Healthy Pineapple Carrot Cake

Healthy Pineapple Carrot Cake

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: Easy
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This healthy carrot cake is a lighter version of the original. It is moist, easy to make and is lower in sugar and has no butter or oil.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour (I used unbleached)
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of sea salt
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of granulated sugar (I used splenda 1:1)
  • 1/2 cup of crushed pineapple
  • 3/4 cup of finely grated carrots (about 2 large)
  • Pam vegetable spray

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Spray Pam on 8×8 ceramic cake pan.
  3. In a small bowl, mix flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, mix together egg and applesauce.
  5. Add vanilla, sugar and crushed pineapple. Stir until combined.
  6. Pour dry ingredients into wet and gently mix with a spatula until completely combined.
  7. Stir in carrots until evenly distributed.
  8. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  9. Bake for 25-35 min until pick comes out clean from centre.
  10. Cut into 12 squares.

Nutrition Per Serving with Splenda


– Calories 55
– Fat 0.55 g
– Sugar 2.8 g
– Carbohydrates 10.1 g
– Protein 2.0 g
– Fibre 1.0 g

Nutrition Per Serving with Sugar


– Calories 94
– Fat 0.55 g
– Sugar 11.3 g
– Carbohydrates 18.6 g
– Protein 2.0 g
– Fibre 1.0 g

This cake is easy to make. The longest part is grating the carrots and making sure that there is no extra protein (the skin off your fingers) as I so often scrape my fingers on the grater.

I’ve given the two versions of nutritional facts with sugar and with Splenda. Even using sugar, a diabetic can have this as the carbs are low and so is the sugar. You can ice it with a cream cheese frosting (let me know if you want the recipe) but it doesn’t even need it. You can sprinkle a little icing sugar for extra sweetness but that is up to you. There are so many possibilities including chocolate chips, or raisins, or even dates that there is no reason you can’t have fun and make it your own.

Applesauce Cake

Applesauce Cake

  • Servings: 9
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Applesauce is often something I have in the house. I’ve learned to buy the little cups as many recipes ask for it but in small quantities. I hate opening a jar and then have half go bad. Here is a recipe that calls for just one of those prepackaged cups of unsweetened applesauce. I’ve given you a couple of options on the fat or sugar content below.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 3 tbsp of vegetable oil or applesauce (if you have extra, my nutritional value below is based on oil)
  • 2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp of white or cider vinegar
  • 1-1/2 cups of white, spelt or oat flour (I used white unbleached flour)
  • 1/3 cup of sugar or sugar substitute (my nutritional value is based on sugar, if using substitute sugar value is 0 g)
  • 3/4 tsp of salt
  • 3/4 tsp of baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp of allspice (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Whisk liquid ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Add remaining dry ingredients to form a batter.
  4. Smooth into a greased 8” square pan.
  5. Bake for 18 minutes or until pick comes out clean.
  6. Cool, then frost if desired.
  7. Cut into 9 squares.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 130
  • Fat 4.4 g
  • Sugar 7.2 g
  • Carbohydrates 21.6 g
  • Protein 2.8 g
  • Fibre 2.6 g

So as you can see this was really easy. Just because it is low in fat and sugar doesn’t mean it can’t taste good. I made mine with oil but without the sugar. I used splenda 1:1 and it was fine. This also brought the calories down to 102 cal per piece. If you change the oil to applesauce it goes down to 66 and only 0.4 g of fat. You can add raisins, chopped walnuts, even chocolate chips without making it go crazy on calories or sugar. Depends what you are after. You could even ice it, if you really wanted to. I thought it was great plain but now it’s your recipe and have fun and make it your own.

Easy Pork Curry

Easy Pork Curry

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Did the word easy get your attention? It got mine when I first saw this recipe. Dinner for 6 in 75 minutes, I just had to try it. Turned out pretty good. So here it is.

Ingredients

  • Boneless pork shoulder roast (2 lbs) cut into 1inch cubes
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil (divided)
  • 1 small white onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp of ginger minced
  • 2 tbsp of curry powder
  • 2 cups of diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can of coconut milk (light)
  • 1 cup of chicken stock
  • 4 cups of cooked basmati rice
  • Fresh cilantro
  • 1 lime cut into wedges

Directions

  1. In a large stock pot, over high heat, add 1 tbsp of olive oil and onion. Cook 3-5 minutes until onions are transparent.
  2. Lower heat to medium, add garlic and ginger. Stir constantly for 1 minute.
  3. Add curry powder and stir for 15 seconds.
  4. Add diced tomatoes, coconut milk and chicken stock and stir until well blended.
  5. In a large skillet, over high heat, add 1 tbsp of oil and cubed pork, working in batches if necessary. Sear pork on all sides, approximately, 1-3 minutes.
  6. Add pork to curry mixture and reduce heat to medium low. Cover and simmer for 30-45 minutes .
  7. Serve with basmati rice and topped with cilantro and a squeeze of lime.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 365
  • Fat 16 g
  • Sugar 7.4 g
  • Carbohydrates 20 g
  • Protein 37.2 g
  • Fibre 4.8 g

This was an easy recipe to make. If you are watching your carbs or need to be careful on what carbs you eat that might spike your blood glucose, you might want to switch the basmati rice for brown converted rice, or even a tortilla. The nutritional facts are with basmati rice. You can also make this with the other white meat, chicken.

Have fun and remember to make it your own.

Berry Strudel

Berry Strudel

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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I was asked if I had a recipe that was low in sugar and looked good. Went digging and this is what I came up with.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups of berries (I used raspberries)
  • 2 tbsp of instant tapioca
  • 1 tsp of grated lemon zest
  • 5 sheets of phyllo dough thawed 12 x 17 inches
  • 2 tbsp of unsalted butter melted
  • 2 tbsp of crushed walnuts
  • 1/2 cup of greek plain yogourt
  • 1 tsp of brown sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450.
  2. Mix berries, tapioca and lemon zest and let rest for 10 minutes.
  3. Place a parchemin paper on your work surface, as this is what you will use in your baking sheet.
  4. Place one sheet of phyllo dough and lightly butter it. (Make sure to place a damp towel on the remaining four sheets so they don’t dry out)
  5. Spread 1/2 tbsp of crushed walnuts on the sheet.
  6. Repeat three times.
  7. Place the last sheet over the four others.
  8. Spread the fruit mixture on a horizontal line approximately 2 inches from the edge and from the ends.
  9. Gently roll and fold the ends under.
  10. Place the roll with the parchemin paper on the baking sheet.
  11. Place the baking sheet on the lowest rack.
  12. Cook for 18 minutes until golden brown. If it browns too quickly place a piece of foil over the top and continue baking.
  13. Once cooked let cool for approximately 20 minutes, serve luke warm.
  14. In the meantime, mix yogourt with brown sugar.
  15. Cut into 8 pieces and serve with yogourt on the side.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 124
  • Fat 7.6 g
  • Sugar 2.9 g
  • Carbohydrates 12.1 g
  • Protein 2.5 g
  • Fibre 3.2 g

This is a refreshing dessert. It looks great (for a fancier look, lightly sprinkle some icing sugar over the top). It is low in sugar, a great dessert for diabetics. You can vary the fruits inside. Berries work great as they don’t need extra sugar. Like I always say, have fun and make it your own.

Pumpkin Soup

Pumpkin Soup

  • Servings: 8 1 cup portions
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Is there ever a wrong time for pumpkin? What you will find here is a soup that is great as is, or can be used as a base. The puree I used was one I froze from a pumpkin I cooked, you can use canned puree (just be sure not to use pie filling)

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 large chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 4 cups of pumpkin puree
  • 6 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp of cajun spice
  • 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. In a large pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat
  2. Add onion and cook until tender.
  3. Add garlic cook for approximately 2 minutes.
  4. Add puree, broth and spices.
  5. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 60 minutes.
  6. You can either serve or if you want smoother, use your blender to puree it even more.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 107
  • Fat 1.8 g
  • Sugar 3 g
  • Carbohydrates 11.6 g
  • Protein 5.1 g
  • Fibre 3.3 g

This is an easy soup that is both nutritious and low calorie. It can be served as an appetizer or as a main course. As a main course, use two servings. You can serve it with a nice sunflower and flax seed bread (see recipe), white bread (see recipe) or country biscuits (see recipe). You can use this as a base for a vegetable soup. You can thicken it with a little flour and use it as a sauce. So basically, have fun and make it your own.

No Bake Bumpy Peanut Butter Nuggets

No Bake Bumpy Peanut Butter Nuggets

  • Servings: 30 small balls
  • Difficulty: Easy
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These are easy to make and quick. You feel to dress up a bowl of sugar free jello, this is a great option. Straight, they are good too.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of smooth peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup of nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened orange juice concentrate

Directions

  1. Combine peanut butter, milk powder, and coconut in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Stir in oats, ground cinnamon, wheat germ and orange juice concentrate until thoroughly combined.
  3. Shape into 1 inch balls, chill thoroughly before serving, store remaining nuggets in the refrigerator.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 46
  • Fat 2.9 g
  • Sugar 1.8 g
  • Carbohydrates 3.8 g
  • Protein 1.9 g
  • Fibre 0.7 g

A healthy serving could be three balls. I think they are great as an add on. Any concentrate can be used. Watch the sugars. You could add a little unsweetened cocoa, would add 1 cal per ball. Can you see it, a chocolatey ball over a light white chocolate sugar free pudding? Possibilities are endless, so have fun and make it your own.

Egg Cups

Egg Cups

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 3 eggs
  • 250 ml of egg whites (8 ounces)
  • 1 tbsp of milk
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup cooked turkey or chicken chopped
  • 1 cup chopped raw spinach
  • 1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk 3 eggs, egg whites and milk along with the salt and pepper. In another bowl mix your other ingredients. Your turkey with cilantro and sundried tomatoes. (or variation you like).
  3. Spray muffin tin with non stick cooking spray (I used silicon muffin inserts and he used a silicon muffin pan).
  4. Arrange your ingredients at the bottom of each muffin tin.
  5. Using a soup ladle, put your egg mixture into each tin on top of the other ingredients.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the tops of the egg cups get big and fluffy and slightly golden brown on top.
  7. Let cool for a few minutes before popping them out of the muffin tin.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 90
  • Fat 4.9 g
  • Sugar 0.8 g
  • Carbohydrates 2.4 g
  • Protein 6.6 g
  • Fibre 1.2 g

A young chef came to me with this. What he loved about this was the versatility. He has done this at home over a dozen times and each time he uses what he has in the fridge. When he asked if we could do this together he reminded me that depending what I used, this was low in fat, low in cholesterol, with high protein. They can be used as part of breakfast, a protein snack, or as an hors d’oevres.

The prep time includes cooking your chicken or turkey or saussage. The versatility is fun. He has one version he calls Tex-Mex which is 1 avocado diced, 1 diced bell pepper, a little jalapeño and a little cilantro. I tried mine with hot italian sausage. I will say, careful what you use. Mine made this a little oily. If you use something that is fatty, make sure you remove as much of the fat as possible. You can have so much fun with this and make them your own.

Hamburger Soup

Hamburger Soup

  • Servings: 10 of 1 cup
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Cold weather is upon us. Comfort food is a must. I love seeing the leaves turning colours, cooler nights for sleep, but salads get pushed aside for cozier foods. Here is one of them.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves or 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 19 ounce can (540ml) of chopped tomatoes
  • 10 oz can (284 ml) tomato soup (preferably sodium reduced)
  • 1 tsp worchestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 cups of low sodium beef broth (I use campbell)
  • 3 medium carrots peeled and sliced (relatively thin)
  • 1 cup chopped cabbage

Directions

  1. In a large pot or dutch oven, brown the meat and drain off excess fat.
  2. Add onions and garlic and cook on low heat until onions are tender.
  3. Add tomatoes, tomato soup, worchestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and broth.
  4. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  5. Add the vegetables and simmer for an additional 30 minutes.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 122
  • Fat 4.8 g
  • Sugar 5 g
  • Carbohydrates 8.5 g
  • Protein 11.2 g
  • Fibre 1.7 g

This is an easy soup that is both nutritious and low calorie. It can be served as an appetizer or as a main course. We had it as a main course and it made 6 bowls. You can serve it with a nice sunflower and flax seed bread (see recipe), white bread (see recipe) or country biscuits (see recipe).

Overall, it was a nice comfort food for a cooler night. If you want it spicy, you can add a little cayenne pepper to taste. You can add extra veggies like frozen corn. Possibilities are endless, so have fun and make it your own.

Light Apple Crisp

Light Apple Crisp

  • Servings: 10
  • Difficulty: Easy
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It’s apple picking time. That usually means, we have extra apples. Apples are very versatile. Nothing quite like an apple pie, or apple crumble, or apple crisp. So I went looking for a recipe that would fit the bill and not over do it on the sugar. I found a version of this (slightly modified by me) in a diabetic site.

Ingredients

  • 5 cups of diced, peeled, cored apples
  • 2 cups of unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup of flour (I use unbleached)
  • 1/4 cup of rolled oats (not the quick cooking)
  • 2 tbsp of melted light margarine
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • nonstick cooking spray

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Coat a 13×9 inch pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, flour, oats, margarine, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and apple sauce. Blend with fork.
  3. Layer apples in the pan and sprinkle brown sugar mixture evenly over top.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle nuts on top.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 125
  • Fat 2.6 g
  • Sugar 19 g
  • Carbohydrates 18 g
  • Protein 0.75 g
  • Fibre 2 g

The picture I posted does not give it justice. It is quite good. I made the mistake (in the picture) to mix everything together. I had layered my apples, I poured the brown sugar mixture over it and then, oops, I stirred everything together. So mine did not have that nice “CRISP” to it. So if you follow the directions, you will be fine. I promise to redo the picture next time I make it.

You can add more nuts if you like. If calories don’t matter you can serve warm with ice cream. Or you can add a little coffee cream. Someone suggested Light Cool Whip. So as the saying goes, have fun and make it your own.

Skinny Banana Bread Muffins

Skinny Banana Bread Muffins

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Skinny muffins that are flavourful and moist. Wait, that doesn’t sound right. Well, it is and they are healthier than most. These banana muffins have no oil, low sugar and are only 130 calories. I apologize to the store bought or coffee house muffins.

Ingredients

  • 4 bananas mashed (about 1-1/3 cup)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp white sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1-1/2 cup all purpose flour (whole wheat makes them a little more dense)
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 and line muffin tin with paper liners or silicon liners.
  2. In a mixing bowl, mash bananas, add egg, vanilla, sugars, and cinnamon and stir well to combine.
  3. In a larger bowl stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add banana mixture and stir to combine.
  4. Gently stir in melted butter. Don’t over-mix the batter as the muffins will be tougher.
  5. Spoon into muffin tin and bake for 18-25 minutes.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • Calories 130
  • Fat 2 g
  • Sugar 9 g
  • Carbohydrates 23 g
  • Protein 2 g
  • Fibre 2 g

Note: You can freeze these for up to 2 months in a freezer safe ziplock bag. Make sure that they are completely cooled and get as much of the air out of the bag first.

If calories or sugar are not of concern, you can add walnuts, raisins, cranberries, or even peanut butter (if you add peanut butter, you will need to add an equal amount of flour). This makes the possibilities endless. Remember to have fun and make it your own.