Nutty bars

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This recipe is adapted from Elana’s Pantry, one of my absolute favorite food blogs for gluten-free goodies. I added hemp seeds for extra protein and omegas and used date paste to make them  lower-glycemic. They’re like extra nutty Larabars. They’re perfect for a quick snack or dessert. The healthy fats, protein, and fiber will keep you going and the nutrient-rich dates will satisfy your sweet tooth without making you crash. For a little extra sweetness, just add chocolate!

  • 2 cups almonds (raw)
  • ½ cup golden flaxmeal
  • 1/2 cup hemp seeds
  • ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ½ cup creamy almond butter
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon date paste, agave nectar, or honey
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chocolate chunks (optional)
Put almonds, flax meal, hemp seeds, shredded coconut, almond butter and salt in a food processor and pulse for about 10 seconds. Melt coconut oil over very low heat in a saucepan. Once melted, add to the mixture with the date paste and vanilla. Pulse until you have a thick paste.  Press mixture into an 8 x 8 inch baking dish. Refrigerate for 1 hour, until mixture hardens.
To make them chocolate covered, melt chocolate over very low heat in a saucepan, stirring continuously. Spread melted chocolate over bars; return to refrigerator for 30 minutes, until chocolate hardens.
Remove from refrigerator, cut into bars and serve.
Makes about 20 bars, depending on how big you cut them. Enjoy!

Maca goji super bars

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These bars are super delicious and packed with nutrients, antioxidants, and protein. The perfect treat to satisfy your sweet tooth and nourish your body and mind!

Maca: Lepidium meyenii. An herbaceous plant native to the Peruvian andes. The root is made into a powder. It is shown to boost mood, energy, and libido and decrease anxiety. It also boosts sperm production, motility, and semen volume in men.

Goji berries: Lycium barbarum. A member of the family Solanaceae (which also includes the potato, tomato, eggplant, deadly nightshade, chili pepper, and tobacco). The plant and its fruit are used widely in traditional Chinese medicine. These little berries are chocked full of vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, and antioxidants!

  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup flax meal
  • 1/2 cup coconut shredded
  • 1/2 cup hemp seeds
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 2 tbsp date paste *
  • 2 eggs, beaten (or to make them vegan try half a banana)
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp maca
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 cup dried goji berries

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Put the almonds in a food processor and pulse for about 10 seconds until coarsely chopped. Add the rest of the ingredients except goji berries and pulse until mixed into dough. Add the berries and mix. Spread out onto a cookie sheet and press or roll to a 3/4 inch thickness. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove and put into bars. You can do any size you like.. I went with about 2×2 inch. Spread the bars apart a little on the cookie sheet and bake for another 5 minutes or so until they’re a little browned around the edges. Let cool and enjoy! Individually wrap them in plastic wrap or snack bags for a great on-the-go snack.

*To make the date paste, soak pitted dates in warm water for a few minutes then blend until smooth. Add water as need to get a consistency of apple sauce.

Raw Vegan Fudge Snowballs

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This recipe was adapted from Averie Cooks. I tweaked it so they’re totally raw and have no processed sugar! Flavor was not sacrificed. These are so delicious and decadent! Perfect for when you have a serious craving for rich chocolate! The pictures look a bit messy but hey life is messy sometimes right? That doesn’t mean it can’t be delicious too.

  • 1.5 cups shredded coconut
  • 3/4 cup date paste
  • 3/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Mix all the ingredients together by hand. Roll into balls and freeze. Or you can just freeze the whole thing in a tupperware and scoop out servings like thick fudgy ice cream!

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Nut Milk.. easier than you’d think

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Homemade nut milk always sounded like an unattainable thing to me until I stumbled onto a recipe in Sweet Gratitude: A New World of Raw Desserts. It is really so easy as long as you have the necessary equipment! And the taste is unbelievably better than the store-bought kind.

Side note: I highly recommend this cookbook and/or getting dessert at Cafe Gratitude if you’re in LA. Their desserts will open your eyes to the amazing taste and texture possible using nutritious raw ingredients!

What you need:

  • Blender – it’s especially easy if you use a Vitamix but any will do
  • Nut milk bag – Basically just a fine mesh bag. You can buy one on Amazon for about $8
  • Pitcher

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almonds or hazelnuts 
  • 2 cups room temp water

Get to it:

  1. Soak almonds for 24-48 hours (if using hazelnuts, you can skip this step)
  2. Put in blender and blend until smooth (in a Vitamix just flip it to the smoothie setting)
  3. Let sit for 5-10minutes for a richer flavor
  4. Pour into nut milk bag secured in a pitcher or other container
  5. Squeeze out all the milky goodness (this is a messy process but should stay contained in the pitcher.. just be careful)

You end up with about 2 cups of delicious milk and 1 cup of nut pulp that you can use for crackers, cookies, etc in place of flour (see some of my other recipes for ideas). Add vanilla, cocao, or agave to your liking but it’s really yummy plain.

Happy milking!

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Peanut Butter Cups

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Move over Reese’s.. These are the best peanut butter cups I’ve ever had. So delicious and easy and no high-fructose hydrogenated nastiness!

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups crunchy peanut butter (no sugar added)
  • 1/2 cup almond flour/meal
  • 1 1/2 cups date paste (thick. explained below)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or himalayan pink salt)
  • 1 bag of 70% cocoa chocolate chips (or semi-sweet)
  • cupcake papers
  • baking sheet

Date paste: Soak pitted medjool dates in room temp water for 10 minutes to an hour. Blend the dates with a little water and add water as needed until its smooth and about the consistency of jam.

1. Put the baking sheet in the fridge to chill.

2. To make the filling, combine the peanut butter, date paste, almond flour, and salt in a bowl. You can adjust the amounts a little to get your desired consistency and taste (ie sweeter, saltier, flakier)

3. Melt the chocolate. The best way to do this without overheating.. Get a pot and a heat-resistant glass bowl that will rest in the pot without falling in. Bring water to a low boil (not so much water that will overflow with the bowl is in).  Place the bowl in the pot and put the chocolate chips in the bowl. As the chips melt slowly, stir the chocolate a few times.

4. Remove the baking pan from the fridge and line up the cupcake papers on it. Pour about a tablespoon of chocolate in each and spread around so that the bottom of the cup is covered.

5. Put the baking pan and cups in the fridge for about 5 minutes to harden and little.

6. Scoop a heaping tablespoon of filling  into each cup and flatten out so that its close but not touching the sides.

7. Cover with chocolate until the filling is fully surrounded.

8. Put back in the fridge until hardened, about 30 minutes.

To make them look a little fancier, sprinkle each cup with a pinch of salt, sliced toasted almonds, or toasted coconut after the chocolate has cooled for a few minutes.

When I made these, I actually used muffin-sized cupcake papers so they were giant! The only problem with them was that I under-estimated how much filling to put in so there was a little too much chocolate compared to filling. But of course they were still amazing!

Enjoy and share the love!!

Unbelievable Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Cookies

I got this recipe from Elana’s Pantry, a great site for gluten-free/paleo recipes. I modified the recipe a bit and the results were unbelievably tasty!! These cookies are gluten-free, dairy-free, and have no processed sugar (if you get sugar-free chocolate chips). You can substitute the chocolate chips with sliced almonds or dried coconut chips or just put it all in! If you’re going to completely substitute the chocolate I recommend adding a little more date syrup to up the sweetness. I made some without chocolate chips so I only splurge on processed sugar for one day and they’re still really good but could use a little more sweetness 🙂

  • 2 ½ cups blanched almond flour/meal
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup date syrup
  • ½ cup chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (or carob chips or sugar-free chocolate chips)
  1. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl
  2. Stir together wet ingredients in a smaller bowl
  3. Mix wet ingredients into dry
  4. Fold in chocolate chips
  5. Form 1-inch balls and press onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet
  6. Bake at 350° for 9-10 minutes
  7. Cool and serve

Makes 24 cookies

Mocha Chip Macaroons

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This recipe was adapted from ChoosingRaw.com’s Holiday macaroons. I highly recommend exploring her site for some great recipes and ideas!

Makes about 25-30

2 cups shredded, raw, unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup almond meal (or raw ground almonds)
2/3 cup raw cocoa powder (yes it’s more expensive than Hershey’s but tastes so much better.. and doesn’t have mold in it!)
1/2 cup cacao nibs
1 tbsp instant espresso (I used 1 packet of Starbucks Via. I recommend decaf if you don’t want to keep yourself up at night)
2/3 cup date paste (Should be syrupy consistency. Add water if too thick) or agave syrup
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp sea salt

1) Place coconut, almond meal, cocoa powder, espresso, and nibs in a large mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk together date paste, oil, vanilla, and salt.

2) Pour wet ingredients over dry, and mix thoroughly until dough is uniformly sticky and clumps together easily. If you need to, add a little more date paste.

3) Scoop in tablespoons onto a cookie sheet (lined with foil for easy clean up). Put in the oven at 325 degrees for twenty minutes or so, then allow to cool in a fridge thoroughly. To make these raw, scoop the dough onto a dehydrator tray lined with Teflex and dehydrate at 115 degrees for about 6-8 hours (6 is probably all you need).

These come out with a rich, bitter chocolate taste. If you don’t want them as bitter, you can make them without the cocoa nibs. I personally love the crunch they add though. And just think of all the antioxidants you’re getting from the raw cocoa and coffee! So good for you and your sweet tooth!