Offering a cake or a cookie to your children or at a gathering of friends and family typically goes over better than a plate of vegetables. However, with many looking for healthier food alternatives, there is a way to combine the attraction of baked goods with the nutritional value of vegetables, while reducing the fat content in those baked goods. Using vegetable purees in place of the fat your favorite recipe calls for is a simple way to add vegetables without compromising your delicious treat.
Steam your chosen vegetables until tender. Allow the vegetables to cool. Place them in the blender or food processor. Puree the cooked vegetables until smooth. Set aside. Preheat your oven to the recommended temperature.
Combine all your recipe ingredients, minus the oil or butter, as directed. When you come to the addition of the oil or butter, substitute the pureed vegetables. For a butter substitution, use 1/2 of the amount the recipe calls for. For example, if your recipe calls for 1/2 cup of butter, measure out 1/4 cup of your vegetable puree. If your recipe calls for oil, substitute 3/4 of the amount with vegetable puree. For example, if your recipe calls for 1 cup of oil, substitute 3/4 cups of vegetable puree.
Combine all your ingredients as directed in your recipe with a mixer or spoon. Place the mixture into the cake pan or on a cookie sheet. Place the pan into the oven. When you use vegetable puree in place of regular fats, cooking times tend to be shorter. Check your baked goods 10 minutes before the recommended cooking time. For example, if your recipe calls for a 30-minute cooking time, check your cake at 20 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the center. If it comes out clean, cooking is complete. If it does not come out clean, return the pan to the oven, checking every few minutes until the toothpick comes out clean.
Items you will need
- Vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, squashes or sweet potatoes)
- Food processor or blender
- Recipe ingredients, minus the oil or other fat, such as butter
- Mixing bowl
- Measuring cup
- Mixer or spoon
- Cake pan or cookie sheet
- If your batter appears drier than when you use oil or butter, slowly add additional vegetable puree until you reach the desired consistency.
- Keep in mind that dark vegetables, such as broccoli, can alter the color of your baked goods. While this works if you want a green-colored cake, it might give away your hidden vegetable secret. If you do not want color changes, consider light or white vegetables such as cauliflower.
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