Because I’m so often asked to share my favorite recipes, I’ve decided to start a new feature called “Guilt-Free Friday!” Each Friday, I’ll post a new recipe that is 100% healthy, simple and delicious. If you make the recipe, be sure to let me know in the Comments how it turned out, and how you and your family enjoyed it. So, here we go. I’m starting this week with dessert because, let’s face it, we all love dessert. 🙂
In case you didn’t already know, I have a killer sweet tooth. I love me some sweets! Fortunately for me, my mom closely monitored my sugar intake as a kid, so I did learn a little about moderation. Unfortunately, it didn’t totally curb my indulgent side, so for many years, I really struggled with sugar addiction. That addiction was one of the contributing factors to a seizure disorder that I developed in my late teens, though it was several years before I realized it. A few years ago, I was able to kill the addiction through internal cleansing and a process of “reprogramming” my body through some pretty dramatic lifestyle changes. And I’m able to maintain freedom from that addiction through prayer and trust in God’s continued grace. So, while I no longer crave sugar, I do still love an occasional sweet.
When you’re committed to radically healthful living, it may seem like there isn’t much out there to satisfy a sweet tooth. I mean, a girl can only eat so many handfuls of dates and raisins! Real desserts must be a thing of the past, right?
I enjoy desserts now more than I ever have before, thanks to some amazingly tasty, guilt-free confections that are so good, even die-hard junk-food junkies like them. And instead of leaving you feeling bloated, stuffed and eventually crashing after a temporary sugar high, these sweet treats actually deliver real nutrition to your cells for a genuine energy boost. Not to mention that you don’t have to fear the scale the next morning, so long as you don’t go overboard. 🙂
So here’s one of my new favorites, which I adapted from another recipe in order to make it even more healthful. It’s simple, has a short ingredient list and tastes fabulous! A definite crowd pleaser. It utilizes one of my favorite healthful foods, coconut. Yes, coconut! I know what you’re thinking: Isn’t coconut high in fat? That can’t be healthy! Well, it is, and next week I’ll devote an entire post to this amazing food. In the meantime, enjoy this deliciously nourishing treat!
Peppermint Pattie Coconut Bark
- 1 C organic coconut oil (if oil is solid, melt 1 C before using)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract*
- 2 tsp peppermint extract*
- 1/4 C unsweetened carob powder
- 1 Tbls Roma, Pero, or other instant grain beverage
- 1/4 C raw honey
- 1 C unsweetened shredded coconut
Oil a 9″ by 13″ baking pan with coconut oil or EVOO, or line with unbleached parchment paper and set aside.
Using a food processor, mix the coconut oil, extracts, carob powder, Roma and honey until smooth and warm, and it exhibits some fluidity. Add the coconut, and pulse to incorporate. Don’t overmix or you risk chopping up the coconut.
Using spatula, spread the mixture thinly (1/4-inch to 1/8-inch thick) on the pan or paper. Transfer to a level spot in the freezer and freeze for 10 to 15 minutes. Eat frozen; break off pieces the size you desire. The bark will melt at room temperature, so keep frozen.
*Always use real vanilla and peppermint extracts, NOT vanilla or peppermint flavoring, which contain dangerous chemical neurotoxins.
Bonus: For an “Almond Joy” version, omit half of the coconut, substituting chopped crispy almonds (to crisp chopped almonds, bake at 350 for approx. 10 minutes). Omit the peppermint extract and double the vanilla extract.