The 10 Best Healthy Desserts in 2022: Eat This, Not That! Food Awards
The cool thing about 2022? Grocery stores are now filled with aisles of nutritious treats and sweets that actually taste good. Along with these endless new options, however, comes the overwhelming challenge of narrowing them down to the best of the best.
Out of all the newcomers that launched nationwide between January 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021, 10 dessert products stood out from the rest with their impressive nutrition and great taste. Eat This, Not That! Medical Expert Board members and registered dietitians, Lyssie Lakatos, RD, CDN, CFT, and Tammy Lakatos Shames, RD, CDN, CFT—aka The Nutrition Twins—helped rate the products and choose the winners, then we taste-tested each one. Read on for our honest reviews—and to see where you can buy the winners!
The Best Healthy Frozen Desserts in 2022:
- Best healthy brownies: DEUX Enhanced Cookie Dough, Brownie Batter
- Best healthy candy: SmartSweets Red Twists
- Best healthy candy bar: Gigantic! Salted Peanut Sortasweet Candy Bar
- Best healthy chocolate: SkinnyDipped Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Bars
- Best healthy cookies: Mmmly Cookies, Banana Chocolate Chip
- Best healthy dairy-free ice cream: Daily Harvest Pistachio + Toasty, Buttery Hazelnut Crunch Scoops
- Best healthy ice cream: Alden's Organic's Mocha Latte Pints
- Best healthy keto dessert: Good Sam Foods Candy Coated Peanuts
- Best healthy peanut butter cup: Lily's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
- Best healthy single-serve dessert: Yasso Poppables, Vanilla Bean
How They Ranked By Taste:
Watch our taste test video and check out how they ranked below.
Best healthy keto dessert: Good Sam Foods Candy Coated Peanuts
Good Sam Foods Candy Coated Peanuts are the keto version of peanut M&M's you didn't know you needed. They're also made through regenerative farming techniques, which means they're an ally for small farms. Besides being keto, they're also organic, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, and sugar-free, so if you've got a specialized diet, chances are, you can still enjoy these.
The experts' take: "We love the ingredients in this! They paid attention to organic, non-GMO, and even used organic spirulina concentrate to squeeze in some extra antioxidants. Plus, with less than a gram of sugar and 100 calories per serving, it's a good, calorie-controlled dessert. Another good thing is that only 2 grams of fat are saturated, unlike many other desserts that have a much higher saturated fat content," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "I was definitely shocked at how much these look and taste like peanut M&M's. I'd say the only difference is that the outside coating is a little thicker and gummier than the M&M version. So, if you're looking for a diet-friendly substitute for those peanut M&M's you used to snack on as a child, these will definitely do the trick," says Associate Editor, Rachel Linder.
Best healthy cookies: Mmmly Cookies, Banana Chocolate Chip
With so many new cookies on the market, it can be overwhelming to decide which ones to try. These Mmmly Cookies are super soft and chewy, and they only contain 2 grams of sugar from fruit. Not to mention, they're great for immunity and packed with nutrients to keep you full.
The experts' take: "We love that these cookies contain good-for-your-gut prebiotic fiber, and most of the ingredients are organic and nutritious. They're good for calorie control, with only 100 calories per cookie, and low in sugar, with 3 grams sugar (2 net grams). Plus, there are 4 grams of fiber in a serving. The tiger nut flour is made from root vegetables, so it's nut-free and great for people with nut allergies," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "If you're a chewy cookie fan, these should be at the top of your list. The banana chocolate chip flavor truly came through in every bite and reminded me of a freshly-baked chocolate chip banana bread loaf. They're also pretty big in size, so one could definitely hold you over as a midday snack or a healthy dessert," says Linder.
Best healthy candy: SmartSweets Red Twists
Candy-lovers looking for a healthier alternative might have already heard of SmartSweets. For those who haven't, these Red Twists—and so many of their other treats—look just like the original version of classic candies. However, they have significantly less sugar and are better for you overall than your typical chewy candy.
The experts' take: "We love this gummy candy licorice option, since most gummy candies use large amounts of sugar and these only have 2 grams of sugar per bag (92% less sugar than other licorice). They don't have sugar alcohols or artificial sweeteners or the artificial dyes found in most gummy-type candies. Plus, they have 12 grams of fiber, including good-for-your-gut prebiotic fiber," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "Pull these Red Twists out of the packaging, and they look identical to red licorice. The flavor, however, is not exactly the same. One thing I didn't realize until I took a closer look at the packaging is that the flavor is actually "berry punch"—not your typical red licorice flavor. So, as long as you're not expecting these SmartSweets to taste exactly like the real thing, they could be a great alternative," says Linder.
Best healthy dairy-free ice cream: Daily Harvest Pistachio + Toasty, Buttery Hazelnut Crunch Scoops
Daily Harvest is known for making frozen items with whole fruits and vegetables that can be ready in minutes, and the scoops are no different. The Pistachio + Toasty, Buttery Hazelnut Crunch Scoop is a cashew-based frozen dessert that is made with nutritious organic ingredients that will keep you full for hours.
The experts' take: "We love the list of these nutrient-dense ingredients, including a variety of nuts, avocado oil, and cholorella. We also appreciate that most of the ingredients are organic. This dairy-free ice cream by far has one of the lowest saturated fat contents out of all the winning desserts. Limiting saturated fat is important because getting too much can contribute to heart disease, the leading chronic disease killer in this country," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "The description on the Daily Harvest website of this pint starts off by saying, "Picture this: you take a bite of this Scoop and immediately think of freshly cracked pistachios." I couldn't agree more! With the crushed pieces of pistachio in every bite, this option definitely tastes healthy, but there's no question you're getting lots of nutrients in every scoop, as pistachios are known to lower cholesterol, improve gut health, and boost your mood," says Lindere.
Best healthy candy bar: Gigantic! Salted Peanut Sortasweet Candy Bar
Looking for a healthier version of a Snickers bar? The salted peanut-flavored Gigantic! bar is definitely that. It looks and tastes almost exactly like the Snickers bar you know and love, but instead of 28 grams of sugar, the Gigantic! bar only has 7 grams.
The experts' take: "Unlike many candy bars, this one has an ingredient list that we like—not a lot of fillers or chemicals—and we love that it uses organic fair-trade chocolate. With 200 calories, it also keeps calories in check compared to other candy bars. And it still comes in higher in protein (4 grams) and fiber (5 grams ) with just 7 grams of sugar, which is considerably less than many bars out there," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "Between the caramel-like insides packaged with chopped peanuts and coated with a chocolate layer, this bar tasted like a gourmet Snickers bar. The sea salt on top gave it a little added depth of flavor, and it brought a savory touch that I never knew a Snickers bar needed. These will definitely be my go-to when craving a chocolate bar from now on," says Linder.
Best healthy chocolate: SkinnyDipped Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel Bars
There's just something about the combination of chocolate and caramel—and if you're on the hunt for a new go-to chocolate bar, this could be the one. This bar has 21 fewer grams of sugar than a Hershey's chocolate bar. Not to mention, it's made with healthier ingredients, but it still has all of the decadent flavor you need in a chocolate dessert.
The experts' take: "This chocolate is a good option for those watching their waistlines, as it contains 110 calories—an ideal amount for a dessert when trying to keep your weight in check. With only 3 grams of sugar, this is much lower than most chocolate, as well. While we'd typically choose more natural products, this got our vote because people tend to overeat chocolate, and with this one, you won't do as much damage to your waistline," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "It definitely takes a few bites to get into the caramel in these bars. Since this is the chocolate category, the quality of the chocolate is definitely a priority when it comes to the overall taste—and I'd give it a 10 out of 10. With this bar, you're definitely not compromising the flavor, even though there's significantly less sugar. I honestly never would've guessed that this bar is healthier than your average chocolate bar, which is definitely a good thing," says Linder.
Best healthy ice cream: Alden's Organic's Mocha Latte Pints
Often when you eat a scoop of non-dairy ice cream, you know. It's usually not as creamy as its dairy counterpart, but that's certainly not the case with Alden's Organic's Mocha Latte Pints. These pints are packed with "only the good stuff," according to their website, which means no artificial sweeteners, flavoring, or colors.
The experts' take: "We love that Alden's is all organic and has nothing artificial—no artificial coloring, flavorings or sweeteners; carrageenan, GMOs, or high fructose corn syrup. At 200 calories per serving, it contains fewer calories than many options out there—and even with 8 grams of saturated fat, it contains less than many of its ice cream competitors. And it's got 4 grams of fiber. This ice cream gives vegans a way to get their ice cream and eat it, too!" say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "As someone whose favorite ice cream flavors are chocolate and coffee, I held this mocha latte pint to some pretty high standards—and it truly met them. There's nothing better than opening up a pint of ice cream and seeing that mocha and vanilla swirl. With an added ribbon of chocolate, there was nothing this pint was missing. The coffee flavor dominates, as you'd expect, so coffee-lovers, this one's for you," says Linder.
Best healthy brownies: DEUX Enhanced Cookie Dough, Brownie Batter
If you say you don't eat half of the cookie dough batter when making cookies, I don't believe you. With DEUX Enhanced Cookie Dough, you don't have to worry about salmonella because the cookie dough is not only edible but also bakeable. So, no matter if you're craving a scoop of raw dough or warm cookies just out of the oven, DEUX has got a sweet treat for every mood.
The experts' take: "This cookie is by far the best from a calorie and saturated fat standpoint. And we love the wholesome, nutrient-rich ingredients like almond butter, organic oat flour, flaxseeds, and apple cider vinegar. The challenge with this cookie dough is whether someone can limit themselves to the 1.5 tablespoon cookie dough brownie serving," say The Nutrition Twins.
Our tasting notes: "The fudgy chocolate flavor in the Brownie Batter flavor of DEUX Enhanced Cookie Dough was truly next-level. As if the batter itself wasn't chocolatey enough, there are also huge chunks of chocolate inside as they cook in the oven. They taste like a chocolate lava cake but in cookie form, which is definitely something you won't want to pass up for dessert," says Linder.
Best healthy peanut butter cup: Lily's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
A peanut butter cup made with dark chocolate and less than one gram of sugar? We think yes. There are only 140 calories in two of these Lily's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, which means you can enjoy them guilt-free. Two Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, on the other hand, have 220 calories. So, it's a no-brainer to make the swap if you're looking for a healthier option.
The experts' take: "We love that these are sugar-free and don't use artificial sweeteners! Plus, they have a nice dose of fiber (6 grams), including some gut-friendly prebiotic fiber. While the saturated fat is a bit high, with 8 of the 13 total grams being saturated, its 140 calories isn't an excessive amount for peanut butter cups," say the Twins.
Our tasting notes: "As a bigger fan of dark chocolate compared to milk chocolate, I can honestly say I liked these better than a classic Reese's Peanut Butter Cup. The inside was incredibly creamy and had a deep roasted peanut flavor, while the dark chocolate outside was rich and almost melts in your mouth. You definitely have to be a dark chocolate fan to enjoy these, though," says Linder.
Best healthy single-serve dessert: Yasso Poppables, Vanilla Bean
If you don't think Greek yogurt would work as a substitute for ice cream, think again! Yasso Poppables are individual Greek yogurt bites coated in dark chocolate and crunchy quinoa, and they're going to be your new favorite frozen dessert. And yes, you can see the flex of vanilla bean in the Greek yogurt that gives these bites a deep flavor that so many vanilla ice creams are missing. And 60 calories per Poppable? Nothing could be better than that.
The experts' take: "We love that this is a low calorie, low-fat way to satisfy a sweet craving. It may be hard to have just one, but try to keep the servings in check as the saturated fat really goes up as you have more," say the Twins.
Our tasting notes: "Yasso knew what they were doing with these Poppables. They reminded me of a gourmet version of the Dibs ice cream snacks from Nestlé—but better. The dark chocolate and quinoa crunch layer gives you the crunchiness you need to compliment the creamy Greek yogurt inside. I'll be eating these as my go-to frozen dessert from here on out," says Linder.
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