Whether you’re trying to eat low-carb, keto, gluten-free, or are following a diabetic diet, having an arsenal of sugar-free dessert recipes can come in handy.
Fortunately, these days, there are plenty of different substitute sweeteners for sugar that you can use in desserts without compromising flavor! Check out these awesome sugar-free dessert recipes!
The Benefits of Going Sugar-Free
According to the Mayo Clinic, there can be many advantages to using sugar substitutes instead of sugar. Since they don’t contribute to dental decay and cavities like regular sugar, they’re definitely better for your teeth. Sugar substitutes also have virtually no calories and don’t increase your blood sugar.
Despite these benefits, it’s important to note that just because these recipes don’t contain sugar, doesn’t mean that they’re healthy. Because artificial sweeteners contain extra-concentrated doses of sweetness, consuming too many might alter your sense of taste. So if you have too many artificial sugar substitutes, naturally sweet things like fruits might start to taste a bit more bitter. Keep in mind, there’s a big difference in the different versions of sugar substitutes, so stick with more natural variations when possible.
Of course, moderation is key! These recipes are a great way to have an occasional sweet treat while avoiding refined sugar.
Sugar-Free Dessert Recipes: Cake
1. Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Chocolate Cake
This recipe one of my favorite substitute sweeteners, Swerve, and coconut flour, a great alternative to regular flour if you eat gluten-free, grain-free, or keto. And it only has 3g of net carbs per slice! Start by greasing the sides of a 9-inch springform pan and lining the bottom with parchment; set aside. Sift together 2/3 cup coconut flour, cocoa powder, and 2 tsp baking powder over a bowl. Stir until well-mixed. Set aside.
In a large microwave-safe bowl, add 3/4 cup chopped baking chocolate and 8 tbsp salted butter. Microwave until just melted in 30-second intervals, stirring in between. Add 8 oz. Swerve, 1 cup warm coffee, and 1 tsp vanilla to the chocolate mixture whisking them in until dissolved. Add eggs, whisking until smooth. Gradually add and whisk coconut flour mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Let it rest for about 10 minutes while you preheat the oven to 300 F. Bake at 300 F for 55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean. Let the cake cool in the pan for 30 minutes. Spread a layer of sugar-free ganache over the cake, slice, and enjoy!
2. Almond Flour Fig Cake
This is a great paleo recipe. Because almond flour has a natural sweetness, it requires less sweetener. If you’re avoiding sugar substitutes, this recipe uses honey instead! Start by preheating the oven to 300 degrees F. Use coconut oil to grease 2 6-inch cake pans. Dust the cake pans with arrowroot powder. In a large mixing bowl, mix together 2 cups almond flour, 1/4 cup arrowroot powder, 3/4 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp baking soda, and 1 teaspoon salt.
In another bowl, mix together 5 egg yolks (save the whites), 1/2 cup melted coconut oil, 1/2 cup honey, 2 tbsp almond milk, 3 tbsp orange zest, and 1 tsp almond extract. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Add the egg yolk mixture to the dry ingredients, and mix until no dry flour remains. Gently fold in the egg whites and 5 oz chopped figs until the whites are incorporated into the batter. Add cake batter to the prepared pans, and bake for 50 minutes. Allow the cakes to cool before removing from the cake pans. Serve the cake plain, or frost it with sugar-free meringue frosting!
3. Sugar-Free Birthday Cake
Just because it’s a birthday doesn’t mean you have to eat a ton of refined sugar, and this can be a great alternative! Preheat oven to 350 and grease cake 3 cake pans. Add 6 large eggs and 2 egg yolks to a mixing bowl and mix on high for 2 minutes. Add 1 tbsp vanilla, 3/4 cup almond milk, 3/4 cup softened butter, 1 tbsp vanilla, and 2 tsp apple cider vinegar to egg mixture and blend until well incorporated.
Sift 3 cups almond flour, 1/2 cup coconut flour, 1 tbsp baking powder, 1 tsp Xanthan gum, salt, and 3/4 cup powdered erythritol in a large bowl. Gently add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients. Split the batter between two 9 inch cake rounds. Bake in a 350 F oven for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool for about an hour before layering with a sugar-free whipped cream frosting.
6. Peanut Butter Cookies
In terms of simplicity, what can top a cookie recipe with only three ingredients? While regular peanut butter has a lot of sugar added to it, for this recipe, use sugar-free peanut butter!
Sugar-Free Peanut Butter Cookies
- 2 cups peanut butter (no sugar added)
- 2 cups Splenda or any sugar substitute that measures 1:1 with sugar
- 2 eggs
- Preheat your oven to 325°F and prep your cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the peanut butter, sugar alternative and egg until blended.
- Drop spoonfuls of cookie batter on to the baking sheet, leaving at least 1/2" between cookie edges. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
7. Pecan Crescent Cookies
Shortbread is one of my weaknesses. Because it’s not too sweet, I love it as an after-dinner treat with a cup of coffee. With coconut flour, almond flour, and Swerve sweetener, this is a sugar-free dessert you’ll love. In a medium bowl, combine 2 cups almond flour, 1 cup finely chopped pecans, 2 tbsp coconut flour, and 1/2 tsp baking powder, and 1/4 tsp salt.
In a large bowl, combine 1/2 cup softened butter, 2/3 cup Swerve Brown Sugar, 1 large egg, and 1 tsp vanilla extract. Add almond flour mixture and beat until dough forms. Roll dough into 3/4 inch balls, then shape into crescents. Place on baking sheets lined with parchment paper and bake at 325°F for 15-18 minutes, until lightly golden brown. Not only are they delicious, but with 4g total carbs per serving, you can indulge guilt-free! You can also top with a glaze or powdered Swerve sweetener.
Other Sugar-Free Dessert Recipes
8. Sugar-Free Brownies
When you’re trying to eat sugar-free, one of the biggest temptations can be chocolate. It seems there’s no escaping it. Fortunately, with this sugar-free brownie recipe, you won’t have to!
Preheat your oven to 325 F and line a 9×9 inch pan with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 tsp baking powder, and gently add 3/4 cup cocoa powder. In a large mixing bowl, mix together 1-1/2 cups of Swerve granulated sugar and 1 cup of melted butter. Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and mix. Add the eggs one at a time, gently stirring, and then add the vanilla. Fold in your sugar-free chocolate chips. Enjoy these as a sweet after-dinner treat!
9. Keto Coconut Blondies
If you have dietary restrictions, these blondies are perfect! They’re not only low-carb, but also nut-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free. Start by mixing 4.5 oz melted coconut oil, 4.5 oz coconut butter, 3 oz Natvia, 1 oz coconut flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp vanilla extract, and 2 large room temperature eggs. Pour the mixture into a 9x9in pan lined with parchment paper and top with 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes. Bake at 355°F for 15-20 minutes. Enjoy!
10. Chocolate Mousse
Not only is mousse delectable and airy, but its light and fluffy texture make it the perfect summer dessert! Start by chilling a medium-sized mixing bowl in the fridge. Meanwhile, place 1 tbsp of cold water in a small bowl. Sprinkle with 1 tsp of unflavored gelatin and let it stand for 1 minute. Add 2 tbsp boiling water and stir until dissolved; set aside.
Grab the chilled bowl and combine 1 cup Splenda, 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/8 tsp salt, 1 cup heavy whipping cream, and 1 tsp vanilla extract. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the mixture until it stiffens. Be careful not to over-beat. Add the gelatin mixture and beat until it is combined. Spoon the mousse into dessert dishes and chill for at least 1 to 2 hours before serving. Top with whipped cream lightly sweetened with Splenda and a dash of cocoa powder if desired.
Are These Dessert Recipes Really Sugar-Free?
While these desserts are technically “sugar-free,” that doesn’t mean they’re not sweet. Most of these recipes derive their sweetness from sugar substitutes. Erythritol is a sugar substitute popular for individuals with diabetes, as it doesn’t affect glucose or insulin levels. It’s also found naturally in some foods. Stevia is a plant that is a member of the chrysanthemum family.
The stevia you can buy at the store like Truvia or “Stevia in the Raw” is a no-calorie nonnutritive sweetener made from a highly refined stevia leaf extract called rebaudioside A (Reb-A). If you have diabetes, stevia can help keep your blood sugar levels in check. Check out the benefits of other sugar substitutes like Xylitol, Splenda, Monkfruit, coconut sugar, and honey. Find one that works best for you and your dietary needs!
If you’re trying to cut back or even eliminate refined sugar, you don’t have to give up your favorite treats! Try out these sugar-free dessert recipes and let us know some of your favorites in the comments. And don’t forget to share your favorite recipes on FamilyApp!