With cookie baking season upon us, it can feel like all your kids are eating is sugar. But there’s no need to give up this wonderful holiday tradition because tons of recipes out there use creative ingredients for a healthier spin on classic recipes. Chickpeas, avocados, and coconut oil are just a few of the sneaky ingredients that pack a nutritious punch in these desserts (your kids will be amazed that you can’t even taste them!). The whole family will love joining in on the fun of baking, and tasting their creations- minus the sugar overload with these 19 not-too-sweet holiday treats to make with your kids!
From Chocolate Covered Katie: The Healthy Dessert Blog (Yes, that’s what it’s called, so bookmark it for tons of healthier sweets). As she says, “These homemade peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies taste like the love child of a gingerbread man and a jar of Skippy.”
From Back for Seconds: Recipes You Can’t Resist, these brownies swap coconut oil in for the butter and according to Dr. Josh Axe, over 1,500 studies show coconut oil is one of the healthiest foods on the planet!
From Sprouted Fig, Josephine goes above and beyond in the healthy department for these:
Avocado for butter (please don’t leave! I promise you won’t ever be able to taste the avocado)No grains (which means no white flour)Coconut sugar for white sugar.Very dark chocolate chunks (I love the fact that dark chocolate is actually healthy)And the rest of the recipe list: organic dark cocoa powder, an egg and baking soda (well, I know this isn’t entirely natural, but it is however organic, source)
From Happy, Healthy Mama, these peanut butter chocolate balls are a healthy twist on an Ohio staple sweet treat made with chickpeas and other healthy swaps. Maryea says, “Whhaaaaat? Buckeyes with chickpeas? Don’t stop reading. You can’t taste the chickpeas. I promise. I also cut out the butter all together, used (a much smaller amount of) honey instead of powdered sugar, and substituted much healthier coconut oil for the shortening. What you get is a healthy, but still really delicious, Buckeye!”
From The Adventures of J-Man and Miller Bug, these Chinese noodles combined with dark chocolate make for an easy, crunchy treat that have the perfect combination of sweet and salty.
#6 Baked Apples
From Ingrid With Love shares this not too sweet treat and says, “For my twist on apple crisp, I baked everything inside a hollowed out apple. This also helped define clear portions so I wasn’t tempted to eat more than I should (like that’s EVER happened before). The result was fragrant, spicy and sweet- everything I love about apple crisp! Even though apple crisp is usually associated with fall, these baked apples make a perfect guilt-free dessert year round.”
From Veggie Inspired’s plant-based recipe archive, Jenn says these are “perfectly chewy, sweet, and packed with warm cinnamon. Only 6 ingredients and 15 minutes needed to make these quick and easy, gluten free cookies! What are you waiting for?”
From Sweet as Honey, Carine says, “I am so addicted to those ‘guilt-free’ coconut balls. Yes, I said ‘guilt-free’ because for me those are safe to eat in moderation as they do not contain much carbs and they are refined sugar free!”
From Cents-able Momma, Corrie says, “It seems like most holiday food while delicious is not exactly health food. That’s why I love this idea for Grinch Fruit Kabobs. They are super cute and filled with vitamins from the fruit. You can either pre-make them for a party platter or set out the ingredients and let a group of kids put them together for a fun activity.”
From Reading Confetti, Lorie says,”These cute little sledding penguins are a fun snack for winter. If your kids like chocolate-covered frozen bananas, they’re sure to like this dressed up version too!”
From Running with Spoons, Amanda says, “I’ve swapped out the butter and marshmallows for slightly healthier ingredients like almond butter and honey. The result is a sweet and chewy square that may not taste exactly the same as the original (depending on what kind of nut butter you use), but is just as good and just as addicting.”
From Purely Twins, Lori and Michelle (very poetically) say, “This recipe is easy to make. Requires no baking. All done in a bowl. This recipe is made with ingredients that are good for the body and soul.”
From My Kids Lick the Bowl, Stacey says, “Since making these I have since discovered that there are a few versions of strawberry santas floating around, but many include biscuits or cream cheese icing, so these are a smidge healthier at least.”
Fro The Big Man’s World, Arman says, “Just four healthy ingredients are needed to whip up these soft, moist and fudgy blondies! Melt in your mouth and ready in just 15 minutes, these flourless pumpkin gingerbread blondies are naturally paleo, vegan, gluten-free and completely refined sugar-free! A quick and easy snack recipe to satisfy the sweet tooth instantly!”
From Veggie Balance, Lindsay says, “Hot Chocolate Mix made with 2-Ingredients. Low-Sugar, Vegan, Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free. The perfect healthy treat on a cold winter day.”
From The Foodie and the Fix, Stephanie says, “I love adding a fun drink or treat to some of our Advent calendar activities, like watching Christmas movies or decorating the tree. It just makes everything more special. I also love that my kids feel like this drink is a treat, but I know that it has a fraction of the sugar of hot cocoa, which is a total mom score.”
From The Healthy Maven, Davida says, “Healthy Peanut Butter Chocolate Banana Soft Serve Ice Cream. It’s made with just 3 simple ingredients and is ready in minutes! It’s also gluten-free, vegan and paleo. Ice cream just got a healthy makeover!”
From Fit Foodie Finds, Lee says, “The best part about this recipe is that you probably already have all of these wonderful flavors in your kitchen. It makes my heart warm just thinking about it melting on my tongue.”
From Dashing Dish, Katie says, “created an egg nog version of my rich-creamy protein shakes to cure my desire for this not-so healthy beverage! Not only does it cure my cravings for egg nog, but it’s full power of protein, so it works great as a snack and/or meal replacement! If you love egg nog, I can guarantee you will LOVE (maybe even be obsessed with) this creamy dreamy egg nog shake!”