Raw Mars Bars

I’m soooo excited to share this recipe with you! I have been wanting to make a healthy alternative to mars bars for ages and I’m so happy that this recipe worked out after only one attempt. I hope you enjoy making and eating them as much as I did.

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Makes around 14 squares

Storage: Up to 1 week in the fridge.

Step 1: The Nougat Layer

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of Cashew Butter
  • 4 tbsps of 100% Maple Syrup
  • 2 tbsps of Ground Almonds

 

Blend all of the above ingredients together either using an electric whisk or a blender until it forms a sticky paste. Spread the paste onto a square baking tin lined with parchment paper (make sure the paste covers the entire inside of the baking tin). Put into the freezer whilst you make the caramel layer.

 

Step 2: The Caramel Layer

 

Ingredients*

  • 1 1/2 cups of Medjool Dates – pitted (around 14-16 dates depending on the size)
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut Oil – melted
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut Milk – solid part only
  • 2 tbsps of Cashew Butter
  • 1 tbsp of Chia Seeds
  • 4 tbsps of Water
  • 4 tbsps of Ground Almonds

 

Blend all of the ingredients in a high power blender e.g. a Nutribullet until it forms a caramel consistency. Take the nougat layer out of the freezer and spread the caramel on top. Again, make sure the caramel covers all of the nougat layer. Put in the freezer for 30 minutes.

*You will have some caramel left over but it’s so delicious so no harm!

 

Step 3: The Chocolate Layer

 

Ingredients

  • 240g of Dark Chocolate – I used 92% but you can use anything from 70% or more

 

Melt 120g of the dark chocolate and pour on to the top layer of the nougat/caramel layer, ensuring the area is covered with chocolate. Place in the freezer for 20-25 minutes.

Then, when the 2o-25 minutes are up, melt another 120g of dark chocolate, take the mix out of the freezer and the tray, flip the mix over so that the bottom layer is facing you and pour the chocolate over. Again, place in the freezer for 20-25 minutes.

 

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The perfect Bank Holiday treat!

 

Tara

 

 

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Post Workout Protein Pancake

The perfect post workout fuel packed with natural ingredients! 

 

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Knowing that this pancake is at the end of my workout motivates me to get up and ensure that I have a great session. I tend to only have it once a week but how many times you want to have it it is entirely up to you.

Ingredients:

  • 40g Gluten Free Oats
  • 1 tbsp Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Egg Whites
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tbsp Raw Cacao Powder
  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  • 1 tbsp Nut Butter (of your choice)

 

Method:

  1. Blend the oats, yogurt, eggs, and powder in a blender/Nutribullet until all of the ingredients are combined and a liquid consistency is formed.
  2. Heat the coconut oil in a small-medium sized frying pan and once it has melted pour the batter into the pan (cook on a medium to low temperature).
  3. When bubbles start to appear, flip the pancake over and allow the other side to cook – it should only take about 30 seconds for the other side to cook .
  4. Put the pancake on a plate and serve with a nut butter of your choice.

 

Now go out and smash your workout!

 

Tara

 

Nobó 4th of July Cookie Sandwiches

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Celebrate the 4th of July with these cracklingly delicious, healthier version of chocolate chip cookies!

Serving Size:

3 cookie sandwiches or 6-8 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 135g Coconut oil, melted
  • 162g Coconut Palm Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 144g Buckwheat Flour
  • 180g Dark Chocolate – I used a combination of 90% chocolate and Ombar chocolate

 

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F), Gas mark 5. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Put the sugar, vanilla extract, and coconut oil in a food processor and blend for 30 seconds. Add the egg and sift the flour in, blend again until everything is combined.
  • Break the chocolate into pieces (the pieces don’t need to be too small) and blend for another 15-20 seconds.
  • Use a medium-sized ice cream scoop or a large tablespoon to spoon the dough onto the baking tray.
  • Cook for 10-12 minutes until the cookies are nice and golden then transfer on to a cooling rack for 5-10 minutes.
  • Whilst the cookies are cooling, use food colouring pens (as seen in the picture below) to decorate your cookies with the colours of the American flag!

 

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  • To create the cookie sandwich wait for the cookies to cool. Once the cookies have cooled use a small (either 2cm or 2.7cm) round cookie cutter to divide the dough into two parts and onto two separate plates (the bottom half of the sandwich on one plate and the top half on another). Spread a Nobó flavour of your choice (I used Vanilla + Coconut) on top of the bottom half of the sandwich then place the top half on top of the frozen goodness.

 

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Enjoy + happy 4th July to all my American friends!

 

Tara

Chocolate + Caramel Roses

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I absolutely adore anything with caramel and I was on a mission to make a healthier version of Cadbury’s caramel bar when I came across a chocolate rose mould in Stock on King Street in Dublin. These little roses are the perfect size because you don’t feel heavy or bloated (even if you eat them all at once) but you still get that amazing crunch and sweetness.

First, you need a chocolate rose mould like the one in the picture below. Like I said, I got this mould in Stock for about but you can try TK Maxx or even online stores like Amazon to see if you can get a better deal.

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Second, melt about 3 squares of dark chocolate (I used Viviani’s 90% dark chocolate) and then pour it into the moulds until the chocolate covers about 3/4 of the mould. Put in the freezer for about 1 hour.

 

Meanwhile, make the caramel: 

  • 1 1/2 cups of Medjool Dates – pitted (around 14-16 dates depending on the size)
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut Oil – melted
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut Milk – solid part only
  • 2 tbsps of Cashew Butter
  • 1 tbsp of Chia Seeds
  • 4 tbsps of Water
  • 4 tbsps of Ground Almonds

 

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If you don’t want extra caramel I would cut the above recipe in half, but this caramel is honestly insanely delicious so it’s always good to have a little extra lying around!

 

After the hour is up, take the mould out of the fridge and spread the caramel on top of the chocolate so that it covers the entire mould. After this, melt another 3-4 squares of dark chocolate and pour it over the caramel – be generous and don’t be afraid of overflowing, you will need to do so in order to ensure that your roses will come out with perfect layers. Put in the freezer for at least 2 hours or overnight – the longer you keep them in the fridge the better the crunch of the chocolate is.

 

And there you have it, a perfect combination of crisp chocolate and gooey caramel. Feel free to tag me in your recreations on Instagram or Twitter.

 

Tara

Quinoa Krispie Squares

 

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This recipe is a healthy twist on one of my favourite childhood treats – Rice Krispie squares.

Instead of Rice Krispies I have used quinoa pops, which is essentially roasted quinoa. Quinoa pops have an unusual yet delicious nutty taste and you can buy them in bulk on Amazon or make your own (I bought mine on Amazon). Quinoa, in general, is a superfood which offers numerous health benefits, such as helping to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, and it is also a great source of protein.

This recipe is vegan-friendly and so simple to make.

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Caramel

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups of Medjool dates (around 270g), pitted
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut Oil, melted
  • 2 tbsps of Coconut milk, solid part only
  • 2 tbsps Cashew Butter
  • 4 tbsps Ground Almonds
  • 1 tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 4 tbsps of water

 

Method: 

  • Blitz all of the ingredients in a blender until they are combined.
  • Set the caramel aside while you melt 100-110g of coconut oil in a large saucepan. When the coconut oil is melted gradually add in 112g of quinoa pops and your caramel until the pops are covered in the caramel and oil.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper and then pour the mixture in, making sure to fill every corner of the tray with the mixture and using a glass to flatten the mixture.
  • Put in the freezer for 30 mins.

 

Chocolate

Ingredients:

  • 160g of dark chocolate (70%+ tend to be vegan-friendly – I used Vivani 92% dark chocolate)

Method:

  • Melt the chocolate in the microwave or on the hob, whichever you prefer, while the quinoa pop mixture is in the freezer.
  • After 30 mins, take the quinoa mixture out of the freezer and pour the melted chocolate on top – making sure every inch of the mixture is covered in chocolate.
  • Put back in the freezer for at least an hour or overnight.
  • Finally, ENJOY!

 

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I hope you love these squares as much as I do, they are brilliant ‘pick me ups’ and are packed with nutrients! Don’t forget to share your recreations by tagging me on Instagram (@neutralsandnutrition) or using #cleancandy. 

 

 

Raw Fudge Brownies with Cacao Frosting

 

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I hope you are all enjoying your week – it’s almost the weekend! These brownies will help get you through the last few hours in work whilst providing you with a variety of vitamins such as A, B, B6 and E.

These brownies are a recreation of The Hardihood’s that I tried during my adventure in London. The reason they stood out so much to me was the light, fluffy frosting on top that perfectly complimented the gooey texture of the brownie. Utter luxury that your taste buds will thank you for.

 

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RAW BROWNIES:

180g packets x 2 Medjool Dates, pitted (available in SuperValu)

4 Tablespoons Coconut Oil melted

6 Tablespoons Raw Cacao Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

2 Tablespoons Tamari

3 Tablespoons Chia Seeds

1/2 Ripe Avocado

1/2 Cup Pecans or Cashews

1 Tablespoon Cacao Nibs

Blend all of the ingredients together in a blender (I used a Nutribullet), except for the nibs, until all the ingredients have combined to make a smooth, gooey texture. Add a little water if needed. Add the nibs to the mixture and combine, then place in a tin (lined with parchment paper). Use a glass or rolling pin to ensure the mixture is spread across the entire tin, leaving no corner empty. Place in the freezer to set for 1 hour.

 

CACAO FROSTING:

1 cup Medjool Dates, pitted

¼ cup Cacao Powder

¼ cup Coconut Oil

¾ cup of Water

Blend all of the ingredients in a food processor or blender until all of the ingredients have combined, creating a fluffy texture. Wait until the brownies have been in the freezer for the hour before lathering the frosting on top. Once the frosting has been placed onto the brownies you can eat them whenever you wish! I would recommend leaving it for another hour or 2 or overnight (if you can resist the temptation😉)

 

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Et voilá! These are perfect for sharing (or hiding from) with friends and family members. Team up with a Nobó of your choice for a match made in heaven!

 

 

Tara

Banana Split

So last week Ireland was blessed with some glorious weather and everyone from office workers to college students seemed to be soaking it up. I love when the weather is so nice in Ireland, there always seems to be a much more relaxed, happier vibe about the place. It also made me realise that summer is right around the corner (woohoo!) and I am now dying for a holiday so I decided to create this recipe as it is probably the closest thing I will get to a holiday right now!

Banana splits are my all time favourite holiday dessert but they are typically laden with sugar and very thick, heavy, processed ingredients, well not this one! This banana split has no refined sugar, no cream just simple, natural, wholesome ingredients. What I love most about this recipe is how the different flavours and textures complement each other so well.

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Serving Size: 2 people (WARNING: It tastes so good you may end up eating it all yourself!)

There are three simple steps to this recipe; the whipped cream, the chocolate sauce and then the actual banana split. This does not take long to make but it does involve waiting overnight in order to get a really light and fluffy whipped coconut cream.

 

Step 1: Whipped Coconut Cream

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of Full Fat Coconut Milk – you will need the solid parts of the milk not the liquid. I find that Thai Gold’s organic full fat coconut milk is really good for this.

Method:

The night before you plan on making the split put the can of coconut milk upside down in the fridge. Leave it in the fridge for at least 8 hours.

About half an hour before you actually make the cream put your whisk into the fridge along with the bowl that you plan on whisking the milk in. If you’re using an electrical whisk just put the metal beaters in – I’d recommend using an electrical whisk for this.

Once the half hour is up take out the coconut milk, whisk and bowl out of the fridge and pour the coconut milk into the bowl (making sure you only get the solid part of the milk). Whisk the milk until forms a thick, fluffy cream.

 

Step 2: Hazelnut Chocolate Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 100g Hazelnuts – preferably skinless
  • 3 tbsps Coconut Oil, melted
  • 4 tbsps Raw Cacao Powder

Method:

Blitz all of the ingredients in a high power food processor/blender until all of the ingredients have combined to form a liquid. The flavour is quite rich on its own but works perfectly with the rest of the banana split. However, if you want that extra sweetness just add around 2-4 tbsps of coconut sugar, depending on how sweet you want it.

Step 3: Creating the split

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2 Bananas
  • 3 Nobó flavours – 1 scoop of each (I used Vanilla and Coconut, Irish Salted Caramel, and Chocolate and Toasted Almond)

Method:

Cut down the centre of each banana and place them on the edge and/or centre of a dish or bowl then add a scoop of each of your chosen Nobó flavours. Put a dollop of the coconut cream on top of each of the scoops of frozen goodness and then drizzle the chocolate sauce over.

Finally, add toppings of your choice. I broke about 5 squares of 92% Dark Chocolate into small pieces to add a bit of a crunch and then added 5 strawberries, cut in half, for that extra freshness.

And voilà! A dairy free banana split with absolutely no refined sugar. The perfect treat that will put you in the holiday mood!

 

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Don’t forget to share your recreations with me on Instagram by following and tagging me on your post (@neutralsandnutrition).

 

Tara

 

Health is the Greatest Wealth: Raw Millionaires’ Shortbread

So for the second Clean Candy post I shall be telling you how to make Raw Millionaires’ Shortbread AKA Caramel Squares. This recipe is special to me in a weird way because it’s really the first recipe that I created that introduced me to the world of healthy treats. This recipe is a healthy alternative to caramel squares (one of my personal favourite treats from my childhood). I am obsessed with these and it has gotten the stamp of approval from my friends and family! 

 

This recipe was actually created on a whim and is now my go-to when I want to have a healthy treat! It is so easy and doesn’t take too long to make. I was pleasantly surprised at how much my family and friends loved these so if you are trying to encourage and show your friends and family how healthy eating can be fun definitely make them these.

You will need a blender for this, Nutribullets are great and worth buying. I got mine in Argos just over €100 which may sound expensive but I promise you it is money well spent. I guarantee you will become addicted to it! It’s so handy to use and wash, I use mine every single day…no joke.

I have tried and tested this recipe tons of times and I do prefer the cacao and hazelnut butter topping but it melts and hazelnut butter is very expensive and like gold dust these days so I will give you the cacao and coconut sugar topping recipe.

So without further ado here is the recipe.

Makes around 16 squares.

BISCUIT BASE:

100g Pecans
50g Hazelnuts
50g Walnuts
6 Medjool dates, pitted
3 tbsp Coconut oil, melted

Blitz all of these in a food processor/blender until everything is well blended together, forming a base. Place in a tray lined with parchment paper and use a glass or rolling pin to make sure it is spread evenly then put into the freezer for half an hour.

CARAMEL LAYER: 

2 tbsps Cashew butter
4 tbsps Water
1 tbsp Chia seeds
1 ½ cups Medjool dates, destined
4 tbsps Ground almonds
2 tbsps Coconut milk (the solid part only, “Thai Gold’s” organic thai coconut milk is good for this)
2 tbsps Coconut oil, melted
A dash of Vanilla extract (optional)

Whilst the base is in the freezer, blitz all of these ingredients together in your blender until it forms a really gooey, brown caramel like texture. This will blend pretty fast but just make sure it is well blended, if you can see some ingredients still in the mixture after blending it (I find the dates take longer than the rest to be mixed in) continue to blend until you no longer see them.

Take the base out of the freezer and place the caramel on top. Again, use a glass or rolling pin to ensure it is evenly spread and covers the entire base. Put it into the freezer and make the chocolate topping while you wait.

CHOCOLATE TOPPING:

4 tbsps Raw Cacao powder (I use Nua Naturals brand)
4 tbsps Coconut oil, melted
2-4 tbsps Coconut palm sugar (depending on the texture and sweetness you want)

Get a blender (I use a hand blender) and whisk all of the ingredients together until a liquid is formed (it looks like melted chocolate). Take the tray with your base and caramel layer out and pour the chocolate on top, making sure you leave no area uncovered.

 

Put into the freezer and you can take them out and devour anytime after 90 minutes. Personally I prefer to leave them overnight to get a really indulgent taste but it is entirely up to you.

 

So there you go! Delicious dairy, gluten, refined sugar, and syrup free caramel squares suitable for all types of diets including vegan and paleo.

Don’t forget to share your recreations using #HealthIsWealth and tag me in your pics!

INSTAGRAM: @neutralsandnutrition

 

Enjoy your weekend!

 

Tara

Nobó Chocolate ‘Mylk’ Shake

 

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As my final year in college is winding down (finally!) I have started to get more creative again with my healthy dessert recipes – I find it very therapeutic and it’s a nice break from college work (plus it’s an excuse to eat my favourite sweet foods) .

For my most recent recipe I have decided to experiment with Nobó’s products. I have been obsessed with Nobó since their products arrived in SuperValu a couple of years ago, there is nothing else out there quite like it. For those of you who have never heard of Nobó, it is an amazing Irish brand that sells dairy free ice cream or “frozen goodness.” All of the products are packed with natural ingredients and they do not use any stabilizers whatsoever in their products so it is the perfect healthy treat that satisfies your sweet tooth whilst nourishing your body a lot more than normal ice cream would.

 

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The other day I was looking out the window at the particularly wet and miserable weather we have been having in Ireland over the past week or two and I was fantasying about being away in a exotic, warm country sitting outside in the 30 degree heat instead of being on a freezing bus, suddenly I found myself craving a milkshake. I HAD to have one immediately. So being the determined and sometimes not so patient person that I am I decided to create a healthier alternative then and there.

This recipe is dairy free but not vegan – if you are a vegan you can simply replace Nobó Chocolate and Toasted Almond flavour with either their Mint Humbug or Irish Salted Caramel flavour (the Mint Humbug was a limited edition product so it may be hard to find but last time I checked SuperValu in the Pavilions in Swords had some).

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Serving Size: 170ml

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp 100% Pure Maple Syrup
  • 2-3 large scoops of Nobó Chocolate and Toasted Almond
  • 2 tbsps Almond Butter
  • 80ml Coconut Milk – add more or less depending on the consistency you want. I find that 80ml is the best to start off with and if you want it to be thinner just add more milk.

To decorate:

  • 2-4 squares 92% Dark Chocolate, melted
  • A sprinkle of Cacao Nibs (optional)

Don’t be afraid to get creative with your toppings I just added these particular toppings because I was really craving chocolate!

Method:

  • Place a tall glass in the fridge while you prep the ‘mylk’shake, this will really give it a refreshing taste.
  • Place all the ingredients in a blender until it forms the consistency that you want.
  • Melt 2-4 squares of Dark Chocolate (70% or more) and pour on top then sprinkle some Cacao Nibs on top if you wish.

 

There you have it, a dairy free milk shake alternative with no refined sugar and packed with lots of superfoods. This recipe is so quick and simple to make and I hope you enjoy it, it really reminds me of summer. Also, don’t forget to share your recreations with me on Instagram using #nobomylkshake or by following and tagging me on your post (@neutralsandnutrition).

 

Tara

Clean Candy

Clean Candy: Dessert that you can feel good about.

I am obsessed with Clean Candy and I’m always on the hunt for amazing dessert recipes and products that I know will satisfy my sweet tooth but will not leave me feeling like shit after.

My Clean Candy blog posts are dedicated to just that, guilt free yet indulgent treats. Stay tuned for some delicious recipes and information on what foods and products you need to satisfy your sweet tooth without any extra dental bills.

 

Tara