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Just Desserts: Diet-Friendly Baking Tips

Decadent cupcakes, brownies, and cookies do have a place in a healthy diet. The secret: sneak tweaks that bring your baked goods out of guilt-inducing territory and into a whole new "light."
Healthy brownies Better-for-You Brownies

Spend Wisely

Paying a little extra for high-quality products, like premium chocolate and pure vanilla extract, can pay off. "More-flavorful ingredients make you less likely to miss any calories you've cut," says Kim Macy, the pastry chef at Miraval Resort & Spa in Tucson, Arizona.

Blend In

Puree soft or silken tofu, then use it in a one-to-one ratio to replace half the fat in your favorite brownie recipe. Researchers from Idaho State University found that eight in 10 people enjoyed fudge made with tofu in place of butter. "It has a neutral taste, so the chocolate flavor still shines through," says study author Linda Rankin, PhD. "Plus it's high in protein and calcium."