Creating balance is often a major part of what goes into cooking breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Sweets, on the other hand, aren’t typically held to the same standards. After all, cakes, cookies, pies, and puddings aren’t exactly known to derive from high-protein dessert recipes. But…why not?
It’s easier than you may think to whip up desserts that are full of protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Case in point are the recipes highlighted here. This is especially true for anyone looking to get a little extra protein in their day, because these desserts are high in the macronutrient which is responsible for building muscle.
And since consuming enough protein is also a key to getting through the day without needing a nap, everything on this list doubles as a perfect go-to snack as well. Ready to get baking? Scroll down for all the goods.
Keep reading for seven high-protein dessert recipes.
1. Gluten-free carrot cake
Carrot cake is a quintessential springtime dessert, but it isn’t exactly known for its nutrient density. (Beta-carotene though, you’re covered.) This recipe swaps out all-purpose flour for quinoa flour, which is high in both protein and fiber. It’s also made with blended cashews, which serve as yet another protein source.
2. Chocolate workout brownies
When an urge to eat chocolate hits, nothing else will do. Guess what? Chocolate protein powder can be worked right into your brownie batter. This recipe is made with super-simple ingredients including banana, cocoa powder, vanilla, maple syrup, and nut butter (for even more protein).
Get the recipe: chocolate workout brownies
3. Two-ingredient protein ice-cream
Protein powder can be worked right into homemade ice-cream, too. Here’s how to make it using literally two ingredients: protein powder (vanilla or chocolate, whatever flavor you’re going for) and bananas. Drizzling nut butter on top will give your scoop even more flavor and an added helping of the muscle-building macronutrient.
Get the recipe: two-ingredient protein ice-cream
4. Vegan apple tart
You gotta love a dessert that’s as show stopping on your table as it is delicious. In this apple tart, the protein is found in the crust, which is made of finely blended walnuts and oats. Besides apples, the filling is made with another fruit you might not expect: an orange, which adds an unexpected hint of zest.
Get the recipe: vegan apple tart
5. Homemade peanut butter cups
When peanut butter serves as the core ingredient for your dessert, you already know you’re getting good protein. But store-bought peanut butter cups are often loaded with so much sugar, corn syrup, and chemicals that it cancels out the benefit. When you make them at home, you can better control what’s in your cups—and, as this recipe shows, they’re pretty easy to whip up.
Get the recipe: homemade peanut butter cups
6. Pecan pie bars
The pecans aren’t the only high-protein ingredient in these bars; they’re made with almond flour and eggs, which both pack a high-protein punch, too.
Get the recipe: pecan pie bars
7. Cashew pudding
Rich, creamy, and subtly sweet, this cashew pudding is so delicious you’ll be licking your spoon clean. As you probably guessed from the name, the primary ingredient is cashews. The only other ingredients are vanilla extract, coconut palm nectar, lemon juice, coconut oil, and water.
Get the recipe: cashew pudding
Get more healthy dessert recipes in Well+Good’s Cook With Us Facebook group.