21 Feb 2013
One thing that sabotages my nutrition goals is the strange need to complicate things. When cravings strike, I somehow feel like I need to bake chocolate chip cookies or turn to a pre-packaged sweet with 20 ingredients (even if all-natural!) to get my fix. But in reality, it truly is the simple things in life, even when talking about food.
So I gathered together a list of some of my favorite simple non-dairy snack recipes to satisfy my sweet tooth and my health. All of these healthy sweet recipes and versatile ideas are more nutritious than reaching for a brownie and contain just 5 ingredients or less!
1. Yogurt Parfaits – Layer your favorite cereal or granola with dairy-free yogurt and fresh berries. My favorite is almond yogurt or unsweetened soy yogurt, sweetened with a few drops of stevia, topped with Buckwheat & Hemp cereal or homemade granola, and fresh blueberries.
2. Chocolate-Covered Figs or Apricots – Melt your favorite semi-sweet or dark chocolate, and dip dried figs or apricots halfway into the chocolate. Set them on parchment paper to set-up.
3. Kettle Corn – Heat 2 tablespoons coconut, grapeseed or canola oil in a large pot or saucepan over medium-high heat. Toss in a few kernels of popcorn. Once they pop, the oil is ready. Add ½ cup popcorn kernels, ¼ to ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ cup maple sugar, coconut sugar, or plain white sugar. Cover and cook 3 to 5 minutes while shaking the pan to prevent burning. When the popping slows down, remove the pan from the heat and let it stand for a minute, or until all of the popping stops.
4. Watermelon Pops – It’s a little chilly out now, but soon enough you’ll all be clamoring for cool, refreshing and easy. Just pop some fresh, ripe watermelon flesh in the blender, and whiz away. Freeze in ice pop molds. If desired, add some fresh fruit chunks (like strawberries!) to the pops before freezing.
5. Graham Crackers with Nut Butter Frosting – Whisk your favorite nut or seed butter with a touch of maple syrup or honey. If desired, stir in some dairy-free protein powder for a little boost of nutrition and a thicker more frosting-like consistency. You can also flavor with vanilla, cinnamon, or another tasty add-in. Spread on graham crackers open-faced or make nut butter-graham sandwiches!
6. Banana Chocolate Chunk Shake – I enjoy this one year ‘round, regardless of the thermometer outside! Place 1 large to medium (very ripe) frozen banana (broken into chunks) in your blender. Add ½ cup of dairy-free milk alternative, and blend until thick and creamy. If needed, blend in another ¼ cup of dairy-free milk alternative (I like it thick enough to eat with a spoon). Taste test, and blend in sweetener to taste, if needed. Now here’s the fun part: Add ½ of a probiotic dark chocolate bar, broken into chunks, and pulse in the blender until you have chocolate chips or flakes throughout your shake! If you want a little boost of protein, you can also blend in 1 to 2 tablespoons of protein powder.
7. Roasted Sweet Potatoes – I know what you’re thinking – vegetables when I’m craving dessert? Roasting brings out the amazing natural sweetness in yams and sweet potatoes. I enjoy them often when my taste buds clamor for a sugary hit. Simply preheat your oven to 425ºF. Peel and cut 1 lb of sweet potatoes or yams into ½-inch chunks. Toss them with ¼ teaspoon salt and 2 teaspoons coconut or olive oil. Spread the potatoes on a baking sheet, giving them some breathing room from one another, and roast for 30 to 40 minutes, or until they begin to caramelize a bit.
8. Easy Baked Apples – Preheat your oven to 375°F. Place 4 cut and cored apple halves (2 apples), cut side up in a baking dish. Dot the apples with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil or dairy-free margarine, drizzle with ½ tablespoon of maple syrup, and sprinkle each half with cinnamon. Pour a few tablespoons of water in the baking dish and cover with foil. Bake until the apples are soft, about 30 minutes. Uncover and bake another 10 minutes. Drizzle the apple halves with any liquid left in the dish and serve topped with gluten-free granola or your favorite cereal. (Recipe adapted from Whole Foods)
9. Cereal Snack Mix – Like a bowl of cereal on-the-go! You can use any combo that you like, but I enjoy Erewhon Buckwheat & Hemp Cereal tossed with chopped dried apples, raisins, cinnamon, and chopped cashews. Toss in a baggie and snack away. If you’re at home, you can of course enjoy a bowl of cereal for a snack!
10. Fresh Fruit & Chocolate Rollers – Why should dried fruit have all the fun? Dip fresh strawberries or bananas in melted semi-sweet or dark chocolate. For a tasty crunch, roll the chocolate-covered fruit in granola (chocolate granola while you’re at it!), chopped nuts, or toasted coconut.
- Peanut Butter Cup Grahams
- Cherry Pie Shakes
- Chewy Whole Grain Cereal Bars (okay, 6 ingredients with the salt, but who counts salt?)
- Puffed Rice & Raisin Treats
- Cranberry & Cherry Crunch Bark
- French Toast Almonds
- Addictive Double Chocolate Granola Bars
- Healthy Apple-Date Crisp
- PB & J No Bake Thumbprints
- Chocolate No Nut Crisp
AlisaCheck out my latest posts here