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Sweet treats, microwave chocolate cake for one and simple indulgences

This blog is dedicated to Tom B. His Facebook post last weekend was my inspiration. Tom posted “Gotta try this!!” and shared a link from Tip Hero – Rich Chocolate Mug Cake. It’s a really short fun video that has garnered millions of views. I watched it a few times myself.

Always looking for simple sweet treats to share with my clients, it was an opportunity to find another. Nothing wrong with the occasional indulgence. I’m a big believer in enjoying eating and making conscious decisions. Guilt-free eating is something I subscribe to.

There was a time in my life—before I became a registered dietitian nutritionist—when I had a good food/bad food mentality. (If interested, you can read My Story.)  I no longer fear food and have embraced the all-food-can-fit mindset.

Nonetheless, I still look at a recipe and wonder how it can be better, healthier. It’s just my nature. Since I was at my computer, had easy access to my nutrition analysis software, and it was a very simple recipe with few ingredients, I ran the nutrition report. Here is the analysis of TipHero’s version:

Rich Chocolate Mug Cake by TipHero

Rich Chocolate Mug Cake
by TipHero

I knew it wasn’t going to be pretty, especially when I saw the 3 tablespoons of oil added to the recipe. One tablespoon—regardless the oil (by the way, there is no such thing as low calorie oil)—is 120 calories per tablespoon.

A common substitution for lightening up a recipe is to substitute plain yogurt or applesauce for oil. I ran the numbers. Whoa. What a difference. Here is my version.

Neily's version - Microwave Chocolate Cake

Neily’s version – Rich Chocolate Cake

How good could it be?

Since the ingredients were on hand, I made it. Here’s the quick video.

Not bad. Fantastic? Well, here’s the deal. There are cake people and there are frosting people. People who know me know I’ll always opt for the corner slice of cake. You know, the one loaded with frosting. If you ever eat cake with me you might ask, hey Neily, want some cake with that frosting? I didn’t have any frosting. I think with a little frosting or ice cream, it would have been fantastic. But on its own, pretty good.

I did make the original for comparison. Verdict? There was definitely a difference in mouthfeel. It was better but not out-of-this-world better.

As I mentioned earlier, occasional indulgences are to be enjoyed.

Some final thoughts
  1. Make the original if you prefer, but cut the recipe in half unless sharing with someone.
  2. For substitution of the oil I used nonfat plain Greek yogurt. It doesn’t have to be Greek, it’s what I had. You can also use applesauce in place of oil.
  3. Consider doing half oil, half yogurt to get a bit of mouthfeel fat provides.
  4. Instead of a bowl with tapered sides, use a mug. I think the shape of the bowl I used dried out the cake a wee bit. But I used the glass bowl so you could see the ingredients better.
  5. Cook for slightly less time for a bit moister cake.
  6. The original recipe used baking soda which I used as well. I’m not an expert baker so maybe could have used baking powder? I’ve seen similar recipes use baking powder.

If you make it, will you let me know?

Here are the recipes for both TipHero’s and my version

Rich chocolate mug cake tiphero - recipes for both

Would you like some sweet treats? Click the button below for perfect portion-controlled-for-one treats! And tell me, what are your favorite treats? Comment below.


Helping people build a healthy relationship with food so they end the diet cycle forever without giving up their most pleasurable food…that is my focus.  – Jennifer Neily, MS, RDN, LD, FAND

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