This hearty, deeply spiced gingerbread loaf from Mimi Thorisson has a wonderful honey-buckwheat flavor.
These wheat-free, butterless brownies are decadent and dense. "It's really, really hard to make a good vegan brownie," says chef Erin McKenna. Her first efforts using applesauce and vegetable oil were cakey or fluffy. It took her six months of making small adjustments to perfect them.
Lemon Pudding Cakes
These pillowy, vitamin C-packed cakelets are adapted from The Greyston Bakery Cookbook. "When you overwhelm dry ingredients with wet ones, an amazing texture separation happens," Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan says. "These cakes are rich without being too heavy."
Mango-Raspberry Baked Alaskas
The F&W test kitchen especially likes Ciao Bella mango sorbet.
Olive Oil-and-Sauternes Cake with Roasted Pears
Because Neil Perry has a passion for wine, he uses Sauternes in every component of this dessert, from the cake to the sauce. He also adds olive oil to the batter, which creates a delightfully moist crumb.
Maple, Pear and Ricotta Parfaits
The ricotta in these parfaits is full of calcium, and the pears are loaded with fiber. To add flavor, Marisa May poaches the pears in water infused with maple syrup and lemon juice. The poached pears can also be served separately with granola or yogurt.
Brown Sugar Custards with Orange Zest
Low-fat evaporated milk gives sauces and desserts creaminess without using cream. "I put it in pasta sauces, panna cotta, quiche, tea—you can't tell the difference," Pam Anderson says.
Homemade Yogurt with Plum Compote
The plums in this tangy-sweet compote are rich in vitamin C, and the milk and yogurt are great sources of calcium.
Espresso Gelées with Candied Pistachios
This dessert because is light, but feels very sinful. Greek yogurt and sugared pistachios add satisfying creaminess and crunch.
Fudgy Chocolate-Walnut Cookies
New York pastry chef François Payard's divinely gooey chocolate cookies are flourless, which makes them ideal for Passover baking.
Apple Pie Granita
Natural-style apple juice—less filtered than regular—is high in vitamin C and antioxidants. Here, Emeril Lagasse transforms it into a refreshing granita.
Poached Pears with Prunes
Paula Wolfert adapted this lightly spiced, unusual fruit dessert from one created by chef Fatima Mountassamin of Le Tobsil, Marrakech's most ambitious Moroccan restaurant.
Citrus Salad with Candied Ginger
The key to making this simple fruit salad with candied ginger: Use a sharp knife to cut the citrus. "The better your knife, the better this dish will look," says chef Jason Travi.
Quinoa Coconut Pudding
This rich and creamy coconut dessert has the comforting consistency of rice pudding and the health benefits of quinoa.
Dark Chocolate Bark with Roasted Almonds and Seeds
"I'm more addicted to chocolate than I am to sugar," says chocolatier Jacques Torres. A small piece of this super-chunky dark-chocolate bark staves off his intense cravings.
Plum-and-Honey Sabayon Gratins
This stunning plum-studded sabayon—an airy custard sweetened with clover honey and Moscato—is summer's answer to crème brûlée. If you don't have Moscato on hand, any honey-inflected dessert wine will do, such as Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise or a late-harvest Riesling.
Roasted Bananas with Spiced Syrup and Candied Nuts
"We didn't have much in the way of spices growing up, but you can't tie everything to terroir," Michel Bras says about the ingredients available to him in the Aubrac mountains. Here the chef uses an international array of ingredients, studding bananas with cinnamon sticks, vanilla beans and coffee beans, then serving them, roasted, with a cinnamony syrup scented with the Moroccan spice blend ras el hanout.
Jeni Britton's easy sugar syrup can be mixed with almost any fruit puree and churned in an ice cream maker to make sorbet. During the summer, she loves sorbets made with locally grown heirloom melons and ruby-red sour cherries.
Grilled Peaches and Plums with Mascarpone
Caramelizing plums and peaches on the grill brings out their natural sweetness, and Francis Mallmann bastes them with melted butter and sugar to make them even more luscious. A dollop of cool mascarpone tops the warm fruit.
Minted Watermelon Popsicles
These popsicles are a great fat-free snack, made with lots of naturally sweet watermelon and only a little sugar. They can be frozen in special popsicle molds or in standard ice cube trays (three cubes equals one serving). Joy Manning has them whenever she feels the temptation to visit the new gelato shop around the corner from her apartment.
Honey-Roasted Apricots with Amaretti Cookies
Jessica Theroux drizzles apricots with honey before roasting (plums and peaches work well, too) and crumbles store-bought amaretti (Italian cookies made with egg whites and almond flour) for a crispy topping.
Strawberries with Buttermilk Ice and Balsamic Vinegar
Pastry chef Deanie Fox makes this fluffy granita with buttermilk, which is low in fat, high in calcium and easy to digest. She spoons the creamy, tangy ice over lightly sweetened strawberries, a vitamin C-loaded fruit.
A lovely way to serve raspberries, blackberries and blueberries: suspended in a hibiscus gelatin.
Summer Blackberry Custards
Alain Coumont makes these ethereal, citrusy custards with wild blackberries gathered from his property. Try them with blueberries, raspberries or pitted cherries, too.
Melon-and-Strawberry Salad with Spicy Lemongrass Syrup
Chiles add subtle heat to this exceptional fruit salad. Grace Parisi likes using any syrup left in the fruit bowl for cocktails; she mixes a little of it into rum and pours the drink over ice.
Honeyed Yogurt and Blueberry Tart with Ginger Crust
Melissa Rubel Jacobson mixes creamy yogurt with honey so it's deliciously sweet and tangy, then she spreads it in a graham-cracker crust spiced with bits of crystallized ginger and tops it with plump blueberries.
Stone-Fruit Panzanella with Zabaglione
A classic Italian panzanella (bread salad) combines juicy tomatoes and bread cubes. Here, Chris Cosentino swaps in stone fruits like apricots and peaches for the tomatoes. Then he pushes the dessert over the top by dolloping the "salad" with an airy zabaglione, a frothy sauce of egg yolks whipped with sweet dessert wine.
Minty Lime Baked Alaska
Instead of making a butter cake, F&W's Grace Parisi created this recipe with nonfat angel food cake. She tops the cake with lime sorbet mixed with chopped mint and rum.