Tag Archive: Raw

Raw Chocolate Fudge Pie

Rich raw chocolate fudge pie

If there’s any way to make peace after 2 weeks of not posting it’s this recipe.

Spending the weekend with friends or family is great but usually leads to a week without recipes. Last weekend was the exception. My friend Eury visited and stayed with me and insisted(she’s going to hate that word–“suggested”) we make the raw fudge pie recipe she’s been working on.

Whether you’re gluten-free or gluten-full, vegan or a meat lover, there’s no denying raw desserts are just better than regular ones. They’re always fudgier, creamier, more flavorful, and easy to convince yourself they’re healthy so you can go back for seconds.

Rich raw chocolate fudge pie

With permission I’m sharing Eury’s recipe which’ll easily win over the staunchest crowd. The cashew filling has the same taste and texture as any milk chocolate fudge.  If you do not care about the health benefits of eating raw and only make this because raw desserts have amazing flavors and textures, feel free to substitute the maple syrup for honey, corn syrup, or simple syrup. 

Raw Chocolate Fudge Pie

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 16 servings):

For the crust:

  • 3/4 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the filling:

  • 2 cups cashews
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Method:

  1. Pulse the almonds and walnuts in a food processor until finely chopped.
  2. Add in the syrup, cocoa powder, and vanilla for the crust and continue processing until it forms a mixed dough.
  3. Press the dough into a 9-inch pan until the bottom’s about 1/4-inch thick.
  4. For the filling, process the cashews into a fine powder. Make sure not to over blend them into cashew butter.
  5. Add in the maple syrup and water and continue blending until smooth.
  6. Add in the rest of the ingredients and process until it forms a smooth liquid filling.
  7. Pour the filling over the crust and spread into an even layer.
  8. Refrigerate for ~4 hours until the center has set. Cut with a sharp knife into servings. Refrigerate when not enjoying.

4 Healthy New Year’s Recipes

New Year’s resolutions are hard. It’s easy to shoot to high and make resolutions impossible to keep up with; the best kind are little changes you can work into your everyday routine and maintain without even thinking about it.

I didn’t make a food or fitness resolution this year. Mine is to get whiter teeth, so I bought special toothpaste and mouthwash. We’ll see how that goes with the horde of coffee and chocolate I eat.

If you did make a resolution to eat healthier, here are 4 simple recipes you can work into your every week to hit that goal. All of them have common, simple ingredients and are probably foods you already eat, so working them into your diet should be a breeze.

Breakfast:

LowFatCinnamonBrownSugarGranola_thumb

Low-Fat Cinnamon Raisin Granola is a great quick and filling alternative to heftier breakfasts like bagels and cream cheese or a donut. You can make a big batch on the weekend and portion out servings for the weekday mornings to grab and go.

Snack:

Fruity-Peanut-Butter-Yogurt-Dip-Yield-807x1024

Fruity Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip will satisfy your sweet tooth in the afternoon and still be tasty enough to enjoy. It’s a simple mix of yogurt, peanut butter, and sweetener that’s good for kids or grown-ups.

Entree:

EasyBroccoliFrittata_thumb

Easy Broccoli Frittata is another recipe you can make in bulk over the weekend and reheat throughout the week whenever you’re less than motivated to make a meal. The eggs and cheese are full of protein while the broccoli adds a boost of healthy nutrients, too. Add a simple side and you’ve got a whole dinner.

Dessert:

hazelnut-chocolate-cake_thumb

Raw Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Cake proves that you can still have dessert even when you’re eating healthy. The bulk of this “cake” is dates and hazelnuts, making for a delicious and nutritious end to a meal.

Did you make a New Year’s resolution? What was it?

Orange Spinach Smoothie

Orange Spinach Smoothie

This is one of those moments where I have to eat my words.

I’m sure if you searched through all my tweets you’d find one about how I’d never, ever eat a smoothie with spinach in it. Well the joke’s on me because I’ve been having one or more of these a day for the past few weeks.

Once you get past the color that makes you think you’re drinking Kermit the Frog, you’d be surprised how good green smoothies can taste. And you know they’re better for you than whatever you can get at an Orange Julius in the mall.

Orange Spinach Smoothie Fruits

If you do add chia seeds or protein powder then I would recommend adding more water so the mixture doesn’t thicken up too much. For an ice-cold smoothie, freeze the banana ahead of time.

Orange Spinach Smoothie

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 2 cups):

  • 1 banana
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 cup frozen spinach
  • 1/2 cup water
  • chia seeds(optional)
  • protein powder(optional)

Orange Spinach Smoothie Blender

Method:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in your blender.
  2. Process until smooth.
  3. Drink immediately while still fresh.

Orange Spinach Smoothie Yield

I promise it tastes better than it looks.

Raw Walnut Brownies

Raw Walnut Brownies

Sometimes the simplest recipes are the best. I don’t think that’s true always, but certainly in this case it is. It’s amazing what you can make with just dates, walnuts, and cocoa powder.

This is something I’ve been making for years now. I think I learned the originally recipe from a food blog that no longer exists; it’s simple enough that you don’t have to write it down or bookmark a page to remember it. The trick to making these well is recognizing what consistency the dough should be; thankfully these are very forgiving and it’s easy to figure out after making a few batches(and you’ll want to make a few batches).

Raw Walnut Brownies Block

You can use any nut for this but I think walnuts are the best both for flavor and texture. They also pack a lot of omega-3s which are great for anyone’s diet. I’d suggest adding crushed walnuts into the batter dough after processing to give these a crunch.

Raw Walnut Brownies

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 8 squares):

  • 2 cups pitted dates
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 3 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1-2 Tablespoons water

Raw Walnut Brownies Ingredients

Method:

  1. Blend the dates in a food processor until they are pulverized and start to stick together.
  2. Add the walnuts and continue blending until the dough starts to stick to itself. Add water as necessary if your ingredients are too dry to clump.
  3. Lastly add the cocoa powder and continue blending until it’s mixed in.
  4. Dump the processed ingredients onto a piece of parchment paper. With your hands, clump them together into a square or rectangle.
  5. Freeze the dough for 5-10 minutes until it’s firm and cut it into even sized squares. Store in the refrigerator for freshness.

Raw Walnut Brownies Serving

You can add chocolate chips or other dried fruit to make this a little more exciting, but I think this is a perfect snack or pick-me-up for after a meal all on its own.

Copycat Chocolate Hazelnut Larabars

copycat chocolate hazelnut larabars

One of my most popular recipes is the raw/vegan chocolate cake I made last Summer, and every time someone new comments on the post or makes it for themselves and blogs their own mouth-watering photos(I’m looking at you, Texanerin) it makes me want it again.

Well, cake every week is a bit much, even if it’s raw and vegan. But as soon as I finished eating my chocolate chip peanut butter “Larabars” I was thinking of what flavor I could make next, and chocolate hazelnut seemed like the perfect answer.

copycat chocolate hazelnut larabars stack

These are definitely healthy enough to have every day but also can easily satisfy a candy craving. You can use raw or roasted hazelnuts, skin on or off. Roasted will definitely have a nuttier and stronger flavor. To make them truly raw, use cacao nibs in place of the chocolate chips. 

Copycat Chocolate Hazelnut Larabars

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(Makes about 7 bars):

  • 8oz(about 2 cups) pitted dates
  • 3/4 cup hazelnuts
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

copycat chocolate hazelnut larabars yield

Method:

  1. In a food processor, blend the dates until they clump together and form a sticky dough ball.
  2. Add the hazelnuts and salt into the food processor and pulse until the nuts are broken into a coarse flour.
  3. Transfer all the contents of the food processor into a large bowl with the chocolate chips and massage by hand until the hazelnut pieces and chocolate chips are completely mixed into the dates.
  4. Form the dough into equal-sized bars, squares, or balls. Store in the refrigerator until ready to eat.

copycat chocolate hazelnut larabars bars

OK, it’s no raw chocolate cake with avocado buttercream, but it will definitely satisfy a late-night sweet tooth.

Pumpkin Seed Trail Mix

pumpkin-seed-trail-mix-4

I’m constantly eating during the day. I can never understand those people who “forget” to have a meal or go 6-7 hours without eating; the roaring of my stomach would not let me or anyone else in the room forget to eat. It just wouldn’t happen.

On Monday I have a class for 5 straight hours in the afternoon. Considering I can’t go 2 hours without needing to eat something, that alarmed me at first. I knew I’d need snacks—lots and lots of snacks—to keep focus. Something portable and nutritious, just like trail mix.

pumpkin-seed-trail-mix

Trail mix can really be anything. When I was thinking of what to make mine like, I thought about the pumpkin seeds I had in the pantry and all the things I’d put in pumpkin bread: walnuts, ginger, raisins, chocolate if I felt like it. So why not make a pumpkin bread trail mix? Only without the bread. Because bread doesn’t make great trail mix.

Besides being delicious, this trail mix has a lot to offer. Iron-deficiency is commonly associated with vegetarianism because of the lack of red meat. But that doesn’t have to be the case with a good diet. Pumpkin seeds and raisins are both high in iron*. Walnuts are a great source of omega-3s as everyone knows by now. And ginger is a cold-fighting ingredient(not to mention tastes great when it’s candied, just like anything else).

Pumpkin Seed Trail Mix

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup diced candied ginger
  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate, white chocolate, or cinnamon chips

Method:

  1. Toss all of the ingredients together and enjoy.

pumpkin-seed-trail-mix-5

*I got all of those facts about iron off of Wikipedia, just like a good student would.

Raw Chocolate Raspberry Ganache

raw-chocolate-raspberry-ganache

From time to time I like to make “chocolate” with coconut oil, agave, and cocoa powder to keep in the refrigerator for a snack. It’s tasty and I can almost tell myself it’s healthy because I made it from scratch instead of peeling off a wrapper and eating a whole Hershey’s bar.

The last time I went to make it, I remembered about the flavored agave nectar I picked up a while back and had yet to use. Have you seen these? They’re popping up more and more places; I think I found mine at Ocean State Job Lot or Market Basket but now even Whole Foods is making their own store brand flavored sweeteners.

raw-chocolate-raspberry-ganache-agave-nectar

And then I remembered the best dessert ever and decided why make chocolate when you can make ganache? Adding a little almond butter into chocolate prevents the coconut oil from fully hardening and gives it a nice, soft, fudgy texture.

If you don’t want to buy specialty flavored agave, you can substitute that for 6 Tablespoons of plain agave and 2 Tablespoons of seedless raspberry jam. If you want to keep this fully raw, you can use 2 Tablespoons of raspberry puree instead. I haven’t tried either of these yet but I’m fairly confident they’d work, albeit with a slightly less intense flavor.

Raw Chocolate Raspberry Ganache

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes(allow 30 minutes to harden)

Ingredients(Makes 36 1-inch squares):

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup raspberry agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons creamy almond butter

raw-chocolate-raspberry-ganache-white-out

  1. Mix the coconut oil and agave nectar together.
  2. Slowly incorporate the cocoa powder until it’s completely mixed in, too.
  3. Lastly, add in the almond butter and mix to completion.
  4. Pour the ganache into a 6×6 pan.
  5. Refrigerate for 10 minutes until it’s semi-soft. While it’s still soft, cut the ganache into 1-inch squares. Then continue to refrigerate for another 20-30 minutes until it’s completely cooled.

raw-chocolate-raspberry-ganache-bite

I just put this into a pan and let it harden and have been eating it like a fudge, but you could make a crust and use it as the filling for a chocolate torte, or even use it as a filling for some chocolate wafers and make sandwich cookies. There’s really no way this wouldn’t taste good.

Firecracker Guacamole

Firecracker-Guacamole

The Superbowl is coming up; I only know that because The Voice premiers right after it and that’s what I really want to watch. Maybe I’ll sit through 3 hours of football or maybe I’ll just eat chips and dip the whole time and not look up at the TV; the latter sounds more fun.

I never really made guacamole before and my first time got off to a rough start: I confused jalapeno and habanero peppers. I’m pretty sure traditional guacamole has jalapenos. This one has habaneros which are a little spicier. I didn’t wear gloves or anything while I was dicing it and ended up sniffling for the rest of the afternoon; those little buggers are hot!

Firecracker-Guacamole-dip

What makes this guacamole unique is that the onions are gently cooked. No one wants raw onion breath, especially at a party. Sautéing them in a pan in some water takes away that bitterness, and since it’s cooked in water and not oil it saves the guacamole from getting too oily. You can include or exclude the cilantro based on your preference; I can’t stand the flavor so I left it out.

Firecracker Guacamole

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 3 ripe medium-sized avocadoes
  • 1 small tomato
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 1 habanero pepper
  • 1/2 Tablespoon lemon or lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro(optional)

Firecracker-Guacamole-close-up

Method:

  1. Peel and mash your avocadoes together in a large bowl.
  2. Carefully dice the onion, tomato, and pepper. Add the tomato and pepper in with the avocado reserving the onion.
  3. Heat a large pan over medium with a little water in the bottom. Quickly sauté the onion in the water for a couple minutes until the diced onions are semi-translucent. Remove from the heat and add in with the avocado.
  4. Add in your citrus and salt and cilantro if using and mix all of the ingredients together.
  5. Serve at room temperature. Store in the refrigerator for up to a day.

Firecracker-Guacamole-Scoop

This wasn’t the spiciest thing I’ve ever tasted but it certainly wasn’t mild, either; it was right around my heat level. Just be careful to wash your hands after handling the pepper. Nobody wants to rub that into their eyes or worse.

Semi-Raw Chocolate Rum Truffles

Semi-Raw-Chocolate-Rum-Truffles

This weekend I’m moving back to Providence, which means I’ll be just a short bus ride away from my favorite bakery again. Lord help me, my stomach, and my wallet.

I keep trying to make some of their desserts in my own kitchen to save a little money, and I think I’ve figured out another one. Their rum truffles from what I can tell are a blend of dates, walnuts, cocoa powder, and rum that tastes amazingly close to a “real” chocolaty dessert for something that’s made with whole foods. Since I’ve been kind of on a date ball kick lately, I wanted to see if I could make these, too.

048

Ps. If you’re ever around Providence you need to get the gluten-free chocolate pound cake that’s lurking in the back. I’m not even a big fan of cake but will happily eat a slice or two of that. It’s high on my list of recipes to recreate right behind this one. All I need is about a dozen taste testers who are willing to eat through a couple failed pound cake attempts.

Semi-Raw Chocolate Rum Truffles

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(Makes about a dozen):

  • 3/4 cup walnut pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons rum
  • 8oz pitted dates
  • 6 Tablespoons cocoa powder plus more for rolling
  • Extra 1/4 cup walnut pieces(optional)

Semi-Raw-Chocolate-Rum-Truffles-Bottle

Method:

  • Blend 3/4 cup walnut pieces in a food processor until it turns into a smooth, buttery consistency. You can add the rum at the beginning to help the walnuts blend faster.
  • Add in the dates and continue processing until the dough sticks to itself and starts forming into a ball.
  • Add in the cocoa powder and continue mixing until all of the powder has been worked into the ball.
  • Stop the food processor. Add in the extra walnuts if using and work them into the dough using your hands.
  • Pour some cocoa powder into a flat-bottom bowl or plate. Break off pieces of the truffle dough and roll them into circles in your hand, rolling them in the cocoa powder afterwards to cover all sides.
  • Store at room temperature in an airtight container.

Semi-Raw-Chocolate-Rum-Truffles-finished

These were good but a little lacking in the rum flavor. Next time I might try extract for a stronger punch of flavor. The originals also look better than mine came out, but isn’t that how it always is?

Chocolate Peanut Butter Snack Balls

chocolate-peanut-butter-snack-balls

Lately I’ve been obsessed with these raw fruit and nut snacks. And I’m always obsessed with chocolate peanut butter. I can’t understand what took me so long to combine the two.

I’m not going to sugarcoat these and say they taste like Reese’s peanut butter cups; they don’t, and anyone who could get that flavor with just fruit and nuts would be a miracle worker. But these do taste deliciously sweet and salty with a hint of cocoa and silky smooth peanut butter. They’re certainly good enough to satisfy a snack craving. And if you want to take these to the next level, you can always mix some chocolate chips(or peanut butter chips!) into the batter for a real chocolate peanut butter treat.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Snack Balls

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 0 minutes

Ingredients(makes about 14 balls):

  • 16oz pitted dates
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 6 Tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 3 Tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup peanuts or chocolate chips(optional)

chocolate-peanut-butter-snack-balls-peanut-butter

Method:

  1. Blend the dates in a food processor until they stick together and form a big dough ball.
  2. Add in the peanut butter and cocoa powder and continue mixing until all of the ingredients are blended together.
  3. Stop the processor; move the dough to a separate bowl and add in the chia seeds and any other mix-ins you might want. Knead them in throughout the dough.
  4. Break off 1oz pieces and roll them into 1-inch balls. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. 

chocolate-peanut-butter-snack-balls-peanuts