Vegan Sugar-Free Hazelnut Spread

“Give your child a touch of joy at the breakfast table”.  This was Nutella’s catch phrase.
“Made with 56 roasted hazelnuts”.  Not to mention, enough sugar in one serving to get your child wired in seconds!

I never understood who was actually being fooled by these commercials, convinced that they are feeding their families a nutritional breakfast when slabbing this sugar spread onto a piece of white bread.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my share of Nutella in the past, but their whole healthy breakfast pitch is ridiculous.  I read a ‘fun fact’ on their website today, that 30,000,000,000g of Nutella was sold in Canada over the last decade.  If you lined up the jars end to end, that would almost stretch from coast to coast in Canada.  Crazy!

I also did the math, one serving (one tablespoon) of Nutella, contains 11 grams of sugar.  That translates to THREE teaspoons of sugar in one tablespoon of Nutella!  I wish labeling was clearer, not many people take (or have) the time to figure this out…

Anyway, on to my very satisfying, much healthier, sugar-free version.  I can’t stop licking the spoon.

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Vegan Sugar-Free Hazelnut Recipe

Makes approximately 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup organic hazelnuts, roasted
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons organic cacao powder
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (I used homemade)
  • 1 tablespoon organic coconut oil
  • a pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Lay out hazelnuts onto a baking sheet and pop in the over for ten minutes.  Watch them carefully, oven temperatures vary and these can go from perfectly fine to burnt quickly.

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  • Remove hazelnuts from oven.  Using your fingers or a paper towel, remove skins from hazelnuts.  They will come off easily.  It doesn’t need to be perfect.

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  • Place hazelnuts in a food processor.  Process at high speed for 2-3 minutes until you have a paste.

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  • Add coconut oil and process for another minute, until it looks smooth.
  • Add all remaining ingredients, process for another 2-3 minutes until you have a creamy texture.

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  • At this point it will be quite thin and liquidy.  Place into a jar (I use mason jars) and refrigerate for one hour hour.

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  • Remove from fridge.  It is now a spreadable texture.

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  • You will store this in the fridge, and it keeps fresh for about 2 weeks.  Bring it to room temperature to soften when you want to spread it, as it will harden slightly in the fridge.  I also suggest making it in small batches so it stays fresh.
  • Spread onto your favourite baked goods, fresh fruit (like apple slices) or on sprouted grain bread.

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  • Be wary of small hands snatching hazelnuts from photoshoot.

Vegan Sugar-Free Hazelnut Spread

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

I’ve indulged in one too many treats this summer, and lately have been very good in keeping on the straight and narrow with healthy eating.  But, a girl loves her snacks.  Salty, crunchy snacks to be precise.  I do not believe we should ever deprive ourselves of delicious eating (or snacking).  I just like to come up with healthier alternatives.  Enter these spicy, crunchy roasted chickpeas.  I had to force myself to put them away so I can type this blog post.
My four year old’s reaction to these, “Mama, I really, really like these.  They are very yummy.”  This makes me extra happy, as I like to fuel his little body with nutritious snacks whenever I can, since he is the pickiest eater and rarely sits down for three meals a day.  I made a decent sized batch of these, as they stay crunchy for a few days stored at room temperature (let them cool completely before storing).
Happy snacking!

Spicy, Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas Recipe
Yields 2
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Cook Time
45 min
Cook Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 (12 oz) cans organic chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  2. 1 teaspoon cumin
  3. 1 teaspoon paprika
  4. 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  5. 1/2 teaspoon kosher sea salt
  6. 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  7. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  8. juice of half a lemon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Rinse and drain the chickpeas then pour them into a large bowl. Pat them dry with a paper towel.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper.
  4. Pour olive oil and lemon juice over chickpeas, then add the dry seasonings which you combined in the bowl.
  5. Using your hands or a silicone spatula, toss to combine until evenly coated.
  6. Lay chickpeas out in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  7. Place in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until crisp.
Notes
  1. Store at room temperature.
Love and Lentils http://loveandlentils.com/
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Spicy Roasted Chickpeas

 

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“Cheesy” Kale Chips

When I first started writing my blog, my first post was a super simple kale chip recipe which to this day is probably the most popular.  As delicious and nutritious as they were, I decided to jazz up the flavour and nutrient content with this new ‘cheesy’ recipe.  For those of you who loved the original recipe, I warn you, you’ll be devouring these!  The ‘cheese’ found here is nutritional yeast.  With such an unappealing name, somewhere down the line of nutritional yeast lovers, the nickname ‘nooch’ was born and caught on over the internet.  Nooch is a staple in my home.  When I adopted a vegetarian diet, my first health check showed a deficiency in vitamin B12.  B12 is not naturally found in plant foods.  It must be added as a supplement, as it is in nooch, making it a wonderful addition to a vegan/vegetarian diet.   The particular brand I use (Bob’s Red Mill) contains 300% percent of your daily recommended value of B12, but it is important to note that not all nutritional yeast contains B12 – so, read the labels (as always!)   Nooch is made up of many other healthy nutrients, but I mainly eat it for it’s yummy cheesy, nutty flavour and for the B12 content.  So, what exactly is it?  Nutritional yeast is an organism grown on beet and cane molasses, which is then harvested, washed, dried and deactivated with heat.  Since it is deactivated (killed), it won’t make your bread rise!  You can add it to just about anything to give your meal a cheesy flavour; roasted veggies, mashed potatoes, popcorn, and pasta sauces, to name a few.  Okay, back to the chips…

"Cheesy" Kale Chips ingredients

'Cheesy' Kale Chips
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 1 bunch kale (about 1 lb), washed, dried well, thick stems removed
  2. 1/4 teaspoon kosher sea salt
  3. 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  4. 1 tablespoon olive oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Cut out the thick stems then wash the kale well. Cut into large chip size pieces. Dry it very well, using a salad spinner.
  3. In a bowl, add kale, sea salt, nutritional yeast and olive oil. Use your hands to mix it all well and get the kale covered in the oil and seasonings.
  4. Spread out the kale on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  5. Pop in the oven for approximately 15 minutes, careful not to burn!
  6. Remove from oven, and enjoy this nutritional snack!
Love and Lentils http://loveandlentils.com/
Kale Chips with Nooch

"Cheesy" Kale Chips

"Cheesy" Kale Chips

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Super Good for You Chips

We’ve all been there, craving a late night salty snack.  Well, I like to skip the potato chips and indulge in these super-good-for-you crispy kale chips.  I love them, my three and a half year old son loves them, and even my dog loves them.

I absolutely love kale in general.  A nutrient powerhouse, one cup of kale has zero fat and only 36 calories and is high in vitamins and antioxidants.  Any time you see a dark green such as kale, it is a sign that it is highly concentrated with nutrients.
Here are just some of its wholesome features:

  • Super rich in vitamin K (which translates into a super antioxidant!)
  • High in fiber (assists in gut health)
  • High in iron (per calorie, more iron than beef)
  • High in vitamin A (great skin, yes please)
  • High in vitamin C (great for your immune system)
  • High in calcium (per calorie, more calcium than milk!)

Super Good for You Chips

Kale Chips Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of kale, stems cut off and leaves washed thoroughly
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • a small pinch of kosher sea salt

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Cut the thick stems from the kale leaves and then cut (or just tear) the kale into chip size pieces.
  • Wash the kale thoroughly, and dry the kale very thoroughly using a salad spinner.
  • Lay the kale out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Drizzle the olive oil over the kale and top with a pinch (go lightly) of sea salt.
  • Pop in the oven for 10 minutes, remove and ENJOY!