Baking for Special Diets: 4 Desserts Everyone Can Enjoy

EEliza December 16, 2023 7:01 AM

Baking can be a bit of a challenge when catering to special diets. It's not always easy to find recipes that are both delicious and meet the dietary needs of people with allergies, intolerances, or specific lifestyle choices. But don't worry—we've got you covered. Here, you will find four mouthwatering desserts that everyone can enjoy, no matter their dietary restrictions.

Gluten-free chocolate cake

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. People with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity must avoid it. This does not mean they have to miss out on the joy of indulging in a rich chocolate cake. Here's a simple, gluten-free chocolate cake recipe that is just as delicious as its gluten-filled counterpart.

  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Mix all the dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, then add the milk, oil, and vanilla extract. Combine the wet and dry ingredients, then bake at 350°F for about 25-30 minutes.

Vegan apple pie

A classic dessert, apple pie, can be easily made vegan without compromising taste or texture. This recipe replaces butter with a plant-based substitute and uses a flax egg instead of a regular egg.

  • 1 vegan pie crust
  • 6-7 cups thinly sliced apples
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon flaxseed meal + 2.5 tablespoons water)

Combine the sliced apples, sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon juice. Fill your pie crust with this mixture. Then, mix your flaxseed meal and water to create a 'flax egg', and brush this over your pie crust. Bake at 425°F for about 45-50 minutes.

Dairy-free coconut cream pie

For those who are lactose intolerant or choosing to avoid dairy, a coconut cream pie can be a perfect dessert. The trick here is to use full-fat coconut milk to achieve the creamy texture.

  • 1 dairy-free pie crust
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut for topping

For the filling, combine all ingredients and simmer until it thickens. Let it cool before pouring into the crust. Top with shredded coconut, and you've got a delicious, dairy-free dessert.

Sugar-free strawberry cheesecake

And finally, for those watching their sugar intake, here's a delicious sugar-free dessert. Enjoy a slice of this strawberry cheesecake without worrying about a sugar spike.

  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup sweetener
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 16 oz cream cheese
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries

For the crust, mix almond flour, melted butter, and 2 tablespoons of sweetener. Press into a baking dish and refrigerate. For the filling, beat the cream cheese until smooth, add in the heavy cream, remaining sweetener, and vanilla. Fold in the strawberries and pour the filling onto the crust. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

These four recipes are just the beginning—there are plenty of special diet-friendly dessert options out there.

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