Lean recipes with baking powder

Lean Cake with Apples, Semolina and Nuts

Stoyanka Rusenova

Quick Cake with Apples for the Nativity Fast

Pancakes are a universally delicious breakfast food, but are often skipped because they can be carb-heavy or sugary indulgences that steer you away from healthy eating habits.

But with the addition of nutrient-dense and delicious Lean, these banana pancakes can pack your breakfast with the protein and energy necessary for the perfect start to your day. You can even use them as a nutritious post-workout snack that can help you build and maintain muscle mass! Plus, they can be made ahead of time, frozen, and reheated for maximum convenience.

By adding just one scoop of Lean to this delicious pancake recipe, you’re adding 10 grams of protein along with many essential amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and digestive enzymes. And, since that single scoop serving of Lean has just 50-60 calories, you get all the nutrients and protein you need to keep you feeling fuller longer, without adding unnecessary calories to the recipe*.

The other ingredients in this Lean recipe are also thoughtfully chosen. Bananas are not only delicious, but they pack a nutritional punch. An article by Authority Nutrition states that bananas can help to moderate blood sugar levels and improve digestive health. They also contain powerful antioxidants and may improve heart health as well.

Cinnamon also offers a wide range of nutritional benefits and tastes delicious! Altogether, this Lean recipe is a win-win-win.

Make sure to try our Banana Lean Pancakes with Lean Chocolate add variety to your power-packed, gut-healthy meal. Trust us, it’ll feel like an indulgence—but one that comes without the guilt!

Makes 2 Servings


1 banana, mashed

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup flour

1 scoop Lean Vanilla or Lean Chocolate

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Coconut oil, for cooking


1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the mashed banana, milk, and vanilla extract, then set aside.

2. In a separate small bowl, mix together the flour, Lean, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon.

3. Incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Add more milk if the batter appears too thick.

4. Melt coconut oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat, or use a griddle. Pour ¼ cup of batter into the pan. Flip the pancake once bubbles have formed and popped (approximately 2 minutes per side.)

5. Top with fresh fruit, nuts, or anything else you desire!

Lean Features & Benefits

Lean is a power-packed shake designed to give you the nutritional support you need to reach and maintain your weight loss goals. Lean’s blend of nutrient-dense ingredients provides complete nutrition to aid in maintaining a healthy weight, building and maintaining lean muscle, and supporting gut health*.

  • 10g of protein and digestive enzymes*
  • Full spectrum of amino acids
  • Helps maintain lean muscle mass*

Contact your Xyngular Distributor or login to your Xyngular account and stock up on Lean today!

These tips will have you turning out perfect healthy baking every time.

  • Always measure out all ingredients before you start. And always sieve flour before adding.
  • Use accurate measurements: 1 cup means a level cup and 1 teaspoon a level teaspoon. In Healthy Food Guide, our cup measurements are loosely-packed cups, so spoon dry ingredients into cups or you could easily over-measure.
  • Always preheat the oven to the temperature stated.
  • Non-stick tins, pans and trays or flexible silicon bakeware are healthier cooking equipment choices.
  • Invest in canola oil spray. It is great for greasing baking tins.
  • When folding in flour and fruits, use a large metal spoon. Add the flour using a figure-of-8 movement.
  • Don’t over-mix, especially when using low-fat cooking methods, or you could end up with a tough textured cake or baked sweet item. Mix gently only until ingredients are just combined.
  • To check if large cakes are cooked, stick a skewer into the cake’s centre. If it comes out clean, the cake is done.
  • Cooking times are guidelines and vary slightly depending on your oven. Fan-assisted ovens are faster, so check halfway through the prescribed cooking time and don’t be afraid to cook for less or more time.
  • Using apple purée is a great way to add moisture to lower-fat cakes. You will find purée in the chutney aisle or with canned fruits in the supermarket. If making a sponge-style cake, try replacing half of the fat with the same weight in apple purée.
  • Use puréed canned peaches or mashed bananas in the same way as puréed apples. In cakes, a half-and-half substitution for fat works well, for example: if the cake has 200g butter, reduce this to 100g reduced-fat spread and add 100g apple or peach purée or mashed bananas.
  • Wholemeal flour can substitute for white flour in baking and adds fibre. Experiment with recipes: start by replacing one-quarter of the white flour with wholemeal flour. Up to two-thirds of the flour in most recipes could be wholemeal.
  • Reduced-fat spread will work instead of butter in most cakes and slices. Use spread with 60 per cent fat or more. The very low-fat spreads are not suitable for baking.
  • Grated fruit and vegetables such as apple, carrot, courgette and beetroot can replace some of the sugar and fat in baking recipes.

Sugar can be essential to the texture, colour and body of various foods but often you can reduce the amount in the recipe by one-quarter to one-third without noticing. Use these guidelines to reduce sugar when baking:

  • Cakes and biscuits: 1/2 cup sugar to 1 cup flour
  • Muffins and breads without yeast: 1 tablespoon sugar to 1 cup flour
  • Breads (with yeast): 1 teaspoon sugar to 1 cup flour
  • Added chocolate: reduce the amount and add some cocoa

Other ways to reduce sugar include using:

  • Fruit purée
  • Spices that sweeten: cardamom, coriander, ginger, mace, nutmeg
  • Essences that sweeten: peppermint, vanilla
  • Alternative sweetener (read the label to make sure it’s suitable and to use the right amount)

Consuming a healthy diet is the first step in fostering good health. Healthy diets include eating more fruits and vegetables, replacing refined foods with whole grain foods, reducing salt and sugar intake, and limiting alcohol and fat consumption.

But eating healthy is not limited to adding fruits and vegetables to your diet. It also has a lot to do with the method of cooking. The cooking method affects the nutritional value and fat content of the dish.

One of the best ways to reduce fat consumption is to adopt a healthier cooking technique. If you are watching your weight or are suffering from a chronic condition like diabetes or hypertension, then stay clear of deep-fried dishes. You must switch from frying to baking instead.

Baking is a much-preferred cooking technique recommended by health experts to make the dishes healthy for you and your family. Besides bread and desserts, baking can also be used to cook seafood, poultry, lean meat, and vegetables. Let us now understand why baking is the most preferred cooking option.

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Why is Baking Healthier than Frying?

Cooks choose different cooking methods like baking, grilling, deep frying, stir-frying, etc., depending on the type of food they want to make and cooking time involved. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages. However, baking is the healthiest cooking method out of all techniques. Let us understand why baking is a healthier option.

  • High Calories: Frying involves cooking food in oil or fat which is high in calories. Whether it is deep-frying, shallow-frying, or stir-frying, all involve the use of added fat that browns the food. All involve submerging food in hot oil for cooking. Absorption of oil while frying adds to the calories count of food making it unhealthy.
  • Heart disease and cancer: Deep-fried foods, such as French fries and samosa, offer little or no nutritional value and put you at high risk of health conditions like heart disease and cancer. This is because of deep-frying and pan-frying lead to high absorption of added fat and the formation of acrylamide, a carcinogen (cancer-causing substance). The high temperature in frying causes the starch in the food to convert to carcinogens. This makes frying very unhealthy.
  • Damage to heart, kidneys, and lungs: Deep frying at high temperatures with starchy foods can lead to oxidation of oils. Oxidized oils can be damaging to your heart, lungs, and kidneys. It can also lead to high blood pressure and atherosclerosis.
  • Obesity, stroke, and diabetes: Many deep-fried foods found in restaurants and packaged foods are cooked in partially-hydrogenated oils like lard to increase their shelf life and enhance the taste. Intake of these oils can reduce the effectiveness of your immune system and promote obesity, stroke, and diabetes.
  • Cuts Down on Calorie Consumption: Baking foods cut down on your intake of fats and calories which help you to maintain a healthy weight and diet. Baking is a dry-heat cooking method in which food is ‘roasted’ at high temperatures in the oven. Baking is often referred to as ‘roasting’ because moisture within the food is converted to steam that combines with the dry heat of the oven to cook the food. It requires little or no added fat. Moreover, any fat will drain out during baking if you use a roasting rack.
  • No Adverse Reactions: As baking requires no added oil, it does not cause any reactions in foods or any oxidation, making it a healthier option. All meats, fish, and vegetables can be cooked by baking. In addition, dough products, such as bread loaves, are better suited to baking.
  • Reduces Health Problems: Since baking requires little or no added oil, there is a reduced risk of heart disease and other unhealthy conditions.
  • Retains Nutrients: Baking helps retain the nutrients in foods without adding any extra salt or fat.
  • Captures the Flavour: Baking helps capture and infuse the original, unique flavors of all ingredients present in the dish. This makes the final baked good flavourful and enticing.
  • Supports Special Diets and Promotes Healthy Lifestyle: Baking supports people who want to maintain a healthy lifestyle or are on special diets or weight loss programs.

While weighing the benefits and negative aspects of frying and baking techniques, it is important to note that frying adds a considerable amount of fat to foods while ‘little to no fat’ is necessary for baking. When you have to decide between frying and baking your foods, choose to bake your food items instead.

Health-conscious people and those undergoing special diets benefit from the lower fat content in baked foods, while still enjoying the tenderness and flavor of this healthy cooking method. For example, a typically fried samosa has over 240 calories, whereas one fully baked samosa has under 85 calories i.e. around 1/3 of the fried version. Therefore, switching to a healthier food alternative isn’t too difficult!

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Quick Tips to Make Baked Goods Healthy & Tasty

  • You can use marinades, fresh hot peppers, citrus juices, and fresh or dried herbs to add spice to your meal rather than relying on fat to produce flavor. For example, you can simply top baked fish with lemon juice and black pepper, or marinade it in a mixture of olive oil and spices before baking to create a flavourful dish.
  • You can satisfy your cravings even with smaller portions by using high-quality ingredients for a more flavorful product. For example, use vanilla beans instead of vanilla extract. Opt for high-quality chocolate and make sure your spices are fresh for achieving the boldest flavor in your dish.

Try my popular Baked Recipes

The cooking method is a very important factor when you’re trying to achieve or maintain a healthy diet. Frying foods can be harmful to your health due to the intake of unnecessary fats. Baking helps to control the level of fat in your food. This helps you to maintain a healthy diet and optimum body weight.

I am a Baking Instructor, Blogger, YouTuber, and Recipe Creator. I love to experiment with my camera tell stories through my pictures.

Inspiration for working a little extra nutrition into your muffins, cakes, cookies, and scones.

Healthy baking recipes are a great way to get creative in the kitchen. Finding ways to enrich both the nutritional content and the deliciousness of your baked goods and desserts can be fun, and lets you focus more on what you can add to a recipe in terms of taste and texture (as opposed to what you can cut out).

A lot of recipes do this naturally—think about nuts in brownies and cookies, berries in muffins, or oats in cookies and fruit crisps. Abbey Sharp, R.D., of Abbey’s Kitchen, tells SELF that she loves baking with nut butters and seeds like flax, hemp, and chia. The fat, fiber, and protein in these ingredients can make for baked goods that are more filling and provide a steadier stream of energy, Sharp explains.

It can also be fun to play with alternative flours, like whole wheat, oat, or almond. Hartley likes mixing those in with all-purpose flour to create some textural and nutritional variety. Sharp looks for “creative ways to use naturally sweet foods to add body, texture and flavor,” like ripe bananas or dates.

And don’t forget that it’s OK for a recipe to be 100 percent about deliciousness and 0 percent about nutrition. “Sometimes the healthiest thing that you can do is really to eat the thing that you want!” as Hartley puts it.

A note about the word healthy here: We know that healthy is a complicated concept. Not only can it mean different things to different people, it’s a word that’s pretty loaded (and sometimes fraught), thanks to the diet industry’s influence on the way we think about food. At SELF, when we talk about food being healthy, we’re primarily talking about foods that are nutritious, filling, and satisfying. But it also depends on your preferences, your culture, what’s accessible to you, and so much more. We selected these recipes with those basic criteria in mind, while also trying to appeal to a wide variety of nutritional needs and taste buds.

Carolyn Todd is a holistic health and life coach for people with diabetes. She was previously a health editor at SELF, and her work has appeared in other outlets, including The New York Times and Men’s Health magazine.

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