Showing posts with label chocolate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chocolate. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Neapolitan Smoothie Pops

It is freezing cold outside currently and while I usually want soups and stews, occasionally I want to pretend I am in a warmer place and want summery January. I know.

Like many foods, popsicles have the opportunity to be a nutritional boon or a calorie bomb. I wanted to make something that tasted delicious and wouldn't set me back a zillion calories. I decided to make a popsicle that was mostly yogurt and fruit based - like a smoothie!

Yogurt, too, can be a high-sugar dessert or a healthy part of your day. Chobani is one brand of plain Greek yogurt I buy because of the very short and simple ingredient list. The only sugar in the product is there naturally from the cow.

Neapolitan Smoothie Pops

  • 2 large bananas
  • 1 1/2 cups plain Chobani Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
Supplies: popsicle molds, or small cups and popsicle sticks
  1. In a blender, puree the bananas and 1 cup of the greek yogurt with honey. Pour about one cup of the mixture into each of two small bowls. This should use up most, but not all of the mixture. 
  2. To one bowl,add the cocoa powder and stir until evenly mixed. To the other bowl, stir inthe vanilla extract.
  3. To the remaining mixture in the blender, add the remaining 1/2 cup of yogurt and frozen strawberries. Blend until smooth. 
  4. Divide the chocolate mixture between your popsicle molds or small cups, filling each no more than 1/3 full. Freeze for an hour or so, until firm enough to hold the popsicle sticks. 
  5. Add the vanilla layer and freeze until solid. Top with strawberry layer and freeze again until firm. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Sweet Treats: Maple + Bourbon Chocolate Mousse

This. Is. Delicious. And it has a mystery ingredient. It is a dessert that almost everyone can enjoy - there isn't any dairy or gluten, just loads of chocolaty good flavor :)

This sweet treat has a mystery ingredient...but you'd never guess it from the flavor!

Maple Bourbon Chocolate Mousse
Serves 4
  • 2 ripe avocadoes
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips, melted
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 5 tablespoons maple syrup (or honey)
  • 2 tablespoons almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  1. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave or over a double boiler - your call.
  2. Pop all of the ingredients into your food processor or blender and blend until very smooth. If you can stand it, let it chill in the fridge for a few hours. 
Do you have any unusual ways to use avocado? 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Sweet treats: Chocolate zucchini cupcakes

Since you're a dietitian, you probably never eat sweets, right? 
Chocolate zucchini cupcakes

Oh wrong baby, wrong.

I get asked versions of that question all the time. Or, if I am meeting someone at a dinner, they'll usually look at their dinner with a guilty expression and then back at me as though I'm the food police. Far from it! I love food, and my passion for all things food are what fueled my interest in becoming a dietitian. I am a dietitian because I LOVE to eat...that includes all things chocolate and sweet potato fries too!

Being a healthy human is about balance. We need to base our usual foods on produce, fruits and vegetables galore, we need some healthy fats and protein as well as fiber and water, but there are so many "right" ways to do it, and there is wiggle room for treats too! Here is the trick: when eating, slow down, eat at the table and pay attention to the food. This is called eating mindfully and applies not just to the treats, but to the main event too. When we slow down and focus, we're more satisfied and eat less.

I received this cookbook from my sweet roommate and his fiance (maybe it was a hint to do some more baking!) and tried this recipe first because I had a zucchini I needed to use. Now, let's not fool ourselves; just because there is a vegetable in these cupcakes, they aren't suddenly a miracle health food. My carrot cake recipe has enough calories to sink the Titanic. However, this cookbook was written in England and it seems that their sweets run a little lower in the sugar and oil department. They're sweet, but the sugar level doesn't sock you in the face.

Side note: most American recipes would try to be sneaky and call these "muffins" to make them sound healthier...I am going to stick with the cupcake labeling assigned on the other side of the pond.
Chocolate zucchini cupcakes
Makes 10
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 3 oz dark chocolate
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup flour plus 1 tablespoon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons chopped pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray muffin tins with non-stick spray or line with paper liners.
  2. Mix oil, brown sugar and eggs in bowl using a whisk.
  3. Sprinkle flour over top of wet ingredients and then sprinkle baking powder and baking soda on top of flour - this is my "cheater" method to avoid sifting dry ingredients together. Stir just a few times to wet the flour. If you keep stirring a lot, you'll over develop the gluten and have tough (not tender) muffins.
  4. Melt chocolate in the microwave by nuking for 10-20 second intervals and stirring in between until melted. Add chocolate, zucchini and pecans to batter and mix until just combined.
  5. Divide batter evenly between 10 muffin cups and bake for about 25 minutes or until firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.
Gather your ingredients

Whisk oil, eggs and brown sugar
Melt chocolate

Add dry ingredients
Add grated zucchini, melted chocolate and nuts
Even batter portions means each cupcake will bake evenly too

Yum! Sweet treats with hidden zucchini!
 I like using a box grater because it stands up on its own; it makes it easier to grate vegetables and cheese without it slipping around. A stable grater also makes it safer if you have kids helping you in the kitchen.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Banana "ice-cream"...a low-calorie dessert that actually tastes super!

There are few things more delicious than excellent ice-cream. And with summer's heat, ice-cream is a tempting way to cool off. However, the high number of calories of even a reasonable portion might take you off track from your beach-bod journey. And the whole pint? Don't get me started! What to do?

I was introduced to this ice-cream substitute last summer from my lovely former roommate Kelly. Even though I am a dietitian, I have a huge sweet tooth. When she was telling me about this frozen banana mush as being something worth trying, I had a pretty high level of skepticism. I tried it though and am an official convert; it really is creamy and delicious! This is lovely dessert that tastes like ice-cream but has the calories of one banana. Magic? Pretty much!

What is in a name? In order for the food package to be labeled as ice-cream, it must contain a minimum of 10% milk fat. Fat gives the creamy mouth feel of good ice-cream, but it also bulks up the calories and saturated fat content. Soft serve treats are sometimes lower in fat and calories, but don't have enough fat to be labeled as ice-cream. Search for the work ice-cream on the menu boards and your cone will be melted before you see it; it isn't there!

Banana "ice-cream"

  • 1 frozen banana per person/serving
Optional ingredients and flavors
  • cocoa powder
  • melted chocolate chips
  • cinnamon powder
  • vanilla extract
  • peanut or almond butter

  1. Peel banana and place in plastic bag or reusable container. Freeze until solid (note: if you're trying to hurry things along, slice the banana. More surface area = faster freezing time).

These slices quickly freeze solid

  • Place frozen banana in food processor and blend until smooth and creamy; this will take a few minutes. Scoop down the sides of the bowl to make sure there aren't any lumps! 
Smooth and creamy "ice-cream"!

  • If you're interested in flavors, add 'em! If not, scoop some into your bowl and enjoy! 
  • Cocoa powder and cinnamon added...yum!
  • If you have left overs, scoop it into a container and store in the freezer. For best results, let the frozen "ice-cream" warm up for a few minutes before serving; this will help it be just as creamy.

Kelly has her own lovely blog called Off The Wall; I'd recommend you check it out! She has great recipes for you to try and love!

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