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22 Anti-Inflammatory Desserts for Fall

22 Anti-Inflammatory Desserts for Fall

Reviewed by Dietitian Jessica Ball, M.S., RD

For many of us, fall is the season of hot coffee, fallen leaves and holiday cheer. You may find yourself wanting to stay indoors and enjoy your favorite comfort foods, which can sometimes be a trigger for symptoms of chronic inflammation like joint pain, muscle aches and mental fog. One action you can take to help alleviate these symptoms (while still enjoying yourself) is to pack your favorite dishes with nourishing ingredients like fruits, whole grains and healthy fats. Luckily, these delicious recipes are the epitome of cozy and comforting desserts that do some work to help your body combat inflammation. They highlight some of the best fall ingredients like apple, pear and sweet potato. They also feature nuts and whole grains like oats, whole-wheat flour and spelt to help you up your intake of fiber and support a healthy gut. Plus, warm brown spices like cinnamon, cloves and ginger give these treats a fragrant boost of anti-inflammatory compounds. Recipes like our Old-Fashioned Sweet Potato Casserole and Crispy Smashed Apples with Cinnamon Sugar are flavorful, seasonal and nutritious ways to enjoy something sweet this autumn.

Crispy Smashed Apples with Cinnamon Sugar

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Photography / Dera Burreson, Styling / Lauren McAnelly / Holly Rabikis

Toasted pecans, brown sugar and cinnamon combine in a crunchy, nutty topping for these apples. Smashing the fruit helps create a crispy edge. Serve these apples warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Pear Cobbler

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A pear cobbler is a crowd-pleasing dessert that highlights one of fall’s sweetest fruits. Cinnamon, ginger and cardamom give this pear cobbler a sophisticated twist for a quick and easy homemade dessert.

Apple-Pie Bread

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This easy everyday apple-pie bread makes a great breakfast-on-the-go with a cup of coffee. The fragrant spices typical of apple pie and the tender bits of baked apple inside also make it worthy as a healthy after-dinner dessert. Enjoy it warm from the oven with a pat of butter or cream cheese or keep it on your counter for a tasty treat during the week.

Pomegranate-Ginger Meringue Pie

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Ted & Chelsea Cavanaugh

Ted & Chelsea Cavanaugh

This vibrant pie gets its color and enhanced tartness from hibiscus flower powder. You can also skip the meringue and serve with some sweetened whipped cream and fresh pomegranate arils.

Ginger Molasses Cookies

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Photography / Greg DuPree, Styling / Ruth BlackBurn / Julia Bayless

Photography / Greg DuPree, Styling / Ruth BlackBurn / Julia Bayless

The spelt flour in these ginger molasses cookies offers a chewy texture and a nutty flavor that shines with the ginger in this easy holiday cookie recipe.

Baked Cinnamon Apple Slices

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Caitlin Bensel

Caitlin Bensel

These baked cinnamon apple slices have just the right level of tenderness and bite and a gooey apple caramel that forms at the bottom of the pan. Enjoy this healthy dessert spooned over ice cream, with biscuits or served over yogurt—the options with these are endless!

Sweet Potato Pie with Cream Cheese Swirl

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This creamy sweet potato pie recipe is seasoned like a pumpkin pie with plenty of cinnamon and nutmeg and gets nice ginger flavor from the gingersnap crust. For the best results, roast sweet potatoes in the oven; in a pinch, microwave them instead.

Apple Spice Muffins

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Think of crème fraîche as sour cream’s richer, thicker, less-sour sibling. In this healthy muffin recipe, it’s the secret ingredient that gives these muffins a light texture and rich flavor. The batter is made with extra spices and tons of sweet fruit, which means you won’t notice the minimal amount of white sugar.

Pear Custard Pie

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A velvety, light custard surrounds ripe pears in this healthy pear pie recipe. Serve with a dollop of vanilla whipped cream.

Old-Fashioned Sweet Potato Casserole

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Thanksgiving isn’t complete without a homemade sweet potato casserole. We like to sprinkle chopped pecans on top along with the marshmallows for a bit of texture.

Apple Coffee Cake

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Apples lend their sweet-tart flavor to this warm and comforting apple coffee cake. The nutty oat and pecan filling in the middle of the cake also acts as a crispy topping that’s drizzled with a sweet vanilla glaze.

Sweet Potato Bread Pudding with Pecan Praline Sauce

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The dessert menu at Brigtsen’s restaurant in New Orleans offers “Bread Pudding du Jour,” which changes with the seasons. This sweet potato version plays well during the holidays.

Apple Crisp with Cranberries

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Sticking to its food-waste mission, L.A. Kitchen created this dessert to work with almost any fruit you have on hand. We’ve done it here with pears and apples, but you can use berries or even tropical fruits instead. The addition of dried fruit adds a concentrated hit of flavor you won’t get from fresh alone.

Naturally Red Velvet Doughnuts

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Cake batters require a lot of food coloring or they end up looking faded. For these un-fried doughnuts, we use both sweet red beets and powdered freeze-dried pomegranate arils to deliver a rich, natural red color along with bonus antioxidants and fiber.

Hasselback Sweet Potatoes with Marshmallows

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These hasselback sweet potatoes are like mini marshmallow-topped sweet potato casseroles drizzled with sage-infused butter. The hasselback technique, slicing the potato but leaving it whole, makes for a tender potato with a crispy top–the best of both worlds.

Flaky Apple Pie Bars

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Jacob Fox

Jacob Fox

Grab your box of puff pastry for these easy and delicious apple pie bars.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie

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This easy vegan pumpkin pie gets its structure from aquafaba (the leftover water from a can of chickpeas) whipped up into a meringue-like foam. When it’s combined with pumpkin and poured into a gluten-free pecan crust, you would never know beans had anything to do with this vegan pumpkin pie recipe.

This Sweet Potato Dump Cake Has a Crunchy Streusel Topping

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Photographer: Robby Lozano, Food Stylist: Jennifer Wendorf

Photographer: Robby Lozano, Food Stylist: Jennifer Wendorf

This lightly sweetened sweet potato dump cake with a crumble topping is similar to a sweet potato casserole but with a firm, cake-like texture. If you can’t find a spice cake mix, you can use a vanilla cake mix and add cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, ginger and cloves.

No-Sugar-Added Mini Apple Pies

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These delectable single-serving tarts are gluten-free and sweetened with dates instead of refined added sugars. Top with a little unsweetened whipped cream to take this special–yet healthy–dessert to the next level.

Almond-Apple Trifles

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Pomegranate juice, low-fat yogurt, and light dessert topping help keep this nutty home-style dessert recipe low in added sugar.

Apple-Crisp-Stuffed Baked Apples

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This apple dessert marries the best parts of apple crisp with a baked apple to make an adorable and tasty sweet treat. Cooking an apple crisp inside an apple is a wonderful treat in summer with a scoop of ice cream, or in fall after an apple-picking trip.

Baked Pears

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Photography / Caitlin Bensel, Food Styling / Kady Wohlfarth

Photography / Caitlin Bensel, Food Styling / Kady Wohlfarth

These easy baked pears are soft with just a little bite and are perfect with the delicious buttery spiced syrup spooned over the top.

Read the original article on Eating Well.