WW Recipe of the Day: 13 Healthy Low fat Biscotti Recipes
Are you looking for light healthy cookies you can enjoy without guilt?
Biscotti are one of my favorite sweet indulgences.
What's not to like?
They're easy to make, very satisfying and relatively light and healthy since they're lower in fat and sugar than most cookies. They're also usually packed with heart healthy nuts.
Here in North America, biscotti refers to a specific type of Italian cookie or biscuit, that is derived from the Tuscan cantucci, a hard almond flavored cookie that is baked twice and usually served with the sweet Italian dessert wine, vin santo.
How Many Calories and WW Points in Biscotti?
Most of these low fat biscotti recipes weigh in with between 50 and 100 calories and 3 Points or less.
How Long Can Homemade Biscotti Last?
Homemade Biscotti make great gifts because they can last up two two weeks if kept in a well-sealed container, so they're perfect for shipping. You can also keep them for several months in the freezer, again in a well sealed container.
Can I Freeze Biscotti?
As noted above, Biscotti keep very well in a sealed container. You can also freeze the dough if you want to make some fresh at a later date. Just roll the dough into a log shape, wrap it in plastic and then place in a freezer bag before popping in the freezer. When you are ready to make it, thaw it on a cookie sheet, flatten and bake as instructed in your recipe.
What is the Origin of Biscotti?
According to Giada De Laurentiis, In her cookbook Everyday Italian: 125 Simple and Delicious Recipes , the origin of biscotti dates back to the time of Columbus, and were eaten by the sailors because they last for a long time without going bad. The person who invented biscotti is believed to have been a Tuscan baker.
Traditional Italian biscotti tend to be extremely hard and most often dipped in vin santo. Biscotti typically available in the US tend to be less hard, but are still good for dipping, although, here we are much more apt to dip them in our espresso or coffee, than sweet wine.
During the past several years, biscotti have become wildly popular, particularly in coffee shops. But the truth is they don't compare to homemade biscotti, which are so much tastier and more interesting than the kind from the store. It seems like the flavor variations are endless and their texture can vary from slightly chewy to hard and crunchy, depending on the biscotti recipe.
How Do You Make Biscotti?
Recipes for the best biscotti, start with stiff sticky dough that is shaped into long logs or slabs and then baked on a cookie sheet. Once cooled, the logs are sliced on a diagonal and baked again. The longer they are baked, the harder they will become.
The nice thing about biscotti is that they can be made and baked in stages. You can make the dough and store it in the refrigerator for a day or two. Then you can form the dough into logs and bake them one day and then store the biscotti slabs at room temperature for up to a day before slicing them and baking them a second time. This flexibility makes biscotti a perfect cookie for the busy home baker.
Here's a fun video showing how to make Katie's Italian 90-year-old Grandma's Biscotti...
Here's what you need to make about 3 dozen of Grandma's Biscotti shown in the video:
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- -¼ tsp. almond extract
- ¾ cups chopped almonds
- 2 Tbsp. orange zest
Video Biscotti Instructions:
- Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
- With an electric mixer , beat the butter and sugar together until light and smooth, then add in the eggs one at a time. Then add in the vanilla and almond extracts.
- Remove bowl from the electric mixer and then with a large wooden spoon , mix in the almond and orange zest. Add in the dry ingredients and fold them in until the dough is just combined.
- Take the dough out of the bowl and halve it.
- Roll each into a log shape (about 13-by-2 inches long) and pat them down to smooth. Put them on a cookie sheet.
- Bake (on the middle rack in the oven) for about 35 minutes, until the loaves are golden and just starting to crack on top. Then remove from oven and let the loaves cool for 10 minutes.
- Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Cut each loaf diagonally into slices with a serrated knife then lay them cut side up back on the cookie sheet. Bake them for 7 minutes, then flip each biscotti slice, and bake for another 7 minutes. The biscotti should be crispy and golden brown now! Let them cool completely and then ENJOY! 🙂
Before we get to our favorite easy low fat biscotti recipes, here are some tricks and tips to make sure the time you spend baking biscotti goes off without a hitch.
Biscotti Making Tips and Tricks
- Biscotti are one category of cookies that are best made with an electric stand mixer because the dough is so sturdy. Hand held mixers often don't have the power to mix the thick, sticky biscotti dough.
- Dust your work surface and your hands with flour before beginning to try to form the dough into logs. It will be a sticky, messy job, but one that is well worth it. Add small amounts of more flour as necessary until you have shaped them into the size log/slab specified in your recipe.
- Always begin with a cool baking sheet . If it is hot from the oven, your biscotti dough will melt and spread before it has a chance to bake.
- Use sturdy baking sheets, either rimmed or not. Many books suggest baking cookies on rimless pans, but I have always had good success with rimmed pans.
- Line your baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone mat, which will help to bake the cookies more evenly and make cleanup much easier.
- Bake your biscotti in the middle of the oven for best results. If baked on the bottom, they are apt to burn.
- To keep biscotti crisp store them in an airtight container.
- Biscotti make a great gift since they are sturdy and keep well. I like to give biscotti wrapped in cellophane bags tied with ribbon as Christmas gifts, along with bottles of vin santo or bags of coffee beans. With so many delicious easy biscotti recipes to choose from, the flavor options seem endless.
13 Healthy Low Fat Biscotti Recipes perfect for Weight Watchers
Here's a collection of 13 wonderful healthy low fat biscotti recipes I've gathered from all over the 'net to inspire you.
1) Low Fat Gingerbread Biscotti - One of my favorite holiday cookies. All the flavor of gingerbread in a crunchy satisfying low fat biscotti 90 calories and 4 (green, blue, purple) myWW SmartPoints
2) Almond Apricot Biscotti - This twice-baked cookie is a classic with coffee or tea. The whole-wheat and nuts are good sources of manganese (a mineral that helps bone formation) and selenium (an antioxidant important for thyroid hormone function). Just 73 calories and 2 grams of fat. Found at The Mayo Clinic Website.
3) Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti - With just a little bit of butter, these biscotti are a bit less crunchy, which some people prefer. A delicious treat with just 104 calories and 4 (green, blue, purple) myWW SmartPoints from Gina at SkinnyTaste.
4) Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti - Dried cranberries and pistachios combine to make this light and delicious holiday biscotti perfect for gift giving. Found at Best Ever Cookie Collection.
5) Ellie Krieger's Healthy Honey Pistachio Biscotti - With a combination of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour and olive oil instead of butter these tasty biscotti are hard to beat. Found at the Food Network.
6) The Best Almond Biscotti - The best almond biscotti from cookbook writer Pam Anderson. Makes a big batch perfect for a party or holiday gifts. Just 43 calories and 1 Weight Watchers Point Plus. (Three Many Cooks).
7) Healthy Deep Dark Chocolate Biscotti - This decadent-seeming chocolate biscotti recipe is actually pretty healthy and features good-for-you ingredients like whole-wheat flour, flaxseed, and unsalted almonds. Just 94 calories and 3.5 grams of fat. From Cooking Light found at MyRecipes.
8) Light Lemon Biscotti with Sour Lemon Drizzle - A light and luscious treat for lemon lovers with only 91 calories and 1 gram of fat. From Cooking Light at MyRecipes.
9) Low Fat Pistachio Biscotti- Most traditional Italian biscotti recipes are naturally low in fat since they don't require butter or oil and this recipe for Low Fat Pistachio Biscotti is no exception.The only source of saturated fat comes from the eggs, which is minimal, especially when you divide the amount among 4 dozen biscotti cookies! Found at Best Ever Cookie Collection.
10) Polenta Biscotti - Delightful with fruit, these crisp golden slices also make a charming partner for a morning caffe latte. And at only 48 calories and 1 gram of fat per serving they're a dieter's dream. Found at Eating Well.
11) Pumpkin Cranberry Biscotti - Not as light as some of the others, but full of wholesome ingredients including pumpkin, pecans, raisins and dried cranberries. Found at Best Ever Cookie Collection.
12) Chocolate Chip Cherry Biscotti - A winning flavor combination that's relatively low in sugar so the biscotti are not overly sweet with 114 calories. Found at AllRecipes.
13) Weight Watchers Chocolate Espresso Biscotti - I love the flavor of chocolate and coffee and can't wait to try these biscotti. I first saw the recipe in my Weight Watchers New Complete Cookbook , where ¾ cup of unsweetened cocoa is called for and then all over the 'net including here at We Gotta Eat where the cocoa is decreased to ⅓ cup. Just 28 calories and 1 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per little cookie.
Bonus: Whole Wheat Butterscotch Biscotti - recipe for a small batch of whole wheat biscotti that bakes up quick and easy from Anna at Cookie Madness. My calculations put them at 109 calories, 6 g fat, 14 g carbs, 1 g fiber and 3 Weight Watchers PointsPlus
Bonus: 4-Ingredient Vegan Paleo Almond Flour Biscotti - The cookies are firm and crisp, as good biscotti should be, but not too hard. No one should have to sacrifice their teeth for great biscotti. Each biscotti has 68 calories and just 2.5g of sugar.
Bonus: Muffin Biscotti - a clever idea for turning leftover muffins into biscotti before they go bad.
Do you have a favorite healthy low-fat biscotti recipe to share?
If you liked 13 Healthy Low Fat Biscotti you might also like:
- Italian Sesame Seed Cookies
- Healthy chocolate chip cookie recipes
- Healthy breakfast cookie recipes
- Healthy Low Fat Pumpkin Cookie and Bar Recipes
*PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. All recipe ingredients except optional items included in determining nutritional estimates. SmartPoints® values calculated WITHOUT each plan's ZeroPoint Foods (Green plan, Blue plan, Purple plan) using the WW Recipe Builder.
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