Dessert Ideas

by Brooke Joanna Benlifer, RD

From Fitness Magazine

Chocolate Banana Split
Halve banana lengthwise. Melt bittersweet chocolate pieces in microwave; spread over banana. Top with scoop of your favorite flavor of low-fat frozen yogurt.

Strawberry Dippers
Dip whole strawberries in low-fat French vanilla, lemon chiffon, or chocolate yogurt.

Frozen Yogurt Sandwich
Place a scoop of low-fat frozen yogurt between two small oatmeal or peanut butter cookies.

Dessert Mix
In small bowl, combine equal parts granola, nuts, raisins or other dried fruit, and bittersweet chocolate chips.

Chocolate “Mousse”
In a mixing bowl, whip chilled premade low-fat or fat-free chocolate pudding on high speed until light and fluffy. Serve in a fancy glass dish or wineglass, topped with squirt of whipped cream and dark chocolate shavings.

Angel Berry Trifle
Cut a premade angel food cake into bite-size pieces; layer with fresh berries and low-fat or fat-free vanilla pudding in a large trifle bowl or individual parfait glasses.

Chocolate Mint Sundae
Top one premade brownie with scoop of low-fat mint-chocolate ice cream or frozen yogurt. Lightly drizzle with 1 teaspoon chocolate syrup, and garnish with fresh mint sprig.

Orange Bowl
Slice large orange in half; scoop out orange sections, keeping peels intact. Put a mixture of grapes, berries, and orange pieces into the orange peel halves.

Just Peachy
Slice a fresh peach or other stone fruit in half. Remove seed; top cut side of each half with low-fat peach, French vanilla, or other yogurt flavor and sprinkle with sliced almonds.

Celebration Sorbet
Put a scoop of raspberry or other berry sorbet in a wineglass or martini glass and sprinkle with fresh raspberries or other berries. Drizzle with champagne or sparkling apple cider.

Originally published on, January 2007.

From Healthy Calendar Diabetic Cooking

Looking for a special dessert to serve at a celebration? Try Rondinelli’s recipes for banana fans and chocolate lovers.

Banana Split Cake
6 1/2 graham cracker sheets (two 1 1/2-inch squares per sheet)
1 ounce sugar-free, instant vanilla pudding mix
2 cups fat-free milk
8 ounces light cream cheese
10 ounces canned, crushed pineapple packed in juice, drained
4 medium bananas, sliced
8-ounce container light whipped topping
3 tablespoons pecans, chopped
Cover the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan with graham cracker sheets.
In a medium bowl, prepare pudding with 2 cups fat-free milk, according to package directions. Add cream cheese to pudding and whip together. Spread pudding mixture over graham crackers. Spread the crushed pineapple over the pudding layer and top with bananas, then spread whipped topping. Sprinkle pecans on top.
Exchanges: 1 fat, 1 1/2 carbohydrate (makes 16 servings, 156 calories per slice)
From Healthy Calendar Diabetic Cooking. Reprinted with permission from the American Diabetes Association Inc.

Chocolate Mousse Pie
1 9-inch prepackaged pie crust
1 1.4-ounce package of sugar-free, fat-free chocolate pudding mix
1 2/3 cups fat-free milk
1 8-ounce container of fat-free whipped topping, divided
2 tablespoons mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake pie crust according to package directions. Remove from oven and cool thoroughly. In a medium bowl, whisk pudding mix and milk. Fold half (4 ounces) of whipped topping into pudding mixture and fold until fully blended. Spread pudding mixture into pie crust and top with remaining whipped topping. Sprinkle top with chocolate chips.
Exchanges: 1 fat, 2 carbohydrate (makes 8 servings, 194 calories per slice)

From Healthy Calendar Diabetic Cooking. Reprinted with permission from the American Diabetes Association Inc.

From (You on A Diet)

Cinnamon Apple Sauté

2 servings
What’s In It for You
(per serving)
Daily calories 155.56

Total fat (g) 4.17

Saturated fat (g) 0.41

Healthy fats (g) 3.48

Fiber (g) 3.41

Carbohydrates (g) 29.69

Sugar (g) 15.21

Protein (g) 2.76

Sodium (mg) 22.91

Calcium (mg) 71.18

Magnesium (mg) 15.9

Selenium (mcg) 0.37

Potassium (mg) 220.5

2 small apples, such as Jonagold or Ambrosia
1 tablespoon apple butter
1 tablespoon unsweetened apple juice or cider, preferably organic
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 walnut halves, toasted, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup nonfat or low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt

Cut apples into quarters; discard stems, core, and seeds. Cut apple quarters into thin slices. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add apples; cook until apples begin to brown, about 4 minutes, tossing occasionally. Stir in apple butter, apple juice, and cinnamon; continue to cook 5 to 8 minutes or until apples are tender and sauce thickens, tossing frequently. Transfer to serving plates; top with nuts. Serve with frozen yogurt.

Cinnamon Baked Apples with Tangerines and Cranberries

4 servings

What’s In It for You
(per serving)
Daily calories 156.96

Total fat (g) 0.4

Saturated fat (g) 0.07

Healthy fats (g) 0.14

Fiber (g) 4.08

Carbohydrates (g) 40.25

Sugar (g) 34.16

Protein (g) 0.62

Sodium (mg) 4.44

Calcium (mg) 27.35

Magnesium (mg) 13.41

Selenium (mcg) 0.12

Potassium (mg) 271.58

2 large baking apples, such as MacIntosh or Rome Beauty
1-1/4 cups unsweetened apple juice, preferably unfiltered organic
1/2 cup (2 ounces) dried cranberries
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 seedless clementines or tangerines, peeled, separated into segments

Heat oven to 400F. Cut apples lengthwise in half; cut out and discard core, seeds, and stems. Place 1/4 cup of the apple juice in an 8-inch baking dish or casserole. Place apples cut side down over juice. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until apples are tender. Meanwhile, simmer remaining 1 cup apple juice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat 5 minutes. Add cranberries, cinnamon and cloves; reduce heat and simmer uncovered 10 minutes, or until cranberries are plumped, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in clementine sections. Arrange apple halves cut sides up on serving dishes. Pour any remaining liquid from dish into cranberry mixture; spoon over apples.


Weight Watchers Snack Cakes in Caramel
Yes we know these 90-calorie, 3g-of-fat cakes are super-itty-bitty, but they’re too good to pass up (they have caramel frosting and everything!). Try ‘em frozen, straight out of the box or with Cool Whip Free. They’re a 1-Point party in your face!!!

Dreyer’s/Edy’s Slow Churned Light Ice Cream Bars
Taking Slow Churned to the next level, these chocolate-covered ice cream bars come in Creamy Vanilla, Cookies & Cream, Vanilla w/ Nestlé Crunch Coating, and no-sugar-added Vanilla Almond. Expect to spend 150 – 160 calories and 8g of fat on the first three (3 Points, thanks to a gram of fiber), and 150 cals and 9 fat grams on the Vanilla Almond (a whopping 4 grams of fiber makes it just 3 Points, as well!).

Mott’s Healthy Harvest Apple Sauce Cups
These no-sugar-added, fun little 50-calorie cups of appletasticness are now available in Blueberry Delight! Other flavors include Granny Smith, Summer Strawberry, Country Berry and Peach Medley. They’re cute AND convenient.

Dreyer’s/Edy’s Loaded Frozen Dairy Dessert
Fully stacked and packed with tons of mix-ins (like cookie dough, Oreo-ish cookies, brownies, etc.), this frozen dessert line has officially freaked us out. Why? Because there’s no mention ANYWHERE of it being “light” or “low” or “reduced” — yet, for the most part, it’s got calorie counts and fat stats similar to their Slow Churned Light Ice Creams. Interesting note — this stuff is called “frozen dairy dessert” (not ice cream), and the first ingredient listed is skim milk. Click here for more info, full nutritionals and a list of flavors. (Pssst…we’ve tried several flavors and they’re head-explodingly delicious.)

Klondike Slim-a-Bear 100 Calorie Sandwiches
These slightly smaller versions of those all-too-familiar round chocolate-cookie ice cream sandwiches are PERFECT. They have just 100 calories and 1.5g of fat each, and they manage to pack in 2 – 3g of fiber apiece, too. Find these 2-Point treats in both Vanilla and Chocolate versions. That skinny polar bear sure knows his stuff!

The Skinny Cow Mini Fudge Pops
If you’re in the market for a lower cal fudge pop, check out these skinny minis! Each one has just 50 calories and a single gram of fat. Not bad! (And what is it with these hefty mammals and their weight loss?!)

Breyers Double Churned 100 Calorie Cups
In two flavors (Vanilla Fudge Swirl and Cookies & Cream), these perfectly portioned cups are satisfying and delicious. These are FANTASTIC for anyone who can’t be trusted around quarts (or even pints) of ice cream.

  • Brooke Joanna Benlifer, RD is a Cornell University graduate and Registered Dietitian with expertise in a variety of medical issues, from diabetes and cardiac care, to renal health and GI issues. She has a strong interest and background in weight management, emotional eating, sports nutrition and corporate wellness. She maintains a private practice, working with clients of all ages, from pediatric to geriatric, and has done freelance writing for Call 619-206-8022 to schedule an appointment.
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    admin on November 9th 2007 in Uncategorized