5 Hacks for Healthier Baking
Baking can be healthy! There’s no getting around it, we all love a sweet treat now and then. Delicious brownies, cookies, and cakes DO have a place in healthy diets. No matter what kind of eating plan you’re committed to, if it includes the complete elimination of all baked goods, the average person will not last.
While there will always be those classic recipes – the ones grandma used to make…that no one should mess with – following these simple hacks will will help increase the nutritional value of your baked goods, and help prevent you from over indulging.
1. Make minis
Investing in mini muffin tins and making bite sized cookies will help with portion control, and may prevent the over consumption of sweet treats.
Studies have shown that people will consume 1/3 less dessert when the portion sizes are smaller!
2. Go grain free
Due to the flour content, baked goods are usually very high in carbohydrate grains.
Switching to a bean or nut “flour” such as coconut, almond, or chickpea will lower the carbohydrate count, increase fibre, and increase protein content.
3. Add chia or flaxseeds as a binder
Instead of using eggs to bind your doughs together, switch to a “egg-like seed” mixture. This can increase the omega 3 healthy fats, making the recipe cholesterol free, and will make your treats plant based!
TRY THIS MIXTURE:
Mix 1 tablespoon of ground chia/flaxseed with 3 tablespoons water.
Letting this mixture sit for 5-10 minute will allow the chia and flax to gelatinize, mimicking an egg.
4. Eliminate artificial ingredients
Steer clear of ingredients that contain partially hydrogenated oil (or trans fats), like margarine or most vegetable shortenings. Consider limiting other artificial ingredients, such as artificial food dyes.
One of the benefits of homemade baked goods is their simple list of ingredients. By making your own cookies, you can use whole ingredients and avoid most, or all, processed ingredient found in many packaged cookies etc.
5. Add beans and chickpeas
By now you’ve probably heard of, or are aware of, black bean brownies or chickpea blondies. Adding black beans or chickpeas to your recipe will increase the amount of protein and fibre in the baked goods; as well, they take the place of some of the flours traditionally used.
Click here to try our ‘Nutritionist Approved’ Black Bean Chocolate (BBC) Brownie recipe!