Nutrition

Healthy baking: 6 simple low-sugar recipes

Healthy baking: 6 simple low-sugar recipes

Baking can be extremely therapeutic to do alone or a fun activity to do with family members or children. With the current environment where the majority of us are finding ourselves with more time at home, it can be a great opportunity to practise our baking skills.

Traditional baking recipes for sweet treats tend to contain a large amount of added sugar. This is completely fine if we’re searching for an occasional treat to make or maybe even a celebration bake, like a birthday cake.

However, regularly eating baked goods that are high in added sugar can have negative effects on our health. On top of this, evidence suggests that a lower carbohydrate diet is the most effective to improve our health and lose weight. As sugar is a form of carbohydrate, being mindful of the amount of sugar we consume can help us follow a lower-carb diet.

Reducing the amount of sugar in our baked goods doesn’t mean that they have to taste boring! The dietitians here at Second Nature have combined all of their favourite, lower-sugar, sweet, healthy baking recipes to bring you 6 delicious, simple options.

All of our recipes are lower-sugar, lower-carbohydrate, and don’t contain artificial sweeteners either, as these might increase your appetite and taste preferences for sweet food. We’ve included a mixture of bake and no-bake sweet recipes. Click on the links below for full recipes!

1) Banana bread

A family favourite – this delicious banana bread is a lower-carb, lower-sugar option that everyone will love. You can make this as one loaf or as separate muffins, by spooning the mixture into cases in a muffin tin.

The almond flour gives a delicious, dense texture and combined with the pecans, oats, and bananas, make this bake high in fibre. Fibre keeps us feeling fuller for longer, reducing our chances of snacking.

Second Nature tip: try a slice of this banana bread with a small spoon of natural, unsweetened yoghurt and a few blueberries or raspberries on top.

2) Anzac cookies

Popular in Australia and New Zealand, these oaty cookies are lower in sugar than traditional ultra-processed cookies and are great for sharing. Consider making a big batch on the weekend and having a cookie for a snack or when you’re craving something sweet.

Anzac cookies

Second Nature tip: add some dark chocolate chips to the mixture before baking if you’re craving chocolate chip cookies.

Want to make healthy living Second Nature?

Pay what you like for the first 2 weeks of Second Nature and start benefitting from 1:1 expert advice today

3) Mug cake

This chocolate mug cake recipe is a great quick option if you’re wanting an indulgent dessert or snack for one, but want to stick to your healthy eating plan. In just 15 minutes, you can make a healthy, rich dessert, without eating large amounts of sugar.

The mug cake is naturally gluten-free (make sure to use gluten-free oats if you opt for oats instead of ground almonds), and can easily be made dairy-free and vegan by using milk alternatives and the chia ‘egg’. A chia egg is simply made from water and chia seeds. Once combined, they become thick and sticky, like the texture of an egg.

Second Nature tip: slice up a few strawberries and enjoy them on top of your mug cake to add some extra textures and flavours. You could even add a teaspoon of peanut butter!

4) Apple tart

Another family favourite, this crumbly tart is a lower-carb option compared with traditional tarts. With the classic, warming flavours of apple and cinnamon combined with the impressive look of this tart, you can’t go wrong.

apple tart

Second Nature tip: serve a slice of this with a tablespoon of cream or natural, unsweetened yoghurt rather than ice-cream, to keep the sugar content low.

5) Naked fruit crumble

If you love fruit crumble but want to stick to your healthy eating goals, this naked fruit crumble is a great option! It’s higher in protein and fat than traditional crumble, which keeps us feeling fuller for longer.

If you make a large batch of this crumble, you can use any leftover as granola on top of yoghurt or fruit for a new breakfast option.

Naked fruit crumble

Second Nature tip: you can swap the peaches in this recipe for apples, nectarines, berries (to make a compote), or any fruit you have available!

6) Bounty Easter eggs

These delicious chocolate and coconut bites are a great alternative to chocolate Easter eggs. If you like Bounty bars, these could satisfy your craving with a fraction of the amount of sugar!

This recipe is great if you’re making something for the family to share – just make a big batch and keep them in the fridge all week to grab when you want a small, sweet bite.

Bounty easter eggs

You might also like

8 simple steps to reduce your sugar intake

7 ways to lose weight without counting calories

Does High Cholesterol Cause Heart Disease?

Woman holding phone with Second Nature

Become a Second Nature member

Join today and pay what you like for the first 2 weeks.

Write a response

Commenter
Gloria
8 April, 2022

I noticed alot of your recipes has nuts or the use of almonds flour. I sm allergic to nuts. What can I used as a substitute or replacement?


Commenter
Anna
17 April, 2022

Hi Gloria,

We’d recommend trying oat flour (ground oats) in place of almond flour. However, keep in mind this will raise the amount of carbohydrates in the recipe.

For more information on our programme, you can take our health quiz here, or email support@secondnature.io with any questions 🙂


Commenter
Keith Webster
7 March, 2022

I was a alcoholic
I dont eat cake
Try to keep away from fatty food or pastry
Is there a better option or do I not eat puddings etc which I am happy with


Commenter
Laila Rahman
30 December, 2021

Really yeammy.


Commenter
Laila
30 December, 2021

Its good recipe. Thanks


Commenter
Anna
30 January, 2022

Hi Laila,

So pleased you’ve enjoyed these recipes 😊

Our programme includes an extensive catalog of delicious and healthy recipes, as well as a meal planner tool to help you plan your meals each week.

If you’d like to learn more about our programme, you can take our health quiz here, or email support@secondnature.io with any questions 😊


Commenter
Cris
5 December, 2021

I can’t eat bananas – can stewed apple or something similar be used instead?


Commenter
Sheila
13 September, 2021

The banana bread doesn’t keep well and as I’m on my own this is annoying as it’s very wasteful. I wondered if it would freeze.


Commenter
Pen
30 September, 2021

Hi Sheila, I usually cut it into slices before freezing, then defrost as I go!


Commenter
Anna
20 September, 2021

Hi Sheila,

You can freeze the banana bread to save for later 🙂


Commenter
Pauline mills
22 August, 2021

Mouth watering can’t wait to try them .


Commenter
Margaret Crawford
21 July, 2021

I know this is unreasonable of me but it annoys me immensely to have Anzac biscuits called cookies.


Commenter
Cris
5 December, 2021

Nope…they should absolutely be called Anzac biscuits and according to the Australian Department of Veteran Affairs never, ever referred to as cookies.


Commenter
Brenda Gascoigne
20 July, 2021

These recipes look divine and will be trying not to eat them, but will have to share with the family, then it’s less of the temptation to eat them all


Commenter
Joan Keating
11 March, 2021

Very attractive & impressive choice of recipes….must begin a shopping list!


Commenter
Mandy Ward
10 March, 2021

I like coconut, but it doesn’t like me – too high in salicylate. What could I swap for coconut oil?


Commenter
Amanda Hammond
26 October, 2020

Hi wanted to make healthy cookies ,but the Anzac ones have banana ,coconut and peanuts in ,wich i can not eat ,any other cookies without these in .Thank you .


Commenter
Alexis Chase
3 February, 2021

I’m allergic to nuts. I can’t eat bananas and coconut which I dislike anyway. The only meat I eat is beef but only minced as I dislike eating flesh. I tolerate fish but I tend towards vegetarian food.


Commenter
Judy Bird
28 September, 2020

It would be helpful if you stated the carbs per portion of the various recipes.


Commenter
Amy Groome
2 October, 2020

Hi Judy, thanks for your comment! The reason we don’t provide this feedback is that it can be misleading for those with diabetes due to the fact that we don’t include all carbohydrates in our method for counting carbs, only starchy carbs that are above 15g/100g. Sorry for any inconvenience caused!


Commenter
Amy Groome
2 October, 2020

Hi Judy, thanks for your comment! We’ve had feedback that for those with diabetes it’s misleading because we don’t include all carbohydrates in our method for counting carbs, only starchy carbs that are above 15g/100g. Apologies for any inconvenience caused!


Commenter
Margaret Kyte
26 August, 2020

Could you please let me know what the carbs are for the Anzac cookies


Commenter
Amy Groome
2 October, 2020

Hi Margaret, thanks for your question! There is one carb serving per 2 cookies. Enjoy!


Commenter
Norma Acker
21 April, 2020

Please where are the recipes . I would like to try them.


Commenter
Tamara Willner
24 April, 2020

Hi Norma, if you click on the underlined words or the photos of the recipe you want the link will take you to the full recipe. Happy baking!


Commenter
Norma Acker
21 April, 2020

Thanks for the tips .I love baking so I am going to apply these tips .


Commenter
Karen Hutchinson
12 April, 2020

Could i have the recipes please😋


Commenter
Tamara Willner
14 April, 2020

Hi Karen, thanks for your comment! All of our recipes in this guide are available if you click on the title of the recipe or the photograph underneath. Happy baking!