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Healthier Holiday Desserts Using 3 Ingredients

December 13, 2016 by Adrienne Ngai, Registered Dietitian

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Easy healthy desserts for the holidays

During the holiday season, your calendar is likely jam-packed with activities, festivities and parties. Potlucks with decadent treats are a common way to celebrate. There are ways you can enjoy divine desserts while pairing pleasure and health. It starts with three simple ingredients, fruit, nuts and dark chocolate. 

  • Fruit: is naturally sweet, healthy and refreshing. Fruits provide antioxidants, vitamins and fibre. Antioxidants can help you reduce your risk of heart disease and other chronic diseases. Use a wide variety of colours to make your dessert stand out. 
  • Nuts: are packed with healthy fat, protein, fibre and antioxidants. They also add a satisfying crunch. Choose unsalted varieties most often.
  • Dark chocolate: delivers an indulgent, rich experience. It also contains antioxidants. Choose dark chocolate with at least 60 per cent cocoa solids to get the most antioxidants per bite.

Sweet treats are fun to enjoy on special occasions. Remember, it’s all about balance. Eat balanced meals regularly and have treats once in a while.

Dessert Ideas Made from Fruit, Nuts and Berries

  • Create a gourmet dessert tray. Use a platter to display pieces of dark chocolate, fresh fruit (like pear, apple and mandarin oranges), dried fruit (like raisins or cranberries), and nuts (like almonds, Pistachios and Brazil nuts). 
  • Make your own chocolate bark. Melt dark chocolate, stir in dried fruit and chopped, roasted nuts, then pour into a parchment paper lined baking sheet and let it cool. 
  • Serve dessert on a stick! Try chocolate and nut dipped fruit kebabs: skewer bite sized pieces of fruit (like bananas, apples, pineapple or strawberries) and place it into the freezer for about 10 minutes. Melt dark chocolate and dip one side of the kebobs into the chocolate and immediately roll onto crushed nuts. Place on a tray to dry. 

Complement your healthier dessert by starting your party off with this pretty vegetable centrepiece. It’s easy to make and will help your guests make half their plate fruits and veggies. Kick off great conversations with these fun holiday food facts.

Happy Holidays!


Photo Credit: harvard.edu

Related blogs

Fun Food Facts for the Holidays
Make Your Own Holiday Centrepiece
For the Love of Potlucks
Answers to Your Holiday Food Safety Questions
Nuts and Seeds: Nutritional Powerhouses

Recommended resources

Lighten Up Your Holiday Recipes
Harvard School of Public Health- Dessert by Design: The Three Pleasures
National Geographic- Rethinking Dessert

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