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These Chocolate Desserts Won't Mess With Your Blood Sugar (At Least, Not As Much)

Eliza Sullivan
Food Writer
By Eliza Sullivan
Food Writer
Eliza Sullivan is a food writer and SEO editor at mindbodygreen. She writes about food, recipes, and nutrition—among other things. She studied journalism at Boston University.
Image by Dobránska Renáta / Stocksy
January 1, 2022

As someone with one heck of a sweet tooth, I don't believe in cutting out desserts—just in picking those that are better for me (and my blood sugar levels). I've learned that the key is picking dessert recipes with the right sweeteners, in particular ones that fall low on the scale known as the glycemic index.

Just what is the glycemic index? It's effectively a scoring system that rates foods by their potential impact on blood sugar response—how much glucose will end up in the bloodstream, and how quickly. A food that releases sugar quickly and causes a dramatic blood sugar spike would be high on the scale, while a food that causes a more steady and overall lower stream of sugars to reach the blood would score lower. In general, foods that score 55 or lower are considered low GI, while anything over 70 is considered high.

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While any sweet will cause some blood sugar rise, picking strategic recipes (like these five) can mean enjoying your dessert knowing your body's response won't be quite as dramatic—which is a good thing for your health:

1.

3-Ingredient Chocolate Truffles

These truffles are doubly great for a sweet treat: They're super easy to make and have no extra sugar—beyond whatever is in the chocolate you pick. That's why something around an 80% cocoa is ideal, but you can also use whatever you have at home.

Get the recipe here.

2.

One-Bowl Brownies

These keto-friendly brownies call for an erythritol-based sweetener, which is common in the keto diet. Because erythritol isn't metabolized, its glycemic index score is effectively null, making this recipe super blood-sugar-friendly.

Get the recipe here.

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3.

Seeded Chocolate-Tahini Bark

For something with a satisfying crunch in addition to sweetness, this layered bark is the perfect treat. It features flax, chia, hemp, and pumpkin seeds alongside dark chocolate. Depending on the dark chocolate you pick, this recipe may have a very minimal impact on blood sugar.

Get the recipe here.

4.

Collagen Chocolate Mousse

Get some bonus benefits with your dessert: This mousse recipe uses mbg's chocolate beauty & gut collagen+ plus a bit of extra unsweetened cocoa powder for the chocolate flavor. You're given the option of adding a touch of agave (which has a low glycemic index at only 17), but the natural sweetness of the banana in the base may be enough (depending on your taste).

Get the recipe here.

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5.

Choco-cado pudding pops

If you're an ice cream super fan, these pops are for you. They're sweetened with dates, which score a 42 on the glycemic index but also have other nutrients like fiber, which helps support digestion. Using avocado in the base also means they're super creamy—just like a good chocolate ice cream should be.

Get the recipe here.

None of these chocolate recipes tickle your fancy? We've also got a list of a whopping 36 healthy brownie recipes ready to go, which you can find here for all your baking adventures (plus, some of them are no-bake, too!).

Eliza Sullivan
Eliza Sullivan
Food Writer

Eliza Sullivan is an SEO Editor at mindbodygreen, where she writes about food, recipes, and nutrition—among other things. She received a B.S. in journalism and B.A. in english literature with honors from Boston University, and she has previously written for Boston Magazine, TheTaste.ie, and SUITCASE magazine.