7 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Autumn/Fall

7 Healthy Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Autumn/Fall

Photo by Jasmine Coro on Unsplash   Today I’m sharing 7 of my favourite, healthy pumpkin recipes with you to keep you inspired this pumpkin season! Pumpkins are traditionally harvested in Autumn through to early winter. In the U.S. and Canada this coincides with Halloween and Thanksgiving which means pumpkin season is often associated with jack-o-lanterns, pumpkin pie, and all things pumpkin spice! Here in NZ we have a number of different varieties of pumpkin, many of which are available all year round. But we do tend to eat pumpkins mainly in the colder months which means lots of warming soups, vegetable bakes and pumpkin pie lattes. Despite finding pumpkins in the vegetable section of the supermarket, these winter squash are in fact classified as a fruit because they contain seeds in their centre. But unlike most common fruits, pumpkins are nowhere near as sweet because they contain barely any fructose at all.

Pumpkins are considered a fibre-rich carbohyrdate made up mostly of water, as such they only contain a minimal amount of protein and fat.

Their nutritional value mainly comes from their high vitamin A content in the form of beta-carotene, a carotenoid that gives them their orange colour. Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the body and helps maintain healthy skin and eyes. Beta-carotene is also an important disease preventing antioxidant that aids in the repair of oxidative stress. Pumpkins are also abundant in vitamins C and E, potassium, riboflavin, copper, and manganese.

So without further ado, here are my top 7 pumpkin recipes that you need to make this pumpkin season:   Pumpkin & Kumara Soup with Crunchy Cauliflower & Popped Lentils  

Pumpkin & Kumara Soup with Spiced Cauliflower & Popped Lentils

Starting off this pumpkin recipe round up is this beautifully thick and creamy Pumpkin & Kumara Soup. This soup is full of amazing spices such as turmeric, ginger, cinnamon and garlic, which mean it’s deliciously warming while also providing some powerful anti-inflammatory, calming and restorative qualities. The secret to the amazing texture of this soup is all in the cooking. By using roasted pumpkin and kumara (sweet potato) you create the perfect base for a super smooth, thick soup. It also means it’s very filling while still very light on the digestion because it’s made simply of blended vegetables. Oven roasted, crunchy, spiced cauliflower and popped lentil toppings provide a delicious contrast in texture, as well as an element of plant protein to this vegan, grain, and sugar free recipe, which also happens to be 10 Day Sugar Cleanse approved.  

Pumpkin Pancakes

Caramelised Pumpkin Pancakes

If you’re a pumpkin pie lover then you’ll adore these Pumpkin Pancakes! They have such a lovely soft texture with a sweet caramelised, pumpkin pie flavour. Best of all, you’d never guess they’re sweetened solely with pumpkin! The secret to their natural caramel flavour is cooking them in coconut oil which gives the pumpkin a caramel-like quality. Add a little ginger and cinnamon to the mix and you have some seriously addictive pumpkin pie pancakes that will fast become a favourite. I like using butternut squash for this recipe because it has a lovely light flavour and can be much easier to cut than some of the larger varieties of pumpkin. But there really isn’t much difference between a squash and a pumpkin so these pancakes can easily be made with either. When I created these pumpkin pancakes I wanted a Sugar Cleanse approved recipe, so these pancakes are dairy, grain and sugar free. They’re also perfect for anyone who doesn’t like bananas or can’t eat other kinds of fruit sweetened pancakes.   7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall  

Roast Pumpkin & Lentil Spinach Salad with a Lemon Chilli Dressing

This was one of the first recipes I created after going completely plant based. Changing my diet inspired me to get more creative in the kitchen, particularly at dinner time, and this Pumpkin and Lentil Salad was the first of my creations that got the thumbs up from my not-so-plant based husband! This salad combines sweet caramelized pumpkin with nutty brown lentils and a zesty chilli dressing. Best of all, it’s unbelievably easy to whip up! The hardest part is cutting open the pumpkin, from there all you need to do is roast the pumpkin, make the dressing and toss it all together. You can serve this pumpkin and lentil salad warm or chilled, and it makes the most delicious leftovers. I love prepping a batch at the start of the week so we have lunch/dinner sorted for a couple days, because it’s so great being able to reach into the fridge and find something delicious all ready to eat.   7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall  

Pumpkin Pie Granola

Pumpkin season definitely can’t go past without a jar full of this wholesome Pumpkin Pie Granola on the breakfast table! A delicious combination of oats, cashews and pecans, combined with pumpkin pie spices, pure maple syrup and golden roasted pumpkin. Because pumpkin is the main sweetener in this granola it’s a lot lower in sugars than regular granolas, and is naturally packed full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fibre. If you can’t tolerate oats simply swap them for another grain or pseudo grain such as quinoa flakes or buckwheat groats. Serve this crunchy granola with a dash of milk and dollop of your favourite yogurt, sprinkle it over smoothie bowls or ice cream, or simply eat it by the handful like a trail mix.   Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry  

Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry

This Pumpkin & Red Lentil Coconut Curry is still one of my go-to, made from scratch weeknight meals. You can whip it up in under 30 minutes and it makes fabulous leftovers for lunch the next day. It’s completely plant based, gluten/grain, dairy & sugar free, and also just happens to be one of the recipes from the Plant Based Menu in the 10 Day Sugar Cleanse program. Even though this curry only takes 30 minutes to make, it doesn’t call for any curry paste or store bought sauces. Instead it’s simply a clever combination of fresh vegetables, herbs and spices, and the red lentils make it deliciously thick and creamy while providing a source of plant based protein. You can adapt this curry to be as spicy or mild as you like with the amount of fresh chillies you add, and likewise, feel free to adapt the vegetables to whatever you have in season or to hand.   7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall  

Pumpkin Pie Spice Peanut Butter Fudge

A pumpkin recipe roundup wouldn’t be complete without a velvety smooth, no bake fudge recipe! This moreish Pumpkin Pie Spice Peanut Butter Fudge is packed full of warming pumpkin pie spices with subtle hints of peanut butter, and you’d never guess it’s sweetened solely with pumpkin and rice syrup. It might just be the easiest fudge you’ll ever make, once you’ve made (or bought) the pumpkin puree, it’s simply a case of combining the remaining ingredients in a blender, pouring it into a tin and then into the fridge to set. This low sugar fudge recipe is vegan and gluten free, making it the perfect Autumn/Fall treat.   7 Pumpkin Recipes You Need To Make This Fall  

Pumpkin Pie Custard Squares

When the creamy custard filling of a pumpkin pie meets a blondie, this is the result! A silky smooth custard slice with just a hint of pumpkin spice, it’s hard to believe these treats are sweetened only with pumpkin puree with no additional sweeteners. They’re also gluten and grain free, and vegan. Find the recipe for these sugar free pumpkin pie custard squares in my Inspired Desserts e-book – Whole Food Sweeteners Edition, which you can download for FREE here.   That sums up my round up of the 7 best healthy pumpkin recipes you need to make this Autumn or Fall. I hope you enjoy them and be sure to leave me a comment below and tell me which of these 7 low sugar pumpkin recipes you’ll be making first! Enjoy!
Inspired Desserts E-Book

Whole Food Sweeteners Edition

F R E E   D O W N L O A D

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice (Vegan Gluten Free Recipe)

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice (Vegan Gluten Free Recipe)

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

 

I Created A New Dessert eBook!

It’s called: Inspired Desserts, Wholefood Sweeteners Edition, and inside you’ll find 6 whole food sweetened desserts, including this Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice!

I created this eBook because I wanted a collection of healthier, low sugar desserts that ticked all the boxes. These sweet treats are all gluten free, oil free, vegan and made with (almost all) whole food ingredients.

As a little taster I’m sharing this amazing raw snickers ice cream slice with you here, and some insights about how I came to create it. To download the full ebook click here:

 

Inspired Desserts E-Book

Whole Food Sweeteners Edition

F R E E   D O W N L O A D

 

Inspired By A Raw Vegan Snickers Bar

Inspired by some particularly mouth-watering vegan snickers bar recreations on Instagram (Addicted To Dates are possibly the most impressive!), I thought it was high time I tried my hand at recreating this iconic chocolate bar too.

Not one to do things by halves, my aim for this recipe was to create a raw, vegan, snickers inspired dessert, that was also gluten, refined sugar and oil free, and ideally made solely with whole food sweeteners… Phew!

What ingredients did that leave me with then?

Surprisingly some pretty good ones when it comes to the flavours and textures of a snickers bar!

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

 

What’s A Whole Food Sweetener

To answer this question, first let’s look at what a “whole food” is.

Essentially, a whole food is simply that. Food that’s still in its whole, original, unaltered state. Whole foods ideally haven’t undergone any processing or refining at all, or have been processed and refined very little so that they still have all their nutrients, vitamins, minerals and fibre intact. Some examples of whole foods are fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, legumes, tubers and whole grains.

A whole food sweetener, is any food in it’s whole, original, unaltered state that can be used to sweeten another food. Some examples of whole food sweeteners are whole dates, date puree, whole fruits, (unsweetened) fruit puree, raw honey, and sweet vegetables such as carrots, sweet potato and beetroot.

 

What About Other Unrefined Sweeteners

There is, however, a slight grey area when it comes to what’s considered a whole food sweetener and what isn’t. For example, is beetroot powder still considered a whole food sweetener given all of its water content has been removed? How about date syrup which you can make yourself by blending dates and warm water, or buy a slightly more processed version?

Taking it one step further, there’s also the minimally processed unrefined sweeteners such as pure maple syrup, rice syrup or coconut nectar which technically aren’t considered whole foods, but many people on a whole foods plant based diet still choose to use them because of their minimal processing.

When it comes down to it, it really depends how far you want to take the whole food concept and the reason why you’re choosing to use whole food sweeteners in the first place.

In my opinion, all the unrefined sweeteners I’ve just mentioned can be great options depending on what you’re looking for. All of the above sweeteners have slightly different qualities and properties, and this will determine which you choose and how you use them.

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

 

This Slice Is Sweetened Solely With Dates

For this Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice recipe I’ve kept it really simple by using pitted Medjool dates throughout. Medjool dates are larger and softer than the more common Deglet Noor variety, and have an amazing, rich caramel flavour with works perfectly for the caramel elements of this recipe. Medjool’s are also quite a bit stickier than regular dates which is a perfect for holding the biscuit base together in the absence of coconut oil.

If you can’t get your hands on Medjool dates (or don’t want to splash out for 16 of them), simply swap them for the smaller Deglet Noor variety at a ratio of around 2:1.

Alternatively, if you’re on a low fructose diet or would simply prefer to avoid dates entirely, you could substitute them for a liquid sweetener such as pure maple syrup, rice syrup or coconut nectar. If you do this you’ll also have to reduce some of the liquid quantities to ensure you end up with a good texture.

 

What About The High Fructose Content In Dates

Some people get worried when they see dates in a recipe due to their high fructose content. But as I discussed above, dates are a whole food that are in their original unprocessed state (aside from removing the pitts of course).

This means their very high fibre content will slow down the absorption of fructose into the blood stream and avoid unwanted blood sugar spikes. Fibre is also essential for a healthy digestion.

Dates are also packed with nutrients such as magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, potassium, B6 and iron, not to mention an abundance of antioxidants!

So as far as sweeteners go, dates are a very nutritionally dense choice and are far better than other high fructose liquid sweeteners such as agave or high fructose corn syrup.

 

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

 

What Else Is In This Gluten Free Vegan Snickers Slice

To create the chocolate biscuit base I used a mixture of almonds and cashews, bound together by Medjool dates, which also provide the sweetness. Raw cacao powder provides the chocolate flavour, coconut cream enhances the texture, and a touch of Himalayan pink salt rounds off the flavour.

The vanilla “nougat” layer is a super smooth, vanilla custard creme which is extremely tempting to eat by the spoonful. The amazing creaminess comes from soaked cashews which are blended with coconut cream, plant milk, pure vanilla powder and a couple more Medjool dates for sweetness.

The peanut caramel layer is no doubt the richest part of this recipe, and is also the simplest. It’s made up of only 3 ingredients: smooth peanut butter, Medjool dates and coconut cream. Just like the vanilla layer, it’s all kinds of lick the spoon, crazy good.

Of course, no snickers bar is complete without some roasted salted peanuts, and these get pride of place on top of this decadent ice cream slice.

If you’re feeling extravagant you could drizzle the top with melted chocolate, or go one step further and cover each slice in chocolate for the full snickers experience!

One thing to note though, most chocolate is made with refined sugar so that’s something to consider if you want to ensure this dessert is made with as many “whole food” ingredients as possible.

 

This Slice Is Packed With Antioxidants, Vitamins, Minerals, Protein & Fibre

Because this Raw Snickers Bar Slice is made largely with whole food ingredients, it’s naturally packed full of nutrients!

Cashews, almonds and peanuts are all amazing sources of plant based protein as well as heathy plant based fats.

Raw cacao powder is packed full of antioxidants, particularly polyphenols. These have been linked to many health benefits such as reduced inflammation, lower blood pressure, improved blood flow, cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

Coconut cream is a source of vitamins and minerals such as manganese and copper, as well as MCT’s (medium chain triglycerides).

And lastly dates are a fantastic source of fibre, as well as vitamins, minerals and an abundance of anti-inflammatory antioxidants.

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

 

Other Peanut Butter Recipes You’ll Love

I’ve created quite a few peanut butter recipes to date, some of my favourites are this creamy Pumpkin Spice Peanut Butter Fudge, this super rich Peanut Butter Coconut Cream Pie, and this classic Chocolate Peanut Butter Avocado Mousse.

But I think the ultimate recipe (apart from this Raw Snickers Ice Cream slice of course) has to be my Ultimate Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake. It’s a super moist, deliciously fudgey, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate cake, with just a hint of peanut butter. 

All these recipes are gluten/grain and refined sugar free, as well as plant based/vegan, but only this Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice recipe is sweetened entirely with dates, aka whole food sweeteners.

I hope you love this new Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice recipe, and when you make it let me know in the comments below.

Enjoy!

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice (Gluten Free/Vegan)

Makes: 20 x 20cm square tin; approximately 16 squares
Prep time: 45 minutes Set time: 3 hours or overnight

Chocolate Base
1 cup (160g) almonds
1 cup (160g) cashews
6 Medjool dates, pitted
3 Tbsp (22g) raw cacao powder
1/4 cup (65g) coconut cream
1 tsp pink Himalayan salt

Vanilla Layer
2 cups (300g) cashews
1/2 cup (125g) coconut cream
1 cup (250g) plant milk
4 Medjool dates
1/4 tsp vanilla powder

Peanut Caramel Layer
1/2 cup (150g) smooth peanut butter
6 Medjool dates, pitted
3/4 cup (190g) plant milk

Topping
1/2 cup (80g) roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt

 

Line a small brownie pan (18 cm x 30 cm or 20 cm x 20 cm) with baking paper.

Soak the cashews by placing in a bowl, cover with water and leave at room temperature for 2 to 4 hours. Drain and rinse well.

To make the base, place the almonds and cashews into a food processor and blend on high until they resemble coarse crumbs. Add the remaining base ingredients, blend until the dates are mixed in and the mix comes together.

Tip the base mixture into the prepared tin and press down until even and smooth. Place in the fridge to set.

To make the vanilla layer, place all the filling ingredients into a blender and blend on high until smooth. Pour over the base, smooth with a spatula and place in the freezer to set for an hour, or until just firm.

Roast the topping peanuts in a 160°C oven for 10 minutes or until golden, then roughly chop.

Make the caramel layer by placing all the ingredients into a blender and blend on high until smooth. Pour over the vanilla layer, smooth, sprinkle with peanuts and return to the freezer to set.

To serve, remove slice from the tin, cut into squares using a hot knife and serve semi-frozen.

Store slice in a sealed container in the freezer for up to 1 month.

 

Raw Snickers Ice Cream Slice

Inspired Desserts E-Book

Whole Food Sweeteners Edition

F R E E   D O W N L O A D

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

 

This deliciously moreish maple cinnamon popcorn was inspired by Serious Food Co.’s maple cinnamon popcorn that’s only available once a year at Christmas time.

There’s something about the combination of pure maple syrup and cinnamon that’s SO mouthwateringly good, whenever I see one of their reindeer marked bags I can never resist putting it in my shopping basket.

This isn’t surprising given as I’m a huge cinnamon fan from way back and am often guilty of adding WAY too much when baking. Aside from it’s exotic sweet flavour, cinnamon has some pretty impressive health benefits too which makes it even more appealing in my book.

Cinnamon is jam packed with antioxidants that have potent anti-inflammatory properties. It can lower blood sugar levels, reduce heart disease risk factors, help fight bacterial and fungal infections, and may also have beneficial effects on neurodegenerative diseases and cancer.

It’s important to note however, that not all cinnamon is created equal and one of the varieties can be quite harmful in large doses.

There are two main types of cinnamon called Ceylon i.e. “true” cinnamon and Cassia. Most of the cinnamon found in supermarkets is the cheaper Cassia variety.

Unfortunately, the Cassia variety contains significant amounts of a compound called coumarin that’s believed to be quite harmful in large doses, wheras Ceylon only has a negligible amount of it. Ceylon cinnamon also has a milder, sweeter taste and smell, and is much better suited to sweet dishes and baking.

 

 

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

 

Alas, it’s now March (already?!) and Serious Food Co.’s coveted maple cinnamon popcorn is nowhere to be found.

So with all things maple & cinnamon on my mind, rather than wait another year for it to grace the supermarket shelves again I took matters into my own hands and created a Swoon Food version.

My aim was to create a completely plant based, gluten and refined sugar free maple cinnamon popcorn using as little sweetener as possible.

Obviously popcorn itself is a simple carb so naturally it contains a reasonable amount of simple sugars. But by using pure maple syrup as the sole unrefined sweetener, you can create slightly better nutritional value as opposed to using a refined sugar which has had all it’s natural nutrients (vitamins and minerals) stripped from it.

This maple cinnamon popcorn is naturally dairy and gluten free, entirely plant based, and perhaps best of all it’s SUPER quick and easy to make!

 

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

 

Sold? Already got your popcorn pot out?! Fabulous.

Let me know when you make this maple cinnamon popcorn by leaving a comment down below, and be sure to tag your pictures #swoonfood on Instagram or facebook. Enjoy!

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

Makes: 1 large bowl/ 2 oven trays
Prep time: 10 minutes  Cook time: 10 minutes

1/3 cup popping corn
3 Tbsp coconut oil

Maple Cinnamon Glaze
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 Tbsp coconut oil
2 tsp Ceylon cinnamon
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt

Heat 3 Tbsp coconut oil in a large pot with a lid over medium high heat.

Once melted, add a couple of corn kernels and wait for them to pop. When they have all popped, add 1/3 cup of popping corn to the oil.

Place the lid on the pot and shake to coat evenly. Remove pot from heat for 30 seconds then return to heat and cook for 2 to 4 minutes, gently shaking the pot until the popping slows.

Transfer the popcorn to a large mixing bowl.

Preheat the oven to 180ºC fan bake and line two baking trays.

Place all the glaze ingredients into a small pan and stir over low heat until melted.

Pour the maple cinnamon glaze over the popcorn and use a spatula to fold it through.

Spread the coated popcorn over the two baking trays and place into the oven for 5 minutes, or until the glaze starts to bubble and turns golden.

Remove the popcorn from the oven and allow to cool – the glaze will harden as it cools.

Store your maple cinnamon corn in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

 

For more cinnamon recipes check out these Feijoa & Cinnamon Muffins, Hot Cross Bun Smoothie or these Cinnamon Bun Pancakes.

 

Maple Cinnamon Popcorn

Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

 

I created these Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls at the same time as these Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls.  My aim was to create a healthy sweet treat that tasted like a treat and not just another healthy bliss ball, and both recipes totally fit that bill!

I considered posting the recipes together, but they’re both so good in their own right it seemed only fitting to give them their own posts, so here we are.

These Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls have a rich, almost gingerbread-like flavour thanks to the cinnamon and pure maple syrup. The pecans add a slightly savoury element, and coconut and cashews add some creaminess and bring it all together nicely.

 

 Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

 

These little treat balls can be whipped up in under 20 minutes minutes, all you need is a food processor and some measuring cups.

Once you’ve blended everything together, simply roll the raw dough into balls and chill until firm. You can skip the chilling step if you really can’t wait, but the dough for these fragrant little balls is pretty soft so chilling is a good idea.

These maple pecan bliss balls are completely raw, dairy, gluten, grain and refined sugar free. They’re also plant based/vegan and full of nutritious whole food ingredients with a generous dose of fibre and protein to balance out the (unrefined) sugars present.

You can eat these beautiful balls as a snack, before or after a workout, for dessert, with a cup of chai, or as a topping on your favourite breakfast bowl!

 

 Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

 

When you make these Cinnamon Maple Pecan Balls let me know!

Leave a comment below, and be sure to tag your pictures#swoonfood on Instagram or Facebook. Enjoy!

 

Maple cinnamon Pecan Balls

Makes: approximately 20
Prep time: 20 minute  Chill time: 20 minutes

1 cup pecans
1 1/2 cups cashews
2/3 cup desiccated coconut
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt

 

Place the pecans and cashews into a food processor and pulse until you have crumbs.

Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until the mixture is evenly combined and comes together – it should look like a ball of cookie dough.

Roll spoonfuls of mixture into bite size small balls then place in the fridge to chill and firm up for 20 minutes.

Store these maple cinnamon pecan balls in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Maple Cinnamon Pecan Balls

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls
 
I created these Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls because I wanted a healthy sweet treat for after dinner that tasted like a treat and not just another healthy bliss ball!

I was inspired by the last sweet recipe I posted for these Raw Chocolate & Raspberry Mini Lamingtons because they have the creamiest vanilla “cake” layer, made from cashews, coconut, vanilla and rice syrup, which reminded me of vanilla cookie dough! From there you can see how I got to Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls 😉

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

 

Like most bliss ball recipes all you need is a food processor, some measuring cups and about 20 minutes.

In the recipe I suggest chopping the chocolate into “chips” in the food processor as an easy way to keep things super simple and save on washing up. But if your chocolate already comes in chips, or you prefer to chop your chocolate with a knife, then simply disregard that step.

Once you’ve blended everything together, simply roll the raw cookie dough into balls and chill until firm. Or not. If you can’t wait that long feel free to eat the balls at room temperature….or you can even skip the rolling step and just spoon it out of the food processor. I won’t tell anyone.

There isn’t too much else to say about these delightful little balls… they’re obviously raw, dairy, gluten, grain and refined sugar free. They’re completely plant based/vegan and full of nutritious whole food ingredients with a generous dose of fibre and protein to balance out the (unrefined) sugars present. 

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

 

So next time you fancy something sweet but still mostly healthy, make these Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls and let me know!

Leave a comment below, and be sure to tag your pictures#swoonfoodon Instagram or Facebook. Enjoy!

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

Makes: approximately 20
Prep time: 20 minute  Chill time: 20 minutes

1 cup cashews
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/4 cup rice syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp vanilla powder
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate (ideally dairy free/raw/refined sugar free)

 

Break the chocolate into pieces and place in the fridge to chill for 20 minutes while you measure out the remaining ingredients.

Place the cashews in the food processor and pulse until you have chunky crumbs. Then set aside.

When the chocolate is chilled, place it into a food processor and pulse until you have a mixture of chunky crumbs and fine bits.

Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until the mixture is well combined and comes together. At this point it should look like a ball of cookie dough.

Roll spoonfuls of mixture into bite size small balls then place in the fridge to chill and firm up for 20 minutes.

Store these chocolate chip cookie dough balls in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

Raw Chocolate & Raspberry Mini Lamingtons

Raw Chocolate & Raspberry Mini Lamingtons

Raw Chocolate Lamingtons Recipe - GF/Vegan

I love a good lamington. There’s something so nostalgic about the combination of a freshly baked soft vanilla sponge, smothered in rich chocolate icing and rolled in a layer of desiccated coconut.

It brings back memories of my 5 year old self being taken to the local bakery after school to choose a treat off their nearly empty, flour dusted wooden shelves. Luckily there’d still be one or two lamingtons left and after I’d carefully carried it home, I would eat it as slowly as possible, savouring every bite. 

If you’re not familiar with lamington cakes, they’re believed to have originated in Australia in the early 1900’s, and are still popular in New Zealand, South Africa and some parts of the U.K to this day. Lamingtons are traditionally made from a square of vanilla sponge cake which is coated in an outer layer of chocolate icing and rolled in desiccated coconut. A popular variation is to put a layer of raspberry jam and cream in the centre, and in New Zealand raspberry iced lamingtons are also very common.

Despite my love of lamingtons, I haven’t been able to indulge in these little cakes for some time because they’re traditionally made with dairy, gluten and lots of refined sugar. While I created this raw chocolate and raspberry lamington slice a little while back, it just wasn’t the same.

So to give these iconic little cakes a Swoon Food makeover I needed to create a low sugar, dairy, gluten and grain free version that was also ideally plant based and made with whole food ingredients. The best way to achieve this was to create a raw version in order to keep to the whole food brief, as to date I’ve yet to taste a sponge cake made without eggs or gluten that’s actually good.

Luckily this raw version came out even better than expected. Thanks to cashews, the vanilla “cake” has a delicious creamy vanilla flavour with a texture that looks just like cake. I created a fresh raspberry jam centre and used raw chocolate as the icing.  Best of all, because these mini lamingtons are so nutrient dense they only need to be bite sized, which makes them the perfect little treat that will last for ages in the freezer.

 

Raw Chocolate Lamingtons Recipe - GF/Vegan

When you make these Raw Chocolate & Raspberry Mini Lamingtons, let me know!

Leave a comment below, and be sure to tag your pictures #swoonfood on Instagram or FacebookEnjoy!

Raw Chocolate & Raspberry Mini Lamingtons

Makes: 20
Prep time: 30 minutes  Chill time: 30 minutes

Vanilla ‘Cake’
1 cup cashews
3/4 cups desiccated coconut
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp rice syrup or pure maple syrup
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt
2 tsp vanilla essence (or 1/2 tsp vanilla powder)

Raspberry Jam
1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
1/2 tsp basil or chia seeds

Raw Chocolate Icing
1/2 cup/70g raw cacao butter
1/2 cup/85g rice or pure maple syrup
1/4 cup/60g extra virgin coconut oil
1/2 cup/65g raw cacao powder
pinch pink Himalayan salt

1 cup desiccated coconut for rolling

To make the ‘cake’:
Line a small brownie pan (18cm x 30cm or 20cm x 20cm) with non-stick paper.
Place the cashews and coconut in a food processor and blend until you have fine crumbs. Add the salt, vanilla and syrup and pulse until well combined. The ‘dough’ should come together in a ball.
Press the dough into the pan in a thin even layer, and place into the freezer to set.

To make the jam:
Place the raspberries in a small pan set over low heat and stir until warm and juicy. Turn off the heat and add the basil or chia seeds. Stir well and leave to stand for 10 minutes or so, to allow the seeds to absorb the liquid.

To make the icing:
Bring a small pan of water to the boil, then turn off the heat. Place the cacao butter, coconut oil and salt in a heat proof bowl and place on top of the pan of steaming water, stirring occasionally until fully melted.
Melting the ingredients using this method ensures the temperature of the ingredients doesn’t go above 47ºC thereby keeping the nutrients in them intact.
Once melted remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients.

To assemble the mini lamingtons:
Removed the ‘cake’ from the freezer and spread with raspberry jam. Cut in half down the centre and flip one side on top of the other to create a sandwich. Return to the freezer for at least half an hour to let the jam firm up. Ideally you want both the ‘cake’ and jam to be semi-frozen, at which point remove it from the freeze and cut into small even cubes, approximately 1.5cm wide. You should get about 20. Return to the freezer until you’re ready to ice.

To ice the mini lamingtons:
Set up a bowl of cooled melted raw chocolate and a bowl of desiccated coconut. Use a fork to dunk each lamington into the chocolate, let it drain through the fork, then roll in the coconut. Place iced lamingtons back on the tray and then return to the freezer to set.

These raw mini lamingtons will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for 1 month. Serve frozen, chilled or at room temperature.

 

Raw Chocolate Lamingtons Recipe - GF/Vegan