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FOOD

5 low-carb, sugarless baking recipes to try

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Desserts do not always need to be guilty pleasures. Now that most food items already have healthier alternatives, there are new ways to whip up desserts that are guilt-free. Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

Editor's note: Recipes featured in the series have not been kitchen-tested by the CNN Philippines Life staff and were featured in good faith with the bakers.

Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — Those observing healthier eating habits, the amount of sugar and carbs packed in each dessert can be enough to ruin the experience. Desserts do not always need to be guilty pleasures. Now that most food items already have healthier alternatives, promoted by several diet-based communities, there are new ways to whip up desserts that are guilt-free.

The practice of keto, or ketogenic diet, has been the subject of debates ever since it first became a popular means for losing weight. But there’s no need to be committed to a strict keto diet — or any diet at all — in order to try the following baking recipes from Quezon City-based artisan bakeshop, Keto Filipino. Keto meals keep carbs at a minimum and avoid the use of sugar, so they are ideal even for those with diabetes or other health complications that may require the same.

The process itself of preparing these goods is said to be therapeutic. “Baking is such a nice way to de-stress and the reward of having a house that smells like a freshly-baked cake is the best,” says Kay Guevarra of Keto Filipino, who also gives a few pointers for keto baking:

1. Always buy premium ingredients. Check the nutrition facts and ingredients to ensure you are buying a product that does not have any hidden sugar.

2. Measurement of ingredients is also important, so make sure you use a weighing scale or cups.Correct temperature is also key. Do not place the dough or mix if the oven has not yet reached the desired temperature.

3. A handy ingredient worth investing on is the Stevia Blend*, a mix of Stevia and erythritol.

Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE

Ingredients:

For the cake batter:
70 grams butter
30 grams cocoa powder
½ cup Stevia Blend
80 grams almond flour
1 tsp baking powder
⅛ tsp salt
3 eggs

For the chocolate icing:
80 grams butter
½ cup cocoa powder
½ cup powdered erythritol
½ cup all-purpose cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp powdered coffee

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Grease your preferred baking pan and line with parchment paper. In a saucepan, on very low heat, melt the butter, add cocoa powder and sweetener until dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside. Mix all dry ingredients, run it thru a sieve to ensure there are no clumps. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and gradually add in the melted chocolate mixture, mix in the dry ingredients last. Transfer cake batter to baking pan. Tap to remove any bubbles. Place in the oven for 20 minutes.

For the icing: Stir all ingredients very well in a saucepan under low heat. Set aside, let cool, place it in the fridge and assemble the cake once it is no longer warm. Enjoy!

Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

KETO CARAMEL SAUCE*

*Can be used as a topping for the Chocolate Cake

Ingredients:

½ stick butter
5 tbsp Sukrin Gold (brown sugar alternative)
1 cup all-purpose Cream
A pinch of salt (optional)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Melt the butter in a saucepan on low heat, until browned. Whisk regularly to avoid burning it. This may take about 4 to 5 minutes. Wait for it to turn into an amber brown color. Add Stevia blend and mix in well. Add cream and keep mixing. Keep on stirring until it covers the back of the spoon.

Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

CHEESE MUFFIN

Ingredients:

4 eggs
½ tsp vinegar
80 ml water
70 grams butter
50 grams grated cheese, small
¾ cup coconut flour
10 grams fiber
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp baking powder

For the topping:
Grated cheese, small

Directions:

Beat eggs. Add vinegar and water. Add in melted butter and cheese. In a separate bowl, mix all dry ingredients. Pour in the dry ingredients to the wet mixture. Place baking cups to your baking muffin mould. Bake for 15 minutes.

Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

CHEESE CRACKERS

Ingredients:

1 cup parmesan cheese
1 cup cheddar cheese
1 cup almond flour
1 egg
60 grams cream cheese
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp rosemary
½ tsp garlic powder

Directions:

Mix cheese and almond flour in a microwavable bowl. Cook it in the microwave for 1 minute. Remove from the microwave and mix immediately. Cheese should be partially melted. Wait for 3 to 5 minutes to let the cheese cool down a bit. Add egg and all seasoning. Mix thoroughly.

Preheat the oven to 230 °C. Cut 2 parchment paper similar to the size of your baking pan. Place the dough on the parchment paper and use your hands to flatten the dough. Place the parchment paper on top and use a rolling pin to flatten it further. Make sure that the dough is very thin, crackers will not be crunchy if it is thick. Score the dough with a knife or pizza cutter of your preferred shape. Bake dough 5 minutes each side. Let the crackers dry overnight on a cooling rack and place it in a ziplock bag. Crackers will be crispy for a week.

Photo courtesy of KAY GUEVARRA/KETO FILIPINO

TIRAMISU

Ingredients:

For the cake:
100 grams cream cheese
¼ cup butter
5 eggs
½ cup Stevia blend
1 tsp vanilla
1¼ cup almond flour
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder

For the custard:
3 eggs
¼ cup Stevia blend
⅛ tsp salt
120 grams mascarpone cheese
1 cup all-purpose cream
½ cup hot water
1½ tbsp instant coffee powder

For the topping:
¼ cup cocoa powder

Directions:

For the custard: Place egg mixture in a double boiler under low heat. Mix consistently. Turn off the heat, then set aside. Add in the mascarpone cheese using the folding method. Take another bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in the egg mixture using a rubber spatula.

For the cake: Cream the softened butter, then add cream cheese, sweetener, and the rest of the ingredients one at a time. Use a spatula to remove clumps. Bake the cake base for 10 minutes at 220 °C. Let it cool. Once cooled, slice the cake in the middle to make two layers. Top each layer of the cake with the custard mix and freeze for 30 to 40 minutes or refrigerate for a couple hours (or overnight). Serve with a generous dusting of cocoa powder.

*Stevia blend and other ingredients available at Keto Filipino Bakeshop.