Ice cream sundaes are the best summer indulgence every day of the week. Each spoon spoils you with cool, sweet ice cream plus sticky chocolate or caramel sauce and other fruity, nutty or salty flavors. An ice cream sundae has something for almost every taste. Unfortunately, even standard versions contain too many calories, fat and sugar: According to FastFoodNutrition.org, a small hot fudge sundae from a popular ice cream parlor chain contains 300 calories, 10 grams of fat and 36 grams of sugar.
Legend has it that the first sundae was made in a drugstore in the 1880s that restricted ice cream sales on Sundays, says What’s Cooking America. A customer asked for chocolate syrup on a plate of vanilla ice cream instead. The result, later called “ice cream sundae”, was an immediate sensation and is still popular today. You can embrace the ingenuity that led to the first sundae to create your own version that will do your waistline as well as it will satisfy your taste buds!
Read on for our step-by-step guide on how to build a healthier sundae:
1. First base
Start your healthier sundae by making a serving of our delicious “nice” cream. It’s quick and easy – no special equipment or laborious agitation required. You just put a frozen banana with unsweetened almond milk in a food processor or blender. For extra creaminess, add some non-fat Greek plain yogurt. After you’ve beaten the ingredients together, you’ll have a thick, cool, creamy base for your sundae. If you like “soft serve” ice cream, it’s ready to eat right away. For a firmer consistency, place the “nice” cream in the freezer for about an hour.
Get the recipe for our 4-ingredient Banana Nice Cream here! >
2. Mix ins
While you are making your base, you can add other ingredients to enhance the flavor. Add a few drops of vanilla extract for a classic taste. Give it a minty taste with mint extract or fresh mint leaves. Mix in frozen blueberries or strawberries, which not only give your mix a taste boost, but also provide you with valuable antioxidants. Try our recipe for Mint Chocolate Chip Nice Cream here! >
3. Sugar-free solutions
Just like in the drugstore all those years ago, it’s the chocolate syrup that turns an ice cream sundae into an ice cream sundae. You can enjoy a traditional chocolate or caramel mug if you use sugar-free syrups. According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), one tablespoon of a popular brand of “Lite” sugar-free chocolate syrup has less than 10 calories and no added sugar. If you love caramel as much as we do, try ours Salted Caramel Nice Cream with the sugar-free sauce in the bottom and drizzled over it
4. Fruity aromas
Whether fresh or frozen, whole fruits add flavor and natural sweetness to your sundae. Bonus: Whole fruits are full of fiber and nutrients to keep you happy and healthy. Aside from berries, you can also try lemon peel (which we added to ours Blueberry and lemon sundae), Pineapple pieces, sliced peaches or chopped mangoes. Fresh figs are an unusually good addition to sundae because they are so sweet. Do you love an old-fashioned banana split? We have reinvented it so that you can get in without hesitation. Get the healthy recipe here! >
5. Nutty ideas
Peanuts, almonds, pistachios, and walnuts add a dash of hearty flavor, a light crunch, and a bit of healthy fats and proteins to your sundae. Make sure to use unsalted raw or dry roast options so you don’t pile up extra oils or sodium. A pinch of unsweetened dried coconut flakes can add a tropical flavor to your sundae without adding lots of extra calories or sugar.
6. Make tough decisions
When crunch in your sundae is your thing, sprinkle a tablespoon or two of common unsweetened rice buffet breakfast cereal on top. You can also crumble our crispy Nutriflakes cereals into little pieces! Along with the satisfying crunch, you also take in fiber to keep you full for hours.
7. Cookies on the site
Another advantage of the “beautiful” cream itself: It is so healthy that you can combine it with one of our delicious snacks! When we made ours Caramel Toffee Crunch Ice Cream Sundae, we overdid it by mixing a pack Toffee Crunch Cookies into the base and it became an instant favorite. We have many other delicious cookies to choose from, so you get exactly the flavor blend you love. Try ours Lemon cool biscuit in our Blueberry and lemon sundae. Get creative with our Chocolate chip cookies, Snickerdoodle cookie or Peanut Butter Cookies.
8. Round off
Classic whipped cream contains tons of excess calories and saturated fats. Instead, equip your healthier sundae with some light or non-dairy whipped cream (coconut or almond-based), which tend to be lower in calories, fat, and sugar than regular whipped cream. According to Cooking Light magazine, a popular coconut whipped cream contains only 10 calories in a two-tablespoon serving. Hold on to the maraschino cherry and finish your sundae with a fresh sweet cherry. Dig in!