Most of us love to indulge in some sweet treats from time to time but usually they’re loaded with sugar, calories, fats, and carbohydrates so they’re definitely not good if you’re on a weight loss journey. These are food components that are guaranteed to send the scales skyrocketing and contribute to those flabby bits that we’re all hiding away over winter. But summer will be here before you know it, so if you want to satisfy your sweet tooth without having to worry about the effect on your waistline, here are some super indulgent but healthy desserts and treats that are easy to make – and jam packed full of goodness.
Paleo no-bake chocolate pecan bars
This paleo recipe indulgence is simply irresistible without the guilt! These bars are easy to put together without the hassle of baking, and are just perfect if you’re on a paleo diet. Made with very few ingredients, this recipe is vegan and it’s gluten-free. Just throw 5 to 7 pitted Medjool dates (about half a cup) into your food processor along with half a cup of almond butter and blitz for about a minute until it gets sticky and crumbly. Add a cup of pecans, a teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt and blend until the pecans are roughly chopped. Pour it into a lined square baking pan and press it flat. Then just melt ½ cup of chocolate chips, add ¼ cup of almond butter and pour over the top. Sprinkle over some chopped pecans and you’re done. Try to freeze it for about 30 minutes before serving – it’s definitely worth the wait!
As the saying goes, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” - but let’s face it, eating a plain old apple all the time can be boring. But you can turn that apple into an indulgent treat by baking it! Baked apples aren’t just a healthy dessert that’s easy on your waistline, they can also be eaten as a snack on a cold winter day. Just cut your apples into quarters and then cut each quarter in half and lay them on a baking tray. Sprinkle over some cinnamon and a little stevia if you really can’t do without an extra sugar hit. Bake at 200oC for around 10 minutes each side. Once done, transfer to a platter and top with a few dollops of natural or coconut yoghurt. Then there’s nothing left to do, but dive in!
Sweet potato brownies
We all love brownies, and here we present our healthy alternative to the usual calorie-laden variety. Simply combine 1 large (about ¾ cup) mashed sweet potato with 1 cup of almond butter and ¼ cup of honey or maple syrup. Once mixed well, add ¼ cup coconut sugar, 1/3 cup almond flour, 4 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda and a pinch of salt. Mix well then add 2 teaspoons of good quality vanilla extract. Mix again then pour into a baking pan and bake at 180oC for 20–25 minutes. Perfect, gooey brownies that are guilt-free eating!
Banana ice cream
Who says ice cream is off the menu if you’re trying to lose weight? Banana ice cream is just what you need to satisfy your sweet tooth even if you’re on a diet. Your kids will love it too as an after-dinner treat. Even better, you can whip it up in under a minute with just two main ingredients - frozen bananas and unsweetened almond milk. Use 1–2 bananas per person and about 1 tablespoon of almond milk per banana. Simply throw them together into a food processor or blender and blitz until you get that ice cream consistency. For added flavour you could add in some cocoa and nut butter or some frozen berries. No need to freeze - just go ahead and dig in right away.
Homemade chocolate (oh my!)
Chocolate gets a healthy makeover so you can still enjoy a little of your favourite sweet treat every day! Just combine ¼ cup coconut oil with 3 tablespoons maple syrup or a little stevia extract, ¼ cup raw cacao powder, ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. Mix until there are no lumps then pour into paper patty pans or just onto a flat sheet of baking paper on a baking tray. Sprinkle over the toppings of your choice – think nuts and seeds, freeze-dried raspberries, goji berries, cacao nibs or plain old sea salt. Freeze until solid – around 20 minutes should do it – and enjoy.
With all these waistline-friendly healthy alternatives there’s nothing to stop you from enjoying a sweet treat every day! Aside from the fresh ingredients that you need to buy, you may also want to invest in some new tools such as a really good food processor or blender, or even a new oven. If you don’t have the right kitchen equipment and your budget is as tight as your jeans in mid-winter, we’re here to help. Just check out our flexible mini-loans from $1,000 to find out how quick and easy it is to get your hands on some extra funds. Once a loan is approved, we can usually deposit the cash into your bank account within a few hours - so you can start planning your healthy indulgences soon!