Healthier dessert recipes: Salted caramel milkshake and cupcakes

Joy Bauer wants you to treat yourself to these healthier chocolate cupcakes, vanilla cupcakes and a salted caramel milkshake.

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/ Source: TODAY
By Joy Bauer

I know it can be challenging to get the kiddos (and some finicky adults!) to eat good-for-you foods. That being said, I have a few tricks up my sleeve to sneak nutritious ingredients into three sweet and decadent desserts. Our live panel of kid taste testers gave 'em two thumbs up!

What's better than the combo of sweet and salty in milkshake form? A sweet and salty milkshake that provides four grams of protein, four grams of fiber and contains no added sugar! This thick and creamy beverage gets its natural sweetness from — drumroll please — pitted dates, which also provide a shot of potassium, magnesium, iron and antioxidants. Sip-sip-hooray!

Blender Vanilla Cupcakes

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Who doesn't loves cupcakes?! These are a real treat because they're super easy to make (everything goes right in the blender!) and they secretly feature a nutrient-rich ingredient that we all should be eating more of: white beans. These heart-healthy legumes are packed with protein — anywhere from 10 to 17 grams per cooked cup — and contain fiber, iron and calcium, too. The best part? Nobody will ever know they're in there.

Get the recipe here.

Chocolate Cupcakes

Tyler Essary / TODAY

Don't worry, cocoa lovers — I've got you covered with these rich and chocolaty treats. The secret ingredient: black beans, which take the place of the oil and eggs in the cake-baking process. These nutritious gems help to amp up the fiber without changing the flavor or color. I like to take these treats to the next level by topping 'em with my special vanilla-avocado icing (I know it sounds crazy, but it works!). And hey, if you're feeling less adventurous, feel free to use any preferred frosting recipe and then dig into the deliciousness.

Get the recipe here.

For healthy tips, follow Joy on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, and check out her upcoming kid's book "Yummy Yoga."

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