Perfect Light Desserts: Fabulous Cakes, Cookies, Pies, and More Made with Real Butter, Sugar, Flour, and Eggs, All under 300 Calories per Generous Serving

( 1 )


Everybody loves dessert, but nobody loves the calories. Perfect Light Desserts offers recipes for desserts rich enough to satisfy any sweet tooth — but with sensible calorie counts.

Master baker Nick Malgieri and healthful food expert David Joachim have joined forces to create 125 exceptional desserts without the usual quantities of fats and sugars. The focus is on flavor and texture achieved through balanced ingredient combinations and ...

See more details below
$19.96 price
(Save 33%)$29.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (24) from $1.99   
  • New (9) from $6.63   
  • Used (15) from $1.99   
Sending request ...


Everybody loves dessert, but nobody loves the calories. Perfect Light Desserts offers recipes for desserts rich enough to satisfy any sweet tooth — but with sensible calorie counts.

Master baker Nick Malgieri and healthful food expert David Joachim have joined forces to create 125 exceptional desserts without the usual quantities of fats and sugars. The focus is on flavor and texture achieved through balanced ingredient combinations and superior baking techniques. Not a single recipe has more than 300 calories per serving.

The results are nothing short of spectacular, with desserts that range from devil's food cake (complete with fluffy icing) to a lemon custard highlighted with a colorful raspberry sauce. Old-fashioned American favorites such as hermits mingle with sophisticated treats like rum raisin semifreddo and white chocolate raspberry tartlets. Best of all, while these desserts are low-calorie, they are high in flavor. Moist coconut poppy seed coffee cake, juicy blueberry pie, and fudgy brownies don't taste like “diet desserts”; they simply taste great.

All of the recipes here achieve great flavor without resorting to artificial sweeteners or synthetic substitutes. The recipes use moderate amounts of real butter, sugar, flour, and eggs in perfect proportions. Every recipe includes a complete nutritional analysis as well as serving and storage notes. Everybody loves dessert, and now no one has to go without it.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Readers who know Malgieri as the author of such drool-inducing books as Chocolate, Perfect Cakes and Cookies Unlimited may be surprised to find the phrase "all under 300 calories per generous serving" on the cover of his new cookbook. Has the renowned pastry chef gone healthy? Only a little bit-and with nary a sprinkle of Splenda or spoonful of "buttery spread" in sight, Malgieri and Joachim (A Man, a Can, a Grill) offer 125 simple recipes for chocolate desserts; cakes; pies and tarts; puddings, custards and souffl s; fruit desserts; iced and frozen desserts; and cookies that happen to be lower in calories than most. Some recipes are for traditional desserts that are naturally low in calories and fat (Blueberry Pie, Peaches in Red Wine, Biscotti), while others use lighter ingredients, e.g., a combination of whole eggs and egg whites (instead of egg yolks) or low-fat dairy products (Chocolate Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Icing, Ginger Lovers' Pound Cake). The authors only go so far with their "light" approach, though: real butter and even real heavy cream appear in several recipes-the result being a well-rounded recipe collection for delicious and fairly guiltless treats. Photos. (On sale Oct. 17) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Director of the baking program at New York's Institute of Culinary Education, Malgieri is also the author of more than half a dozen other cookbooks. Here, with food writer Joachim, he presents an array of delectable desserts that are all "under 300 calories per generous serving." He includes fruit and other desserts that are naturally low in fat, along with lighter versions of more indulgent sweets, ranging from Chocolate Buttermilk Tart to Updated Linzertorte to Fresh Strawberry Souffl . The instructions are clearly written, with many helpful tips, and there are line drawings of techniques as well as color photographs throughout. For all baking collections. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060779290
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/17/2006
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 552,533
  • Product dimensions: 7.70 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Nick Malgieri is the author of seven books, including A Baker's Tour, Perfect Cakes, Chocolate, and the James Beard Award–winning How to Bake. He is director of the baking program at the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. His website, www.nickmalgieri .com, includes a schedule of his guest teacher appearances across the country.

David Joachim has written about healthy cooking for more than fifteen years. He has authored or collaborated on more than twenty-five cookbooks, including The Food Substitutions Bible and the New York Times bestseller A Man, a Can, a Grill. His A Man, a Can series has sold more than one million copies.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Perfect Light Desserts

Fabulous Cakes, Cookies, Pies, and More Made with Real Butter, Sugar, Flour, and Eggs, All Under 300 Calories Per Generous Serving
By Nick Malgieri

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2006 Nick Malgieri
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0060779292

Crisp Chocolate Biscotti

Makes about 60 biscotti

This is a streamlined version of an excellent biscotti recipe shared by my friend cake designer Ellen Baumwoll. Adding walnuts to the dough increases calories but provides richness to what would otherwise be a somewhat plain cookie.


1¾ cups all-purpose flour (spoon flour into dry-measure cup and level off)
2/3 cup alkalized (Dutch-process) cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1¼ cups sugar
2/3 cup (about 3 ounces) walnut pieces, coarsely chopped
6 large egg whites
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Two cookie sheets or jelly-roll pans lined with parchment or foil


Set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.

Sift the flour and cocoa into a medium mixing bowl. Stir in the baking powder, salt, sugar, and nuts.

Whisk the egg whites and vanilla together and add to the dry ingredients. Use a large rubber spatula to stir the dough together. At first the dough may seem dry, but as the sugar continues to melt, the dough will become softer and eventually quite sticky.

Scrape the doughout onto a lightly floured surface and press it together. Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces and roll each into a log the approximate length of the pan you are using. Arrange the two logs of dough on one pan (the other will be used later for toasting the biscotti). Make sure the logs of dough aren't too close to each other or to the side of the pan. Flatten each log with the palm of your hand.

Bake the logs of dough for about 30 minutes, or until they are well risen and firm when pressed with a fingertip. Leave the oven on and place racks in the upper and lower thirds.

Cool the baked logs on the pan on a rack.

After the logs of dough have cooled completely, place them on a cutting board and use a sharp serrated knife to cut them into straight or diagonal slices H inch thick.

Arrange the slices, cut side down, on the prepared pans and return them to the oven to toast for about 15 minutes.

Cool the toasted biscotti on the pans on racks.

Serving: Very good on their own or dunked into coffee, these cookies also dress up a plain sherbet or ice milk.

Storage: Keep the biscotti between sheets of wax paper in a tin or plastic container with a tight-fitting cover.

Per biscotto: 44 calories, 2 g total fat (41% of calories), 0 g saturated fat, 1 g protein, 8 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 38 mg sodium

Dorie's Blueberry Sherbet

Makes 10 servings

A gift from my friend Dorie Greenspan, author of the award-winning Baking with Julia (Morrow, 1996), this recipe uses frozen berries, but if you prefer to use fresh ones, add them to the sugar syrup and bring them to a boil. If you try to puree raw fresh blueberries they will oxidize and turn brown.


1 cup water
1 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
1½ cups sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/3 cup strained lemon juice
1-pound bag frozen blueberries, thawed


Combine the water, milk, sugar, and corn syrup in a medium saucepan and whisk to mix. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.

Pour the syrup into a bowl and cool it to room temperature. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill the syrup until it is very cold.

Stir the lemon juice and blueberries into the syrup.

Puree the mixture in batches in a blender. Strain the mixture to remove the skins and seeds.

Freeze the mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's directions.

While the sherbet is churning, place a bowl or other container in the freezer. Empty the churned sherbet into the bowl as you remove it from the ice cream maker. Press plastic wrap against the surface and freeze the sherbet. Remove the bowl from the freezer to add the remaining sherbet when it is ready.

Serving: Serve the sherbet in chilled dessert bowls or glasses. A garnish of fresh berries or sliced fruit such as peaches makes a good accompaniment. Or use it when an ice is suggested for serving in the cake and fruit desserts chapters.

Storage: Keep the sherbet in the freezer. It certainly won't spoil if you keep it frozen for a long time, but its texture will be best if you serve it within 24 hours of churning it.

Per serving: 170 calories, 1 g total fat (5% of calories), 0 g saturated fat, 1 g protein, 42 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 14 mg sodium


Excerpted from Perfect Light Desserts by Nick Malgieri Copyright © 2006 by Nick Malgieri. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2012

    Awesome book, highly recommend!

    If you just can't live without dessert but still want to watch the calories this is the book for you. Very well written, easy to prepare recipes, and no artificial ingredients. Any book by Nick Malgieri is worth buying!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)