Vegan Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

HCB

Before I met my husband, I had never even heard of Hot Cross Buns. Then once he made some… OMG! I was hooked! All of the spices mixed with the fruit in a warm, slightly sweet cinnamon bun…YUM!

Needless to say, when we went vegan and gluten free, this was one thing we thought was off limits. I’m not one to give up on things, so I gave a vegan, gluten free version a shot and we were both really surprised and pleased with the results! Now, anyone that bakes gluten free knows that the texture will never be the same as regular flour. The texture of these is somewhat like a cake, but the taste is spot on!

Vegan Gluten Free Hot Cross Buns

Here’s what you need:

Wet Ingredients

  • 2/3 Cup Almond Milk
  • 1 T Coconut Oil
  • 2 T Coconut Sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp Yeast

Dry Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 Cup Gluten Free Flour Blend (I used this recipe: Gluten Free Flour Blend )
  • 3/4 Cup Almond Flour (not almond meal)
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/3 Cup Coconut Sugar
  • 4 T Cold Coconut Oil
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Allspice
  • 1 tsp Ginger
  • 1 tsp Cloves

Fruit Mixture

  • 1/2 Cup Raisins
  • 1 Apple (chopped in small pieces)
  • Zest of an Orange
  • 1 tsp Orange Juice
  • 1 tsp each of: Cinnamon, Ginger, Cloves, Allspice

Topping Options

  • For the cross piping: GF Flour + enough water to make a paste.
  • Apricot Jam
  • Vegan Frosting (I brushed the tops with this: Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting)

Here’s what you do:

  • Heat almond milk in microwave until it’s about the temperature of warm bath water (not too hot, not too cold).
  • Stir in the rest of the wet ingredients and let it sit for about 5-10 minutes to let the yeast activate. (It should be poofy on top.)
  • While the yeast mix is activating, combine all the fruit mixture ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients.
  • Add the yeast mixture to your dry mix and stir well with a wooden spoon.
  • Gently fold the fruit mixture in.
  • Lightly coat a pie plate with coconut oil.
  • With a 1/3 measuring cup, scoop out dough, not completely filling the measuring cup, and drop onto pie plate.
  • Continue until you have about 8 equal size buns.
  • If you are piping the cross, do this now by placing your paste in a baggie with one corner cut off or a piping bag.
  • Preheat the oven to 350
  • Cover the pie plate with plastic wrap and set on top of the preheating oven for 30 minutes to proof.
  • Remove plastic wrap and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
  • Brush with your preferred topping as soon as they come out of the oven.
  • Enjoy! ❤

 

 

 

Advertisements

Healthier Vegan Turtles

Turtles

One of our favorite Office episodes has a reference to Turtles, so, it’s becoming a common saying in our house…  LOL!

Turtles are typically made with milk chocolate and caramel, so lots and lots of refined sugar. These Turtles are made with simple ingredients and the sweetness comes from dates! When we want a sweet treat, these are our go-to!

Healthier Turtles

Turtles2

Here’s what you need:

  • 60 Pecan Halves
  • 10 oz bag of Vegan Chocolate (I use 72% Simple Truth Chocolate Chips)
  • 20 Large Pitted Dates
  • Optional: Peanut Butter (Peanuts and salt as the only ingredients!)
  • Optional: Chopped Almonds

Here’s what you do:

  • Soak dates in hot water for about 10 minutes.
  • Drain water, then add to a food processor.
  • Blend together until it becomes a creamy paste. (You may have to stop a couple of times to scrape down the sides.)
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil & lightly spray or wipe down with coconut oil or other neutral tasting oil.
  • Drop date paste in small teaspoonful balls on baking sheet. (You may need to use a knife to rake it off of the spoon.) **Should make about 20.
  • Place 3 pecan halves on top of the date paste balls and lightly mash them in to make them look more like patties.
  • Using a knife that has been dipped in coconut oil, slide it under the date paste and flip them over so that the pecans are now on the bottom.
  • If you are adding peanut butter, do this now. Place a small amount on top of each date patty.
  • Place the baking sheet in the freezer.
  • Put your chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 60 seconds. Stir and repeat in 30 second intervals until the chocolate is melted.
  • Remove the baking sheet from the freezer.
  • Using a fork, dip the bottom of the turtle in the chocolate, then turn it over to coat the top. Flip it back over and lift it out pecan side down…let the excess chocolate run off.
  • Place it back on the baking sheet and top it with the chopped almonds if you are using those. Because they are cold from being in the freezer, the chocolate will harden faster.
  • Once all of the turtles have had their chocolate baths, place them back in the freezer to set, 10 minutes or so.
  • Keep any leftovers in the freezer.
  • Enjoy!

 

 

Fudgy Almond Bars

_MG_5969

We don’t eat sweets very often, so when we do indulge, it had better be delicious! These certainly were! Yum! 😀

 

Fudgy Almond Bars

_MG_5944

Here’s what you need:

CRUST

  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts
  • 1/4 cup coconut flakes
  • 8 large dates (pits removed)
  • Pinch salt

ALMOND LAYER

  • 1 cup almond butter (or sub other nut or seed butter)
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • Pinch salt

GANACHE

  • 1 bag of vegan dark chocolate chips (at least 70% cocoa) (I used HEB Organics 70% dark chocolate chips in the 10 oz bag)
  • 1 can coconut milk (with about 2 tablespoons of the water poured out)
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

Here’s what you do:

Crust

  • Place all ingredients in food processor and pulse until you have a coarse mixture that holds together when you mash it.
  • Empty mixture into 8×8 dish that has been lined with parchment paper. Pack down until it’s evenly placed on the bottom of the dish.

Almond Layer

  • Add all ingredients in a small bowl and stir together.
  • Empty out onto the top of the crust and spread evenly.
  • Place in freezer.

Ganache

  • This will make more than what’s needed for the top of the bars (unless you want an insanely thick layer of ganache!). You can save the rest to eat on its own!
  • Place chocolate chips in a large glass bowl.
  • Heat coconut milk in a sauce pan on top of the stove until it just starts to boil.
  • Pour on top of the chocolate chips and allow to sit for about 5 minutes.
  • Add cocoa powder.
  • Whisk all of the ingredients together until creamy smooth.
  • Place in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes to let it start setting.
  • Remove the crust/almond layer mixture from the freezer and add ganache on top (use as much or as little as you like.), spreading it out smooth.
  • Return to the freezer and let sit for about 30 minutes, or until the ganache is firm.
  • Cut into 12 squares, serve and enjoy.

**You can keep them either in the freezer or the fridge, depending on which you like better. If kept in the freezer, you can actually just pick them up and eat them. If kept in the fridge, you’ll need a fork. 😉

Super Fudge Protein Brownies

FudgeBrownies

When you’re trying to eat clean, super chocolately, gooey, delicious brownies are probably something you think are off limits. That’s where you’re wrong! Ditch the box and make your own. These are a delightful treat, filled with protein and no nonsense ingredients. It’s not permission to eat the whole pan in one go, though…remember…moderation!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 3/4 Cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Vanilla Protein Powder
  • 3/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Sugar
  • 2 Squares of Dark Chocolate (at least 70%), chopped into pieces
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 T. Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Peanut Butter (make sure it only contains peanuts!)
  • 1/4 Cup Almond Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Pecans (optional)

Here’s what you’ll do:

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Grease 8×8 baking dish with non-stick spray.
  • Mix all ingredients together in a medium sized bowl. If the batter is too thick, add additional milk by tablespoonfuls until it reaches a better consistency (not runny, but moist enough to where all of the ingredients are mixed together nicely).
  • Pour until baking dish. Using a knife, spread it evenly into the dish.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until the top is somewhat crispy.
  • Let cool for 10-15 minutes before cutting.

Enjoy!

Healthier Apple Crumble

AppleCrumble

So, my husband became a Citizen of the United States last week, YAY! It’s been a long process since his arrival from South Africa, so we are extremely happy to have this chapter behind us! Since America and Apple desserts seem to go hand in hand, I was in the kitchen on Sunday experimenting with healthier ways to create a delicious Apple Crumble, and I think I succeeded! It’s not too sweet, is full of fiber and fills the house with the most incredible aroma!

Here’s what you’ll need:

Filling

  • 5 Medium Sized Apples – Cut into chunks (I left the peel on.) (All I had on hand was Red Delicious, but any apple would do.)
  • Zest of 1 Orange
  • Juice of 1 Orange
  • Zest of 1 Lemon
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 1/8 Cup Honey, Pure Maple Syrup or Agave
  • 3 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 1 T. Cornstarch

Topping

  • ½ Cup Oats
  • ½ Cup Nuts (I used mixed which included pecans, almonds, cashews, brazil nuts & pistachios.)
  • ¾ Cup Ezekial 4:9 Almond Cereal
  • ¼ Cup Coconut Sugar
  • ¼ Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/8 Cup Chopped Pecans

Here’s what you’ll do:

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Grease 9x9in. baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a medium sized bowl, toss all of the filling ingredients together and add to baking dish.
  • In a food processor, pulse the oats, nuts and coconut sugar, just until it’s a course mixture.
  • Add the Ezekial Cereal to a bowl, then mix in your oat/nut mixture and the coconut oil.
  • Add additional coconut oil by teaspoonful if needed, until the topping clumps together.
  • Sprinkle the topping over the apple filling.
  • Top with the chopped pecans.
  • Bake for 30 minutes while covered with foil.
  • Bake another 30-40 minutes after removing the foil, or until the apples are soft.
  • Enjoy!

AC2