Snack Wars: Carrot Cake

Carrot cake is by far one of my favorite desserts.  The name, however healthy it sounds, is deceiving considering a slice of carrot cake packs 300 calories, 16 grams of fat and 27 grams of sugar.  You’d be able to eat 5 1/2 cups of chopped carrots for those calories! 

Not just for Easter!

So why is carrot cake so calorie dense?  There are two things to blame.  The cream cheese frosting and the 1 1/2 cups of oil used in the batter.  But there is a better way.  Instead of using full fat cream cheese in the frosting, switch to 1/3 less fat neufchatel.  Cut down the butter called for too by half.

When it comes to the batter, substitute all but a 1/4 cup of the oil with a mix of sugar-free applesauce and plain, low-fat yogurt. 

Another trick…instead of making a layer cake (which requires a lot of frosting), bake the cake in a square cake pan and just frost the top. 

I had a cake that followed this recipe this weekend and let me tell you I didn’t think it was a low-fat cake at all!  And when I found out it was, you know I helped myself to another piece!

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