Mocha Energy Love Bites

I made these yummy little bites at a recent snack class and it was the favorite recipe of the night. They come together very quickly with a food processor and keep for weeks in the refrigerator.

It’s a great recipe to double and make a big batch and keep ready in the freezer, for a quick pick-me-up. I tend to gravitate to them when it’s time to prepare dinner. Just having a little something to wake up the taste buds while prepping makes the process go a little more smoothly. Plus they satisfy the urge without eating half a bag of chips.

We all struggle with making healthy snacking choices and these are sure to please..if you like coffee and chocolate! So make a batch this weekend and see how much better you feel after snacking on these!

Mocha Energy Love Bites

Packed to the brim with flavor and nutrients to keep you going through the slumps in your day.
Prep Time15 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten free,, sugar-free, vegan
Servings: 6

Equipment

  • food processor

Ingredients

  • 1 cup almonds, Brazil or hazel nuts
  • 1 tsp espresso powder or coffee extract
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • 2 tbsp vanilla protein powder
  • 12 dates pitted and soft
  • 3 tbsp cacao nibs
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • pinch salt

Instructions

  • Combine the nuts, espresso, cacao, protein powder and salt in a food processor and
    process into flour.
    Add half the dates and process adding more dates until the mixture forms into
    dough. It may take a few more or less depending on the stickiness of your
    dates. Then add the nibs and seeds and pulse a couple times to incorporate them
    evenly.
    Scoop into balls or transfer the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap, fold over
    plastic to cover dough and press into a rectangle an inch thick. Cut into
    bite size pieces.
    Bites will keep for several weeks if kept sealed at room temperature, or longer
    refrigerated.






 

 

Chocolate Swirl Cookies

These swirl cookies are pretty quick to put together. I adapted this from a recipe I saw on Audrey’s unconventionalbaker.com blog. I decided to use almond and tapioca flour along with a 5-seed butter. The flavor and texture is really nice. This recipe is definitely a keeper. You can change up the nut or seed butter to change up the flavor. This recipe makes 12-15 cookies.

  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 2 tablespoons 5-seed butter
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • pinch salt

Process the ingredients in a food processor until a dough is formed. If the dough is too sticky to roll out, sprinkle with a little more flour. If it is too dry to stick together, add a little more syrup. Scoop the dough onto a sheet of parchment and press into a disc. Let this rest while you make the chocolate dough, no need to clean the processor container.

  • 1/3 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons 5-seed butter
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • pinch salt

Process everything in the food processor until it becomes a dough. Add a little more flour or maple syrup if the consistency needs adjusting. Scoop the dough onto a sheet of parchment and press into a disc. Cover with another piece of parchment and roll out into a rectangle of 1/4 in thickness. Remove top sheet and place on the vanilla dough and repeat, rolling into a rectangle of similar size and thickness.

Remove top parchment sheet and set aside. Take the sheet with the chocolate dough and flip it over onto the vanilla dough and remove the sheet of parchment paper. On the longest side of the rectangle, lift the bottom parchment sheet up and over using it to help roll both layers of dough into a log.

Use a serrated knife or a length of dental floss to cut through the dough into 1/4 inch slices. Lay the slices flat onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Let cool and then store in sealed container.

 

Pecan Fingers

These delicate cookies are a remake of the traditional buttery sugary cookie that was always one of my favorites. By replacing the sugar, butter and flour, you get a gluten free, sugar free, vegan delight.  Recipe makes about 20 cookies.

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup organic vegan butter at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup powdered monk fruit-erythritol blend, more for dusting
  • 1/2 cup almond flour or oat flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Whip the butter and olive oil together until emulsified and light. If you have crystallized and not powdered monk fruit, put a 1/2 cup in a blender and blend until powdered. Add 1/4 cup of the monk fruit and remaining flours and vanilla to the oil mixture and beat until completely combined and smooth. Stir in chopped pecans. Chill the dough for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 . Using a small spoon, scoop and roll into short logs and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Bake for 20 minutes in the middle of the oven, until lightly browned.

Nutty Tahini Fudge

This is a delicious candy alternative and so easy to stir together. It takes a little time to set up in the freezer, but well worth the wait.  This is a treat that is gluten and dairy free. If nuts are something you avoid, add in chopped pumpkin or sunflower seeds for texture in place of the almonds.

You’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 3 tablespoons of cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons cacao butter or coconut oil
  • pinch of Himalayan salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/3 dried cranberries or cherries (optional)

Melt the cacao butter or coconut oil in a mixing bowl over a pot of steaming water.  When melted, add the tahini, cacao powder, maple syrup and salt. Stir with a whisk to combine into until smooth. Then add in the chopped nuts and dried fruit, if using.

Line a small rimmed dish with parchment paper and pour in the mixture, smoothing out the top.

Chill in the freezer for two hours, cut and serve. Keep refrigerated. Fudge will last for two weeks in refrigerator, longer in the freezer.

Gluten-free Pumpkin Molasses Ginger Cookies

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, soft
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon clove powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon pink or grey salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Use a blender to mix the coconut oil, coconut sugar, pumpkin and molasses together until smooth. In a mixing bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and stir to mix well. Then add the pumpkin mixture and stir with a spatula or wooden spoon, just until the flour is completely incorporated. The dough is a little thin, so use a 2 tablespoon scoop to spoon the dough onto parchment lined cookie sheets. Sprinkle a little coconut or cane sugar over each mound of dough. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the cookies start to crisp around the edges. Let cool and enjoy!

No Sugar Pumpkin Muffins

  • 1 14 oz can of pumpkin puree
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups oat flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • Optional stir in: ½ c chopped cranberries and/or 1/3 c pumpkin seeds or chocolate chips

 

Preheat oven to 350.

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the pumpkin, bananas, applesauce and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, combine the oat flour, spice, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add cranberries if using, and coat with flour mixture.

Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and mix with a spoon until the dry ingredients are completely incorporated.

Lightly spray or line a muffin pan with papers. Divide batter between muffin cups and bake for 30 minutes. Let cool before removing muffins from the pan.

Notes: Spelt or Einkorn flour can be substituted if gluten is not an issue, You can make your own apple puree by blending a chopped apple with a little water and adding to the recipe.  To make your own oat flour, grind rolled oats in a blender until fine.

Caramel Apple Dessert

Caramel Apple Dessert ( Nut, Dairy, Gluten, Soy and Refined Sugar – FREE)

Crust
1 1/2 C hemp seeds (can sub cashews)
1/4 C coconut flour
3 Tbs honey
1 Tbs coconut sugar
1 Tbs coconut oil

In a food processor, combine hemp seeds and coconut flour and process until a very fine meall is reached. Add remaining crust ingredients and pulse until it becomes sticky. Press into a parchment lined 8X8 in baking dish.
Place in freezer while you make the filling.

Filling
1 1/2 cups of dried Apple slices, soaked for 15-30 minutes to soften slightly
2Tbs maple syrup or honey
1/3 C sunflower butter (may substitute,  almond or cashew  butter)
2Tbs coconut sugar
3 Dates
1/4 C cacao butter, melted (may substitute. Coconut oil)
1/2 tsp sea salt

Soak apples, strain and gently squeeze out excess water. Set aside. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix well to completely combine into a thick caramel. Spread about half of this mixture over crust. Roughly chop the dried apples and add them to the remaining caramel. Stir to coat the apples well. Pour into pan and spread evenly.  Place in freezer while you make chocolate layer.

Chocolate layer
1/4 C cacao butter, shaved and melted, measure before melting ( may substitute coconut oil)
1/4 C cacao powder
3 Tbs maple syrup or honey

Pinch salt or sprinkle Malden salt on top.

Shave cacao butter into a small bowl or jar, melt it by placing the jar into a pan or bowl of steaming water. Once its melted, add to the remaining ingredients and whisk well to combine and until it is shiny and smooth. Pour over the caramel and apples. Place in refrigerator until set. Slice into pieces and enjoy!

The Versatile Carrot

Carrots are a favorite vegetable across the globe, enjoyed by children and adults.  It is packed with nutrients that have been researched and found to be beneficial specifically for eyesight and cardiovascular disease, colon cancer preventive and liver supporting.. Carrots can also be enjoyed in so many ways:  raw, steamed, grilled or roasted, or incorporated into either savory or sweet recipes. Here are a couple recipes for using these beneficial roots this spring. Let me know if you try them.

Coconut Carrot Cookies

  • 1cup sugar (coconut, maple crystals, cane, xylitol)
  • 1 1/4 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 1/4 cup oats
  • 1 1/4 cup oat flour (or rice or sorghum)
  • 1 tbs flax meal
  • 1 tsp grey or pink salt

Combine all these in a bowl and  mix well.

  • 1 cup shredded carrots or carrot pulp from juicing
  • 1/2 cup dairy free chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 6 Tbs elted coconut oil
  • 7 Tbs water
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Add carrots, chocolate and nuts to the dry ingredients. Drizzle in the oil, followed by the water and vanilla, mix well until all the ingredientsare incorporated and the mixture commes together. It is recommended to place mixture in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to help bind it together, making it easier to form the cookies.

Preheat oven to 325. Form dough into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheet, flatten then slightly using the back of a spoon. Bake for 15-20 minutes until slightly browned and still moist. Remove fro oven and allow to cool on pan for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. You can adjust cooking time if you like them more or less done. The dough can also be formed and frozen for quick-bake cookies.

For a savory carrot salad check out this recipe: Thai Carrot Noodles

 

Simple Weekday Meals

These are a few of the meals I made this week that I had not planned out. It was a couple days where I was busy or outside planting  and when dinner rolled around I had to decide what I could make with what was on hand. These were pulled together in under thirty minutes each. I also made them on separate days. (I’m actually more comfortable making up meals with what I have than planning out a shopping list for specific recipes.) So I had a variety of fruits and vegetables and greens, a bag of kelp noodles, a can each of fire roasted tomatoes, artichokes and chickpeas, and some Sami’s Bakery Lavash which is like flatbread, but GF.

This is what I ate:

  • Veggie Roasted Flatbread – lavash topped with pesto, onion, mushroom, peppers, artichokes and spinach – Roasted for 10 minutes (not pictured)
  • Large mixed green salad with pineapple, orange, almonds and pumpkin seeds
  • Orange, pineapple, banana, mixed greens and protein smoothie with granola and seeds on top (not pictured)
  • Cold tomato soup with zucchini noodles & Hummus lettuce boats on the side
  • Asian Peanut Kelp Noodles (Raw Pad Thai)
  • You wont believe it – Ice “cream”

Tomato Soup with Zucchini Noodles

  • 1/2 large zucchini, spiralized or sliced lengthwise and then cut into noodles
  • I can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups of vegetable broth or water
  • 1 tablespoon of tamari or Braggs Aminos
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of honey

Blend everything except zucchini in a blender and pour into serving bowls. Top with zucchini noodles.

Hummus

  • 1 can chickpeas, pour the chickpea water into a bowl and save for “ice cream”
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon of coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons water

Combine everything in a blender or food processor and mix until a smooth paste is formed. Scoop onto a plate and drizzle with a little more olive oil and grind some black pepper over the top. Serve with lettuce leaves. (you could add assorted vegetables and chips to the plate for dipping.)

Asian Peanut Kelp Noodles

  • Use a variety of vegetables and slice thin. I used, zucchini, mushrooms, peppers, jicama, spinach and broccoli stems.
  • 1 bag kelp noodles

For the peanut sauce, combine the following in a bowl and stir well or blend together and pour over veggies and noodles:

  • 1/2 cup organic peanut butter, I had crunchy (sub in almond or tahini)
  • 1 tablespoon tamari
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 clove garlic
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 cup water, maybe more
  • 1 teaspoon honey (optional)

You Won’t Believe It – Ice “Cream”  – This is pretty amazing and delicious, but hard to wrap your head around. The base of this dessert is chickpea water! also known now as Aquafaba, (water of the bean)

I made a large batch with about 2 cups of the chickpea water, but if you just have the water from one can these amounts should work.

  • 1/2 -3/4 cup chickpea water
  • 3 tablspoons xylitol or raw sugar, ground fine
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar or guar gum
  • 5 drops of vanilla stevia, optional
  • Flavoring: freeze dried strawberries, crushed and chopped dark chocolate  (add in your own favorite flavors – water content of fruit may cause crystals to form and stiffen up the texture. May be better to add fruit after base is frozen)

The chickpea water needs to be placed in a med to large mixing bowl. Using a hand or stand mixer, mix/whip the water until it becomes creamy white like whipped egg whites. The volume will about double. Add in your fine ground sugar/xylitol and guar gum and continue to whip until you reach a shiny white merengue with soft peaks. At this point, I stirred in my crushed strawberry powder and chocolate, and then poured it into a tight sealing container and put it in the freezer for at least four hours. OMGoodness! It is the lightest, creamiest ice cream ever and plant-based without nuts!