Banana Coconut Pudding – 5 Smart Points

Banana Coconut Pudding

Of course you’re all familiar with my never ending quest to have new and yummy banana recipes. This one fits the bill. It’s perfect for my brother too, who is lactose intolerant. It’s made with light coconut milk, but it’s not an overpowering flavor. Combined with the sweet banana pieces and the tender tapioca pearls, it’s a wonderful dessert. I garnished it with another sliced banana, but you could also whip a little coconut milk and garnish it with a dab of that on top of the bananas. It’s a great dessert that really isn’t labor intensive. It’s perfect if you want to serve something elegant and delicious for your dinner party, or just end a family dinner with a sweet treat. You can chill the pudding in one large bowl, or, if you’re looking for a great way to make cute individual desserts, scoop the warm pudding into small ramekins and chill the pudding in those. [Read more…]

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Blueberry Mango Yogurt Pops – 2 Smarts Points

Blueberry Mango Yogurt Popsicles

I love blueberry and mango together. It’s one of my favorite smoothie flavors, so I usually have frozen blueberries and mangos in the freezer. They’re great for smoothies, and blueberries are perfect to add to pancakes, scones and muffins. This makes it perfect to have blueberries and mangos on hand to make some really delicious frozen yogurt pops. I don’t have the actual popsicle molds, but paper cups (avoid the ones with wax coating if possible) and wooden sticks work just as well. These are a great treat for me, they provide the sweet treat that I often crave in the afternoons. However, since it’s full of fruit and low-fat yogurt, it’s a much better option that candy or ice cream. These are just a great treat and they’re perfect for all the kids – the little ones and the big ones! [Read more…]

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Flan – 5 Points +

Flan

At Thanksgiving one of the desserts was a flan. I’ve been wanting to make it even since. Flan is a custard that is baked and has a delicious caramel topping over it. It seems a little intimidating at first, but it’s actually pretty easy to do. The hard part is making sure you don’t stir the syrup, just let it slowly cook on medium until it begins to boil, then watch it carefully. I made mine in little ramekins, since it’s easier to serve that way, but you can make it in one large baking dish if you don’t have ramekins. It works great with regular milk (reduced fat) or with lactose free milk. It’s rich and creamy, a delicious dessert that is elegant and sure to please everybody who tries it.
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Berry Crisp – 5 Points +

Berry Crisp

There’s always those days when you just feel like you need a dessert. One of the tough things to find is a dessert that is packed with flavor, nutrition and doesn’t have too many points. This fruit crisp is just the thing. Since it’s packed with berries – it’s also packed with fiber and vitamins. You can use frozen or fresh fruit, but I typically use frozen since that’s what I have on hand. Just keep in mind that frozen berries will be a little more juicy. Since there’s some brown sugar in the crisp part, I don’t add extra to the berries, but you can sweeten the berries with a bit of sugar. You can garnish the crisp with a little whipped cream, yogurt or ice cream. This dessert has everything – simple and easy to put together, delicious, nutritious and something that everybody loves.

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Ginger Walnut Bundt Cake – 7 Points +

Ginger Walnut Bundt Cake

One of the gifts that we got for our wedding was a Bundt pan, along with a recipe book with Bundt pan recipes. Several years later, I’ve used it for the first time and this recipe is a keeper. Ginger is a delicious spice – that sweet and spicy flavor is just fabulous. Combined with the rich brewed coffee and crunchy walnuts, it’s a delicious combination. I tweaked the recipe a bit, since the original called for a cup of canola oil – which I thought was overkill. I substituted applesauce for it, and it worked perfectly. It was moist and delicious. Top it with a dollop of whip cream or a little frozen yogurt or ice cream and it’s a perfect dessert. If you don’t have cake flour, you can use all purpose flour. I used cake flour because its lighter and more finely ground that all purpose flour, but either one will work. This cake is a delicious fall dessert that is a perfect end to a meal with grilled chicken breast, salad and baked potatoes. In fact, it’s so delicious, it’s the perfect end to any meal.

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Apple Roses – 3 Points +

Apple Roses

It’s now apple season, so it’s a perfect time to try out new apple recipes. These apple roses are just the thing. They are simple to make, especially since they use ready-to-bake puff pastry. But they turn out so beautiful every time! The bright red apple peel creates a beautiful rose but the puff pastry holds it all together. Dipping apples in lemon juice prevents them from turning brown. This works with apples or bananas, just dip them in any citrus juice (lemon, lime, orange or grapefruit works just as well). The best apples for this are slightly tart, since the apricot preserves is a little sweet so the balance is just perfect. Give these apple roses a try – they’re simple and easy but beautiful and delicious.

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Chocolate Raspberry Torte – 6 Points +

Chocolate Raspberry Torte

Bittersweet chocolate is perfect for this raspberry torte. Since it’s not overly sweet, it’s not too rich or overpowering. It’s also a mild chocolate, so it’s not too much for those who aren’t big chocolate fans. The cake is light and delicious and is paired with sweet and succulent fresh raspberries with raspberry jam. Even though there is a little all purpose flour, it’s easy to make this gluten free by just substituting the all purpose flour for an all purpose gluten free flour. There isn’t a lot of flour in this cake, and there isn’t any baking powder, but the beaten eggs work as a perfect leavening agent. The resulting cake is light and tender. You can also make this cake in one cake pan, if you don’t have two (or if you don’t want to wash two pans). Just slice the finished cake in half and then add the raspberry jam for filing. While you can make this without the butter in the cake, adding butter (or lard or shortening) to the chocolate when it melts helps it to melt more evenly. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler if you’re not pressed for time and have patience. Otherwise, just use a glass bowl or measuring cup in the microwave, making sure to stir frequently. This delicious cake will definitely become a household favorite with the delicious chocolate and sweet, fresh raspberries on top.

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Mini Blueberry Cheesecakes – 4 Points +

Mini Blueberry Cheesecakes

Cheesecake is a classic in our house. It’s one of my husband’s favorite desserts. In fact, we had cheesecake at our wedding. It’s not something that I make all that often, however, because the two of us have to eat the whole thing. While I don’t mind eating the whole thing, it’s not good for either of us. The answer is these delicious mini cheesecakes. I use foil muffin cups and don’t even bother with a muffin pan. Then, we keep a couple out for dessert and freeze the rest. Simple defrost them in the fridge (or pop them in the microwave for a few seconds) and add your favorite topping. While these ones have blueberry topping, you can have plain cheesecake, blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, caramel apple…the list is endless. If you don’t want to make all of that topping, just make the cheesecakes and then top with a dollop of your favorite jam before you eat it. These are really easy to make and really delicious. The individual portion sizes makes it easy to get enough to satisfy without going overboard.

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Peach Crisp – 5 Points +

Peach Crisp

Fresh fruit is one of the best things about summer. Peaches were particularly good this year, and I just had some that were really wonderful – juicy and ripe. I just had to try these peach crisp. Typically I make apple or rhubarb crisp and peach cobber, so I thought I’d change it up with this peach crisp. It’s just as delicious as apple crisp or peach cobbler. It is so simple to make that dessert is ready in no time. Depending on how sweet your peaches are depends on how much sugar you’ll add to the fruit. Since peaches are a zero points plus food, it make this a delicious dessert. It’s sweet and hits the spot without breaking the points bank. Also, if you’re new to peeling peaches, there’s an easy way to do it. Just dunk the peaches in boiling water for about 30-45 seconds then submerge in ice water. The skins should just slide right off. It helps make this a perfect recipe for a quick and easy dessert.

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Whole Wheat Banana Nut Mini Loaves – 5 Points +

Whole Wheat Banana Nut Mini LoavesWith school getting ready to start back up soon, I know I need to be prepared for those hectic mornings where getting the family fed becomes an on-the-go task. When I have spare time, I love making wholesome, baked breads or muffins to have on hand for those days when cooking breakfast just isn’t going to happen. These Whole Wheat Banana Nut Mini Loaves are ideal for this exact situation. Made with all clean ingredients, healthy fats, and nothing artificial, they are nutritious as well as incredibly moist and delicious. I like to make them in mini loaf form because my kids think it’s super cute. But, alternatively, you can use mini muffin cups instead. Both options make them easily accessible and portable! For just 5 Points +, this banana bread recipe will leave you feeling happy and satisfied. Enjoy!
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Old Fashioned Oatmeal Raisin Cookies – 2 Points +

Old Fashioned Oatmeal Raisin Cookies 

Who doesn’t love a cookie for a snack? These old fashioned oatmeal raisin cookies are delicious. They’re soft and moist, just a little sweet and they hit the spot. I quite often make oatmeal cookies and split the dough into two batches. I’ll make some with chocolate chips or M & M’s and the other half with raisins. That way, everyone’s happy – the chocolate lovers and the chocolate haters. When you make these cookies with raisins, soak the raisins in hot water for 15 or 20 minutes before you add them to the cookies. The raisins will be much more plump and the cookies will be tender and tasty. But, if you’re in a hurry, just toss the raisins in and the cookies will still turn out fabulous. I typically use a combination of quick oats and old fashioned oats. The quick oats mix in a little better, but having some old fashioned oats in the cookie shows that it’s a real oatmeal cooie.

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Irish Apple Cake – 5 Points +

Irish Apple CakeDuring the month of March, I love to prepare different types of Irish meals to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. I have tweaked this recipe in order for it to be a bit healthier and guiltless. I really enjoy the walnuts as they add a nice crunch to the cake. I serve this at room temperature or I heat it up and serve it warm. Either way it is delicious.

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