Cooking feeds your body, mind, and soul. It allows you to control the food you put into your body, connect with your family and friends over a home cooked meal, and save the money you might otherwise spend in restaurants or on processed, prepackaged foods. Believe it or not, making simple and satisfying meals from scratch doesn’t have to be hard. Here are some of my favorite easy, healthy recipes. You’ll find that eating well can also be delicious!

Do you sometimes need to make swaps in recipes, like when a recipe calls for heavy cream and you’d like to swap in a healthier choice? Here are some Healthy Baking Swaps that I like to use in my kitchen!

Instead of white flour, use black beans in cookies and brownies. Replace up to half the flour with an equal amount of pureed, rinsed and drained canned black beans. For light colored desserts, use white beans. This will increase your fiber and protein by 2 grams each per brownie!

Instead of sugar, use unsweetened applesauce in cakes. For every 1 cup of sugar in the recipe, use 1 1/3 cups of applesauce. Reduce the amount of liquid called for by a quarter to adjust for the moisture added by the sauce. This will reduce each cake slice by 64 calories and 17 grams of sugar!

Instead of eggs, use chia seeds in cakes, breads and cookies. Replace each egg called for in the recipe with a mixture of 1T of whole chia seeds and 1 cup of water. For best results, let chia-water mixture sit for 15 minutes before using. This increases fiber and adds 263 mg of omega-3s!

Instead of heavy cream, use unsweetened coconut milk in cakes, scones and biscuits. Replace all of the heavy cream called for in the recipe with equal amounts of unsweetened coconut milk. This reduces calories and 2 grams of fat per serving.

Instead of butter or oil, use nonfat greek yogurt in cakes, breads and cookies. Replace half the butter called for in the recipe with an equal amount of yogurt. If using oil, replace every 1 cup of oil with 3/4 cup of yogurt. This will reduce fat by up to 8 grams per serving!

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