With Christmas on Tuesday, I chose to share recipes for healthy treats tonight rather than info about a supplement. Being plant based doesn’t mean we can’t occasionally enjoy snacks or treats. I’ve discovered there are healthy, and delicious, alternatives to sugar or dairy laden snacks.
I tried out three new holiday suitable treats this evening, and a wonderful chai hot chocolate.
Healthy Rice Krispy Treats
This quick and easy recipe comes from Anthony William.
1/2 cup raw honey
2/3 cup raw cashew butter
2 teaspoons alcohol-free vanilla
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
4 cups organic brown puffed rice cereal
In large bowl combine honey, cashew butter, vanilla and sea salt. Add cereal, stirring well to coat. Line 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper. Spread cereal mixture in pan, pressing firmly. Chill in refrigerator at least one hour. Cut into bars. Makes 9-12 bars. Store in refrigerator.
Chai Hot Chocolate
I have missed hot chocolate during the winter months, since going plant based and eliminating sugar and dairy products from my diet. The delicious hot drink combines the goodness of chai with a sugar free, dairy free hot chocolate.
This wonderful drink is adapted from a recipe by Taking Route.
For the chai spice – mix together in a small bowl
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon allspice
For hot chocolate –
2 cups dairy free milk (I used almond coconut)
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
In a saucepan mix together milk, cocoa powder, maple syrup and 1 teaspoon of the chai spice mix. Bring just to boiling point, whisking occasionally. Lower heat and simmer a few minutes. Pour into mugs. Makes two serving.
I topped the chai hot chocolate with a dollop of whipped coconut cream (available at health conscious grocery stores) and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
I carried out steaming mugs of chai hot chocolate and a small plate of the rice krispy treats to share with Greg around a crackling fire in the backyard fire pit. What a perfect winter evening!
Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies
This great recipe comes from an Instagram friend, Leah’s Health.
2 cups gluten free flour (I used a combination of almond and oat flour)
2 tablespoons Arrowroot Starch
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 – 1 cup dark chocolate chips, sweetened with stevia. (I used 1 cup of dark mini chocolate chips, sweetened with stevia)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl combine flour, arrowroot starch, baking soda and sea salt. Add maple syrup, water, coconut oil and vanilla, stirring just until combined. Add chocolate chips.
Form into large balls of dough, 2 – 3 tablespoons each, and flatten on cookie sheet. Makes 7 – 9 large cookies. Bake 8 – 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Don’t over bake.
Finally, I adapted a recipe my grandson and I used a couple of nights ago. He made gingerbread cookies to give as gifts. I decided to try gingerbread bars, as his creations smelled so wonderful!
3/4 cup of olive oil spread (rather than butter)
3/4 cup coconut sugar
3/4 cup molasses
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons of water. Let set for 5 minutes.)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 1/2 cups gluten free flour (I used oat and almond)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In large bowl whisk together olive oil spread, coconut sugar and molasses. Stir in flax egg. Add salt, spices, baking powder and baking soda. Using a wooden spoon add flour, half a cup at a time. If baking as bars, don’t allow dough to form into a ball. Chill mixture for 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Press into baking sheet. Bake 20-25 minutes, until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean and edges are slightly browned. Cool completely. Cut into bars.
Or for cookies, add enough flour so that dough forms into a ball. Chill. Then roll dough out, between two sheets of parchment paper, to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into shapes and bake 8 – 10 minutes.
I’m ready for Christmas Eve, with holiday songs to listen to, plant based meals to prep for the next day and healthy versions of traditional treats to snack on. I’ll enjoy some quiet, cozy moments late tomorrow night, appreciating the glow of Christmas tree lights and tea light candles…and a cup of chai hot chocolate and one of my healthy Christmas Eve treats.