Our Best Healthy Fall Desserts

Cozy up and take the chill off with one of these fabulous warm desserts. They're all low-calorie and low-fat without skimping on great taste.

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Sweet Potato Cinnamon Bundt Cake with Orange Glaze
Sweet Potato Cinnamon Bundt Cake with Orange Glaze

    Make an excuse to try heart-healthy sweet potatoes by baking this scrumptious moist cake. Substituting yogurt for sour cream cuts about 48 grams of fat.

Mocha Souffles

    Don't let the word souffle intimidate you: No French cooking lessons are needed to perfect these chocolate espresso cakes -- just a few quality ingredients and 25 minutes of hands-on time.

    Tip: Cream of tartar helps stabilize and add volume to beaten egg whites. Substitute white vinegar in the same ratio if you don't have cream of tartar.

Apple Cranberry Crisp

    Having a busy day but still want something fresh from the oven for dessert? This tangy crisp takes 15 minutes to prepare and hits the spot for a seasonal treat.

    Tip: Purchase cranberries that are plump and shiny. Weed out soft berries, as they tend to rot the whole batch more quickly. Store in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed bag for up to two months.

Baked Pumpkin Pudding

    This creamy custard has a surprising twist -- a wonderful toasted oat topping that satisfies your need to munch. It's perfect to serve drop-by guests, as it only takes 20 minutes to prepare and uses ingredients from your pantry.

Apricot-Cherry Tart

    Delicious fruits -- apricots, tart red cherries, and an apple -- mix with shredded orange peel and crystallized ginger for a tangy, tasty dessert.

Chocolate Accordion Bread

    Got a bread machine? Let it do all the work as you fill your kitchen with the intoxicating scent of a European bakery. At the bottom of the recipe, you'll find directions that don't require a bread machine.

Caramelized Apple Tostadas

    Pick a bag full of apples and turn them into a royal treat. Quick to prepare, these sauteed apples turn crisp-tender and caramelize in a brown sugar cider reduction. Who needs a crust with filling this good?

    Tip: Caramelized apples aren't just for dessert. They taste great over mashed sweet potatoes or alongside grilled pork chops, too.

Pineapple Pear Crisp

    A slimmed-down oat-and-nut topper helps keep these baked pears heart-healthy. Let frozen yogurt or ice cream melt over the baked dessert for a hot-and-cold treat.

Chocolate Cookie Treats

    These deliciously low-sodium cookies include a quick-fix chocolate glaze, which you could drizzle over fresh fruit for a midday treat.

Date-Ginger Cake

    Subtly spiced, this aromatic confection delights with chewy dates and sweet ginger. Bright orange sauce tops it off.

    Tip: Crystallized ginger has been cooked in sugar syrup and coated with additional sugar. It can be found in the spice aisle of most supermarkets.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bars

    Warm pumpkin smells from the kitchen are irresistible, but add dark chocolate to the mix to double your pleasure. These wholesome treats are low-fat, too.

Cinnamon-Chocolate Bread Pudding Souffles

    Prepare these elegant souffles and you'll be dining on chocolate clouds. The perfect souffle should stand tall and proud for at least two or three minutes without deflating.

    Tip: For the fluffiest souffle in town, be sure to use beaters that are clean and dry to whip egg whites. Any trace of grease will deflate them.

Ginger-Pear Crisp

    Crunchy-sweet oat topping is everybody's favorite part about this dessert. Good thing, too, because oats can help lower cholesterol.

    Tip: Bosc pears are the best variety to use for this recipe because they retain their texture better during baking.

Dark Hot Cocoa

    After a refreshing walk outdoors, this frothy treat takes only 10 minutes to create. You'll warm up in no time.

    Tip: Sprinkle freshly ground nutmeg or cinnamon on top for a spicy touch.

Cocoa-Nutmeg Snickerdoodles

    Getting together with friends to scrapbook, quilt, or simply socialize? Pull a pan of these piping-hot snickerdoodles from the oven, and you'll be set for success.

Mocha Pudding Cake

    Finally, a low-fat dessert that doesn't taste like it. You'll never guess this fudgy coffee dessert contains only 1 gram of fat per serving.

    The applesauce in the recipe (instead of oil) helps reduce the fat content without sacrificing flavor.

Apple Pie with Gingerbread Crust

    With a brown sugar and cinnamon topping and a gingerbread crust, this apple pie is an instant classic. Whole wheat flour and fat-free sour cream keep this decadent dessert heart-healthy.

Cinnamon-Glazed Poached Pears

    Simmer up a glaze made from pomegranate juice, water, honey, and cinnamon to top seasonal pears or baked apples.

Caramel Popcorn

    Save the calories when you reach for yummy caramel popcorn. Our recipe includes lower-fat margarine and light popcorn together in a light, warm treat.

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