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Wombat140

Favourite sugar-free recipes

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Another recipe thread. What are your favourite sugar-free recipes you've discovered over the years, the ones you use all the time? Or any other handy ways of doing things you've discovered, that aren't actually recipes? We can pass them all on here. The person who posts the best recipe... er, is a clever cook. :-)

 

Also, you could post your requests for things you haven't found a good recipe for yet, and see if anyone can step forward with one.

 

That's all the special diets I can think of; if anyone else thinks of one that ought to have its own thread, please start one.

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I'll start:

Baked banana pudding

This isn't the same pudding that's sometimes called "baked bananas" - it's somewhere between that and bread and butter pudding.

A hot pudding made in ten minutes, and it's good for you. These instructions look more complicated written down than they are to do. It has to be said that the result looks like something scraped out of the bin. This is normal, and it doesn't taste like it at all! (It looks more appetising once it's got yoghurt and jam on top.)


Ingredients
Quantities depend on the size of your ovenproof dish, these are for ours which is about 7 inches and makes enough for 3 people.

2 or 3 slices of wholemeal bread
1 or 2 bananas - should be thoroughly ripe, in fact this is a good use for slightly overripe bananas, though preferably not actually going mushy.
1 teaspoonful of mixed spice
1 dessertspoonful of raisins
Milk
Plain yoghurt and sugar-free jam for topping.

Cut bread into fingers - cut each slice in half and each half in thirds. Line an oven-proof bowl with the pieces.
Sprinkle with spice and raisins.
Cut bananas into halves or thirds (depending on size), then halve each piece lengthways. Lay them flat on top of the bread.
Pour on some milk - half or quarter of a pint, maybe, not sure.
Bake in a medium oven for maybe 20 or 30 minutes, check from time to time to see that any sticking-up edges of the bread aren't burning too much, until it looks done.
Serve with milk (the first lot of milk will all have evaporated or been absorbed by now) and yoghurt and a spoonful of jam on top.

Note on sugar-free jam
It's worth seeking out the kind sweetened only with fruit juice, e.g. Whole Earth or Meridian, which is labelled "Pure fruit spread" because it can't technically be sold as "jam" (at least not in this country). You probably still shouldn't go too overboard with it, as it has a fair bit of concentrated fruit sugar, but I assume it's not as bad as ordinary jam and it's worth getting just for the taste. Since they can't bulk it out with sugar, it's impossible to skimp on the fruit, so that it tastes more fruity than any ordinary jam I've ever had. I don't know why more people don't know about this!

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Millet flake biscuits

I often find that to avoid sugar, it's useful to have a stock of non-sweet things that fit the kind of occasions when you'd previously have had something sweet. If I've been baking these biscuits and feel in need of something specially nice to nibble on to cheer me up (frequent occurrence with OCD in the house...), I don't have to either cave in and eat sugar or go without. They're lovely and crumbly despite having less fat than usual, I think it's the millet flakes that do it.

 

Ingredients

6 oz (175 g) wholewheat flour

4 oz (50 g) millet flakes. (The original recipe that this was heavily modified from says medium oatmeal. Never tried that with this version as my mum's allergic to oats, would probably work fine for all I know.)

2 oz (50 g) butter

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 tbsp or so of milk.

 

Pre-heat oven to Mark 4. Grease a baking tray.

Mix everything but the milk together in a bowl. Rub in the butter, then add enough milk to make a rather wetter dough than usual for, say, pastry, as it tends to crumble.

Roll out thin, about 1/8 of an inch, and cut into 7 cm (3") biscuits.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until firm and lightly browned.

Leave to cool, then store in an airtight tin. They keep for about a week, but if they do start to lose their crispiness then heating them up in the oven will revive them.

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My mum's rule of thumb in baking is that if the filling is sweet, always use unsweetened pastry. This not only cuts down the sugar, it tastes better, as the contrast between the sweet and plain parts shows up the flavours. We puzzle every year over the fact that no shop-bought mince pies are EVER made with plain pastry. We always make our own - not quite as pastoral as it sounds... packet pastry mix and a jar of mincemeat... but they're so much better. Mincemeat plus sweetened pastry doesn't have room to taste of anything much but sugar.

The same is true the other way around, that's why a sweet crumble topping works best of all with slightly sour fruit like tinned apricots in juice.

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Chocolate muesli - I've just invented this. Add about one heaped teaspoonful of cocoa powder to a bowlful of unsweetened muesli and stir it in as thoroughly as you can before adding the milk. (As usual, make sure to get "cocoa powder" rather than "drinking chocolate" which has sugar.) I wasn't sure if it'd really work without any sweetening at all, but it really does.

It doesn't even need to have raisins if even those are too much sugar for your kids - I know this because we've got a particularly miserly brand of muesli at the moment, and the day I tried this I got literally only two raisins in my bowl :-D

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What's ready-made apple sauce like, I mean, how thick is it? They don't sell it in this country. I've got a recipe for sugar-free chocolate brownies that calls for two-thirds of a cup of ready-made apple sauce, and I'm wondering how many mashed-up apples I need to allow instead. (Or possibly bananas, that being easier to mash.)

Edited by Wombat140

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I'd mash bananas.

 

I give my kids low sugar diets - not sugar free yet but getting there!

 

I use either coconut flower nectar or xylitol instead of sugar and never put in the amounts stated in recipes - I usually half the amount.

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We always halve amounts of sugar too. Once you're used to eating less sugary things, the amount of sugar in ordinary recipes just tastes far TOO sweet!

I wonder if those jars of baby food apple puree would work instead of apple sauce in recipes?

 

I'll let you know if the brownies work with mashed banana!

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The brownies were a great success, so here's the recipe I used (modified a bit from the original). They're quite easy.
It's not completely sugar free the way I did it, but pretty low in sugar; the original recipe uses stevia and sugar-free chocolate chips, in which case it is sugar free.
1 American cup is 240 ml, half an American pint or slightly under half a British pint, by the way.

Makes 12. Prep time 10 minutes, cooking time 20 minutes.

1 smallish banana
4 tbsp milk
4 tbsp / 100 g butter or coconut oil, melted
1 egg (can omit this or use a substitute if allergic, according to original recipe)
----
125 g / 1 American cup plain flour ("pastry flour") (can use gluten free; if so add 1/2 tsp xanthan gum)
65 g / 1/2 American cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp brown sugar: that's what I used and it was plenty. The original recipe says 1 1/2 tsp pure stevia extract or 4-6 tsp Sweetleaf powdered stevia, but according to Sweetleaf's website that's supposed to be equivalent to 10 tbsp sugar, so I think the original recipe has overdone it!
----
1/2 cupful chocolate chips (optional)
1/2 cupful chopped walnuts (optional)

1. Preheat oven to Gas Mark 4/350 F/180 C. I put the butter in there to melt.
2. Push the banana through a sieve. If you just mash it the mixture comes out lumpy.
3. Add the milk, butter and egg and whisk together.
4. Add the flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt and sugar and mix well.
5. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts if using - keep some chocolate chips back to put on top.
6. Line an 8" x 8" baking dish with parchment paper. Pour batter into dish and top with a few more chocolate chips.
7. Bake for 20 minutes.
8. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before slicing.

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