Welcome, Good Morning Washington viewers and Veggie Quest readers! If you like chocolate, you’re going to love today’s post. Because it’s all about chocolate desserts that are practically healthy.
Okay, healthy-ish. 😉
Because they’re made out of vegetables.
Yep, vegetables, like sweet potato chocolate frosting and cauliflower chocolate silk pie.
Wait, hear me out!
These treats may have vegetables, but they don’t taste like it! I swear! (And to think I almost lost you to funny dog videos.) 😉
In fact, if you don’t tell anyone about the whole vegetable thing, they’ll never be the wiser. Just make sure no one has food allergies—I don’t want to be responsible for death by cauliflower! What’s more, making these desserts and having people try to guess what’s in them is actually surprisingly entertaining. In fact, you can watch two of the anchors of Good Morning Washington, Autria and Jummy, taste-test these desserts and try to guess the hidden veggie on my recent segment here.
First, a quick life update: 3 months to RD!
Before I jump into delish recipes, I want to give you a life update that I’m really excited about: I’ve finished nearly 6 months of my 9-month dietetic internship! That means in just 3 more months, and Lee = RD! (Well, I’ll still have to take the exam, but I’ll be really close.)
Unfortunately, working towards becoming a registered dietitian hasn’t been all sunshine and bunnies. In fact, the past 6 months have felt like drinking water from a fire hose. From 10 weeks in the hospital learning nutrition for conditions like cirrhosis and cancer, to 3 weeks in outpatient care for heart disease and diabetes, to a stint in geriatric nutrition in a long-term care facility, I tried my best to learn ALL THE THINGS.
As a result, I learned a lot about myself. (I also gained 5 pounds—thanks a lot, stress eating!—but that’s another story.)
First, I discovered my strengths can play against me. For example, when working in the hospital, you need to be quick and decisive. See the patient. ID the problem. Provide a fix. Move on.
Me, on the other hand? I love talking with people about food, digging for root causes, and helping people find solutions. That made me popular with patients. Yet those same strengths made me s-l-o-w. I mean, I did learn to fight those tendencies and got faster with time. But as a preceptor told me on my last day, “I think your nutrition skills would be better utilized elsewhere.”
But she had a point…
Because on the flip side? My passion for prevention and (mostly) healthy eating made me a great fit for outpatient nutrition and my most recent rotation, corporate wellness. In those areas, my strengths made me better at my job (hallelujah!), so you’d better believe I’ll be working in one of those settings when I’m done. I mean, during those rotations, I got to write blog posts, help people find ways to eat right that worked for them, and even jam about the health benefits of chocolate in a cooking video. How cool is that?
Which brings us full circle, because creating that video helped inspire today’s Veggie Quest post…veggie-licious chocolate dessert recipes!
So, let’s get to the best part: chocolate…with benefits!
7 To-Die-For Chocolate Desserts…Made with Vegetables!
I love love love this frosting. You can sweeten it with agave or maple syrup (easier) or dates (healthier) and it tastes amazing. Since it’s made out of sweet potatoes, it’s also surprisingly nutritious. I’m talking 115% of the daily value of vitamin A and 2 grams of fiber in a single 2½ tablespoon serving, but only 73 little calories. Yet it’s yummy and chocolatey and pipes just like regular icing. Cool, no?
I recommend trying it on…
If you need a crazy delicious chocolate cake that’s loaded with veggies but tastes amazing, this recipe is for you! Created by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, the bestselling author of Eat to Live, this 100% plant-based cake is actually good for you, sweetened only with fruit. What’s more, it secretly harbors more than 2 cups of beets, carrots, and zucchini! While the recipe calls for whole-wheat pastry flour, I’ve made it with a gluten-free all-purpose flour with good results. Note: The recipe linked on Dr. Oz fails to separate out the icing ingredients; the icing ingredients start with the macadamia nuts, FYI. Although I prefer healthy chocolate sweet potato frosting instead!
These low-fat brownies from Happy Herbivore feature one of my favorite veggies: black beans! Not only do the beans boost these brownies’ fiber content, but studies have shown that eating beans can help your body control blood sugar the day after you eat them. Plus each brownie only has 112 little calories. Win!
While I haven’t made these yet, I’ve liked every recipe I’ve ever tried from Oh She Glows! Angela Liddon is a magician in the kitchen, whipping up healthier vegan treats that will have you swooning in no time. Use a gluten-free flour blend if needed, and omit the walnuts for the full cupcake effect. Then ice with—what else?—chocolate sweet potato frosting!
These cupcakes from Feasting on Fruit are a little shorter on veggies than the rest of the desserts in this list. But they still contain some beets, and they looked so good I had to include them! Plus they get all their sweetness from dates, which keeps them moist despite having no added oil. Bonus: They have a secret chocolate filling.
One of my earlier recipes on Veggie Quest, this super-tasty chocolate peanut butter cup pudding is higher in sugar and fat than most of my other recipes, but I had to include it because it’s so good! Rich enough to use as an icing in its own right, this thick, creamy pudding is made from nutrient-dense avocados. (Don’t worry, it doesn’t taste like chocomole—just smooth, peanut-butter-chocolate goodness.)
Right up there with my skinny cinnamon roll muffins, chocolate-cauliflower silk pie is one of my favorite recipes on Veggie Quest. I make this pie for potlucks, parties, and even as a gift for my lovely neighbors who are forever helping us out with something, because it’s one of those recipes that omnivores and vegans alike enjoy. Plus, people never guess that it’s made out of cauliflower! In fact, people never even guess that it’s vegan, much less healthy. (Unless they know me and suspect, lol!) And yet this delicious silky-smooth pie is made with an entire head of cauliflower. Who knew?
So there you have it, 7 delicious chocolate desserts made with vegetables!
Now it’s your turn:
What dessert would you most like to see made out a vegetable?