24 Easy Desserts with 5 Steps or Less
You’re just five steps away from a healthy and delicious dessert. Whether it’s cookies, brownies or a fruit crisp, these desserts are easy to make when you’re craving something sweet. Recipes like Apple Crisp with Cranberries and Peanut Butter Swirl Chocolate Brownies are tasty and the perfect end to any meal.
You might want to keep a copy of this recipe in the pantry beside the cocoa for those moments when you crave a chocolaty treat. Cook this fudgy brownie in a mug in the microwave and it's ready in less than a minute!
2-Ingredient Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream
Whir up frozen bananas into an “ice cream” without the cream! Peanut butter adds a natural swirl of flavor for a sweet and satisfying dessert with no added sugar.
Apple Crisp with Cranberries
Sticking to its food-waste mission, L.A. Kitchen created this dessert to work with almost any fruit you have on hand. We've done it here with pears and apples, but you can use berries or even tropical fruits instead. The addition of dried fruit adds a concentrated hit of flavor you won't get from fresh alone.
Walnut-Nutmeg Pumpkin Custards
Planning any parties for fall? Don't overlook this custard recipe--it's easy to assemble and will have your guests doling out the compliments! They'll love how the creamy pumpkin custard contrasts with the crunchy walnut, brown sugar and oat topping.
Peanut Butter Swirl Chocolate Brownies
This diabetic-friendly brownie recipe uses the classic flavor combination of chocolate and peanut butter to make a delicious dessert you'll want to make again and again.
Vanilla, Cinnamon & White Wine Poached Pears with Yogurt
Slightly sweet, tender pears are paired with a lovely vanilla-, cinnamon- and orange-infused golden syrup. The (literal) icing on the cake is a dollop of creamy vanilla yogurt in the bottom of the bowl. This very elegant dessert is also calorie-conscious and brimming with fiber. If you want to dress up your poached pears, they can be topped with a variety of items, like granola, crushed cookies, chopped nuts, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Flourless Chocolate Cookies
These flourless cookies get their volume from whipped egg whites (like a meringue) instead of grains, making them gluten-free and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. A chocolate chip in each bite adds to the rich chocolate flavor.
Mint Chocolate Chip Nice Cream
This green-as-a-shamrock "nice cream"--made with almond milk, coconut cream and bananas--is loosely inspired by the Shamrock McFlurry. Whip up this dairy-free dessert for St. Patrick's Day or anytime you're craving a minty treat. (To keep this recipe vegan, be sure to choose vegan chocolate chips.)
Chocolate Mini Cheesecakes
These individual cheesecakes are made with a reduced-fat vanilla wafer crust and and filled with reduced-fat cream cheese and chocolate. They make a perfect light dessert.
A double dose of lemon juice and zest brings fresh and tangy flavor to these easy brownies. They're the perfect dessert for any holiday or special occasion--or when you just need a little something to brighten your day.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Kids and adults alike will love this easy peanut butter chocolate chip cookie recipe, which--unlike most cookie recipes--doesn't call for flour. These gluten-free peanut butter chocolate chip cookies are soft and chewy and, with only five simple ingredients, they can easily be whipped up by young chefs and enjoyed as an after-school treat. They're also perfect for a holiday party or for a cookie swap.
Pear Cheddar Crisp
In this 35-minute recipe, sweet pears and savory Cheddar cheese are topped with a buttery brown sugar- and cinnamon-oat topping. Whether you serve it for breakfast, a snack, or dessert, we know it will be a hit with your family.
Healthy Dirt Pudding Cup
Upgrade classic dirt cups by replacing the gummy worm with a strawberry to make it healthier, while achieving the same earthy feel. Creamy chocolate pudding (the "mud") is the ultimate comfort food and this easy homemade version is so much better than any pudding mix or refrigerated prepared pudding! A topping of chocolate wafer crumbs (the "dirt") provides an appealing texture contrast to the silky smooth pudding for a delicious snack or dessert kids and adults alike will love.
Grasshopper Ice Cream Pie
In this healthy grasshopper mint and chocolate ice cream pie recipe, you'll save about 150 calories and half the saturated fat per serving versus a traditional ice cream pie by using nonfat Greek yogurt and heart-healthy oil instead of butter.
One-Bowl Monster Cookies
If you thought it wasn't possible to make healthier monster cookies, think again. These peanut butter, oatmeal, chocolate chip and M&M cookies have less butter and sugar than traditional recipes, but they have just as much flavor and tenderness, thanks to more peanut butter. Even better, they're made in one bowl for easy cleanup.
Chocolate, nuts, and caramel are certainly hard to resist so it's easy to see why turtle brownies are always a favorite. This recipe has black beans in the batter for added fiber. We won't tell if you won't--and we promise nobody will ever know!
Spicy Roasted Plums
Roasting plums concentrates their flavor and allows the added spices in this recipe to really penetrate the fruit. If you prefer, you can omit the sour cream topper and serve this dessert with vanilla frozen yogurt instead.
Spiced Snickerdoodle Cookies
In this healthy snickerdoodle cookie recipe, ginger, allspice and nutmeg combine with cinnamon to make this the best snickerdoodle you've ever had. The cookies get their signature look and texture from a little food science--baking soda makes them rise and cream of tartar prevents the sugar from binding together and causes the cookies to collapse and wrinkle.
Uunsweetened applesauce, fat-free milk, and oatmeal transform traditional custard into a yummy good-for-you treat.
Old-Fashioned Fruit Crumble Old-Fashioned Fruit Crumble
Use whatever fresh or frozen fruit you have on hand to make this old-fashioned crumble. Typical crumble topping has as much as a half cup of butter--ours has just a bit of canola oil and, for richness, chopped almonds, which are full of healthy monounsaturated fats.
No-Oat Apple Crisp
This simple oatless apple crisp gets its sweet topping from white whole-wheat flour, dark brown sugar and butter. Any sweet, firm apple will work. Experiment and mix and match to find your favorite fruit combo.
Dark Fudgy Brownies
We like to use chocolate with 60-72% cacao content in these rich, fudgelike brownies, as it imparts a deeper, fuller flavor than less-chocolaty choices. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
This makeover recipe was one of the favorites chosen for our 30th anniversary issue. Tahini gives this cookie a subtle sesame flavor.
Caramel Apple Crisp
This Caramel Apple Crisp is so decadent it might be worth the carb indulgence. For a holiday recipe, the low-carb, diabetic-friendly apple crisp is perfect for any family member!