Healthy Sweets

  • Ingredients:
    1/2 cup goji berries
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup coconut
  • 1tbsp unhulled tahini
  • 1tbsp chlorella powder (optional)

How to make it:

1. Place goji berries and raisins in a bowl with the warm water and mix through. Leave for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Meanwhile, process cashews on low in a food processor until chopped finely. Remove from processor and place aside.

3. Place soaked goji berries and raisins in the food processor with soaking water. Process into a paste.

4. Add cashews, coconut, tahini and chlorella to a processor. Process on medium until well combined.

5. Roll into balls and toss in shredded coconut.

6. Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

 

These balls are a great smack to satisfy your sweet tooth without sugar. They are super high in iron, calcium, magnesium and good fats.

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup organic dried apricots
  • ¼ cup goji berries
  • ¼ cup warm water
  • 2 cups macadamias
  • 1 cups coconut plus some for coating
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 2 tbsp agave syrup OR honey
  • 2 tbsp maca powder (optional)

Method
1.In a bowl place apricots and goji berries with the warm water. Stir to combine and leave resting for at least 20 minutes.

2.In a food processor, place macadamias and process until finely chopped. Remove and set aside.

3.Place soaked dried fruit in food processor and process on medium to high speed until it is a smooth paste.

4.Add coconut, tahini, agave/honey and maca to fruit mix and process until combined

5.Add macadamias back into the food processor and process on a low speed until combined.

6.Roll mix into small balls and coat with coconut. These balls will last 1 week in the fridge.

Ingredients:

  • Nut mix – will serve 4
  • 2tbsp raw almonds
  • 2tbsp pepitas
  • 2tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 2tbsp flax seeds
  • Fruit for one person:
  • ½ ripe mango, finely chopped
  • ¼ medium paw paw, finely chopped
  • 1 inch slice pineapple, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Dessicated coconut

Method:
1. Soak all nuts and seeds in water overnight. Drain with a fine sieve and rinse well.

2. In a blender, place half of the soaked nuts and seeds and 1 cup of water. Blend on high until smooth.

3. Place the rest of the soaked nuts and seeds in the blender. Blend on low until nuts are finely chopped but still visible in milk. Mixture should be a runny thick consistency, but it is not essential.

4. Add 3 tbsp of nut mix and coconut to fruit and stir through. Enjoy immediately.

5. Place leftover nut mix in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Indulge guilt free with this lovely cake, which is free from sugar, wheat and gluten.

Ingredients:

  • 250g chopped organic butter
  • 1/2 cup filtered water
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 1/2 cup xylitol
  • 375g raisins
  • 300g sultanas
  • 300g currants
  • 125g chopped prunes
  • 4 organic eggs, beaten
  • 1tbsp grated orange zest
  • 1tsp grated lemon zest
  • 2 1/4 cups freshly made almond flour
  • 100g chopped almonds
  • 1/2tsp bicarb soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/4 cup whole almonds to decorate
  • 2 tablespoons brandy

 

1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius.

2. Grease a 23cm cake tin and line with baking paper

3. In a saucepan on medium heat add butter, brandy, water and xylitol. Once butter is melted add dried fruit and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Place in a large mixing bowl and allow to cool.

4. Once cool stir in beaten eggs and grated zest with a wooden spoon. Then add almond meal, bicarb, mixed spice and chopped almonds. Stir until well combined.

5. Spoon mixture into prepared cake tin. Decorate the top with whole almonds.

6. Cover the top of the cake with baking paper. Loosely wrap the cake in brown paper and place in preheated oven. Bake at 160 degrees for 1 hour.

7. Remove the brown paper and reduce temperature to 150 degrees celcius. Bake for one more hour, or until a skewer comes out clean.

8. Drizzle with 2 tbsp brandy and leave to cool in the tin.

Recipe adapted from www.perfectsweet.com.au

As well as being delicious, this gluten-free cake is high in fibre, low in sugar and is a good source of protein. The dates provide calcium and fibre. It is great for the food sensitive, also being free from dairy and wheat. We hope you enjoy this dense, chocolatey treat.

Ingredients:

  • 250g raw almonds
  • 4 organic eggs, beaten well
  • 200g 70-85% dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 200g pitted Medjool dates, soaked in 3/4 cup water
  • 160ml rice or almond milk
  • 1tbsp coconut oil
  • 2tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1tsp baking powder (aluminium free)

 

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees celcius. Line a 24cm springform cake tin with baking paper.

2. In a food processor, grind almonds on high for at least a minute to make a rough almond flour. Place in a large mixing bowl with shredded coconut and baking powder. Mix to combine.

3. Place dates and water, and rice milk in food processor. Process until a fine paste.

4. Place a small saucepan inside a larger one filled with enough water to touch the smaller pot. Place chocolate, coconut oil and maple syrup in the smaller pot and heat gently until chocolate is melted through.

5. Turn food processor on low and slowly pour chocolate mixture into the date mix. process until well combined.

6. Remove blades and gently stir through beaten eggs until combined.

7. Pour food processor contents into bowl with dry ingredients. gently fold through until well combined. Pour into the cake tin and spread evenly.

8. Bake in the oven at 190 degrees for 40-50 minutes. A skewer should come out with some sticky mix on it but not too wet. You want the cake to remain moist.

9. Remove from oven and leave to cool in tin for 10 minutes before removing.

10. Serve on it’s own or with yoghurt and berries.

MAKING BAKING HEALTHY!
Baking your own cakes, biscuits and other treats is great fun! It also gives you the opportunity to control exactly what is going into your food, avoiding nasty additives and allergenic foods.

There are many easy substitutions that you can make when it comes to baking. Using natural sugar alternatives, different flours and natural flavourings can turn an unhealthy food into a healthy and satisfying treat. Baking is all about experimentation (it is a science after all). Trying new ingredients will give you success and disasters, but once you get the feeling for it you will be able to create some great food that will benefit your and your family’s health.

SUGAR
Sugar is one of the very worst things we can put into our body. It offers little to no nutrition, spikes our blood sugar levels and robs our body of vital nutrients. Try these sugar alternatives next time you bake:

Xylitol
Xylitol is a naturally derived fruit sugar that can be used interchangeably for sugar in baking. It has a low glycaemic index, helps to prevent tooth decay, and out of all of the sugar substitutes it tastes the closest to sugar.

Stevia
Stevia is a herb that has a natural sweetness with extremely low calories. The sweetness comes from pythochemicals called steviol glycosides, not from actual sugars, meaning that is has the lowest GI of all sugar substitutes. Stevia is super sweet, so you only need to use a small amount. You can buy in a powdered form or a liquid extract.

Honey
Raw honey is a truly natural sweetener, coming straight from the bee hive to you. Honey is well tolerated by diabetics and those with blood sugar issues. You can use honey in most recipes, but remember that as it is liquid you may need to adjust the amount of flour or other ingredients. Pure honey also contains B vitamins and trace minerals.

Maple syrup
Maple syrup (the 100% pure form not the sweetened variety) is a great choice for sweeteners containing manganese, zinc, B2, calcium and magnesium. Maple syrup has a delicious malty taste. Like honey you will need to adjust the amount of flour or dried ingredients you use.

FLOUR
Wheat flour (especially white flour) has been refined and bleached to make it more uniform. A better choice would be organic wholegrain flour, which at least will be free of chemicals. Try these other alternatives too…

Spelt flour
Spelt is a grain related to wheat that is great for those with wheat intolerance or sensitivity. Spelt is lower in gluten than wheat and generally higher in nutrients. You can substitute spelt flour 1:1 in recipes.

Kamut flour
Although not as readily available as spelt flour kamut is a great alternative to flour in baking, having a low GI and being high in protein.

Buckwheat flour – GF
Buckwheat is a good gluten free alternative in baking. Buckwheat is alkaline (anti-inflammatory), high in calcium and other minerals. As buckwheat has no gluten it is more suited for use in biscuits and denser cakes, as it will not rise as flour with gluten does.

Coconut flour – GF
Coconut flour is a healthy alternative for use in baking biscuits, brownies and slices.

Almond flour – GF
Almond flour is a high protein, nutritious gluten free flour options that is great for making friands and cakes. The only downside is that almond flour will contain oxidised oils which are not so great for your health. Make you own flour in a nut grinder to reduce this possibility.

OILS
There are many healthy oil options to add to your baking. The number one rule is NO MARGARINE! It is very detrimental to your health. Also don’t use polyunsaturated oils such as olive and sunflower oil in cooking as they can easily turn into trans fats.

Butter
Butter is actually a very good option for cooking as long as it is organic. Organic butter is very heat stable and has good amount of the fat soluble vitamins A, E and D. It also contains butyric acid, which helps to improve gut health.

Coconut Oil – DF
Coconut oil is another great oil to use in baking as it is very heat stable and has many health benefits. You can substitute coconut oil for most other oils in cooking easily.

Cold pressed oils
The best liquid oils to use in baking muffins and the like is macadamia or rice bran oil, both of which have a high smoke point so will produce less trans on cooking.

BAKING POWDER
A little known fact is that conventional baking powder contains aluminium, which is detrimental to your health. Buy only aluminium free baking powder and pure bicarbonate of soda.

COLOURINGS
Artificial food colourings are chemical based and should be avoided, especially with children. Try these alternatives to add colour to baking.

Beetroot
You can use beetroot powder available at health food shops) and even just a little beetroot juice is enough to give a red/pink colour to foods.

Turmeric
A little turmeric added to hot water makes a bright yellow colouring. Don’t use too much though!

Berries
Pureed frozen berries make a great purple or red colour – just add some hot water to defrost then blend to a paste.

For recipes using these alternative ingredients click here.

This delicious raw pudding is so delicious you’ll be coming back for more! The chia seeds swell like tapioca to give a yummy pudding like consistency.

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tsp honey or xylitol
  • 2/3 cup chia seeds

Method:
1. In a blender, place all ingredients except for chia seeds.

2. Blend until a smooth consistency.

3. Put chia seeds in a bowl and pour liquid in.

4. Mix thoroughly with a spoon and place in fridge for at least 4 hours (overnight is preferable).

5. That’s it! Serve with fresh

These biscuits are easy to make and are free from sugar, wheat and dairy. The almonds and oats make them high in protein and fibre too! You’ll need a food processor for this recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup natural almonds
  • 1 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/4 cup wholemeal spelt flour (or organic wheat flour)
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) rice bran oil
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) natural maple syrup
  • sugar free jam (usually sweetened with fruit juice) – berry or apricot jams work well.

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius and line 2 trays with baking paper.

2. Place almonds and oats in food processor and process for 20 seconds on high (or until a fine crumb). Add flour and process briefly to combine.

3. Pour into a bowl and add oil and maple syrup. Stir to combine well.

4. Using a dessert spoon, roll spoonfuls of mixture into a ball. Place on baking paper and press down with thumb so that there is a small indentation.

5. Spoon a small amount of jam onto each biscuit using a teaspoon.

6. Place in oven and bake for approx 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and allow to cool (biscuits will harden once cooled).

This yoghurt is great for those that are dairy intolerant. Cashews are an excellent source of protein, iron, calcium and magnesium. There is a naturally occuring bacteria on the outside of the cashew which allows it to naturally ferment overnight – giving you health promoting probiotics.

Ingredients:

  • Raw cashews
  • Filtered water

How to:

In a blender, place cashews and enough water to cover and a little more. You can adjust water amount depending on how thick you’d like your yoghurt.

Blend well and leave in blender or another container overnight.

In the morning you will have some cashew yoghurt! If you live in a cool climate you’ll need to leave it a little longer – just taste it to see if it has gone sour enough yet.

You can blend dates or other fruit in as well to change the flavour. This will last a few days in the fridge.

Evi Km Cropped

Katherine Maslen

Author

Hey, I’m Katherine Maslen, naturopath, nutritionist, host of The Shift podcast, author and renegade for health.
Since completing 2 bachelor degrees in health science over 12 years ago, I’ve been helping peeps just like you to be their best through awesome health. I’ve spent most of this time one on one in clinical practice – in the trenches with my clients to navigate them through the minefield that is imperfect health.

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