Healthy Diet

Simple Baking Hacks to Create Healthier Baked Goods at Home

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If you have ever read what I have written here, perhaps you know that I live and adhere to the philosophy that any baking at some point can be “useful” for you, and no food should be forbidden. However, I am constantly asked how I think cooking at home can be “healthier” or improved without compromising taste. This is not an easy task – I made a lot of quick bread and tasteless cookies after I overdid it with “healthy” ingredients. By trial and error, I have developed several fail-safe strategies that will help you find a balance between taste and the ingredients that are right for you.

PUMPKIN PUREE

Pumpkin puree can be used as a fat substitute, such as butter or butter, in a ratio of 1:1. This means that if the recipe requires 1 cup of butter, you can replace it with 1 cup of pumpkin. Pumpkin puree is a great ingredient for cooking, because it has a hint of sweetness and a lot of moisture. It is great for making bread, cupcakes and even cookies quickly. I usually replace half of butter or vegetable oil, for example, 1/2 cup pumpkin and 1/2 cup butter, in a recipe that requires 1 cup butter to make. Thus, you can still preserve the taste and texture of butter (which cannot be reproduced) with a slightly lower saturated fat content. Pumpkin also contains vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A and potassium, as well as heart-healthy fiber.

GOOD QUALITY BUTTER

Although there are excellent substitutes such as pumpkin porridge, there is no need to avoid butter together. Fat is an integral part of the diet. It helps the body absorb important fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K, promotes hormone production, cell growth, protects your organs, promotes satiety, etc. Oil is a very good source of fat, and the properties it gives to baking help make food satisfying and tasty. Without butter or only with low-fat butter substitutes, the final product may be less satisfying and force you to eat a lot more pastries. If you use butter for cooking, I recommend using good quality butter. Grass-fed butter tops my list, as it has been found to contain less saturated fat and more monounsaturated fat than grain-fed cow butter.

ADD VEGETABLES AND FRUITS

One of the easiest ways to increase the nutritional value of any bakery product is to add fruits or vegetables. In addition, they can also add great flavor and texture. I like to add quick bread, cupcakes and even cookies with vitamin A and grated carrots or zucchini with a high fiber content. Blueberries, apples and bananas containing antioxidants are also very versatile and go well with various recipes. Fruits and some vegetables, such as beets or carrots, can also add sweetness to baked treats and help slightly reduce the amount of sugar needed in the recipe.

SUGAR SUGAR IS

Speaking of sugar, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention its use in cooking. Undoubtedly, sugar helps to make pastries sweet and delicious. The consumption of added sugar (that is, the type of sugar found in baked goods) is also quite high in this country and can contribute to various health problems if consumed in large quantities over a long period of time. However, I’m not going to tell you to throw away all your sugar and never use it during cooking again. I’m also not going to advise you to replace it with sugar substitutes that contain little sugar but are not satisfactory or well processed. Instead, use sugar if needed in the recipe, or substitute some (but not all!) Fruits or vegetables and from time to time enjoy baking as part of a varied plant-based diet. Other types of sugar, such as honey and maple syrup, can be used instead of cane sugar if desired, but, after all, sugar is sugar, and they all have the same effect on the body when we digest them.


final

When it comes to “healthy” baking, I prefer to focus on what can be added to the product rather than what needs to be packaged. A balance can be achieved between more nutritious ingredients and old reserve foods such as sugar, flour and butter. After all, they are old acquaintances for a reason! In addition, baking loses its usefulness if it is bad or unsatisfactory. I’m in favor of experimenting with different ingredients in the kitchen to increase their nutritional value, but don’t lose sight of why you’re doing what you’re doing. Have a good time!

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