photo credit: Plate Joy.
Hurray! It's the start of this week's Healthified Holiday Recipes Extravaganza! Over the next few days, I'll be sharing a series of great gluten-free, vegan, sugar-free recipes to makeover your holiday baking plans. Everything is super simple to make, nourishing and so yummy, your family might not know they're eating good stuff. ;) If you're not already subscribed to the From the Ground Up Weekly Refuel, hop on it here and you'll get the goodies straight to your inbox all week, plus some extra bonus fun on Saturday. You have enough to do with all of that holiday planning, why don't we simplify things a little? (In the meantime, you'll also receive a copy of sweet: the eBook, packed with ten more delicious, sugar-free recipes.)
So, let's dive into the yum, shall we?
At this time of year - with all the festivitating going on - most recipes calling for dried fruit, nut butter and some kind of grain aren't usually going to be the best for us. After all, interspersed into the mix with these will often be a refined flour, some sugar, several gallons of heavy cream, etc. etc. etc. What's a poor apricot to do?
Luckily, there are these (insanely insanely insanely yummy) no-bake gluten-free granola bars to save the day. They're actually really nutritious (Vitamin C! Polyunsaturated fats! Iron! Zinc! Slow-burning carbohydrates! Low-glycemic sweetener!) and incredibly easy to make.
While these initially began as an experiment in good-for-you granola bars and an option for workout refuels (which then became the food that got me through the first few days of our trip to Europe), these bars are just too good to not have them as dessert.
Don't love the granola bar shape? Prefer them as a bites or cookies or tiny reindeer? Totally cool: this batter is pretty darn versatile and will hold whatever shape you mold it into. (And please, if you're going to start sculpting things out of it, send me a picture. You'd make my month.)
These are a high-energy food, and because they contain a little protein, a little carbohydrate and a good boost of fat from the cashews, they can be a stand-alone meal.
Simply combine dry ingredients, then wet, then mix 'em together. Press into a baking sheet, chill so the oils can solidify, then cut into whatever hilarious forms you wish.
So there you have it: another fun option for healthified holiday dessert. (Your challenge: don't tell anyone what's in them and wait to hear what a culinary genius you are... and then still don't tell them. Sometimes it's nice to let your folks think they're 'cheating'... then, of course, have one the next for breakfast and see what they say. Oh what fun!) ;)
Happy un-baking adventures to you,
- 2 1/2 cups gluten-free oats
- 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup apricots, chopped
- 2/3 cup cashew butter
- 1/2 to 2/3 cups brown rice syrup
- pinch or two of sea salt
- 1. Combine all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
- 2. In a separate bowl, combine cashew butter and brown rice syrup.
- 3. Once evenly mixed, add cashew butter mix to oat mixture, stirring thoroughly to combine. It should form a semi-gooey, cookie batter like consistency. If it's too crumbly, add a little water, 1 tsp at a time.
- 4. Line a baking sheet with low edges with parchment. Press your batter into it and smooth out to fill the sheet. It should be a uniform thickness all the way across.
- 5. Transfer to the fridge for about half an hour to let your batter set, then cut it into bars and transfer to a sealed container.
- Store in the fridge.