by Deb
(Wisconsin)

These apple sauce brownies are absolutely delicious and use just a little oil. Plus, the apples make them very healthy.

Ingredients:
1/4 Cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 Cups Sugar (can use sugar substitute like Splenda or adjust with stevia instead)
2 Cups Flour (try whole wheat pastry flour)
2 Cups Apple sauce (naturally sweetened or unsweetened is best)
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
2 Tablespoons Cocoa
2 eggs (can use 4 egg whites to reduce fat even more)

Directions:
Pre Heat oven at 350F. Beat sugar and oil until smooth, then mix in remaining ingredients. Pour mixture into greased 9 X 13 inch pan. Bake at 350F for about 35 minutes. Let cool, then enjoy!

For an extra delight, you can sprinkle chocolate chips or powdered sugar on top, once brownies are finished baking. Another option is to add nuts to the brownie batter for a delicious and nutty flair!

I hope you enjoy these special brownies as much as my family and I do!

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by Tammy
(FL)

This orange dessert is made with fresh slices of orange, plus sugar-free orange slice candies, arranged in a circular flower. Very easy to make and delicious to eat! I included a picture so you could get the idea better.

How to Make

5 to 6 slices of fresh orange
5 or 6 pieces of sugar-free jelly orange slices
Scoop of low-fat ice cream, or orange yogurt, or orange sorbet
Whipped cream
Sugar-free malted milk ball, or a truffle, for the center

(If you use ice cream for the center, you need to have the items all ready to assemble, in order to serve and eat it right away). On an attractive plate, place the ice cream, yogurt or sorbet in the center. Put the malted milk ball or truffle on top (or other candy that you’d want to use).

Then arrange the orange slices and the sliced candy around the center, like flower petals. You can add a squirt of whipped cream on the end of each orange. Or put a little piece of candy on the ends instead.

These are nice, healthy desserts to serve for friends or family, when you want something a little different. You can also serve it with Mimosas (champagne or sparkling juice, with orange juice added).

by Virginia
(Missouri)

This is a really simple custard recipe from scratch. It is light and healthy, made with all-natural ingredients. And delicious. You can leave the brandy out if you want, and add another flavor instead.

Ingredients
2 cups of milk
3 Tablespoons of instant milk
4 Tablespoons of honey (I’m sure you could use sugar instead)
2 teaspoons of brandy (or rum)
…or substitute with 1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tablespoon coco powder
1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional)
1/3 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Add in the instant milk into the regular milk and beat it well with a beater. Then beat the eggs. Add them into the milk and mix them in with a wire whisk. Next put in the honey and brandy (or vanilla instead). Lastly, stir in the coco powder, coconut and chocolate chips.

I have custard cups that I use. Or you could use a glass baking dish. Make sure you oil either one before putting in the mixture. I use the custard cups, and I’ve always been taught that you place them in a pan, then put hot water in the pan so that it goes about half way up the outside of the custard cups. This helps with steaming. Then bake them at 325 F for around 45 to 50 minutes. Test a custard cup with a knife to see if it’s done. It will be clean when you pull it out. Almost everyone likes chocolate, and good, old-fashioned custard is a popular dessert with the elderly.

by Carol
(Ohio)

This fresh blueberry pie is really scrumptious, and best when the blueberries are in season. And especially good when you pick the berries yourself!

You may already know that blueberries are considered to be a highly nutritious fruit. They are high in many vitamins like Vitamin A and K and C. They are also high in anti oxidants. So to put all that in a fresh pie, you can’t go wrong!

Ingredients
3/4 c. of sugar or sweetener of your choice
3 Tblsp. of corn starch
1/8 tsp. of salt
1/4 c. of water
4 cups of fresh blueberries
1 Tblsp. of butter
1 Tblsp. of lemon juice
Whipping cream (optional)

Combine the sugar, corn starch and salt in a sauce pan. Add the water and 2 cups of the blueberries – set the others aside. Cook it over medium heat, stirring constantly until it is thick and clear.

Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in butter and lemon juice. Then let the mixture cool.

Bake a prepared pie shell. Either use your own recipe or purchase a prepared shell in the frozen food section of grocery store. If you like a natural pie crust, I love the brand called “Wholly Wholesome” which is an all natural organic crust I get at the health food store.

In the baked and cooled pie shell, add in the remaining 2 cups of fresh blueberries. Pour the cooked, cooled blueberry mixture over top of fresh blueberries. Chill and serve with whipped cream. Or ice cream.

I have used this as a basic recipe for other types of berry pies as well. So depending on what berries are in season, you can change out what you put into the pie. So enjoy!

by Sue
(Colorado)

I have a really good date nut bread recipe that’s been in our family for years. My elderly grandma used to make it. It’s sort of desserty too – you can add frosting to the top! (You can also add in lots of other kinds of dried fruits if you want, not just dates). We serve it at brunches a lot especially at family get togethers. This one is very healthy too. It’s made with honey but you could use other sweeteners. Since honey is a liquid, you could use another liquid like maple syrup. But if you use regular sugar I am not sure what the proportions would be. So here goes.

Beat these ingredients together very well –
4 eggs
1/2 cup of oil
1 cup of honey (or other sweetener)

Now add in these next ingredients and stir well –
1 cup of flour (using whole wheat pastry flour is good)
1 teaspoon of salt

Next stir in –
1 cup of chopped dates
1/2 cup of other chopped dried fruit (optional)
1 cup of ground walnuts or pecans

Grease a loaf pan, add in the mixture, and then bake at just 300 degrees (F), for about 2 hours. Check it to make sure a fork comes out clean. Cool it thoroughly before you serve it. You can also add a frosting of your choice if you want to dress it up! Sorry, I don’t have a picture, though!

This is a sweet bread, but it is also good with a little jam on it. I’ve also put the slices in a toaster oven in the morning for breakfast. I just set it on Bake at about 250 degrees, for about 10 minutes. It’s nice a warm, and a little toasted.

by Marsha M
( MN)

This is a great dessert type bread that is delicious for brunch or breakfast too! My family always asks me to make it because it is not only really flavorful but also really moist. And apples are easy to get all the time.

Ingredients
2 1/2 c. of sifted flour,
3/4 c. of sugar (or sweetener such as Splenda),
3 tsp. of baking powder,
1 1/2 tsp. of salt,
1/2 tsp. of cinnamon,
1/2 tsp. of nutmeg

1/2 c. of chopped walnuts.

2 eggs well beaten,
15 oz. jar of unsweetened applesauce,
1/4 c. of melted butter or margarine

Putting It Together
Sift together the first six ingredients and stir in walnuts. You can put in a little less salt if you want to. Next add in the well beaten eggs, the applesauce (I use the unsweetened kind, which is what I recommend especially for seniors and elderly) and butter, mixing them just until the dry ingredients are moistened. Pour it all into a greased 9x5x3 loaf pan. Smooth the top with a knife.

Bake it at 350 degrees for about 60 to 70 minutes until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes and turn out onto rack. Cool thoroughly before serving.

You can also substitute about 1/4 c. of toasted wheat germ instead of the walnuts. Spread the bread with peanut butter for a great breakfast treat full of protein. A pure fruit, sugarless jam is also very good. Round out the meal with your favorite beverage and a piece of fruit. This is really good (and especially healthy) for senior and elderly coffee groups and brunches too. Enjoy!

by Martha
(Santa Barbara)


This pumpkin dip can be used to dip all sorts of goodies. It’s reeeeallly yummy! Try it with apples (tart ones!), ginger bread pieces, ginger cookies, or spread it on different breads, such as sweet breads.

BLEND TILL SMOOTH:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch ground cloves
1/4 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
(or, use 1 – 1 1/2 tsp “pumpkin pie spice” instead of all of these spices)
4 oz. cream cheese (softened … can be lowfat )

MIX IN: 1 cup pumpkin (drained, if you cooked it yourself)

Keep refrigerated.

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by Connie
(North Dakota)

These little dessert pizzas are very easy to make, and you can have lots of fun with variety and “decorating” them. I have to watch my sugar, so like to shop in the health food section. I use more natural cookies sweetened with fruit sugar or concentrates, or with honey. You can find all sorts. I also use natural chocolate sauce. I think it would be very good for elderly nutrition to use the more natural products.

The basic idea is, you have a cookie, topped with a layer of ice cream, and then decorated the top with sauces, fruit, nuts, candies, etc. The secret is in the type of cookie you use, paired with the flavor of ice cream. I use more natural ice creams. If you’re familiar with Rice Dream (very good – made out of rice instead of cream and is naturally sweet) – you can use it as a substitute. You can get kinds of ice creams made with fruit sweeteners, found at health food stores or aisles. All-fruit sorbets are good too!

What you’re going to need

* Box of cookies of your choice. Or two. Or three.
* Pint of ice cream of your choice. Or two. Or three.
* Variety of nuts
* Variety of fresh or frozen fruits, sliced or chopped (banana, strawberries, raspberries, coconut shavings, nectarine slices, pitted cherries, kiwi, peaches, apricots, etc.
* Hot fudge, caramel sauce; also all-fruit jam (optional)
* Variety of candies (optional)

You need to slightly melt the ice cream, then mix it so it’s smooth, so that it is a little “spreadable.” Place your cookies on a platter or cookie sheet to assemble it all together. Spread a thick dollop of ice cream on top of the cookie. If you’re using hot fudge, drizzle it on at this point. Top with nuts and/or fruit. You can also add another layer of ice cream and top it with a fun candy. Then freeze it all until serving. You can place them in a plastic container with a lid before you put them in the freezer. When I serve them, I put ice cubes or crushed ice in a very large bowl under my platter, and put the platter directly on top of the ice. This keeps them chilled so they don’t melt as quickly before eating. Some people have those specialty serving trays that use ice.

Ideas

Chocolate peppermint type cookies – with chocolate or peppermint ice cream. Top with raspberries. Also good is hot fudge. If you do a second layer, top with crushed peppermint candy, or a small round peppermint. Coconut shavings are also good.

Pecan cookies – with butter pecan ice cream. Top with a pecan half. I’ve tried them with a banana slice too – but I put it on after it comes out of the freezer. Caramel sauce is also good to drizzle over the ice cream first. A butterscotch candy is good on top of this.

Sugar cookies – Anything goes with this. I like strawberry ice cream topped with a strawberry. Sugar cookies are also really good to use with sorbet. Another really good thing to add on to these is a natural all-fruit jam on top of the ice cream or sorbet.

Chocolate, chocolate chip, or a sandwich type cookie – of course chocolate ice cream is great, topped with chocolate chips, or a raspberry or strawberry. But I also just love mocha ice cream too. Coconut shavings are very good. For a double layer of ice cream, you can top this with just about any candy you can think of. Want to go decadent? Top it with a truffle.

Cinnamon swirl type cookie – again, mocha ice cream is my favorite with this. A peach slice is good on it. Or, if you use vanilla ice cream, you can add caramel sauce. A peanut is fun on top too, or a walnut.

Gingersnaps or ginger cookies – I’ve never used a sauce topping on this one. But butter pecan ice cream or just vanilla are really good. Top it with a pecan or walnut. A really good item to put on top is a small chunk of candied ginger.

Those are just a few ideas. You can really get imaginative for these. You can also turn them some of them into faces, especially if kids will be eating them too. Have fun!

by Emily
(South Dakota)

Our peanut butter and chocolate bites are just about my favorite combination of flavors. This recipe makes just the right amount for a real substantial treat. And you can make them as healthy as you’d like, depending on what you use.

I myself prefer to use natural products, so I will tell you what I use, but you can of course use whatever you like or have in your kitchen already. But in case you’re interested, I love to use the organic peanut butter – it’s very natural and has a fantastic fresh flavor. If you are concerned about salt intake, you can also usually find natural peanut butter made without added salt.

I also like to use natural chocolate. The chocolate I use is the Endangered Species brand, and you can get it with really low sugar content, and they use beet sugar instead of regular processed table sugar. I like the kind that is at least 72% cocoa. (Actually, my favorite is 88% cocoa and is very dark, but that may be a bit intense for most people.) As you may know, dark chocolate is full of antioxidants, so the combination of the peanut butter and dark chocolate is pretty nutritious for a dessert.

You need:
Graham cracker or Triscuit, etc.
Squares of chocolate
Peanut butter
Mini marshmallows (optional)

This is all you do —
Take a square of your favorite cracker (like low-sodium Triscuits or a natural Graham cracker)
Put on one square of chocolate
Microwave it for about 20 seconds or so
Then top it with a small blob of peanut butter
Microwave it again for about 10 seconds
(You may have to play around with the timing a little according to you own microwave).

I tried warming these different ways. I found that if I put both ingredients on and microwaved them together, the peanut butter got way too runny. So I put it on after I melted the chocolate a little bit. Of course, you don’t have to heat up the peanut butter at all, if you don’t want to. You can also top it with a mini marshmallow if you can eat sugar — it makes a kind of S’more. These peanut butter chocolate bites are very fast to make and great for a little treat. And of course kids will love to make them too. It’s a good cooking project to do with your grandchildren. Or if you are inviting children to your senior campus for an activity.

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by Marsha M.
(MN)


These pecan or walnut bars taste like chewy praline brownies. You might eat the whole pan at one sitting and throw healthy right out the window. Oh well, enjoy!

1/4 c. butter, 3/4 c. brown sugar, 1 egg, 3/4 c. flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. vanilla, 1/2 c. chopped pecans or chopped walnuts.

Heat oven to 350. Spray 8×8 baking pan with cooking spray. Melt butter and add sugar. Cool. Stir in egg. Combine flour and baking powder and stir into egg mixture. Add vanilla and nuts. Bake 20 minutes. (Don’t over bake.) Cut into squares when cool and store covered in an airtight container.