Diets

Heart-healthy desserts: Recipes to try, ingredient swaps, and more

Not everyone needs to eat healthy. People can substitute butter for heart-healthy options to include baked goods and other treats in their diet.

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the United States — according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 6.2 million peopleCurrently, you are suffering from heart failure.

A key part of controlling heart disease is eating heart-healthy food and avoiding foods high on saturated fat and cholesterol. There are a few easy ways to make baked goods and treats more delicious.

This article contains five delicious recipes for heart-healthy desserts such as brownies, snickerdoodle cookies, and banana bread.

It is important to eat a heart-healthy diet in order to prevent and manage heart disease.

High levels of cholesterol, saturated fat, and sodium can be detrimental to the heart. A heart-healthy diet seeks to reduce these. Cutting out certain foods can feel restrictive or overwhelming.

When following a long-term diet that is healthy for the heart, it is important to include heart-healthy foods. Examples include:

Many heart-healthy recipes use vegetable oils that are low levels of saturated fats. However, it’s important to eat these in moderation. Vegetable oils are rich in omega-6 fatty acid. most researchThis suggests that people should aim to have a balanced intake of omega-3 and Omega-6 fats. In excess of omega-6s can cause inflammation.

It doesn’t mean that a person must stop eating sweets and baked goods if they want to eat a heart-healthy diet. One can experiment with different ingredients. Some substitutes work better in some recipes. Black beans work well as a substitute in flour for fudgy brownies. Cane pumpkin works well in pumpkin spice cookies or muffins.

These recipes are adapted directly from the American Heart Association (AHA)The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).

Snickerdoodle cookies

This recipe for snickerdoodle cookies comes from the AHAMakes 24 cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable margarine or vegan butter — free from trans fats
  • 1/4 cup Truvia stevia sugar blend (Truvia), or 1/3 cup cane sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400°F / 204°C
  • Mix the margarine, sugar and water with an electric mixer. 1 tbsp sugar is reserved
  • Once the mixture is light and fluffy, add the vanilla and egg.
  • Mix flour, baking powder and salt together in a separate bowl.
  • Slowly add the dry mixture into the wet, stirring after each addition. Don’t overmix.
  • Combine the cinnamon and reserved sugar in a separate bowl.
  • Make 1-inch balls from the dough and roll them in the sugar mixture. Place them on a baking tray and flatten each one with a fork.
  • Bake for 8–10 minutes.

Coconut chocolate truffles

This is the recipe for no-bake cookies from the AND makes 14 truffles.

Ingredients

  • 10–12 pitted Medjool dates
  • 2 tbsp of water
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup puffed rice cereal
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded Coconut

Directions

  • Soak the dates in water for 15–30 minutes.
  • Combine the softened dates with water in a food processor. Pulse until it forms a smooth paste.
  • Pulse the cocoa powder until it is well combined.
  • Combine the mixture in a large bowl. Mix in the rice cereal. Stir gently.
  • To form 1-in balls, use a spoon or small scoop.
  • Roll each ball in coconut.
  • Place on a baking pan or tray and place in the fridge for 1 hour.

Apple blueberry crumble

This recipe is from the ANDThis recipe makes six servings. It can be served with low-fat frozen yogurt or whipped topping.

Ingredients

For the fruit mix:

  • 3 large apples
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1–2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice

For the topping

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup nuts — walnuts, almonds, peanuts
  • 2 tbsp brown Sugar
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp flax milled
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oils

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F / 204°C.
  • Combine all ingredients and stir until well mixed.
  • Combine all topping ingredients in a separate bowl and mix.
  • In a 8 x 8-inch baking dish, place the fruit mixture. Sprinkle the topping mixture evenly over the fruit mixture.
  • Bake for 30–45 minutes or until golden brown.

Chocolate brownies

This low-sugar brownie recipe comes from the AHAMakes 16 servings

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup stevia sugar blend
  • 10–20 drops of liquid stevia — adjust to taste
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oils
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa butter powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F / 177°C.
  • Spray a baking pan with cooking spray, or line it with parchment.
  • Mix the stevia syrup, stevia drops with eggs, oil, and vanilla extract.
  • Mix the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and milk together.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet. Stir until no flour remains.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25–30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Banana bread

This recipe for banana bread is nutritious and delicious from the AHAMakes 24 slices

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup stevia sugar blend
  • 4 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup juice of fruit, such as orange juice
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F / 177°C.
  • Spray one or two small loaf pans with cooking spray. Line them with parchment paper.
  • Mix thoroughly the stevia and mashed bananas, egg juice, oil, and vanilla extract.
  • Mix together the flour, baking powders, baking soda, cinnamon, and sea salt in a large bowl.
  • Mix the dry ingredients into the wet until combined.
  • Place the batter in the pan(s). Bake for 30–40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool completely before you serve.

Although a healthy diet can seem restrictive, people can still enjoy baked goods and treats. You can easily swap out ingredients to make them part of a healthy eating plan. For example, you could swap butter for pumpkin puree, oats instead of flour, and stevia syrup blend for cane.

Source: Medical News Today

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