It’s so hard to stay healthy
during the holiday season at any time of the year with all of the temptations around. One of my tricks to keep as reasonably close to my “nutritarian” plant-based diet of whole foods with minimal oil, salt and added sugars is to bring a dessert to parties or potlucks that I know I can eat. This strategy really helps me stay away from the more decadent desserts that almost always trigger overeating for me.
This version of a raw cookie is an adaptation of my Almond-Date Ball recipe that is available on Vegan Delish. The change is the addition of peppermint extract that makes these bites feel so seasonal.
Have you ever used peppermint extract? I am kind of obsessed with it right now and putting it into everything! The combination of carob or cocoa plus the peppermint reminds me of the old peppermint patties that I used to love, but can’t eat now because of all the sugar.
While this recipe isn’t truly “raw” in the strictest sense, the cookies are unbaked and come together in minutes. So, if you have a last minute gathering and want to bring a treat, I highly suggest these Raw Peppermint Bites (btw, who let Carrie run wild with the holiday photo edits? I can’t help it, it’s so fun!):
Here’s the recipe:
- 1 cup almonds (preferably raw and unsalted)
- 6 pitted Medjool dates
- ½ cup dried currants or raisins
- ¼ cup raw buckwheat groats that have been soaked, rinsed and dehydrated so they are crunchy (alternatively, you can use a crispy cereal or just leave them out)
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon carob or 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons water
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- ¼ cup unsweetened dried shredded coconut (for coating)
- Combine almonds, dates, currants, buckwheat groats, cinnamon, vanilla, carob and water in a food processor and process until ingredients are combined.
- Pour coconut onto a plate. Use your hands to form the dough into 12 balls and roll each one in the coconut.
I’ve made some other sugar-free treats that may also be appropriate for the holiday season including these Cranberry-Oat Cookies:
Or, these Sweet Potato Cookies:If you’re looking for more traditional healthy holiday cookies, I suggest you check out the 12 Days of Christmas Cookies feature that Helyn is doing over at Helyn’s Healthy Kitchen. She is inarguably way more festive than me and doing an amazing job with creating a holiday spirit.
I also participated in a healthy cookie round-up over at Sandra’s blog so please do check that out:
Are you doing any holiday baking this year? One tip I just learned about is using apple puree in place of oil. I have tried applesauce in the past, but the idea of just putting uncooked apples in a food processor and using the resulting raw puree is a great one.
Share your tips in the comments, I’d love to hear them!
Lastly, if you need any stocking stuffers this year, may I suggest that you gift a copy of my recipe app, Vegan Delish? To do so, you go into the App Store on iTunes and search the store for the app. Then, where it says “Download,” just pick “Gift this App.” It’s a great way to share the 150+ whole food, plant-based recipes that I’ve put together there in a handy-dandy digital format.