Chocolate Covered Katie – The Healthy Dessert Blog
One of the most popular Healthy Dessert Blog. Women's Health Magazine has labeled Chocolate-Covered Katie "The next Nigella Lawson," and Glamour voted her one of the Top 7 Most Influential Accounts On Instagram. Katie's blog has been featured by CNN, ABC, Time, People, and The Huffington Post.
Thick-cut, homemade sweet potato steak fries. Pretty much my new favorite thing in the world!
Are you ready to become obsessed with these sweet potato steak fries?
Sweet, savory, and totally addictive, these super healthy sweet potato fries are baked instead of fried.
Adapted from my Crispy Oven Baked Fries, they can completely satisfy your french fry cravings without all the added fat and calories. Go ahead and eat the whole batch!
I went through a phase in high school where I was crazy about Ore-Ida Sweet Potato Steak Fries and could easily polish off half a package in one sitting.
Six servings per bag, seriously?
Who in the world eats just 8 french fries as a serving?
Anyway, a few days ago I was in the freezer aisle of the grocery store when a package of those steak fries once again caught my eye. I picked up the bag but was shocked to see just how many extra ingredients they’d managed to include: canola oil, modified food starch, rice flour, tapioca dextrin, salt, baking soda, sodium acid pyrophosphate, xanthan gum, annatto…
Why add so many unnecessary ingredients to something that tastes just as delicious without them??? I put the bag back on the shelf and decided to save money and make my own homemade sweet potato fries instead. Homemade will always taste better than frozen anyway!
Honestly, these fries are pretty hard to mess up.
I’ve made them a million different ways now, and although each way has its unique taste and texture, I’ve loved almost all of them (except the batch I forgot in the oven that burned to a crisp… we aren’t going to talk about those…)
Short on time? Just skip the soaking step. Baking other veggies too? Throw these fries into the oven at the same time. Feeding a crowd? Double the recipe!
I like to serve the fries with a bowl of tahini mixed with ketchup – so addictive.
You can season the sweet potato fries however you’d like – salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, oregano, curry powder, cumin and chili powder, or even cinnamon! Bake the fries first, then season them at the end. You can even divide them up and add different seasonings to each serving.
optional seasonings, such as cinnamon, onion, garlic, or chili, or curry powder
Cut sweet potato into fry shape with a knife. Place in a large bowl and soak in water for 30 minutes to an hour. Drain, and be sure to pat completely dry. Preheat oven to 485 F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper. Toss or spray the sweet potatoes with oil, but don’t add the seasonings yet. Arrange in a single layer on the baking sheet, place on the center rack, and bake 20 minutes. Turn the fries, then bake another 5 minutes or until desired doneness. Toss with seasonings of choice.
One of the most popular searches on my blog every single week is from readers looking for healthy banana recipes.
I know bananas are such a polarizing food – you either love them or hate them! Personally, I love them not just for the taste, but also because they’re so perfect for sweetening recipes naturally, without any added sugar. Often referred to as “nature’s candy bar,” bananas offer a host of important nutrients (potassium, vitamin B, fiber, etc.), and I always make sure to have a few on hand for using in smoothies, brownies, oatmeal, healthy fudge, cakes, pies, ice cream recipes, and other healthy desserts or breakfasts. If you ever find yourself with extra bananas on hand, here are 30 delicious ways to use them up!
Tip: If you ever have overripe bananas that you aren’t yet ready to eat, don’t throw them away, even if they’ve turned brown. You can absolutely freeze bananas for later use. Simply peel, cut into a few pieces, and freeze in a single layer in an airtight container. The frozen bananas are great for making banana soft serve, or you can thaw them and use in baked goods as well. Or heat the ripe banana until it’s all nice and caramelized–I call this The Melted Banana Trick–then stir into oatmeal instead of sugar or spread on toast to make the best peanut butter banana sandwich of your life.
Do you have any favorite ways to use bananas? Or suggestions for more easy banana recipes you’d like to see that aren’t on this list? Personally, I think this post could really use some more brownies! But then again, I think every post could use more brownies. Also maybe granola bars or cinnamon rolls?
An alluringly simple sesame noodles recipe that is super quick to make and tastes like Chinese take-out!
Just 15 Minutes
These super easy sesame noodles are a healthy and totally plant-based recipe you can eat hot or cold, for a quick and delicious weeknight meal! The best part about the recipe is that you can easily customize it however you’d like, adding protein or bulking it up with any veggies you have on hand. Sometimes I like to stir a few tbsp of peanut butter into the sauce to change it up, and it’s really good that way too!
Sesame Noodles Ideas:
Toss in some steamed broccoli
Add chopped carrot or zucchini
Stir in some diced roasted sweet potato
Serve as a main course with a side salad
Make it a meal by adding tofu, beans, or your favorite protein
I first made a version of these healthy sesame noodles back in college, on a night when I returned home from class feeling so hungry but finding close to nothing in my fridge.
Being forced to improvise, I cooked up some noodles, tossed them with bottled sesame ginger salad dressing, and called it dinner. It was the start of many more college nights eating hot or cold sesame noodles for dinner. These noodles were like my own version of the ubiquitous packaged ramen popular with so many college students.
Recently I’ve been making my own homemade sesame ginger dressing instead of buying it at the store, and I was happy to discover that this new dressing on top of noodles is even better than the ones I remember from college. If I’m not eating the vegan sesame noodles as a side dish, I’ll usually stir in some veggies and a source of protein, for a healthy one-bowl meal that’s easy to make and includes all the facets of a nutritious dinner.
optional, feel free to add diced veggies, tofu, or another protein of choice
Bring a salted pot of water to a boil, and cook pasta according to package directions. Drain fully but do not rinse. Meanwhile, stir together all remaining ingredients except garnishes. Once pasta is drained, combine everything together. Garnish as desired. Leftovers can be served either hot or cold.
There are two versions of the recipe – raw chocolate chips and a version that’s good for baking.
And while brands such as Lily’s sugar free chocolate chips do exist on the market, making your own at home not only saves money, it also enables you to control what ingredients to use. Lily’s chips contain soy, and many other brands contain dairy and artificial ingredients, so if you want to avoid those ingredients as well as sugar, making your own sugar free chocolate chips recipe is the way to go. I’ve also included an option below for making the chips with maple syrup or agave if you want refined sugar free and vegan chocolate chips.
Before publishing this recipe, I had the very difficult task of testing out every single version, to make sure each variation worked. Imagine being forced to eat all that chocolate.
You can totally use these dairy free chocolate chips to make chocolate chip cookies, as shown in the recipe I’ve linked above.
Or throw some into your brownie batter, stir a handful into ice cream, sprinkle on top of a frosted chocolate cake, or stuff them into cupcakes. Chocolate chips are like the little black dress of the food world, and I can’t think of very many desserts where a few of these babies wouldn’t be a welcome addition.
Just be sure not to eat them all right out of the container, so you’ll still have some left to use in recipes!
Gently melt the oil if not already liquid. Stir in the sweetener. Stir in the cocoa. If using the stevia, add a little extra melted coconut oil if the mixture is too thick. Pour into a parchment-lined tupperware container or candy molds. Freeze util firm. Break into small chip-sized pieces, or pop out of the candy molds. Store in the freezer.
Sugar Free Chocolate Chips For Baking:
While the above raw version is fantastic for using in no-bake treats or eating by the handful, if you want a version that you can bake with or that has the option of being oil-free, simply melt a bar of unsweetened chocolate and sweeten to taste with your favorite sweetener of choice. You can add a tsp oil for smoother results, but it’s not required. Pour into a parchment-lined container or candy molds, and freeze until firm. Then break into small pieces or pop out of the molds. This version needs no refrigeration and can be used anywhere you’d use store-bought chocolate chips.
Homemade apple enchiladas, comfort food hot from the oven!
Just 8 ingredients, and they’re vegan and oil-free!
If you like apple pie, you will love these wholesome apple enchiladas. They remind me of apple blintzes, but are so much better! Serve them hot or cold for a delicious breakfast, or top each with homemade Coconut Ice Cream or Keto Ice Cream for a healthy dessert.
It was basically like eating a giant caramel apple covered in creamy vanilla ice cream and stuffed into a warm tortilla.
And while I know apples are normally a winter dessert, eating these enchiladas always makes me think of a summer fair. They’d be perfectly at home alongside other typical fair foods like funnel cakes, popcorn, corn dogs, and deep fried oreos. Or whatever they’re deep frying these days.
When I lived in Texas, I learned that pretty much any food you could possibly imagine can be deep fried.
Anyway, but these apple enchiladas are BAKED, not fried.
This is culinary fusion at its finest. The hot-from-the-oven apple enchiladas give you all the cinnamony goodness of hot apple pie stuffed securely into a tortilla and baked to a bubbly perfection. While traditional apple enchilada recipes can call for up to an entire cup of sugar and a large amount of butter, this version has been lightened up considerably, making it a delicious indulgence for dessert or breakfast.
For the optimum dessert-enchilada experience, don’t forget the ice cream!
P.S. In case you were curious, here’s a list of some of the weirdest deep fried things to come out of Texas:
Chicken Noodle Soup On A Stick (I have no idea…)
Texas Sheet Cake
Butter (Yes, deep fried butter)
I’m going to stop with this list now. Because, yikes.
Place 2 cups of the chopped apples in a medium saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil, then cook on low heat for 8 minutes. Meanwhile, combine remaining 2 1/2 cups apple with all other ingredients in a blender, and blend until completely smooth. After the 8 minutes, add the blender contents to the saucepan and bring to a boil again. Once it begins to boil again, turn heat to low. Cook 30 minutes, stirring very occasionally (about 3-4 times). Let cool, then put in the refrigerator, uncovered. Wait at least 4 hours before proceeding with the rest of the recipe, as this filling will thicken as it cools. For the apple enchiladas: Preheat oven to 400F, and lightly grease an 8-in square pan. Portion about 1/3 cup of filling in the middle of each of 4 tortillas, roll up, then stick into the pan (seam-side down). Cover with the remaining sauce. Bake 28 minutes. Serve warm or cold, with ice cream of choice.
Soft and healthy blueberry oatmeal bars, filled with fresh summer blueberries.
These whole-grain blueberry oatmeal bars are a deliciously healthy breakfast or snack.
They’re easy to make, great for picnics or barbecues (hello, Fourth of July!), and the recipe is totally vegan – NO eggs or butter required.
Plus, the wholesome snack bars have less than 1/4th the amount of sugar called for in most traditional blueberry bar recipes.
I really have no idea why traditional recipes call for so much added sugar. Blueberries are perfectly sweet on their own, and all that extra sugar—often a shocking 1 1/2 cups or more packed into an 8×8 pan—is completely unnecessary.
Cut them into bars or squares, and serve either plain or topped with coconut butter if you’d like.
Both fresh and frozen blueberries work here; just be sure to thaw the berries first if using frozen. And yes, other berries will work as well if you want to change up the flavor. These were actually adapted from a recipe for strawberry oatmeal bars that I posted a few months ago. After I published the recipe, so many of you wrote in to ask if they could be made into blueberry bars that I decided the blueberry version needed its own post.
Honestly, I also wanted to do the blueberry version in a new post because I loved how beautiful the bars looked with the coconut butter and really, really wanted to take pictures!
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line an 8×8 pan with parchment. In a large bowl, stir together the oats, flour, salt, baking powder, sugar, and optional cinnamon. Stir in the oil, then very firmly press 2/3 of the dough into the prepared pan, reserving the remaining dough. In a separate bowl, stir blueberries, starch, and 1 tbsp sweetener. Press this mixture on top of the dough in the pan, then sprinkle the remaining dough on top. Press down very firmly again. Bake 35 minutes on the center rack. Let cool, then refrigerate at least 1 hour before cutting, as they firm up considerably. Eat plain, or top with melted coconut butter, frosting, or a basic powdered sugar glaze.
For my US readers, do you have any fun Fourth of July plans this year?
If you’re attending a party and haven’t yet decided what to bring, here are the top trending healthy Fourth Of July recipes on my site each year. If you don’t have plans yet or are a non-US reader, all of these recipes are of course just as delicious any other day of the year as well. As always, if there’s a certain recipe you don’t see on the blog but would like to, please feel free to let me know in the comment section below. I’m always happy to receive recipe suggestions.
Starting with the hands-down most popular July 4th recipe on my entire website, every single year!
This easy chocolate peanut butter baked oatmeal recipe is a healthy breakfast for the whole family.
Cook just once, and get breakfast for the entire week!
Ooey, gooey, chocolatey peanut butter baked oatmeal that can be prepared the night before and is perfect for taking on the go.
The recipe yields a large number of servings, so it’s great for when you have guests spending the night or are feeding a crowd. Leftovers can easily be frozen, to reheat any time you’re in a rush and need an instant and healthy breakfast.
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you might have noticed that many of the recipes will call for “milk of choice” as one of the ingredients.
People often ask me what this means, or what milk I personally use. My favorite, and possibly the most-used ingredient in my entire kitchen, is Blue Diamond Almond Breeze. It’s creamy, dairy-free and plant-based, and its unsweetened varieties (original, vanilla & chocolate) have less than 40 calories per cup. I go through so many cartons of almond milk that I usually buy them five or six at a time! (And yes, in case you were wondering, this is SUPER FUN to carry home from the grocery store.)
I also make sure to always have a couple shelf-stable Almond Breeze (good for up to a full year) tucked into my pantry, because you never know when you might run out of refrigerated almondmilk halfway through making a recipe. This is exactly what happened to me yesterday morning when I was making the peanut butter oatmeal, and having that shelf-stable Almond Breeze on hand saved the day!
Or, it saved my breakfast plans at least!
This chocolate peanut butter baked oatmeal can be all of the following:
2 2/3 cup overripe mashed banana (banana-free version here)
1 cup milk of choice – I like Almond Breeze Almondmilk
1/4 cup pure maple syrup OR additional milk of choice if you are used to the lower sweetness level of clean-eating recipes
2 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
optional chocolate chips, melted peanut butter for garnish
Be sure to use bananas that are partially or mostly brown before peeling, which means they’re ripe. Preheat the oven to 350 F and either line a 9×13 baking pan with parchment or grease the bottom and sides very well. In a large bowl, stir together the first 5 ingredients until evenly combined, then stir in remaining ingredients. Smooth into the pan, top with chocolate chips if desired. Bake on the center rack 30 minutes, then do not open the oven door even a little, but turn the oven off and let the pan sit in the turned-off oven for an additional 20 minutes. Garnish with additional peanut butter or maple syrup if desired, and serve hot or cold. This tastes even better if you loosely cover and refrigerate overnight, so I highly recommend serving it the day after it’s made. Leftovers can also be sliced and frozen for up to two months.
I’ve teamed up with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze to offer a very lucky reader an entire year’s supply of Almond Breeze. To enter, just leave a comment on this post sharing about a time when you ran out of milk and wished you’d had a carton of shelf-stable Almond Breeze in the pantry to save the day.
For me, having the carton of shelf-stable almond milk on hand saves the day whenever I run out of milk while making a recipe, when I want to pour a glass of almond milk to go along with dessert, or especially when I return home from a long trip and don’t want to run right out to the store.
Sweet firecracker brussels sprouts, bursting with a crash of vibrant flavor!
Some of my favorite Fourth of July memories actually took place when I was growing up in Japan.
Every year, we would meet up after sunset in the local park with other Americans living abroad and set off fireworks into the sky. I remember the year we moved back to the States, being so disappointed to find out it wasn’t legal to buy fireworks and that we’d no longer be able to continue the tradition.
Then there was the year we spent the holiday camping at the beach, where one of my cousins introduced me to those pop snap noisemakers you throw on the ground. (Does anyone remember those things?) We ran around the campground after dark, throwing snaps at the ground and making friends with kids at neighboring camp sites.
These sticky-sweet brussels sprouts burst with spicy citrus flavor immediately upon contact with your mouth… it’s like an edible version of those childhood pop snaps.
The super healthy recipe has just 5 ingredients and can be vegan, gluten free, and sugar free. If you’re serving it to kids or adults who aren’t big on spicy food, feel free to omit the hot sauce for a milder result that will still be delicious. The recipe serves 4 but can easily be doubled to suit a larger crowd.
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment, and set aside. Toss sprouts, oil, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until evenly coated, then place in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake on the center rack, 15 minutes, then stir. Bake an additional 10-15 minutes or until done to your desired texture. Transfer back to the bowl, and toss with the remaining ingredients. Taste, and add additional salt, pepper, zest, or hot sauce as desired. Serve.
The easy vegan cheesecake recipe that even non vegans love… with no cashews, and NO tofu!
This vegan cheesecake is so out-of-this-world delicious that I have yet to bring it to any party where both vegans and non vegans haven’t raved about it!
Even people with no interest whatsoever in healthy or vegan eating go crazy for this cheesecake every time I serve it. When creating the recipe, my goal had been to make something that tasted so similar to classic New York cheesecake that—if you didn’t already know it was vegan—you would absolutely NEVER be able to tell.
I’ve had way more than my fair share of bad vegan cheesecakes in my life, so I know exactly what comes to mind when people picture vegan cheesecake: chalky texture, unpleasant artificial aftertaste, disappointingly non-cheesy flavor, or lack of any flavor at all. As a huge cheesecake lover, I have exorbitantly high standards for the perfect baked cheesecake, and those high standards were front and center when I set out to make a vegan version that tasted just as good as the original.
This cheesecake is so rich and creamy, no one ever believes it isn’t full of heavy cream and sugar!
When I finally perfected my cheesecake recipe, it was time to test it out on a group of non vegans.
I brought it to a party and quietly set it down with all of the other desserts, without mentioning to anyone that it was vegan. While I’d hoped people would like it, I’d never in a million years expected the entire cheesecake to be completely GONE in under an hour!
That’s when I knew the recipe was definitely a keeper.
The actual cheesecake recipe is very similar to my Healthy Cheesecake Recipe. So many people have asked me about the crust recipe in that post, which I’m unable to share because it’s in my book… BUT I decided to make the cheesecake again—this time with a different crust recipe that I can share.
And the entire cheesecake, from the filling to the crust, is completely vegan!
Vegan Cheesecake Recipe
*If you want a vegan cashew cheesecake instead of one with cream cheese, I do have a recipe for that as well: Raw Cheesecake Recipe
Vegan Cheesecake Recipe–With NO Cashews!
No ratings yet.
24 oz vegan cream cheese, such as TJ vegan or Tofutti
2 cups plain yogurt, such as coconutmilk, almond, soy, or cashew yogurt
2 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar or maple syrup, honey, or xylitol for sugar-free
pinch uncut stevia OR 2 additional tbsp sugar
4 tsp cornstarch OR arrowroot
Optional Crust (or use your favorite crust): 1 1/2 cup raw nuts of choice, 1 cup pitted dates, 1/8 tsp salt. If dates are not soft, soak in boiling water until soft. Blend all ingredients in a food processor until fine crumbles form. Add water very slowly (1 tsp at a time) only if needed. Pour into a lined 9-inch springform, press down evenly, then set aside while you make the filling.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Fill any baking pan about halfway with water and place it on the oven’s lower rack. Bring cream cheese to room temp. Beat all cheesecake ingredients with a blender or food processor just until smooth. (Do not overbeat, which would introduce air bubbles that might burst in the oven and cause cracking.) Smooth on top of the prepared crust. Place on the middle rack, above the rack that has the water pan. Bake 30 minutes, and do not open the oven door during this time. When the time is up, still do not open the oven even a crack, but turn off the heat. Leave in the closed oven for an additional 5 minutes. Then remove the cake—it will still look underdone—and let cool at least 20 minutes before placing the still-underdone cheesecake in the fridge. It’s important to let it cool before refrigerating, because you want it to cool gradually so it doesn’t crack. Chill at least 6 hours or overnight, during which time it firms up. Store leftovers covered in the fridge 3-4 days, or you can also freeze slices if desired.