Archive for Holiday Recipes
This dessert is on my top 10 list for a number of reasons. It’s easy to prepare, it’s fresh and light tasting and the filling ingredients can be changed to whatever is in season. A couple of my favorite combinations besides this kiwi and blackberry combo are peach and blueberry or rhubarb and strawberry. This tart would be a great addition to an Easter brunch or just anytime you want an easy and tasty dessert.
- 5 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp ground flax seed
- 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 cup raw walnuts, finely ground
- 1 cup raw coconut crystals plus 2 tbsp, divided
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ginger
- 2/3 cup Earth Balance Buttery Spread
- 8-10 kiwi’s, peeled and diced
- 1 cup blackberries (or blueberries)
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Mix the ground flax seed with the water. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Combine the flour, walnuts, 1 cup of the coconut crystals, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in a large bowl.
- Add the Earth Balance and the flax seed mixture and mix with a fork or pastry cutter or even your hands until crumbly.
- Press half of the mixture into a 10 inch tart pan or if you don’t have a tart pan you could use an 8 x 8 baking pan.
- Gently combine the kiwi, blackberries and remaining coconut sugar and pour them into the baking dish.
- Spoon the remaining crumble mixture over the top of the fruit.
- Bake 40 minutes or until the fruit is tender and the crumble topping is browned. Let sit for 10 minutes or so before removing from the tart pan or cutting.
Makes one 10 inch tart.
Serving size 1/10.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 346, Cal. from Fat: 152, Total Fat: 17g, Sat. Fat: 3g, Carbs: 45g, Fiber: 7g, Sugars: 19g, Protein: 5g, Sodium: 118mg, Chol: 0mg
Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
One of my favorite holiday gifts to give out is homemade fudge. Each year I make a couple batches of my famous Peanut Butter Fudge, pack them in pretty gift boxes and hand them out to friends and loved ones. This year I wanted to stick with the fudge theme but keep it simple for those that don’t like peanut butter (Gasp! I know. Who doesn’t like PB? Sadly, my son.). This fudge is my family’s favorite ice cream topper. I love giving out gifts like this to people. If one bit of this fudge sauce doesn’t convince them that natural, wholesome foods taste the best then nothing else will!
- 1 can full fat coconut milk (yields about 1/2 cup of coconut cream)
- 1/2 cup coconut nectar or raw honey
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- Place the can of coconut milk in the fridge for 2-3 hours. The coconut cream will settle to the top and separate from the coconut water below.
- Carefully remove the coconut cream (you should end up with just over a 1/2 cup of cream) and place it in a saucepan over low heat. Add the remaining ingredients, except the cocoa powder and stir well.
- Once the coconut oil has melted and the coconut nectar has loosened slowly add the cocoa powder one tablespoon at a time. You want to go slowly so you don’t develop any lumps.
- Remove from heat and let the fudge sauce cool for 5-10 minutes.
- Carefully pour the fudge sauce into a glass container. Make sure whatever container you use is microwave safe.
- Let the fudge sauce cool completely before sealing with the lid.
Makes approximately 1 3/4 cup fudge sauce.
Serving size 2 tbsp.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 105.5, Cal. from Fat: 65.5, Total Fat: 7g, Sat. Fat: 6.5g, Carbs: 10.7g, Fiber: 1g, Sugars: 8g, Protein: 1g, Sodium: 24.5mg, Chol: 0mg
Store your fudge sauce in the fridge for up to 4 weeks. To reuse the fudge sauce place the container in the microwave until the sauce is completely melted. Pour over ice cream or add to a cup of hot milk for a delicious cup of hot chocolate milk!
I love granola. One of my favorite snacks is our No Bake Blueberry Granola Bars. I actually like to give these out as gifts throughout the year. During the holidays though I like to make a more seasonal granola. The smells that will waft out from your oven while this granola is cooking is divine. As good as the smells are the taste is even better! I like to place the granola in a decorative tins or even cellophane bags and give them out as holiday gifts. This recipe makes a good amount of granola, which means you can give the gift of granola to others and to yourself!
- 4 cups rolled oats (if you follow a gluten free diet make sure to use a gluten free oat)
- 1/2 can (15 ounces) pumpkin (not canned pumpkin pie)
- 1 cup unsalted cashews, whole or roughly chopped, your choice
- heaping 1/3 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom (omit if you don’t have any)
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup, raw honey or coconut nectar
- 1/2 cup raw coconut crystals
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Line a large baking sheets with parchment paper, silicone baking mats or non stick foil.
- In a large bowl mix together the oats, cashews and pumpkin seeds. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan add the coconut oil. Once the oil has completely melted add the pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, maple syrup and coconut crystals. Remove from heat and mix until completely combined.
- Spread the granola evenly over the baking sheet. Press it down evenly with a wooden spoon or your hands.
- Bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Break the granola up and stir it around once or twice while it cooks. The granola will crisp up once it cools so don’t worry if your granola is still a little wet.
- Allow to cool slightly, then mix in the dried cranberries.
Makes approximately 7 cups.
Serving size 1/2 cup.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 308, Cal. from Fat: 133, Total Fat: 15g, Sat. Fat: 8.5g, Carbs: 38.5g, Fiber: 4g, Sugars: 10g, Protein: 6g, Sodium: 12.5mg, Chol: 0mg
You can store in an airtight container at room temperature for several weeks or place in the refrigerator or freezer for longer term storage.
Ah, biscotti! The grown up version of dunking cookies in milk. This is one of my favorite homemade gifts to give out during the holidays. Traditionally biscotti is served with coffee but in my household it’s our favorite thing to dunk in our hot chocolate. This recipe only makes 8-10 slices so if you’re like me and you sample a few pieces (you know, for quality assurance!), you might want to make a double batch!
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/3 cup raw coconut crystals
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1 tbsp tapioca starch
- 1 tbsp potato starch
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tsp neutral flavor oil
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup Homemade Almond Milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper
- Mix together the flours, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Mix in the pecans and raisins.
- In a separate bowl whisk together the tapioca starch, potato starch, baking soda, water, oil, vanilla extract and milk. Add to flour mixture, stir until combined.
- Place the dough onto the baking sheet and shape into a loaf about 1 inch thick, 5 inches wide and about 8 inches long.
- Bake until firm, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.
- Let the loaf cool about 10 minutes then cut diagonally into approximately 1 inch thick slices.
- Arrange slices cut-side down and bake 10 minutes, then turn the slices over and bake 10 more minutes.
- Place the slices upright on the pan, turn the oven off but leave the pan in the oven as it cools.
- The slices should be firm and crispy.
Makes 8-10 slices.
Serving size 1 slice.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 146, Cal. from Fat: 57, Total Fat: 6.5g, Sat. Fat: 1g, Carbs: 20g, Fiber: 2.5g, Sugars: 54g, Protein: 3g, Sodium: 1mg, Chol: 0mg
Leftover biscotti will keep for up to 5 days at room temperature. After that you can place it in the fridge for an addition 5 days.
I normally don’t drink flavored tea but around the holidays I love to make spiced tea. Take today for instance, I was out in the rain going in and out of a dozen different places running errands and when I got home all damp and cold the first thing I did was to brew up a hot cup of this delicious and aromatic spiced tea. The tea warmed me up and the aroma lifted my spirits. What better gift can you give to someone than some happiness in a cup?
- 1 orange, zest removed and dried *see notes
- 6 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces
- 2 tbsp cardamom pods
- 2 tbsp whole cloves
- 2 tbsp whole allspice
- 2 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1/4 cup whole star anise
- 1/2 cup loose tea of your choice, black tea works best
- In a small bowl mix all of the ingredients.
- Place the tea mixture in a cellophane bag or other pretty container.
- Write out tea making instructions to include with the tea mixture.
Nutrition information not available.
To dry the orange zest peel the orange and remove the white pith. Cut the skin into strips and lay on a baking sheet. Bake in the oven at 200 degrees until dry, about 30 minutes.
Brewing instructions are as follows:
Place 1 tbsp of the tea mixture into a reusable tea bag or diffuser and place into a mug. Pour hot water (around 190 degrees) over the tea mixture and steep for 3 minutes.
Keeps for up to 3 months stored in a sealed bag or container.
I don’t know what it is about Christmas and popcorn but they seem to go together. How did the tradition of stringing popcorn on the tree start and why did we always make caramel popcorn balls and wrap them in green or red plastic wrap? Whatever the reason I’m delighted to share this recipe with everyone to enjoy for themselves or to give as gifts to carry on the popcorn tradition. It’s so easy that everyone in the family can participate in some part of the fun of making these tasty treats.
- 1 cup raw honey or coconut nectar
- 1 cup raw coconut crystals
- 1 cup unsweetened peanut butter (creamy or crunchy, whatever you prefer), room temperature
- 8 cups popped popcorn
- course ground sea salt to taste
- 1/2 cup peanuts (optional)
- Measure the popcorn into a large bowl. Set aside.
- In a medium sized sauce pan stir together the honey and coconut crystals. Turn heat to medium high and bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
- Boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Adjust heat down a little if needed to keep from boiling over.
- Remove the pan from the heat and add in the peanut butter. Stir until completely mixed in and smooth.
- Pour the mixture over the popcorn, sprinkle with sea salt and stir to combine.
- Form into balls. Be careful as the popcorn mixture will be hot but you need to form the balls right away for them to stick together. Lay the balls on a sheet of wax paper to cool before placing into cellophane bags.
- You can also lay the loose popcorn out onto waxed paper to cool without shaping into balls.
Makes 12 popcorn balls.
Serving size 1 popcorn ball.
This will be the first Thanksgiving where I don’t have my traditional after Thanksgiving Toasted Turkey Sandwich. Of course, after whipping up this fantastic cranberry vinaigrette that sandwich is a distant memory. I’m loving the sweet and sour of this dressing and could pretty much drink it up with a straw. This might be my favorite use of Thanksgiving leftovers yet!
Ingredients for Thanksgiving Salad:
- 1 package (5 ounces) mixed greens salad
- 1 apple, cored, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1/2 cup pecans (I like to toast them first but that’s optional)
- 4 – 5 ounces dried unsweetened cranberries
- 2 – 3 ounces roasted pumpkin seeds
Ingredients for Cranberry Vinaigrette:
- 4 tbsp Cranberry Relish
- 1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- 3 tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
- 2 tsp yellow mustard
- a squeeze or two of lime juice
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place all ingredients for the vinaigrette in a small bowl (for a chunkier dressing) or blender (for a thinner dressing) and whisk together until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
- In a large serving dish add the mixed greens and top with apple pieces, pecans, cranberries and pumpkin seeds.
- Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad and toss to combine.
Makes 6 – 8 servings.
Nutritional info not available.
Leftover dressing can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
If you are like me you probably decorate your Thanksgiving table with a few pumpkins, squash or gourds. Maybe you just bought a few extra squash to be sure you had enough. Either way you win because this recipe is a fun and flavorful way to take that squash and a few other leftovers and combine them into a whole new creation that is fast and easy (something you will appreciate after all that shopping).
- 1 acorn, carnival or delicata squash, skin on and sliced into 4 rings about 3/4 inch thick
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 cups leftover stuffing
- 1/4 cup leftover Cranberry Relish
- 2 tbsp pecans, toasted
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Place the squash rings on a baking sheet. Drizzle the olive oil over the top of the squash and flip over to coat the other side with oil as well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bake 20-25 minutes or until fork tender. Remove from the oven.
- In a small bowl mix the stuffing and the cranberry relish. Evenly spoon the stuffing into the squash rings.
- Place back in the oven until the stuffing is warmed, about 5 minutes.
- Garnish with the toasted pecans.
Makes 4 servings.
Serving size 1 squash ring.
Nutrition information will vary depending on the stuffing and cranberry relish used.
This dish is best served right away. Please adjust the ingredient amounts for the serving size you need.
Even before we switched to a plant based diet, Turkey was not the item I looked forward to most for Thanksgiving dinner. It was ‘Mashed Potato Volcanoes’. What? You’ve never heard of them? I don’t remember who in my family invented this little tradition but my cousin and I always had a little competition to see who could make the biggest volcano. You start with a big ole’ spoonful of mashed potatoes and you form it into a mountain. Then you make a hole in the top of the mountain, this is where you put the corn. Next you take the gravy and pour it onto your volcano – VOLIA! – Mashed Potato Volcanoes! Ah, the memories! I’ve never gone a Thanksgiving without my volcanoes and I’m not about to stop just because we don’t eat meat. Finding a delicious vegan gravy was on the top of my list this Thanksgiving. Does this taste just like the usual turkey gravy you have at Thanksgiving? No, but I loved the taste of it and it was FABULOUS on top of my volcanoes. If you need a vegan/vegetarian or gluten free gravy for your Thanksgiving dinner I highly recommend you give this a try. So, someone please tell me I’m not the only grown adult out there making volcanoes out of their food?
- 1 cup low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 1/2 tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 1 tbsp coconut nectar or raw honey
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- 1 tsp yellow mustard
- 1 tbsp low sodium tamari or soy sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder
- 2 tbsp Garlic Gold Oil or olive oil
- In a blender or food processor combine all ingredients and puree until smooth.
- In a medium pot on high heat, add gravy and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to low and stir frequently to thicken.
- Remove from heat and serve.
Makes about 2 cups.
Serving size 1/4 cup.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 82.5, Cal. from Fat: 44, Total Fat: 5g, Sat. Fat: .5g, Carbs: 8g, Fiber: 1g, Sugars: 5g, Protein: 2.5g, Sodium: 98.5mg, Chol: 0mg
Leftover gravy can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
It’s been almost 3 months since my family switched to a plant based diet. This will be our first Thanksgiving where we don’t sit down to stuff ourselves with turkey and more importantly – leftover turkey sandwiches. I’ve always believed that with good, wholesome ingredients you can make incredible tasting food. So even though we won’t be eating turkey this Thanksgiving I can honestly say that we won’t be missing it. Among the things on our dinner table will be these fanfreakingtastic pecan pies. Not just any pecan pies – CHOCOLATE pecan pies. Because as you know, everything tastes better with chocolate. Would it be wrong to eat these pies and only these pies for Thanksgiving?
- 1 Perfect Pie Crust (bottom only)
- 1 cup toasted, unsalted pecans (The pecans I used were rather small so I left them whole. If the pecans you use are larger you may want to cut them in half except for the ones used to decorate the top)
- 3/4 cup raw honey or coconut nectar
- 1/4 cup chocolate chips of your choice (I used Sunspire Grain Sweetened Chocolate Chips)
- 2 tbsp tapioca starch
- 2 tbsp potato starch
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tbsp neutral flavor oil
- pinch sea salt
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a small bowl whisk together the tapioca starch, potato starch, baking powder, water and oil. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan heat the honey. Bring to a boil and when foamy lower heat and simmer for 3 minutes.
- Add the starch mixture stirring constantly for 3 minutes more.
- Add the chocolate chips and vanilla, stirring until the chocolate is melted. Remove from heat.
- Evenly disburse 3/4 cup of the pecans onto the pie crust.
- Pour the chocolate mixture over the pecans about 3/4 full.
- Arrange the remaining pecans on top. (If using mini tart pans place the pans on a baking sheet)
- Bake 30 minutes.
- Cool on a rack for about 1-2 hours, then refrigerate until thoroughly chilled and set.
Makes 1 pie or 5 tarts.
Serving size 1/8 piece of pie.
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 183.5, Cal. from Fat: 112.5, Total Fat: 13g, Sat. Fat: 3g, Carbs: 16g, Fiber: 1.5g, Sugars: 12g, Protein: 1.5g, Sodium: 0mg, Chol: 0mg
Leftover pie can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.
For a gluten free pie make sure to use a gluten free pie crust and gluten free chocolate chips.