Sweet, Low-Calorie Desserts To Reward Your Hard Work

IN THE KITCHEN

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You've been watching what you eat, but you're starting to feel deprived. A dessert would be such a nice reward for all your hard work. But you don't want to spoil the effort by over-indulging.

The solution: low calorie dessert dishes.

Oatmeal Drops

1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats

1/2 cup sugar (or bakable sugar substitute like Splenda)

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients and drop by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart on a greased baking sheet. Bake until tops are dry and edges are light brown -- about 8 to 10 minutes. Cool slightly before removing from baking sheet.

Makes 3 dozen cookies with less than 50 calories in each.

Cereal Crisps

2 eggs

1 cup sugar (or bakable sugar substitute like Splenda)

2 cups chocolate-flavored corn puff cereal

1 cup flour

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/8 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Beat eggs until very thick, beat in sugar until well combined. Stir in remaining ingredients and refrigerate for about 15 minutes until dough is stiff.

Drop dough by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheet. Bake until edges are light brown -- about 10 to 12 minutes. Immediately remove from baking sheet and allow to cool on wire rack. Makes 4 dozen cookies with less than 50 calories in each.

Apple Cake

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup sugar (or bakable sugar substitute like Splenda)

1/4 cup flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

2 medium apples, chopped to make about 2 cups

1 slice zwieback, crushed

12 tablespoons low-calorie whipped topping

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8x8x2-inch baking pan. Beat eggs and vanilla until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar gradually, continue beating until thick and fluffy. Stir in flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and cloves. Fold in apples and zwieback and pour into prepared pan.

Bake until center is set, about 40 minutes. Cut into 2-1/2x2-inch serving pieces, topping each with a tablespoon of whipped topping. Makes 12 servings, each with less than 130 calories.

Fluffy Lime Pie

1 (13-ounce) can evaporated skim milk

1 cup boiling water

2 envelopes low-calorie lime-flavored gelatin

6 ice cubes

3/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoons grated lemon peel

1 teaspoon lemon juice

6 square graham crackers, crushed

2 tablespoons sugar

Beat milk in chilled large bowl, using the high speed of mixer, until soft peaks form, about 5 minutes. Set aside. Pour boiling water on gelatin in bowl and stir until crystals dissolve. Add ice cubes and continue stirring until ice melts and gelatin begins to thicken.

Beat gelatin into milk. Beat in 3/4 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Beat in lemon peel and lemon juice. Keep beating until stiff peaks form. Mound filling into 2, ungreased 9-inch pie pans.

Mix cracker crumbs and 2 tablespoons of sugar and sprinkle over pies. Chill for 3 to 8 hours. Makes 12 servings with less 100 calories each.

Cool Mint Cookie Pie

1/2 cup nonfat dry milk

1/2 cup ice water

2 egg whites

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

5 drops green food color

1/3 cup small, pastel pillow mints

1 chocolate wafer, finely crushed to make about 1 tablespoon

Beat dry milk, water and egg whites in small mixer bowl on high speed for 3 minutes. Beat in lemon juice on high speed for 1 minute. Beat in sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time; continue beating until thick and fluffy, about 2 minutes (do not over-beat). Beat in extract and food color until well mixed, about 15 seconds. Fold in mints, pour into ungreased 9-inch pie pan and sprinkle with wafer crumbs. Freeze uncovered, about an hour. Makes 8 servings with less than 100 calories in each.

Eggnog Oven Omelet

10 eggs

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup unflavored yogurt

1/2 cup sugar-free creme-flavored carbonated beverage

1 tablespoon shredded orange peel

1 tablespoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoons powdered sugar

1 1/2 cups blueberries

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Coat bottom of 9x9x2-inch baking pan with spray-on vegetable oil. Beat eggs and granulated sugar in large mixer bowl on high speed until thick and foamy, about 3 minutes. Beat in yogurt, carbonated beverage, orange peel, vanilla, nutmeg and salt. Pour into pan.

Bake until knife put in center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into 3x2-inch serving pieces. Top each serving with 2 tablespoons blueberries. Makes 12 servings with less than 130 calories in each.

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