Fat-free vegan cooking

I have a relative who is vegan, but also will not eat fats or oils of any kind. Is there some information out there on fat-free vegan cooking and baking? Is there any way of letting him eat cake? Thanks!

  • Posted by: louisez
  • November 7, 2012


louisez November 12, 2012
I'm sorry if I was the cause of lost pumpkin bread. Baking without eggs and fat seems to be a daunting proposition -- at least to me. The bread pudding has the advantage of not trying to duplicate something that can't be duplicated. I think I'll give it a whirl. And maybe a mousse that fits all the qualifications. Thanks again.
louisez November 12, 2012
Dr. Babs -- Thank you so much. the NY Times recipe sounds perfect. Sorry I didn't answer your last e-mail -- or what I think was your last e-mail. For some reason it wasn't legible. The Times recipe ought to be great for vegans and non-vegans, too. Thanks again.
drbabs November 12, 2012
You're welcome! The last email was my pathetic attempt at turning mrslarkin's pumpkin bread into a no-fat cake; it was not very good. My husband and I each ate a piece and then threw it in the garbage can.
drbabs November 12, 2012
Here's a recipe from today's NY Times that was developed by Chloe Coscarelli (a vegan chef who won "Cupcake Wars" with vegan cupcakes. She uses coconut milk--something I didn't think of because i don't like coconut--but I think you can get lowfat coconut milk.
drbabs November 10, 2012
I've been thinking about this a lot(obviously) and I was thinking of trying the pumpkin bread without applesauce but in a 9 inch cake pan. It does have a lot of sugar in it, which makes me wonder if your friend would even eat it. I would probably use white whole wheat flour and a cup of brown sugar. Then I was thinking you could melt dark chocolate and kind of drizzle it over the
top with a fork. So you'd have a pretty cake that would be relatively within his dietary restrictions.
louisez November 10, 2012
amysarah -- no one understands the logic of his do's/don'ts. chocolate is okay, nuts not -- you could go nuts trying to figure it out. i think you're right about not running an obstacle course -- i just want things to be pleasant. the marinated dried fruit might have been nice, but he won't have any alcohol, even if it's cooked out. thanks for the help, in any case.
amysarah November 10, 2012
Not sure I understand your friend's do's/don'ts - for instance, if naturally occurring fat in chocolate is okay, why not the fat in nuts? Having said that, I don't think I'd be inclined to run an obstacle course; rather would simply go for something that's vegan and fat free without complicated work-arounds. Not a lot of choices come to mind, but you could do seasonal and dried fruit marinated in a liqueur or red wine/port, with spices, sugar, orange peel or whatnot. Also delicious: dip dried pears or pineapple in melted good dark chocolate and let cool. (I'd say to also sprinkle it with toasted almonds, hazelnuts, or coconut....but that's a no go here.)
louisez November 10, 2012
Thanks, drbabs. I may give the pumpkin christmas bread a try with applesauce (that is, after the current major snowstorm stops and I can get to the store). Alas, he will not eat nuts -- despite the fact that tree nuts, at least in relatively small amounts, are healthy foods.
drbabs November 10, 2012
Also, this recipe has no eggs or dairy and only 1/3 cup of oil. Someone in the comments used applesauce as a substitute for oil. I've made this (using oil) and it's wonderful. Maybe try it with applesauce?
drbabs November 10, 2012

drbabs November 10, 2012
Will he eat nuts? You could make a fruit crumble with oats and nuts in the topping. I know nuts have fat in them, but some people who follow that diet plan (usually those without heart disease) will occasionally eat walnuts.
louisez November 9, 2012
Unfortunately, dairy is out -- so no frozen yoghurt. I'm thinking of giving up on cake, and making mousse (fat- and dairy-free) -- but your idea about fruit might be good to serve with it. Thanks ATG117.
ATG117 November 11, 2012
Yes, sorry about that. The vegan thing must have momentarily escaped me.
ATG117 November 9, 2012
Given the egg and fat constraints, you may want to consider roasting or poaching fruit, which you can serve with fat free frozen yogurt. Another idea, which I normally wouldn't suggest, is the fat free brownie mixes you can buy in the supermarket, like no pudge. They're good for what they are, and if you don't want to risk wasting time and money on a flop, in this instance, I'd consider.
louisez November 9, 2012
Thanks jilhil and ATG117. I'll check out the blog, and think about the applesauce sub. And I'll have to check out egg substitutes as well -- at least in recipes that call for eggs (though egg-less recipes may be a better bet).
ATG117 November 9, 2012
You can substitute sugar free applesauce in banana bread, zucchini bread, and pumpkin bread with good results. I've done it before. I've heard of subbing prune butter for fat in oil based chocolate cakes, but I've never experimented with that.
jilhil November 9, 2012
Another blog to check is fatfreevegan.com
louisez November 8, 2012
Been there, done that -- to no avail. You're quite right -- but there's only so much any of us can do under certain circumstances.
Linn November 8, 2012
Please find a way to let your relative know that no fat is not a healthy way to eat. Some fat is essential.
louisez November 7, 2012
It was kind of you, in any case. I wish Earth Balance or coconut oil were acceptable. But alas....
Monita November 7, 2012
Ah - you're right about the Earth Balance/fat - too focused on the vegan part of the question - sorry
louisez November 7, 2012
Earth Balance's nutritional chart says it has fat, and, alas, added fat is evidently a big no-no -- even if chocolate is okay. Earth Balance may be okay for most vegans, but not okay in this instance. Ditto coconut oil. But thanks just the same.
Monita November 7, 2012
Earth Balance makes a natural shortening that is vegan and can be used in baking
louisez November 7, 2012
Thanks to all of you. Though he will not eat fats or oil, he will eat chocolate -- he seems to distinguish between added fats/oils and chocolate. Hence salvation -- thanks to you -- may well be at hand. The mousse really is wonderful -- I ought to have thought of that. I have lots to explore now, as well. I've been hoping for some kind of cake -- tough without oil or butter or eggs. I'll have to see what I can -- or cannot -- do. Thanks again.
drbabs November 9, 2012
Here are some recipes that might work for you:
drbabs November 7, 2012
Here's a whole mess of fat-free vegan recipes by a blogger who specifically promotes that kind of cooking and eating: http://www.happyhealthylonglife.com/happy_healthy_long_life/recipes/
Also check out Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz http://www.amazon.com/Appetite-Reduction-Filling-Low-Fat-Recipes/dp/1600940498/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1352315353&sr=8-1&keywords=appetite+for+reduction
and The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn http://www.amazon.com/Engine-Diet-Firefighters-Save-Your-Life-Cholesterol/dp/0446506699/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1352315405&sr=1-1&keywords=engine+2+diet+cookbook
and the Forks over Knives cookbook http://www.amazon.com/Forks-Over-Knives-Cookbook-Plant-Based/dp/1615190619/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1352315445&sr=1-4&keywords=esselstyn

(P.S. I have not cooked from the blog or any of these cookbooks so I can't attest to the quality of any of the recipes.)
jsdunbar November 7, 2012
You can use applesauce instead of oil in cake recipes
Marian B. November 7, 2012
This is also an AMAZING, fat free, vegan mousse: http://food52.com/recipes/16044_herv_this_chocolate_mousse
drbabs November 7, 2012
That is a wonderful recipe, but bittersweet chocolate has about 12 grams of fat per ounce, so it's definitely not fat free.
Marian B. November 7, 2012
Louisez, here's a recipe for chocolate cherry mini loaves that use nut butter as the fat. This could be a great option for your relative, and the linked website has many other low-fat vegan recipes: http://www.theppk.com/2012/02/cherry-chocolate-chunk-mini-loaves/
Recommended by Food52