As the days get longer and the nights get cold, autumn reminds us that it’s OK to fire up the oven again. Since you won’t be sweating anyone out of those house when you preheat to 425 degrees, take advantage of the temperate season and fill the house with the intoxicating aroma of homemade baked goods.
There’s nothing like a sweet treat in the fall, but the pies, lattes, and candies are usually calorie bombs that you could frankly do without. With Halloween, October might just be the sweetest month of the year. But our sweet treats spare you the sugar and calories normally associated with confections. And you better believe we never skimp on the novelty.
We’ve dreamed up five simple, healthy, and scrumptious donut recipes that will fill your home and belly with fall feel-goodness. Our donut recipe collection is the perfect complement to the cravings associated with fall: warm, sweet, ooey-gooey fun. Even more impressive, none of the donuts rely on the typical “pumpkin spice” crutch so often seen in October. Leave the pumpkin guts to the kids, you’ve got some baking to do!
Apple Cinnamon Streusel Donut
Unless you’re a teenager or child, you can’t enjoy a donut without some post sugar-high guilt. For the food conscious who have a sweet tooth, these hearty gems are the perfect fit. The donuts have real apples, whole wheat flour batter, and a decadent and textured streusel topping. With this perfect weekend-long snack, you can practically afford to eat two in a row at 155 calories each.
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Earlier this summer, I decided to challenge our very own recipe maven, DIR editor Brandi Koskie. It seemed she could take any decadent food of the moment or classic dish and make it healthy without sacrificing its original deliciousness. Anyone who can produce a healthy tailgate menu void of gut-busters is special, so I asked her to do the same thing with state fair food, and she delivered. First with an ooey-gooey bacon, egg, and cheese stuffed donut under 200 calories, and now this:
Meet the Blue Cornbread Donut Stuffed with Andouille Sausage and Peppers. All the novelty and tastiness of the trending donut sandwich, but with a mere 186 calories per serving. Ours is five times healthier. The Dunkin’ Donuts ham, egg, and donut-for-buns sandwich has nearly twice the calories with 360. Starbucks offers a sausage sandwich too—albeit with traditional buns—but it still clocks in at 500 calories.
And then there’s the “Luther Burger,” more coloquially known as the Krispy Kreme Burger, that you’ve seen peddled at state fairs and on Paula Deen’s discontinued show. It’s a cheeseburger with two glazed donuts for buns and normally contains anywhere from 800 to 1,500 calories thanks to the burger and fried eggs. Our donut sammie has no glaze, but its got the sweetness. Let’s talk about the blue cornbread.
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At the beginning of fall I got bit by the chili bug and was eating the stuff non-stop for weeks. I was offering it up to friends, feeding it to my husband and packing it as a quick lunch for work almost daily. I didn’t realized I’d hit my max until a friend and I were discussing ideas for an upcoming dinner party and she said “anything but chili.” I agreed with her at the time but secretly I thought, “What are you talking about? I could chili year round!” And I do.
My all-time favorite chili companion is cornbread, which I made plenty of this fall drizzled in a little maple syrup for good measure. Absolutely smitten with the traditional kind, I had never tried the blue which is apparently healthier for you than the yellow stuff. Why? Let me explain.
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This week, we can’t stop munching and crunching on blue corn tortilla chips! These snack-friendly chips are not just your ordinary tortilla chips. Not only are they more colorful, but they pack 20% more protein than a white or yellow corn tortilla and they score lower on the glycemic index than their paler counterparts since they only contain about 68% starch (white contains 75%).
Just in case you were wondering, according to WebMD, the blue color comes from the antioxidant anthocyanin in the corn, which are the same compounds found in berries and red wine.
Our favorite bag of blue chips comes from Garden of Eatin’. They’re organic, and have a variety of options to keep your blue chip dippin’ interesting.
Next time you’re scooping some salsa, up the nutritional content and yum-factor and grab a bag of blues!