High-Protein Desserts – Healthier Desserts

You might think of protein as synonymous with meat—and therefore not part of a delicious

You might think of protein as synonymous with meat—and therefore not part of a delicious dessert! But there are many other forms of protein, and they can give your sweet treat a bit of a boost, health-wise. If you’re going to opt for dessert, after all, why not include an important nutrient in it?

Protein is an essential part of every cell in your body and plays a starring role in muscle, bone, and skin health. Most people eating a 2,000 calorie diet want to aim for a minimum of 50 grams of protein per day, says Jackie Newgent, R.D.N., C.D.N., plant-forward chef, and author of The Clean & Simple Diabetes Cookbook. If you want to get more specific, she says, you can multiply your body weight (in pounds) by 0.36 grams—the result is the number of grams of protein to target. For example, a 150-pound woman would want to aim for about 54 grams of protein per day. Though this calculation tends to be more accurate, protein needs vary based on age, gender, activity level, and overall health.

“No matter what your needs are, it’s best to spread protein intake through the day since your body needs a continual supply,” Newgent says. “It doesn’t store protein like it stores fats and carbohydrates.” So if you shoot for 15-to-20 grams of protein per meal, you can get more with snacks and other treats. For a food or dish to be considered high-protein, it will have at least 10% of your recommended daily value of protein, according to the Food and Drug Administration. That’s why all the desserts here have at least five grams of protein per serving.

“When protein is in dessert, it may help you feel more satiated. And, in many cases, that protein in your dessert comes in a package of other nutritional benefits,” Newgent says. “For instance, if you’re eating a nut-based dessert, you’re not just getting protein, you’re getting all the heart-protective nutrients of the nuts, too.” Just be sure the rest of the ingredients in the dessert are wholesome, and you’re not totally knocking out the healthy qualities with a ton of empty sugar, fat, and calories, she says.

To ensure you’re making smart picks, aim for adding in plant-based protein options like nuts and seeds, chia pudding, black beans mixed into brownies, and swap in whole wheat, garbanzo bean, or nut-based flours where possible.

Ready to get cooking? These protein-packed desserts are dietitian-approved—and delicious.

1

Avocado Mousse

The power of plants pack in five grams of protein in this chocolatey mousse. But don’t worry if you’re not an avocado fan, cocoa and honey come together to mask the savory flavors and create a decadence you’ll want again and again.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

2

Pumpkin Pie In A Cup

Spice up your favorite instant pudding with fall flavors in this 15-minute treat. Each cupful contains five grams of protein for a rich seasonal delight.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

3

Pumpkin Bread With Lemony Cream Cheese

Not only will each slice of this dessert pack in nine grams of protein, but you’ll sneak in whole grains, zucchini, kale, and pumpkin into each slice for a healthy dessert the whole family will love.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

4

Blood Orange and Coconut Chia Pudding

5

Pomegranate Orange Tart

This show stopping tart will wow your guests with exquisite flavor, without any dairy or gluten. A walnut-almond crust brings healthy fats to the dish and five grams of satiating protein.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

7

Red Citrus Salad With Berries, Pears, and Pomegranate

Greek yogurt is the star that brings five grams of protein to each serving of this fruity dessert. Swap in your favorite seasonal fruit to enjoy year-round.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

8

Peaches with Honey and Pistachios

Fire up that grill for dessert, too! Perfectly warmed peaches are topped with pistachios and Greek yogurt for a decadent bite with six grams of protein.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

9

Blueberry-and-Mixed Nut Parfait

Walnuts, almonds, pecans, and pepitas come together for a tasty treat containing 22 grams of protein per serving. It’ll be your new creamy, crunchy, and fruity favorite.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

10

Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake

Calling all bakers! This triple-fruit cheesecake is ultra-satisfying with 10 grams of protein per serving, a nutty gluten-free crust, and a rich cream cheese filling.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

11

Almond-Espresso Buche de Noel

This gluten-free (yes, really!) decadent cake boasts nine grams of protein per serving. With almond flour, eggs, and mascarpone cheese, each forkful is a fluffy, protein-packed masterpiece.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

12

Pumpkin Bread

Give a classic seasonal dessert a healthier twist with a whole wheat flour blend, low-fat yogurt, and real pumpkin puree. Each serving offers eight grams of protein and fall flavor you’ve been craving.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

13

Cherry Chocolate Granola Bars

Each granola bar contains six grams of protein with real nut butter, fruit, and nuts for the ultimate on-the-go sweet or after-dinner dessert.

Get the recipe from Prevention»

14

Blueberry Crème Fraîche Semifreddo With Pecan Crumble

15

Flourless Chocolate Cake

16

Chocolate Hazelnut Cheesecake

17

Old-School Peanut Butter Cookie Sandwiches

18

Best Lemon Meringue Tartlets

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