The holiday season is finally here! That means all things cinnamon spice, and everything nice… and of course, a lot of sweet treats! Here is a round-up of our favorite Food for 6S festive holiday recipes to get you in the spirit. Each recipe was created using nutrient dense ingredients (as opposed to refined flours and sugars) making them a healthier twist on the conventional version. After all, ‘tis the season to indulge, but why not do so with a healthier option? Enjoy!
1) Mint Chocolate Nanaimo Bars
(For a nut-free bar, substitute your favorite mint chocolate chip ice cream for the cream layer)
1 1/2 cups raw cashews or macadamia nuts (160g)
1/8 tsp salt
scant 1/4 tsp pure peppermint extract
1/2 tbsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup virgin coconut oil (40g)
2 Nunaturals stevia packets, or 2 tbsp liquid sweetener (such as pure maple syrup)
3 oz raw spinach (85g or 2 very-loosely-packed cups)
Place the nuts in a cereal bowl and cover with water. Let soak 8 hours or overnight. Drain and pat completely dry with a paper towel. Combine all ingredients in a vita-mix or high-quality food processor, and process until completely smooth. (This can take a few minutes in a food processor)
1/2 cup raw almonds, walnuts, pecans, or a combination of these (or sunflower seeds for nut-free)
1/2 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened (I used the full-fat kind)
scant 1/2 cup pitted dates (8 small dates) or raisins
1/8 tsp salt
Process all ingredients until even crumbs form. (Blenders will yield sticky mixtures, so it’s best to use a food processor.) Transfer to an 8-in square baking dish lined with parchment or wax paper going up the sides for easy removal. Using a piece of wax or parchment paper, smush into the pan until the crust evenly fills the bottom. Make the final layer:
1/2 cup cacao or cocoa powder (40g)
1/2 cup virgin coconut oil (80g)
2 tbsp pure maple syrup (or liquid sweetener of choice) (28g)
Melt the coconut oil if it is not already melted. Stir together all ingredients to form a smooth sauce. Spread over the other layers. Freeze just until chocolate has started to set, then cut into bars. It is best to cut after 10 minutes or less have elapsed, to prevent cracking. Then place back in the freezer to firm up completely. Bars can be stored in the freezer for a few weeks; thaw before eating.
2) Thin Mints (high protein)
¾ cup protein powder
½ cup + 2 tbsp cocoa
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp stevia liquid
1 tsp peppermint extract
6 tbsp coconut oil, melted
Place all ingredients into a bowl and stir together. Scoop into 1-inch diameter circles onto a plate or tray lined with parchment paper. Place into the fridge to set for approximately 2 hours or until the cookies are hard to the touch.
3) Creamy Hot Chocolate
1 cup milk (almond, soy, or coconut, unsweetened)
1 tbsp maple syrup (can substitute 1 tsp stevia for sugar free)
¼ tsp vanilla extract
2 squares dark chocolate (85%)
1 tbsp cocoa powder
Heat milk in a pot. Place all ingredients into a blender and blend for 20-30 seconds. Serve immediately. Recipe serves 1-2.
4) Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pizookie
2 cans white beans or garbanzos (drained and rinsed) (500g total, once drained)
1 cup quick oats
1/4 cup pureed pumpkin (or butternut squash or sweet potato)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp vegetable oil or coconut oil
1 and 1/2 cups coconut sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
Blend everything (except the chips) very well in a food processor (NOT a blender). Blend until it’s super-smooth. Mix in chips, and pour into a pan a 10-inch springform pan. Cook at 350F for 35 minutes. Let stand at least 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
5) Gingerbread Cookies
1 ½ cups gluten free all-purpose flour
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup tahini
3 Tbsp molasses
1/4 cup earth balance or organic butter, softened
3/4 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg (optional)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
In a large mixing bowl, add egg, soften butter, molasses, tahini, coconut sugar, salt, spices, baking soda and beat on a low with a mixer, or vigorously whisk. Add gluten free flour to the wet ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until well combined. Your dough should hold its shape when pressed, but not feel dry. Cover and chill dough for at least one hour, preferably overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Carefully roll out dough to a little thicker than 1/8 inch on a clean cutting board, generously sprinkling the bottom & top layer of the dough with flour before rolling. Dip your cookie cutters in flour and cut out Christmas shapes. Next, place shapes on a baking sheet with parchment paper and freeze for 5 minutes to let them firm up. Remove from freezer, and bake for 8-10 minutes or until they appear only slightly browned on the edges. Once cooled, dip into 70% dark chocolate.
Store covered at room temperature for several days in a glass container.
If you try any of these recipes, please comment below and let us know how it turned out.
Blog written by : Leigh Merotto
FF6S Registered Dietitian
CrossFit 6S team helping you achieve your fitness goals.