dates

Superfood Energy Bites (Raw, Vegan, Paleo)

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I am very excited to be teaming up with Prana (Cherry Creek location) this summer to do various nutrition and fitness workshops. The first one is happening this weekend, and in preparation I was on the hunt for a delicious finger food to share.

You know how sometimes you need just a little something...something sweet, but salty, gooey and crunchy, and...chocolaty? And of course healthy, too. Well, these energy bites should satisfy on all accounts. 

This one was inspired by a recent post from one of my favorite food blogs, Detoxinista. These delicious little morsels are full of minerals, antioxidants, protein, omega 3's, and fiber. Not to mention naturally sweetened by only dates and cranberries. I made two variations as an experiment and both turned out great. (I don't know how it happened, but the Berries N' Chia kind of tastes like bubble gum, and I am not complaining.)

Btw, I've been trying out some different superfood powders. So far these are my two faves and are a key ingredient for the energy bites. 

Chocolate Walnut Energy Bites

Makes about 25-30 small chunks

Time: about 20 minutes

You'll Need:

  • 1 Cup pitted dates
  • 1.5 cups walnuts
  • 2 packets (1/8 Cup) Perfect Food brand Raw Green Super Food (chocolate flavor)
  • 1/8 cup cocoa or cacao powder
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1/8 tsp salt

In a food processor, blend the walnuts first for a few seconds. You don't want them too chunky otherwise the mixture won't hold together as well.

Add in the remaining ingredients and process for another 30 seconds or so. Ready? Stuff's about to get messy. Use your hands to roll the "dough" into balls of whatever size you choose.

Keep them as is, or roll them in a layer of cocoa.

Berries N' Chia Energy Bites

Makes about 25-30 small chunks

Prep Time: about 20 minutes

  • 1.5 cups pitted dates
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 packet Amazing Grass brand "Amazing Meal" superfood mix, pomegranate flavor
  • 1/2 cup chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1/8 tsp salt

This one is just as delicious and even easier to make. Throw all the ingredients into the food processor and give it a whirl .

You can also use a rolling pin to flatten the "dough" out on a piece of parchment paper and cut into bars. Enjoy!

Raw Pumpkin Cheesecake (paleo, vegan)

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It's the middle of November and I still haven't posted a pumpkin recipe...shame on me! It's not that I haven't been eating anything and everything pumpkin, it's just been so hectic around here these days that I haven't had time to sit down and write out a good one.  I celebrated an early Thanksgiving last night with my dad's family, which gave me the perfect opportunity to play around with some pumpkin. This recipe was actually inspired by Detoxinista's Classic Raw Cheesecake. I've been wanting to try this recipe for a while now, but thought I'd give it a pumpkin makeover. Aaaaand, since I've been house sitting for the family I work for this weekend, I've been putting their Vitamix to very good use!

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This cheesecake is just as delicious without a crust, but since I had loads of family to impress, I made mine with a crust. I used Detoxinista's (love this blog) Raw Graham Cracker Crust. I had to double her recipe to fit my 9" pan.

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Be careful, the crust alone is dangerously delicious. I may or may not have saved some to eat on its own....

Now for the cheesecake.

Raw Pumpkin Cheesecake

Prep time: 10 minutes, plus time to freeze overnight

Makes 1 nine inch pie

You'll need

  • 1 Cup cashew butter
  • 1 Cup zucchini, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 Cup pumpkin puree (canned is easiest, but I actually had baked a pumpkin and had some left over which is even more yummy)
  • 2 T fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tsp vanilla flavoring
  • 5-8 dates (I only used 5, but if you're looking for a little more sweetness, feel free to toss in a few more)
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Process zucchini and lemon juice in a blender or food processor until you have a fairly smooth puree.

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Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth. (Make sure to remove the pits from the dates!)

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Scoop the mixture into a 9" pan and smooth out the top. When I made this I actually forgot to grease the pan, but turns out it doesn't need it. Freeze overnight, or until firm.

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Serve to hungry family members and wait until after they've tried it to disclose what's in it!

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