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Spoil mom on Mother’s Day or any day with some heart-healthy treats and desserts.

They are easy to make, affordable and consist of essential ingredients. Try these delicious heart-healthy Mother’s Day treats – they’re sure to warm mom’s heart and make her smile.


You can find more Mother’s Day treat ideas and recipes here.

Chocolate cake (serves 20)

There is nothing like some chocolate for a special treat. This is so easy to bake and ideal for Mother’s Day or to celebrate a birthday.

Ingredients cake
  • 3 cups (750ml) cake flour
  • 1¼ cups (310ml) sugar
  • 4 tsp (20ml) baking powder
  • 1 tsp (5ml) bicarbonate of soda
  • 6 tbsp (90ml) cocoa
  • 2 cups (500ml) hot water
  • ½ cup (125ml) buttermilk
  • 5 tbsp (75ml) sunflower oil
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) white grape vinegar
  • 2 tsp (10ml) vanilla essence
Ingredients topping
  • 150ml sugar
  • 300ml water
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) soft tub margarine
  • ¼ cup (60ml) cocoa
  • ½ tsp (2.5ml) vanilla essence
  • 3 tbsp (45ml) cornflour
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) grated chocolate
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C and line a large rectangular (20 x 30 cm) baking tin or oven dish with baking paper.
  2. Sift all dry ingredients together. Mix the liquids together and gradually fold into the dry ingredients. Then, pour batter into tin or dish.
  3. Bake for 20–25 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Remove from the tin and cool.
  4. Topping: Meanwhile, place all the ingredients, except the chocolate, in a pot and stir over a low heat to dissolve the sugar.
  5. Bring to the boil and simmer gently. Stir until the mixture thickens. Cool slightly and pour over the cooled cake. Sprinkle with grated chocolate.

Milk tart (serves 8)

 This no-bake custard filling is delicious and easy to make. A special treat that mom will enjoy on Mother’s Day.

Ingredients crust
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) soft tub
  • margarine
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ½ tsp ( ground
  • cinnamon
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) cake flour
  • ¼ cup (60ml) whole-wheat
  • Flour
Ingredients filling
  • 2 cups (500ml) low-fat or fat-free milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ cup (60ml) sugar
  • 3 tbsp (45ml) cornflour
  • ½ tsp (2.5ml) vanilla or almond essence
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) ground cinnamon
  1. Crust: Preheat oven to 180 °C. Beat together the margarine and sugar. After that, add the egg and mix well.
  2. Mix cinnamon and flours together. Gradually add to the egg mixture to form a soft dough. Press the dough into a 22 cm tart or pie dish.
  3. Prick with a fork and bake for 15–20 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool.
  4. Filling: Place milk in a pot, bring to the boil and remove from heat. Beat eggs and sugar well.
  5. Mix cornflour with a little water to make a paste. Stir into egg mixture.
  6. Add half the milk into egg mixture and stir well.
  7. Pour egg mixture into the pot with the rest of the milk and stir well.
  8. Return to a low heat and stir all the time. Allow to simmer very gently until it thickens – at least 10 minutes.
  9. Stir vanilla in and pour into pie crust. Allow to cool and refrigerate. Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve.

Apple pudding (serves 8)

Apples and cinnamon are comforting flavours. Swop your custard or ice-cream for plain low-fat yoghurt.

  • 4 medium Granny Smith apples, seeds removed and cut in wedges
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ¼ cup (60ml) sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3 tbsp (45ml) sunflower oil
  • ¾ cup (180ml) low-fat or fat-free milk
  • ½ cup (125ml) plain low-fat yoghurt
  • 1 cup (250ml) cake flour
  • ½ cup (125ml) wholewheat flour
  • 2 tsp (10ml) baking powder
  • 2 tsp (10ml) ground cinnamon syrup
  • ½ cup (125ml) low-fat or fat-free milk
  • ½ cup (125ml) water
  • ¼ cup (60ml) sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick optional
  1. Place apples with 2 tbsp of water and the cinnamon in a pot. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 3–5 minutes or until just tender, but not mushy.
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C. Beat sugar and eggs until well blended. Then add oil, milk and yoghurt and mix well.
  3. Combine the flours, baking powder and half the cinnamon in a mixing bowl.
  4. Beat liquid into the flour mixture to form a smooth batter.
  5. Spoon apples into an oven dish and pour batter on top.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown and cooked.
  7. Syrup: Meanwhile, place all the ingredients in a small pot and stir over a low heat.
  8. Simmer for a few minutes or until slightly thickened.
  9. Prick warm pudding with a fork or skewer and pour syrup over, tThen sprinkle with the rest of the ground cinnamon. Serve warm with plain low-fat or fat-free yoghurt.

Tip: Make the pudding with fresh pears, alternatively use a tin of pie apples or peach slices and leave out step 1.

Baked sticky pudding (serves 8)

Most baked puddings are very sweet. The combination of buttermilk and ginger makes this an interesting variation of a well-loved favourite.

  • 1 cup (250ml) cake flour
  • ½ cup (125 l) sugar
  • ½ tsp (2.5ml) ground ginger
  • 3 tbsp (45ml) sunflower oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup (125ml) low-fat or fat-free milk
  • ½ cup (125ml) buttermilk
  • 1 tsp (5ml) bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tbsp (30ml) apricot jam
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) white grape vinegar Syrup
  • ½ cup (125ml) water
  • ½ cup (125ml) apple juice
  • ¼ cup (60ml) sugar
  • ½ tsp (2.5 ml) vanilla essence
  1. Preheat oven to 180 °C. Combine the flour, sugar and ginger in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Mix oil, eggs, milk and buttermilk and stir in the bicarb until dissolved.
  3. Mix in the jam and vinegar. Gradually stir liquid into the flour mixture until a smooth batter forms, with no lumps.
  4. Pour the batter into an oven dish and bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Syrup: Meanwhile, place all the syrup ingredients in a small pot. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10–15 minutes or until syrupy.
  6. Prick the warm pudding with a fork and pour the warm syrup over. Allow the pudding to absorb the syrup. The pudding will sink quite a bit as it absorbs the syrup. Serve warm with fresh fruit of your choice like pears or bananas.

Tips: Soak ¼ cup chopped dates in hot water. Add with the vinegar to the batter. For a chocolate pudding, suubstitute 2 tbsp of the flour with cocoa.

Recipes from Pharma Dynamics’ Cooking from the Heart cookbook. You can download more recipes from