No Butter, No Problem
A vegan diet is defined as one that does not include animal products, and instead incorporates seeds, legumes, nut butters and soy-based foods for protein. This nutrient-rich diet offers a number of benefits, including lowering blood sugar, improving kidney function and reducing the risk for heart disease.
Audra Wilson, RD, LDN, a dietitian at Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital Metabolic Health and Surgical Weight Loss Center says, “Veganism can be a healthy food pattern if meals and snacks are planned to include all essential vitamins and minerals. Sometimes this type of diet can create deficiencies in B12, iron, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.”
Butter, milk and eggs are all common staples of baked goods that are forbidden in a vegan diet, but following a plant-based diet doesn’t mean sweets have to be off the table. Indulge your sweet tooth with these vegan-friendly recipes. (And yes, chocolate is very much included.) As with any dessert, remember to indulge within moderation.
Vegan Dessert Recipes
- 1 1/4 cups fresh or frozen fruit
- 1 1/2 tsp. sugar
- 4 tsp. all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 1/2 tsp. orange juice
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
- 3 Tbsp. chopped almonds
- 4 tsp. brown sugar
- Pinch of cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp. canola oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Combine fruit with sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. flour and orange juice. Divide between two 6-ounce ovenproof ramekins.
- Combine oats, almonds, brown sugar, the remaining 2 1/2 tsp. flour and cinnamon.
- Drizzle with oil and stir to combine.
- Sprinkle over the fruit mixture.
- Place the ramekins on a baking sheet and bake until the fruit is bubbling and the topping is golden, 20 to 25 minutes.
- 3/4 cup almond butter or natural peanut butter
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 3/4 cups rolled oats
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- Heat almond butter (or peanut butter), brown sugar, coconut oil and almond milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring, until the oil and sugar have melted.
- Stir in oats, cinnamon, vanilla and salt.
- Let cool slightly.
- Scoop the dough by tablespoon and drop onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Press into 2-inch circles.
- Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.
- 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
- 2 Tbsp. unsweetened coconut milk
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. mini chocolate chips (optional)
- Place coconut oil in a small microwave-safe coffee mug and microwave on high until melted, 15 to 20 seconds. Cool for 1 minute.
- Whisk in coconut milk and vanilla.
- Add flour, sugar, cocoa and salt; continue whisking until completely incorporated.
- Stir in chocolate chips.
- Microwave on high until firm to the touch and no longer glossy, 30 to 40 seconds. Let stand for 8 to 10 minutes.