine ¼ cup coconut oil with 3 tbsp of pure maple syrup. Stir, then add ¼ cup of cocoa powder and keep stirring until the mixture thickens, then pour into any flat container and freeze until solid. Store in the freezer until you’re ready to eat it.
The Last Word
There really are hundreds of sweet recipes you can make without sugar – in fact, if you search online for your favourite treat but add “sugar free” after it, you’ll probably find an awesome recipe that’ll let you keep eating your favourite things but cut out the sugar.
Some of the recipes do work best if you invest in some decent kitchen equipment such as a Thermomix, Vitamix or ice cream maker. Those items aren’t cheap but they’ll definitely make your life a whole lot easier in the kitchen.
If you’d like to upgrade to some new appliances but can’t afford it right now, why not take a look at our flexible mini-loans and find out how easy it is to get some extra funds. Once a loan is approved, we can usually get a payment into your bank account within 24 hours - so you can start clearing some bench space for your new appliances right now!