Homemade Churros

Churros (deep-fried, cinnamon-and-sugar-coated pastry sticks) aren't exactly the healthiest snack. But Robin Miller's lightened-up baked churros are a better-for-you alternative.

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My kids love churros. Most people do. Considering they're deep fried, cinnamon and sugar-coated pastry sticks, who wouldn't dig them?

I realize my boys are kids and they'll burn off the 200-400 calories and 12-14 grams of fat in a flash, but I hesitate to buy them nonetheless. One day (at SeaWorld actually), I let my boys share one. Twenty minutes later, Kyle’s stomach was churning (and it wasn't the new coaster's fault). At that moment, I vowed to make a healthier version he could enjoy without stomach cramps. And one they both could enjoy more often. My baked version is a breeze to prepare and super fun to eat with your hands. Chewy on the inside and crisp on the outside, with a nice dusting of cinnamon and sugar to boot. The way a churro should be. Let me know what you think!

Cinnamon and Sugar Churros
Cooking spray
1 cup water
1/2 cup light butter spread (preferably Brummell & Brown with yogurt)
4 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a medium saucepan, combine the water, butter spread, 2 tablespoons of the sugar, and salt. Set the pan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the flour with a wooden spoon. Stir until the mixture forms a ball. Stir in the egg until the mixture is smooth and glossy.

Transfer the dough to a pastry bag or freezer bag fitted with a large tip (preferably star-shaped). Pipe the dough onto the prepared baking sheet, making 12, 8-inch long strips. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until the churros are golden brown.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and cinnamon.

Spray the baked churros with cooking spray and sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar mixture over top. Flip the churros and repeat on the other side. Serve warm.

Serves 12

Nutrition Info Per Serving
Calories: 84
Total Fat: 4 grams
Saturated Fat: <1 gram
Total Carbohydrate: 11 grams
Sugars: 3 grams
Protein: 2 grams
Sodium: 147 milligrams
Cholesterol: 15 milligrams
Fiber: <1 gram

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