You may have seen treats labeled “Laura’s Wholesome Junk Food” on the shelves of local markets. “Laura” is Maine native Laura Trice, and she has now come out with a cookbook featuring more than 100 healthy recipes for people who want to indulge in their guilty pleasures without feeling quite so guilty.

“The Wholesome Junk Food Cookbook” (Running Press, $17.95) begins with a primer on food – what it is, what it isn’t, what are the ingredients you should avoid (trans fats) and what should be embraced (agave syrup, evaporated cane juice).

If you already know this stuff, skip right to the recipes, which are basically all the classic treats you love with more healthful ingredients substituted for things like hydrogenated oils and white sugar. Sure, it’s kind of strange to see a Boston cream pie made with unbleached wheat or spelt flour and evaporated cane juice. But most of the treats look delicious (golden pineapple-carrot muffins), many are quite clever, and nothing is off-limits. Trice makes a “Fluffy Marshmallow Frosting,” for example, with egg whites, maple syrup, vanilla and sea salt.

One small suggestion: It would have been helpful to see a calorie comparison between the old favorites and the made-over treats.


– Meredith Goad, Staff Writer