Dairy-Free Berries ‘n Creme Parfaits

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Dairy-Free & Gluten-Free Berries 'n Creme Parfaits (All Natural and Organic)

Living a healthy lifestyle isn’t all carrot sticks and leafy greens. We all need a little indulgence now and then, but that doesn’t mean you have to betray healthy habits.

I used to reach for tollhouse-style cookies when my sweet tooth took hold (which was quite often!), but over the years, I’ve learned to replace the ingredients I use with more nutrient-rich options that don’t cause the dreaded sugar rush / crash effect. Here are just a few of the healthy food swaps I used to make these parfaits:

Whole Grain Cereal – By choosing brown rice cereal that is just lightly sweetened to make the crumbles, I’m forgoing quite a bit of added sugar (when compared to regular crumbles), and getting a little extra dose of fiber and protein.

Coconut Oil – Though higher in saturated fat, coconut oil is one of the new darlings of the healthy food market. I like to use it in place of butter or margarine. The nutritious coconut oil claims are abundant, but like any food, I use it in moderation.

Raw (preferably local) Honey – Honey is still a sweetener, no doubt. However, as a whole food (rather than highly processed like refined white sugar), scientists believe that honey has some nutritive value. In fact, raw honey is said to have natural anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties. To preserve its healthy benefits, I like to avoid cooking raw honey. If strictly vegan, agave nectar or pure maple syrup are good options.

Raw Cashews – Instead of dairy cream, which is mostly fat (and saturated at that), I use cashews, which help to bulk and thicken better than cream, are a good source of protein, and are one of the lowest fat nuts. Plus, about 75% of the unsaturated fatty acid content in cashews is oleic acid, the same “heart-healthy” monounsaturated fat found in olive oil.

Berries – Even low carb and paleo dieters splurge on berries. High in antioxidants and vitamins, and low on the GI scale, berries get the go ahead from most and are something I like to enjoy in abundance during the summer months. Since many berries, such as strawberries, are often sprayed liberally with pesticides, I splurge on organic whenever possible.

Now, make this dreamy parfait and enjoy all of these wonderful ingredients together …

Dairy-Free and Gluten-Free Berries 'n Creme Parfaits (All Natural and Organic)

 

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