My 38 Fave Healthy Recipes That I Baked This Year – Yes, Chocolate Doughnuts Made the List!
With so much time spent at home, coupled with the anxiety about the pandemic and the stress of juggling working from home and homeschooling my two kids, I turned to my kitchen for solace, and lemme tell you – I baked the hell out of this year! The delicious, feel-good recipes I whipped up were all vegan, and I tried to make them healthy, low in sugar, and protein-packed to keep my family happy and feeling energetic. Here are the tried-and-true recipes I turned to over and over again, including cakes, muffins, blondies, doughnuts, sheet-pan pancakes, and more. If you need a little baking inspiration, keep reading!
The dough for these vegan blondies is made with rolled oats, almond butter, beans (I know, shocker!), and flax meal to give them that buttery-soft and chewy texture.
Get the recipe: vegan flourless blondies
Made with just five ingredients – rolled oats, ripe banana, almond butter, cocoa powder, and chopped walnuts – these brownies have that soft, chewy texture I crave and that sweet, chocolaty flavor. These don’t taste as sweet as regular sugar-filled brownies, but they’re sweet enough for me!
Get the recipe: sugar-free brownies
No-Knead Whole-Wheat Bread
This is a no-knead, whole-wheat bread recipe, so it couldn’t be easier to make! This bread has a denser texture than white bread and also has fewer calories and carbs per slice. It’s much heartier and more satisfying because it has over three times the fiber and two extra grams of protein.
Get the recipe: whole-wheat no-knead bread recipe
Pumpkin-Spice Sheet-Pan Pancakes
Soak up the flavors of fall as long as you can and make these delicious chocolate-chip pumpkin-spice sheet-pan pancakes. No more flipping pancakes on the stove! These bake on one sheet so they save you time and are the perfect quick and easy Sunday meal-prep recipe.
Get the recipe: pumpkin-spice sheet-pan pancakes
Refined-Sugar-Free, Vegan Blueberry Muffins
This blueberry muffin recipe uses powdered stevia in place of sugar, and if you’ve never baked with it, you’ll be floored by the flavor. It’s also oil-free to save on added calories from fat.
Get the recipe: refined-sugar-free, vegan blueberry muffins
Baked Carrot-Cake Protein Doughnuts With Maple Cashew Frosting
These vegan carrot-cake protein doughnuts look and taste decadent, but they’re a cinch to put together.
Get the recipe: baked vegan carrot-cake doughnuts
Vegan Chocolate-Marbled Pumpkin Protein Bread
You’ll love the unbelievably moist and tender texture and the sweet flavor combination of the pumpkin spice with the swirls of chocolate – this recipe tastes decadent but is easy to make!
Get the recipe: vegan chocolate-marbled pumpkin bread
Sugar-Free Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins
These apple cinnamon oatmeal muffins are sweetened with just apples, applesauce, and banana, resulting in a perfectly moist, vegan muffin you can enjoy for breakfast, snack, or dessert. No sweeteners needed!
Get the recipe: sugar-free apple cinnamon oatmeal muffins
These vanilla cupcakes taste absolutely sweet, moist, and decadent, and no one would guess they were vegan. Decorate these for any occasion! Although they’re not exactly the healthiest baked good recipe, they were great for my mental health.
Get the recipe: vegan vanilla cupcakes
Vegan Whole-Wheat Sheet-Pan Protein Pancakes
These sheet-pan pancakes are fluffy in texture yet also firm enough to hold in your hand if you need to eat on the go. They have a deliciously cake-like sweet vanilla cinnamon flavor.
Get the recipe: blueberry sheet-pan protein pancakes
How to Meal-Prep Cinnamon Steel-Cut Oatmeal
Although not a recipe you bake, I’ve been meal prepping this a lot to have steel-cut oatmeal on hand all week.
Get the recipe: how to meal-prep cinnamon steel-cut oatmeal
High-Protein Peanut-Butter Banana Baked Oatmeal
Super soft and packed with protein, this peanut-butter banana baked oatmeal is like breakfast cake you can eat with a fork! Just mix the basic ingredients together, pour it into a pan, and within 30 minutes, you’ll have breakfast for the entire week done.
Get the recipe: peanut-butter banana baked oatmeal
Low-Sugar, Protein-Packed Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Muffins
These muffins are vegan and made with plant-based protein powder and flax meal for an extrasatiating muffin you can enjoy for breakfast, snack, or dessert.
Get the recipe: pumpkin chocolate-chip protein muffins
Low-Sugar, Vegan Peach Crisp
Sweetened naturally with peaches, chopped dates, applesauce, and a touch of maple syrup, this scrumptious dessert has under 16 grams of sugar per 236-calorie serving.
Get the recipe: vegan peach crisp
Vegan Apple Cinnamon Sheet-Pan Protein Pancakes
Fluffy, packed with protein, and perfectly spiced, once you bake these apple cinnamon sheet-pan pancakes, you’ll realize how much faster they are than traditional pancakes.
Get the recipe: apple cinnamon sheet-pan pancakes
Stevia-Sweetened Banana Protein Muffins
Vegan protein powder added to the batter adds a protein boost – seven grams per muffin! – making these satisfying enough for breakfast smeared with nut butter, enjoyed as an afternoon snack, or as a healthy after-dinner dessert paired with a dollop of jam.
Get the recipe: stevia-sweetened banana protein muffins
Double Chocolate-Chip Mint Vegan Protein Muffins
These taste like a chocolate mint cupcake, but they’re healthy for you: made with whole-wheat flour, flax meal, and plant-based protein powder. At 150 calories each, these vegan muffins offer seven grams of satiating protein for just around 10 grams of sugar and 13.8 grams of carbs.
Get the recipe: chocolate mint protein muffins
Vegan Chocolate Frosted Doughnuts
The batter is easy to whip up, and don’t fret if you don’t have a doughnut pan – just use a muffin tin instead. Decorate as you like, and enjoy right away, since these babies taste best freshly made.
Get the recipe: vegan chocolate frosted doughnuts
Gluten-Free Banana Nut Protein Muffins
Bake a batch of these banana nut protein muffins to enjoy for the week’s breakfast or snacks, or double the batch so you can freeze them for later. They taste delicious on their own but are even better paired with a smear of nut butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Get the recipe: gluten-free banana nut protein muffins
Vegan Banana Strawberry Apple Grape Muffins
Skip the added sugars and bake these fruit-sweetened muffins. And don’t worry if your strawberries are a little shriveled or your grapes a little soft – just like the bananas, they bake up beautifully so they won’t have to go to waste.
Get the recipe: banana strawberry apple grape muffins
Iced Lemon Pound Cake
This cake will satisfy your cravings for lemon pound cake and fool anyone who’s skeptical that a vegan cake could taste this good. Buttery (without the butter), moist, and lemony sweet, this cake is made with almond meal so you’ll get a little extra fiber and protein.
Get the recipe: iced lemon pound cake
Chocolate Cupcakes With "Buttercream" Frosting
Upon your first decadent bite, you just might drop the rest of your cupcake when you realize these are low-calorie and vegan. Plus, the frosting is made with avocados instead of butter!
Get the recipe: chocolate cupcakes with “buttercream” frosting
You probably already have everything you need to make these brownies, except maybe the patience to wait for them to cook!
Get the recipe: three-ingredient brownies
Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Cookies
Soft, chewy, and under 100 calories, these gluten-free cookies are bursting with spiced pumpkin pie flavor. The main ingredient is almond butter, so make sure you have a jar on hand.
Get the recipe: pumpkin chocolate-chip cookies
Vegan Protein Cornbread
This protein-packed cornbread is great on its own, smeared with a little Earth Balance or homemade jam, or dunked into your famous bowl of chili.
Get the recipe: vegan cornbread
Chocolate Protein Breakfast Doughnuts With Peanut-Butter Frosting
These vegan chocolate protein doughnuts are baked and made with whole-wheat flour, so they’re already healthier than regular doughnuts, but the addition of protein powder to the batter gives each one of these moist and decadent doughnuts almost nine grams of protein!
Get the recipe: chocolate protein doughnut with peanut-butter frosting
Vegan Cider Doughnuts
Soft and full of warming spices, these healthy baked cider doughnuts are perfect any time of the year – not just in autumn.
Get the recipe: vegan cider doughnuts
Double-Chocolate Zucchini Protein Muffins
Bursting with chocolaty flavor, these muffins have zucchini, but you can’t taste it whatsoever! It just makes for a supermoist and delicious muffin that could easily pass as a cupcake if you add a layer of frosting (now there’s an idea!). Each one offers almost five grams of protein.
Get the recipe: vegan double-chocolate zucchini protein muffins
Vegan Double-Chocolate Banana Protein Muffins
Sweet with a soft, melt-in-your mouth texture, this moist muffin recipe is every ripe banana’s dream.
Get the recipe: double-chocolate banana protein muffins
Sweet-Potato Banana Protein Bread
Packed with fiber and protein, this bread is naturally sweetened with sweet potato, banana, and applesauce. And it tastes like dessert!
Get the recipe: sweet-potato banana protein bread
These cookies are not only free of white sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, or any other sweeteners, but they’re also flour-free, gluten-free, and vegan, so if you’re trying to eat cleaner, you can feel good biting into these chewy cookies.
Get the recipe: date-sweetened cookies
Banana Oat Cookies
If you’re trying to eat less sugar and less processed junk, this cookie recipe is perfect. They’re only made with three ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen: bananas, rolled oats, and vanilla protein powder. That’s it!
Get the recipe: banana oat cookies
Sweet and moist on the inside and crispy on the outside, this banana bread tastes delicious on its own, but it’s even more amazing smeared with nut butter and sprinkled with chocolate chips.
Get the recipe: banana bread
Iced Sugar Cookies
The best vegan desserts are the ones no one would even guess are made without dairy and eggs, and these sugar cookies fit the bill!
Get the recipe: iced sugar cookies
Black-Bean Brownie Bites
Delicious brownies in bite form, these are just 150 calories each. Since they’re made with black beans, each one offers almost six grams of protein and 5.2 grams of filling fiber.
Get the recipe: black-bean brownie bites
Gluten-Free Banana Bread
This banana bread is just begging to be smeared with peanut butter for tomorrow’s breakfast. The hardest part about this recipe is grinding rolled oats into flour.
Get the recipe: gluten-free banana bread
Lemon Blueberry Protein Muffins
With fewer than nine grams of sugar per muffin, these light and moist muffins deliciously sweetened with lemon juice and blueberries are sure to satisfy your dessert cravings.
Get the recipe: lemon blueberry protein muffins
Chocolate-Chip Protein-Packed Pumpkin Bread
When you want your house to feel as cozy as slipping on a sweater in the fall, turn on your oven and bake this vegan chocolate-chip pumpkin bread.
Get the recipe: vegan chocolate-chip protein pumpkin bread