Figure-Friendly Brownie Recipe

The typical brownie recipe calls for 1 to 4 sticks of unsalted butter, 4 to 6 whole, large eggs and 1 1/2 to 2 cups of sugar. Translation: tons of empty calories for a few moments of fudgy satisfaction. While there's nothing wrong with an indulgence here and there, you can still get your chocolate fix without overdoing it.

The key is to use tricks to enhance a relatively small amount of chocolate. This is accomplished in the recipe below by adding coffee. The roasted, slightly acidic brew compliments the earthiness of the chocolate; in addition, the bitterness of the coffee balances the sugary notes of the semi-sweet chocolate (note: This is why this recipe doesn't call for 70-percent dark chocolate, which is much more bitter.). Other easy, low-calorie, flavor-enhancing tricks:

  • Sprinkle the top of brownies with a pinch of coarse sea salt or Fleur de Sel
  • Add citrus zest or juice to the recipe—in this case, orange pairs well with chocolate
  • Add a teaspoon or two of flavored liquor to the recipe—in this case, orange, raspberry or hazelnut liquor would work well

More: Chocolate Diet Fact and Fiction

Brownie Bites Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled slightly
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons ground almonds
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground coffee
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, optional
  • Mini chocolate chips, for tops of brownie

Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Spray two mini muffin tins with cooking spray and set aside.

Whisk egg yolks and sugar with a hand-held (or upright) mixer until pale and creamy. Stir in cooled melted chocolate, ground almonds, coffee and walnuts (if using).

More: Your Favorite Frozen Caffeinated Drinks Made Healthier

Whisk egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold two-thirds of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, taking special care not to deflate the egg whites too much. Fold the rest of the egg whites into the mixture. Fill the mini muffin cups until the chocolate mix is just below the top of each rim on the tray. Top each cup with four chocolate chips. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before popping each brownie out (loosen the edges with a knife for easier removal). Makes 18 to 20 brownie bites.

More: 10 Ways to Find Hidden Sugar in Your Diet

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