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10 Healthy Alternatives to Sweet Cravings

We’ve all been there—sometimes, all you want is a big old piece of pound cake. Or banana cream pie. Or cheesecake. Or a dessert that’s equally rich, sweet and fulfilling and makes you sigh with bliss—until you realize you need to head straight to the gym (while making pit stops at the health food store and your dentist’s office).

Instead of giving into your sweet craving and regretting it later, why not choose healthier alternatives that provide a similar taste and satisfaction, minus the guilt and calories?

Check out these healthier alternatives to ten popular dessert faves below.

Photograph by Maura Hernandez

1. Craving apple pie? Choose baked cinnamon apple chips. You can even make it à la mode with some non-fat vanilla yogurt.

2. Instead of banana cream pie, choose a banana cream pie smoothie. Can you say yum? The liquid version has nearly all the same stuff as the solid version but with only 216 calories per serving.

3. Rice Krispie treats typically pack in 120 calories per bar. Instead try Angel Delights. In this version, you substitute the artificial ingredients like marshmallows with wholesome dates and coconuts and end up with a 52-calorie snack.

Photograph by Debbie Koenig

4. Instead of chocolate chip cookies, choose banana oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. You may even start craving this version in the future.

5. Instead of cherry pie, cherry almond crisp will give you the same satisfaction. Chock-full of sweet and tart cherries. You won’t miss the buttery crust.

6. Love Aunt Rita's lemon blueberry cheesecake but hate the calories? Try blueberries with lemon cream. This ones a real winner—it’s gluten free, low calorie, low cholesterol, low sodium and appropriate for diabetics.

7. Instead of lemon meringue pie, make vanilla lemon berry parfaits. Refreshing on a hot summer day.

8. Love pineapple upside-down cake? Grilled pineapple with greek yogurt sauce and pistachios is a just as sweet option and just plain yummy.

9. Instead of traditional carrot cake, choose a healthy flaxseed version. Bonus ingredients—whole wheat flour, egg whites, pineapple and non-fat milk.

10. Instead of pound cake, choose vanilla bean angel food cake. This airy alternative has almost no fat. If you serve it with berries, you’ll get even more flavor and a boost of antioxidants.

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