Good-for-You Sweet Treats
While eating healthy and enjoying sweets seldom go hand-in-hand, choosing the right combination of nutritious ingredients can allow for guilt-free indulgences that shirks conventional dieting wisdom. In fact, some eating plans take it a step further by actually encouraging eating big in the evening when you’re naturally hungriest to help achieve your weight loss goals. (Family Features)
For example, “Always Eat After 7 PM,” written by Joel Marion, CISSN, NSCA-CPT, five-time best-selling e-book author and co-founder of the e-commerce supplement company BioTrust Nutrition, debunks popular diet myths and offers an easy-to-follow diet that accelerates fat-burning and allows you to indulge in your most intense cravings by eating the majority of your calories at night. The outlined plan features a 14-day “acceleration phase” designed for rapid results, a “main phase” when you’ll learn which fat-burning foods to eat to achieve your weight loss goals and a “lifestyle phase” to keep the weight off for good.
Conventional wisdom dictates that it’s best to avoid carbs, eat an early dinner and never eat immediately before bed. However, Marion debunks the myths underlying traditional dieting with a simple, highly effective weight loss program allowing readers to enjoy social dinners without restriction, satisfy nighttime hunger with fat-burning sweet and salty pre-bedtime snacks and indulge cravings with strategically timed cheat meals.
With straightforward food lists, easy-to-follow meal plans and recipes for each phase, this can be a simpler, more enjoyable way to lose weight without feeling restricted. Taken directly from the book, these recipes for No Bake Salted Caramel Bars, Cherry Garcia Ice Cream and Fruit Tarts can satisfy that sweet tooth before heading to bed.
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 cup raw honey
- 1 tablespoon coconut flour
- 3 cans (13 2/3 ounces each) full-fat coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, plus additional for greasing
- 1/2 cup palm shortening
- 1 cup coconut palm sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 egg yolks
- 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup blanched almond flour
- 1⁄4 cup coconut flour
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot starch
- 2 kiwis, peeled and sliced
- 1 mango, peeled, pitted and sliced into 1/2-inch strips
- 1/2 cup raspberries
- 1/2 cup blackberries
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- 1/2 cup red grapes
- 1 cup strawberries, thinly sliced
- fresh mint leaves, for garnish
- To make custard: In saucepan, whisk egg yolks and honey until smooth. Mix in coconut flour.
- In medium saucepan over medium heat, combine coconut milk, vanilla extract and lemon zest; bring to boil then remove from heat.
- Pour hot milk mixture into egg yolk mixture, stirring while pouring. Over low heat, simmer 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat and let cool, continuing to stir occasionally. Once cooled to room temperature, pour into individual custard cups. Chill in refrigerator 30 minutes, or until serving.
- To make crust: Heat oven to 350° F. Line bottom of pie pan with parchment paper and grease with coconut oil.
- In large mixing bowl using electric mixer on high, beat coconut oil and palm shortening 30 seconds. Add coconut palm sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt; beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla until combined. Beat in almond flour, coconut flour and starch. Chill dough in refrigerator 15 minutes.
- Press chilled cookie dough into bottom of pie pan and 2 inches up sides. Bake 12 minutes, or until crust is golden and browned on top and edges. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. Place cooled crust in refrigerator 30 minutes or overnight before assembling.
- To assemble fruit tarts: Spread custard over chilled crust. Decorate top in circular pattern with kiwis, mango strips, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, grapes and strawberries.
- Before serving, chill at least 30 minutes or freeze 1 hour to help keep toppings in place.
- Remove from freezer and set out at room temperature 20 minutes before slicing. Garnish with mint leaves.
Cherry Garcia Ice Cream
- 1/4 cup fresh Bing cherries, pitted and halved
- 1/4 cup stevia-sweetened dark chocolate bar, chopped
- 3 overripe frozen bananas, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk
- 1 pinch sea salt
- Chill cherries and dark chocolate.
- In food processor, pulse frozen bananas, milk and salt until smooth, creamy consistency of soft serve is achieved. Stir in cherries and chocolate. Serve immediately or place in freezer-safe container and freeze until serving.
No Bake Salted Caramel Bars
- 2 1/2 cups raw pecans
- 8 pitted dates, soaked in hot water 10 minutes then drained
- 2 tablespoons blanched almond flour
- 1 teaspoon coconut flour
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup granular zero-calorie, natural sweetener
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
- 1/2 cup granular zero-calorie, natural sweetener
- 2 tablespoons full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 cups stevia-sweetened chocolate chips
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- coconut oil
- 1/3 cup dry roasted macadamia nuts, chopped
- coarse sea salt
- To make cookie layer: Place large skillet over medium heat. Spread pecans over skillet and toast, stirring often, 8-10 minutes until golden. Remove from heat.
- Transfer toasted pecans to food processor and pulse until fine. Add dates, almond flour, coconut flour, sea salt, sweetener and coconut oil; pulse until dough forms.
- To make caramel layer: In skillet over medium heat, combine coconut palm sugar, sweetener, coconut milk, coconut oil, sea salt and vanilla extract; bring to boil. Once boiling, decrease heat to low and cook 5 minutes, stirring often.
- Remove skillet from heat; whisk in baking soda. Return pan to low heat and cook 2 minutes, stirring often.
- Remove caramel from heat and let cool and thicken 5 minutes.
- To make chocolate layer: In double boiler, melt chocolate chips and coconut oil. Stir until mixture is smooth then remove from heat.
- To assemble salted caramel bars: Line bottom and sides of 9-by-9-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some hanging over sides. Lightly rub parchment paper with coconut oil.
- Press cookie dough into bottom of pan to create even layer. Place in freezer 5 minutes to harden.
- Pour caramel over cookie layer and spread to coat evenly. Place in freezer 5 minutes. Pour chocolate over caramel and spread to cover evenly. Sprinkle with macadamia nuts and coarse salt. Place in freezer 10 minutes until chocolate sets.
- Use overhanging parchment paper to ease set mixture out of pan. Transfer to cutting board and slice into bite-size bars.
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