5 Ridiculously Delicious Protein Desserts!

Hey, you with the store-bought brownies! Ditch those fat- and sugar-loaded sweets. Have your desserts and support your gains with these 5 healthy twists on classic treats!

I have a confession to make: I absolutely love sweet treats! Of course, I prefer to indulge without the bulge—who doesn't?—so I'm not a big fan of the fat- and sugar-loaded gut bombs that populate the aisles of most grocery stores. Instead of scouring nutrition labels for something that looks even remotely healthy, I like to bake my own nutritious goodies at home!

Whether you're sticking to strict macros or simply want to try your hand at some healthier indulgences, this collection of protein sweets is sure to delight your taste buds without sabotaging your fitness goals. Try each recipe, then let me know which you like best!

1

Peppermint Fudge Protein Brownies

Dark, dense, fudgy, minty, rich—I could go on forever about these incredibly delicious brownies! Forget everything you know about black bean brownies; these peppermint fudge beauties take decadent to a whole 'nother level. You really can't taste the veggies at all! However, if you can't tolerate beans, try substituting sweet potato or butternut squash. You may just need to extend the baking time by a few minutes.



Ingredients

Baking Stevia 1/2-2/3 cup


Unsweetened cocoa 1/3 cup


Salt 1/4 tsp.


Black beans, drained and rinsed 1 cup


Egg whites 1/2 cup


Coconut oil 2 tbsp


Pure vanilla extract 1/2 tsp


Pure mint extract 1/2 tsp


Candy canes 1 oz. (2 medium)



Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Drain and rinse black beans thoroughly, then microwave them for 30 seconds (optional, but makes them easier to blend/mash).
  2. Add black beans to a blender or a food processor, and pulse until smooth. You can also mash them with a fork, but be prepared for quite the arm workout!
  3. Microwave coconut oil for 30 seconds to soften it, then blend it, egg whites, and extracts with the black beans until smooth.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients, then combine wet and dry ingredients until smooth. Stir in half the crushed candy canes, saving half for topping.
  5. Pour batter into 6x8 or 8x8 baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake for 15-25 minutes, or until batter has set but inserted knife still comes out a bit dirty. It's important not to overbake because the brownies will set in the fridge.
  6. Sprinkle with remaining crushed candy canes, allow brownies to cool for 15-20 minutes, then place them in the fridge for a couple of hours so they can get even more fudgy and delicious!


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 brownie
Recipe yields: 8 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 115
Total Fat4.2 g
Total Carbs11 g
Protein11 g
2

White Chocolate Cranberry Protein Bars

These white chocolate cranberry protein bars are not only mouthwatering, they're also made without any flour or butter. The secret? Butternut squash! I absolutely love baking with it, especially frozen cubed butternut squash. Just microwave, and voila! You've got the perfect sweet ingredient. Fresh-cut butternut squash works, too. Whatever your preference, just be sure to make these (please)!



Ingredients

Baking Stevia 1/3 cup


Truvia brown sugar blend 1 tbsp


Baking powder 1/2 tsp


Salt 1/4 tsp


Ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp


Ground nutmeg 1/4 tsp


Ground ginger 1/8 tsp


Butternut squash, baked 3/4 cup


Egg whites 1/2 cup (4 large)


Coconut oil 2 tbsp


Pure vanilla extract 1/2 tsp


Butter extract 1/2 tsp (optional)


White chocolate chips 1/4 cup


Reduced-sugar dried cranberries 1/4 cup



Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk together dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. To cook the butternut squash, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and either bake at 350 F for 60-90 minutes, or microwave on high for 8-10 minutes, scooping out flesh once cool. If you buy the frozen squash or the fresh-cut cubes, microwaving is probably your best (and fastest) option.
  3. Blend together cooked squash, egg whites, coconut oil, and extracts until smooth. Combine wet and dry ingredients until no clumps appear. Stir in white chocolate chips and cranberries.
  4. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until batter has set but a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out slightly dirty.


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 bar
Recipe yields: 8 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 115
Total Fat5 g
Total Carbs11 g
Protein9 g
3

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Blossoms

Chocolate and peanut butter is one of those classic combos that never get old! These crave-worthy "blossoms" are packed with protein to keep you full for hours. You can even leave off the kisses for a scrumptious low-carb peanut butter cookie! Yum.



Ingredients

Baking Stevia (or sweetener of choice) 1/3 cup


Powdered peanut butter 1/4 cup


Coconut flour 2 tbsp


Salt 1/2 tsp (optional)


Baking powder 1/4 tsp


Plain nonfat Greek yogurt 1/2 cup


Natural peanut butter 1/4 cup


Egg whites 1/4 cup (2 large)


Pure vanilla extract 1/2 tsp


Special Dark Hershey's Kisses 12 (optional)



Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk together dry ingredients in a mixing bowl, then mix in wet ingredients until smooth.
  2. Lightly coat a baking sheet with cooking spray and drop cookies 1-2 inches apart, using rounded tablespoons.
  3. Bake for 6-8 minutes until batter has set, press a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie, and bake for another 2 minutes. Let cool for 15-30 minutes.


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 cookie
Recipe yields: 12 cookies
Amount per serving*
Calories 89
Total Fat4.6 g
Total Carbs6 g
Protein7 g
 *Including optional ingredients

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4

Iced Gingerbread Protein Doughnuts

You now have no excuse to blow your diet on doughnuts! These protein donuts have a rich spiced-gingerbread flavor and that classic cake-doughnut texture (great for dunking in your coffee). These also have fantastic macros. And the glaze is just perfection!



Doughnut Ingredients

Baking Stevia (or sweetener of choice) 1/2 cup


Coconut flour 3 tbsp


Baking powder 1/2 tsp


Baking soda 1/4 tsp


Salt 1/4 tsp (optional)


Ground cinnamon 1/2 tsp


Ground ginger 1/8 tsp


Ground cloves 1/4 tsp


Butternut squash, baked 3/4 cup


Egg whites 1/4 cup (2 large)


Unsweetened applesauce 1/4 cup


Blackstrap molasses 2 tbsp



Icing Ingredients

Unsweetened cashew milk (or milk of choice) 1/4 cup


Coconut oil 2 tbsp


Stevia 2-3 tsp (to taste)


Pure almond extract 1/8 tsp



Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Whisk together dry ingredients in a mixing bowl, then mix in wet ingredients.
  2. Spoon batter into a sealable baggie and cut off one corner to make a piping bag. Use piping bag to squeeze batter into doughnut wells.
  3. Bake for 8-12 minutes until firm.
  4. While doughnuts cool, mix up your icing. Spread icing over cooled doughnuts and enjoy!


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 doughnut with icing
Recipe yields: 6 doughnuts
Amount per serving
Calories 140
Total Fat5.9 g
Total Carbs9 g
Protein13 g
5

Black Forest Protein Cupcakes

I am seriously in love with these cupcakes! With the sweet creamy frosting and rich chocolate-cherry cake, you would never guess they're healthy and packed with protein! Whip up a batch of these beautiful Black Forest protein cupcakes for a special occasion, or keep them all to yourself for dessert, pre-workout, post-workout, or anytime! Sometimes you just need a cupcake.



Cupcake Ingredients

Baking Stevia (or sweetener of choice) 1/2 cup


Coconut flour 1/4 cup


Unsweetened cocoa powder 1/4 cup


Baking powder 1/2 tsp


Salt 1/4 tsp (optional)


Unsweetened applesauce 1/2 cup


Egg whites 1/4 cup (2 large)


Unsweetened cashew milk (or milk of choice) 1/4 cup


Coconut oil 1 tbsp


Pure vanilla extract 1/2 tsp


Pure almond extract 1/4 tsp


Dark sweet cherries, fresh or frozen 1/2 cup (do not thaw if frozen)



Frosting Ingredients

Whipped cream cheese 3 oz.


Nonfat plain Greek yogurt 3 oz.


Stevia 1 tbsp


Pure almond extract 1/8 tsp



Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk together dry ingredients in a mixing bowl, then mix in wet ingredients until smooth. Fold in dark sweet cherries.
  2. Line eight wells of a muffin tin with paper or foil liners, or coat wells with cooking spray. Fill wells 3/4 full with batter.
  3. Bake for 15-25 minutes, or until a toothpick or knife inserted comes out clean. Let cupcakes cool for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, combine frosting ingredients (adjust sweetness to taste) to spread over cupcakes once cool. For fancier frosting, use a piping bag, or a Ziploc bag with one corner cut off. I grated dark chocolate over my cupcakes and put a cherry on top of each one (not included in macros). Store leftovers in the fridge or freezer.


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 frosted cupcake
Recipe yields: 8 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 120
Total Fat5.2 g
Total Carbs9 g
Protein22 g