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3 Amazing Vegan Dessert Recipes

Indulge During Bikini Season

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I love dessert, but cookies and milk every night don't exactly keep my body camera ready. My secret for enjoying sweets without packing on extra pounds? Homemade vegan treats!

Why vegan? I used to eat an assortment of everything (in moderation). But when I faced surgery to help treat my stomach problems a few years ago, I took the advice of my good friend and New York Times bestselling author Kathy Freston and gradually adopted a vegan diet instead. The result? All the pain went away. Plus, I lost weight, my hair and skin look healthier than ever before, and I have more energy. The best part: I don't feel deprived!

Here are three vegan desserts I love! They not only taste amazing, but they're sugar-free, packed with nutrients, and super easy to make. So go ahead: Have your strawberry shortcake and eat it too!

Vegan Raw Cocoa Banana Bites

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Ingredients:
1 c dates
1 c walnuts and almonds
3/4 c raw cocoa
2 ripe bananas
4 Tbsp raw almond butter
4 Tbsp agave (or honey)

Directions: Combine the dates, walnuts, almonds, and 1/4c raw cocoa in a food processor. Spread the mixture evenly in a glass pan.

Combine the bananas, almond butter, agave, and 1/2c raw cocoa in a mixing bowl. Spread this mixture on top of the first layer in the glass pan. Place it in the freezer to chill for 30 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of FitSugar.com

Strawberry Shortcake

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Ingredients:
1 ½ c flour
¼ c honey
2 ½ Tbsp baking powder
¼ Tbsp salt
6 Tbsp Earth Balance Butter (cut into pieces)
½ c almond, soy, or rice milk
Strawberries, sliced and chilled
Agave (optional)

Directions: Set aside the strawberries and honey/agave and combine all remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl. Form 8 biscuits with the resulting dough and place them on a floured cutting board while you work. Transfer the biscuits to an oiled cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

Add sliced strawberries on top and drizzle agave nectar on each warm cake. Enjoy!

Recipe courtesy of Dairy Free Cooking

Apricot Berry Bars

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Ingredients:
8 sliced apricots
2 c. berries
1 ½ c. oats
½ c. cornmeal
5 Tbsp applesauce
¾ c. almond, soy or rice milk
3 Tbsp. flaxseed
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp salt
3 Tbsp agave nectar
½ c. almonds, pecans, or walnuts (optional)

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Spread the mixture evenly in a glass pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. It's that simple!

Experiment with Vegan Ingredients

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These are just a few examples of guilt-free vegan desserts. Don't be afraid to experiment! Eggs, butter, and sugar can be replaced with healthier ingredients such as applesauce, flaxseed, and agave nectar. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many more simple vegan recipes, so explore and enjoy this new way of indulging without the downside.