Healthy Bite Size Holiday Desserts

In Dessert, Recipe, Snack by JenniferLeave a Comment

I love desserts but I feel totally overwhelmed and out of control when faced with a holiday dessert buffet. You too, right? I really just want to have a taste of a few of them and I’m done. But that requires finding a tasting partner who by some giant coincidence want s to taste just a bite of the same ones. Otherwise the remaining bites are just staring me in the face daring me to walk away without finishing the whole thing. What if there was a portion law and desserts had to be served in miniature size only. That would save those of us with dessert anxiety a lot of suffering from overindulging.

I decided to take a couple of my favorite holiday flavors and pack them into a bite instead of a slice. There’s a lot of flavor in these treats and I believe they have a nicer consistency on the second day. So go ahead and make them ahead of time. I had some expectations for my mini creations. I did not want them to contain the ingredients that usually leave me, my family, and our guests with digestive complaints or a food coma, so no sugar, white flour, or heavy cream allowed. I stirred in some oats and chia seeds for fiber and a little omega-3’s. Dates are responsible for most of the sweetening power so you’re getting the added bonus of more fiber and minerals like calcium, potassium, and magnesium.

Let’s see what you think. My bet is you’ll thoroughly enjoy the creamy, crackly coating and the pie-like filling. You’ll have a tray of tiny desserts that are more nutritious and a lot less guilt producing than the usual selections. Yes, the traditional desserts will most likely show up somewhere during your holidays but look at these as a break both for your digestive system and for the intense sweetness in most high sugar foods we are surrounded with this time of year. Take a minute to focus on how your body responds to the egg nog, chocolate yule log, and butter cookies. Is it is worth it to you to suffer the side effects of ingredients that you can’t metabolize well? Will you choose a different plan of attack for eating them this year? Will you eat just 3 bites? Will you make food choices that are easier on your digestive system? Think about it now before you get to the parties. You’ll be glad you made a plan!

Pecan Pie Bites
 
Author:
Serves: 20
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup vanilla almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 tablespoons chia seed
  • ½ cup pecans
  • 9 Medjool Dates, pitted
  • ¼ cup oats
  • ¼ cup vanilla protein powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla powder, or 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch sea salt
  • Glaze
  • ¼ cup coconut butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey
Instructions
  1. Place chia seeds in a small bowl. Add almond milk. Let sit 20 minutes.
  2. Add pecans, dates, oats, protein powder, vanilla powder or extract, and sea salt into your food processor and pulse until mixture is completely chopped. Pulse in chia almond milk mixture. Blend for a few more seconds, until a dough forms. Use a scoop or roll into small balls using your hands. Freeze for 20-30 minutes.
  3. In a shallow bowl, whisk together melted coconut butter and coconut oil with honey. Roll each ball into the mixture and place back in the freezer to harden. Gently press chopped pecans and chocolate chips into the top of each bite before freezing, if desired. Store bites in refrigerator.

 

Pumpkin Pie Bites
 
Author:
Serves: 20
Ingredients
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked 2 hours, rinsed, drained
  • 9 pitted medjool dates
  • ¼ cup oats
  • ¼ cup vanilla protein powder
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • pinch of sea salt
  • ¼ cup pumpkin purée
  • Maple Coconut Glaze
  • ¼ cup coconut butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • pinch of pumpkin spice
  • dried cranberries, for garnish, if desired
Instructions
  1. Add cashews, dates, oats, protein powder, pumpkin pie spice and sea salt into your food processor and pulse until mixture is completely chopped. Open food processor and add pumpkin purée. Blend for a few more seconds, until a dough forms. Scoop dough from food processor and roll into small balls using your hands or a small scooper. Freeze for 20-30 minutes.
  2. In a shallow bowl, whisk together melted coconut butter and coconut oil with maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice. Roll each ball into the mixture and place back in the freezer to harden. Press a cranberry into the top of each bite before freezing, if desired. Store in refrigerator.

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