Why I don't use Artificial SweetenersSatisfying Eats Cookbook:
Every recipe in this cookbook (and on my blog) has fewer than nine net carbohydrates per serving and most have fewer than five. This is achieved without the use of any artificial or chemical sweeteners. The goal of these recipes is to keep blood glucose levels regulated throughout the day, thus avoiding hunger and other negative affects.The primary sweetener used in all of my recipes is pure Stevia. Stevia is a green plant that looks similar to mint. The leaves are ground into a fine powder that dissolves easily in drinks and foods. KAL® Pure Stevia doesn't include any fillers and is the best-tasting Stevia I have tried over the many years I have used it. You will only get an aftertaste if you use too much. Because there are no fillers, it is very concentrated. For my Sweet Southern Tea recipe, you would only use a little less than 1/2 teaspoon of KAL® Pure Stevia per gallon versus 1-1/2 to 2 cups of sugar you would traditionally use. In some recipes, I desire extra sweetness and I will use a very small amount of raw honey. I do this for the extra sweetness without using extra Stevia which could make the final product bitter. I would rather use a minuscule amount of natural sweetener than anything artificial.
For those who are nervous about Stevia because you are worried about a bitter aftertaste, here is my trick. I have found for those who like the taste of sugar and are used to it (or other sweeteners), if you use 75%-90% Kal stevia and the last 25-10% coconut sugar or honey, then you can't tell the difference and it is still healthy and low carb.
I personally choose to avoid artificial sweeteners such as Sweet-n-low and Splenda because they are dangerous chemicals! There are more and more studies that show consuming these artificial sweeteners are not only bad your your health (they are neurotoxins) but they also are linked to diabetes and being over weight. I also choose not to use sugar alcohols like erythritol and xylitol when baking. I am not only feeding myself but my 20 month old son as well as my son in utero and I am not comfortable feeding them these highly processed sweeteners. Erythritol and xylitol also cause digestive distress and the unnecessary loss of nutrients due to "tummy troubles."
I am still able to keep my foods low carb even when adding a minuscule amount of the natural sugars. This is a lifestyle choice for me and not a diet. I want to feed myself and my family the most wholesome food that I can. This is a personal choice. Whatever sweetener you decide to use, do your research and feel comfortable with your decision.
About this recipe, it is EASY!! No pointers other than tasting your batter before baking. It is delicious plain or topped with a little heavy whipping cream or some yummy ice-cream!
7 Net Carbs per Serving (using Mini Chocolate Chunk Dreams)
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8th tsp Kal Stevia plus 2 servings (to taste)
1 tbsp coconut sugar (or other sweetener) (to taste)
1 large egg
3 tbsp salted butter, room temperature
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup Mini Chocolate Chunk Dreams (or chocolate chunks)****
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, add dry ingredients. Using whisk, mix well. Add wet ingredients and use wooden spoon to blend well. Taste for sweetness and add more if necessary. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Press into a 9 inch cake pan. You can also use a shaped pan, like this heart one I found.
Bake for 16-18 minutes or until edges are slightly brown. Remove from oven and serve warm or allow to cool and carefully remove from pan.
***Note about Chocolate Chips:
I have used a few kinds of chocolate chips. As stated before, I don't use the "low-carb" chips sweetened with artificial sweeteners.
- Choices include the chocolate chunk recipe from the blog. Because these do not have any stabilizers or cocoa butter so they will melt and spread. You will still get the chocolate flavor, they will just spread. Using the chocolate chunks recipe will subtract around 3 Net Carbs per serving.
- I have also used Enjoy Life Brand Chocolate Chips. These chips are dairy and soy free. They are about 60% cocoa and they do have added sugar (sugar cane) but I think they are a good option in very limited amounts.
- You can also chop up a 85%-95% chocolate bar and use it or melt it down and add just a bit of Kal Stevia to it and let it set up and chop it back up . This will give you a lower sugar option while giving you a little bit of stabilizers so that it won't "spread" as the chocolate chunks do when baking. Using this method will decrease Net Carbs by about 2.