Tag Archives: baking

King Cake Gets a Calorie-Cutting Makeover this Mardi Gras

round king cake with purple and green sugarFor some, indulging in King Cake on Mardi Gras is well-worth the calories, particularly if sweets are something one is giving up for Lent. However, there are some creative ways to save on calories that are in keeping with the festive spirit of the holiday. Below are some ideas and lower-cal recipes to consider before you bake a cake with 250 to 500 calories per serving.

Calorie Saving Swaps

Former Biggest Loser contestant Heba Salama suggests having a healthier Fat Tuesday by making your King Cake with an angel food cake and frozen low-calorie whipped topping. “To make it a layered cake simply slice the cake in half, spread whipped topping down the middle, re-stack and keep cool until ready to serve,” she recommends. You can use food coloring to add the right colors without adding more sugar.

If King Cake just isn’t right to you without puff pastry and cream cheese, use these healthy swaps in any King Cake recipe. “You could replace nonfat Greek Yogurt for the sour cream and use four egg whites instead of the two eggs and use skim milk in the icing,” says Alison Lewis, cookbook author and president of Ingredients, Inc. “If a recipe calls for cream cheese, the light one-third less fat cream cheese is a great substitute.”


Simple Changes Can Make an Old Recipe Your New Favorite

Paula Shoyer is the author of The Kosher Baker: 160 dairy-free desserts from traditional to trendy. She is a freelance writer, teaches cooking and baking classes around the country and recently appeared on Food Network’s Sweet Genius. She specializes in baking for people on special diets such as gluten-free, sugar-free and dairy-free. She can be found at www.paulaspastry.com and blogs at www.kosherbaker.blogspot.com and tweets @paulashoyer.

Carrot cake for me used to be like that sweater in your closet that you never wear. Every once in a while, you try it on and then take it off again. Eventually, you give it away. For decades, I sampled every carrot cake that came my way, but after one bite, I put my fork down and ultimately abandoned carrot cake altogether. When I wrote The Kosher Baker, I decided to include a carrot cake, though I had never baked one before. When I researched carrot cake recipes, I quickly learned why I never liked them: people put too much bling into them such as raisins, nuts, pineapple, and coconut to name just a few unnecessary and, in my view, pernicious ingredients.

I decided to create my own simple carrot cake that was dairy and nut free. I even added whole-wheat flour to make it healthier. For The Kosher Baker, I turned my simple carrot cake recipe into a huge layer cake with a dairy-free Cinnamon Honey Cream Cheese Icing. The icing is sinful and the iced cake is lovely for special occasions.

One winter, I taught a healthy-dinner-in-an-hour class and was searching for the right dessert. I chose the carrot cake, but omitted the icing and baked the cake in a bundt pan. During the class we ate it straight out of the oven. When my students left, my four kids ran downstairs and pounced on the carrot cake. My four chocolate lovers asked why I had never made it before. When I told them the origin, they said that this way was tastier because they could taste the carrots better. They also loved eating it warm, which makes it a comforting winter dessert. As Jessica Rabbit said in the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, to make Roger feel better “Roger, let’s go home, I’ll bake you a carrot cake.”


Guilt-Free Holiday Baked Goods Substitutions

Christina is a mom, registered nurse, and blogger. She fully admits to both a love of too much food and a love of the couch, two vices she struggles to overcome on a daily basis. In the past two years, she’s lost nearly 50 pounds through diet and exercise, some of it chronicled on her blog, Losing My Hind.

Confession: baked goods are my downfall. Muffins, cakes, brownies, breads, cupcakes…just thinking about them makes my mouth water and my pants feel tight. Any weight gain in my life has never been without yummy baked treats playing a featured role.

Of course, at no other time of the year are baked goods as tempting and as abundant as the holidays. Christmas lights and cold winter nights seem to go perfectly with warm, cinnamon-scented goodies. Swearing them off entirely would be impossible, and would likely only lead to a binge during a moment of weakness. So instead, I try to limit myself to small, frequent indulgences and use some tips I learned from Weight Watchers to bake up healthier versions of my favorite snacks.


The 15 Best Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You Haven’t Tried

Matthew Kaplan is the Editor for FaveDiets.com, a free online resource featuring hundreds of free healthy recipes, healthy cooking tips and loads more. Be sure to check out FaveDiets on Facebook and on Twitter.

Oh, pumpkins – what would fall be without you? After all, from Jack-o-lanterns to pumpkin pie, it is awfully hard to avoid those seemingly ubiquitous orange orbs this time of year. Try as you might, pumpkins are always the “it” food item this time of year.

However, while pumpkins and pumpkin dishes appear everywhere, the one place where they rarely make an appearance is the average home kitchen. This is too bad, as pumpkin recipes are delicious and, when done right, highly nutritious as well. If you have seemingly banned pumpkin from your recipe repertoire, then it’s time to reconsider. (more…)

Gluten-Free Baking Tips for Weight Loss

When you’re trying to lose weight, there are a lot of simple ingredient swaps and recipe modifications that you can make in order to remove some of the fat and calories from your favorite baked goods.

When you follow a gluten-free diet, it is even more difficult to make your favorite baked goods lower in fat and calories because you have to often substitute a variety of specialty flours in order to mimic the taste of traditional recipes.

The main reason someone would go on a gluten-free diet is if they are diagnosed with celiac disease,” said EA Stewart, RD, nutritionist and author of The Spicy RD. “Some people may go on a gluten-free diet because they think it will help them lose weight or improve their athletic performance. It’s very important however, that celiac disease be ruled out before someone starts a gluten-free diet, as a person needs to be eating gluten for the test to be accurate.”


Coconut Sugar is a Nutritionally Superior Natural Sweetener

By Abra Pappa for NutritiousAmerica.com

Seems like there is a hot, new “healthy sweetener” on the market every 10 minutes and as soon as you are convinced that this is the ONE, new reports come out saying, “NO, stay away!” Frustrating, I know.

Let’s look at the star “healthy sweetener” of the moment, Coconut Palm Sugar. Is it all it’s cracked up to be?

What exactly is Coconut Sugar?

Coconut sugar is an unrefined sweetener derived from the nectar of the blossom or bud of the coconut palm tree; not the coconut itself but the bud that would form a coconut. This is important because this bud is the source of all nutrients that are being fed to the maturing coconut, kind of like the umbilical cord from mom to baby. Skilled farmers, called “tappers,” tap the bud and release the sap. The sap is then heated and crystallized. (more…)

3 Sugar-Free Desserts to Let Go of the Guilt

By MyDailyMoment.com Editorial Team

Just because you’ve sworn off sugar doesn’t mean you can’t satisfy your sweet tooth. If you’re one of those people who can’t resist the urge for rich desserts, you can still have your cake and eat it too, especially since it’s sugar-free.

Whether you are looking to lose weight, maintain your fantastic figure, or can’t indulge because of medical reasons, you may be under the assumption that sugar-free desserts don’t cut it. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Check out these sweet treats, and you’ll quickly realize they’re even better than the real thing. (more…)

Aces Up is the First Gluten-Free Bakery in Las Vegas

What would you do if almost every time you eat a meal, you suffered extreme abdominal pain? Dave Teator had to face this problem every day. Doctors could not explain why he would feel perfectly fine one day, and be very ill the next.

Finally, Teator took matters into his own hands and decided to try a gluten-free diet last year. And guess what, it worked!

“Going to a gluten-free diet made me feel so much better,” Teator said. “The healthier markets out there, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, dedicate gluten-free aisles, but the one thing that was missing was fresh baked [bread products].”


Empty Calories Comic: Holiday Baking

See more Empty Calories right here in the blog each week, or receive one each month when you subscribe to our free newsletter. (more…)

Simple Fat Swaps to Better-for-You Baked Goods

If you’re like me and have a serious sweet tooth, sometimes baked goods are just too hard to resist. But with many baked goods being high in trans fats (especially the processed ones or recipes with shortening) and low in nutrition, they’re really best eaten rarely- very rarely.

There is a loophole, though — making your own! When you bake at home you know exactly what’s in your food, so you can nosh guilt-free. In fact, there are tons of tricks to turning a regular recipe into a low-fat recipe! All it takes is a little ingredient experimentation and some time in the kitchen. (more…)