Tips on making any cake a little healthier
- Applesauce is your friend. This old lunchbox favorite makes a great substitute for sugar or fat when baking a cake (just don’t try to replace both at the same time…). When subbing for sugar, applesauce can be used as a replacement in a 1:1 ratio — just be sure to reduce the amount of milk, water, or other liquid in the recipe by ¼ cup for every cup of applesauce added. To cut down on oil or butter, start by replacing half of the fat with applesauce (for example, a recipe using 1 cup oil would be reduced to ½ cup oil and ½ cup applesauce).
- Swap white flour for something a bit healthier. Skip white flour for something healthier, whether it’s whole-wheat flour, nut flour, or a mix of a few different types. White, or “all-purpose” flour is processed in a way that removes the bran (the outer layer of the wheat grain) and germ of the wheat, taking away all the healthy stuff like fiber.
- Slim down the toppings. If you’re already chowing down on cake, there’s no need to top it with more refined sugar! Instead of traditional frosting and candy toppings, try frosting with something lighter, such as fresh whipped cream (orcoconut whipped cream!) or meringue. Instead of sprinkles or candy, top with fresh fruit or antioxidant-rich dark chocolate.
- Cut down on fat to save unnecessary calories. In addition to applesauce, there are a number of easy and healthy recipe substitutions to help cut back on unnecessary added fat in all kinds of baking recipes. (Not that fat is unhealthy, just that, why add extra if you don’t need to? Save your fat allowance for that hunk of Brie cheese in the fridge!) One of our favorite substitutes is mashed banana. Just one cup of mashed banana works perfectly in place of 1 cup of butter or oil (just be prepared for a big banana flavor kick, too). For chocolate cake, ¾ cup prunes pureed with ¼ cup boiling water makes another great substitute for butter (seriously!).
See the 20 healthier cakes on Greatist.com
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