Desserts With A Twist

Dessert isn't all cherry pies and chocolate cake. Sometimes healthy, sometimes vegan, we put together a list of dessert recipes with a twist. Sponsored by Smucker's.

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A day without a dessert is a day without cheer. At Yummly, we like every day to be cheerful, but we recognize that dessert isn't always a layer cake after dinner — there are many different ways to weave delight into the day. Taking that into consideration, Smucker's helped us put together some recipes for desserts with a twist to share and inspire you.

Easy Vegan-Crust Galette

Easy Vegan-Crust Apple Cranberry Galette 3

There are so many twists to this classic dessert recipe, it might be hard to keep all its winning wonder straight. We'll start with the obvious: it's a galette. A galette is a French free-form pie which means you don't need a pie plate to make it. On top of that, you don't have to worry about crimping the crust to make it pretty — aesthetically it has a pastoral appeal without having to do any extra work. The other great part about not being restricted by a pie plate is that you can make it mini by dividing the dough into smaller portions for individual galettes. In a pie shell: You don't have to be a pastry chef to make one of these.

Another obvious twist is that it's vegan. If you've ever been intimidated by making vegan pastries, let this recipe be your grand introduction to vegan baking. Rather than butter or lard, the flakiness of the pie crust is credited to the Crisco Butter Flavor All-Vegetable Shortening. With just a few pulses in the food processor, the flour and the shortening create tiny layers that develop in the oven as flakes of joy for the final product. And the butter flavor makes it a vegan pastry undetectable to the average omnivore, so no one misses out on apple pie.

But even the filling has a twist — to hold it all together, it uses Smucker’s Apple Butter which acts as a rich solder between the cranberries and sliced apples. It also tames the tartness of the cranberries. Top this with a scoop of ice cream and you'll have a delicious substitute for pecan pie or pumpkin pie on the holiday dessert table. Of course then it won't be vegan, but it will be delicious.

6-Ingredient Breakfast Cookies

6-Ingredient Breakfast Cookies 2

You probably wouldn't eat cherry pie with vanilla ice cream in the morning, so dessert for breakfast is a twist in itself (which is why this is one of our favorites), but even if these cookies weren't made specifically for breakfast, you could easily add them to the majority of dessert menus, most notably vegan and gluten-free menus because of the uncomplicated ingredients. They're made sans egg (hence the vegan designation) and this recipe uses almond meal (gluten-free) instead of all-purpose or wheat flour, and oats (also gluten-free) to help keep the ingredients contained in cookie form. But wait! There's more! No extra oil, shortening, or margarine is used; Jif Natural Creamy Peanut Butter is the only fat in this recipe to leaven it, give it flavor, and add protein. To appeal to those with a sweet tooth, the recipe calls for maple syrup instead of sugar. You're probably thinking, 'isn't maple syrup just sugar?' While that is true, maple syrup has about 30 percent fewer carbs than granulated sugar. It also contains about six percent of the amount of magnesium you should be getting in a day. Magnesium is important to keep your body operating properly, including blood pressure regulation and nerve and muscle function. Sweet treat with a twist indeed.

Jif® Natural Creamy Peanut Butter, quick cooking oats, Smucker’s® Natural Concord Grape Fruit Spread and 3 more

Lemon Meltaway Cookies

Vegan Lemon Meltaways 3

The meltaway cookie is an old favorite that comes in many different flavors — if it's a cookie you think you've never heard of, you may be familiar with its Christmas version, pecan meltaways or pecan balls. They are basically shortbread cookies, which is the first twist. It means there's no egg involved, just flour, sugar, (usually) butter, and flavorings. This recipe is actually vegan — thanks to Crisco Butter Flavor All-Vegetable Shortening — which means it keeps its lovely texture and doesn't lose any flavor. To twist a little more, instead of just flour, this recipe also includes cornstarch. Typically, cornstarch is used as a thickener for sauces, fruit pie filling, and custards, so it's an unusual ingredient for a cookie or cake recipe. Similar to how it works in a vanilla custard or butterscotch pudding, after it's cooked and all of the ingredients puff up, it holds everything in place to make light and airy confections. Usually, it's paired with eggs to work well, but in this cookie dough it partially replaces the egg. How the starch makes this dessert recipe different from old fashioned shortbread is in texture — it's much smoother and lighter than your average shortbread cookie. That's a twist we'll want to eat seconds of!

Grain-Free, Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies 3

OK, we'll admit that "gluten-free" isn't usually a good sign when applied to cookies, but these cookies are an exception and there's an excellent reason for this. The two main ingredients are peanut butter and sugar, but they're not just any peanut butter and sugar — and they are the tasty secrets to this recipe.

We already know that peanut butter is delicious, but these cookies are made with Jif Natural Creamy Peanut Butter Spread which contains just peanuts, sugar, palm oil, (and less than two percent of salt and molasses). Peanut butter is high in protein. To make these cookies even more interesting, instead of all-purpose flour (which has been stripped of almost all of the wheat's nutrients) and refined white sugar (100% empty calories), this recipe uses coconut palm sugar. If you haven't been schooled on coconut palm sugar, it's made from the sap of the coconut palm. That means it contains fiber (read: low glycemic index value), zinc, potassium, and calcium making it a notch more nutritious than the plain white sugar it replaces here. Dumping the flour is what makes these cookies gluten-free. However, we should also note that even though there are more nutrients in coconut palm sugar than white sugar, it still contains a significant amount of fructose, so you don't want to get too crazy with it (but it does make crazy delicious peanut butter cookies).

If all that's not enough to convince you to make these, there's one more twist: This recipe can also be mixed, portioned, baked, and ready to eat in less than a half-hour. Twist away, we say. Twist away.

Healthy desserts or daily indulgences, there are millions of ways to make a sweet treat and you can find one to suit your taste right here on Yummly.