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Natural Awakenings Central New Jersey


Aug 30, 2018 02:00AM
Sarah Britton, a plant-based holistic nutritionist who blogs at, lives near Toronto, Canada, with her husband and school-age son. Like all mothers, she faces the challenge of packing her child’s lunch. These three recipes can be made ahead of time and come from her new book Naturally Nourished: Healthy, Delicious Meals Made with Everyday Ingredients.

Sour Cream and Onion Chickpea Crisps

Yields: 4 to 6 servings

Make a double batch to have extra to garnish salads and soups as a gluten-free, high-protein crouton replacement.

  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1½ tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp dried dill
  • 4 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 3 cups (2 15-oz cans) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
Preheat the oven to 400° F.

In a small saucepan, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Whisk in the lemon juice, dill, onion powder and salt.

Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm. Keep in mind that the chickpeas will crisp up outside of the oven, so it’s okay if they’re still a little soft when finished roasting.

Spread the chickpeas out on a clean kitchen towel and rub them dry, discarding any loose skins (chickpeas will not crisp in the oven if wet). Place the chickpeas in a large bowl and toss with the coconut oil mixture.

Spread the chickpeas on a large rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast, stirring occasionally, until golden and crisp, 25 to 35 minutes.

Remove the chickpeas from the oven and let them cool. Serve at room temperature. Store in an airtight glass container at room temperature for up to one week.

Toasted Walnut Brownie Bite Dough

Yields: 1 pound dough

Brownie Dough

  • 1½ cups raw, unsalted walnuts
  • ¾ cup, cocoa powder
  • 2 cups soft dates (preferably Medjool)
Preheat the oven to 350° F.

Place the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until lightly colored and fragrant, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

In a food processor, pulse the walnuts until they are finely ground. Add the cocoa and salt. Pulse to combine.

Pit the dates and add them one at a time through the feed tube of the food processor while it’s running. The resulting mixture should resemble cake crumbs but, when pressed, will easily stick together (if not, add more dates).

Use the dough to make the Brownie Bites. Leftover dough (one-third of the batch) will keep in the freezer for up to one month.

Toasted Walnut Brownie Bites

Yields: about 10 balls (servings)
  • ⅓ batch (about ⅓ lb) of brownie dough
Shape the dough into 10 small, bite-size balls. Freeze the balls until ready to eat. Store in the freezer for up to one month.

Vanilla Coconut Brownie Bites

Yields: about 10 balls (servings)
  • ⅓ batch (about ⅓ lb) of brownie dough
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened, desiccated coconut, toasted
Combine the dough with the vanilla and 1½ teaspoons of the coconut, using both hands to fully incorporate the ingredients.

Shape the dough into 10 small, bite-size balls, then roll them in the remaining coconut.

Freeze the balls until ready to eat. Store in the freezer for up to one month.

Honey Almond Granola Bars

Yields: 14 bars (servings)

It’s important to toast the oats and almonds as both contain an unwanted phytic acid, which is destroyed by heat. The bonus of this step is gaining extra flavor.

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup raw, unsalted almonds (or hazelnuts, pecans or walnuts)
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • ½ cup raw honey
  • ½ cup tahini
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unsulfured dried fruit (raisins, dates, figs, prunes, apricots, cranberries or a combination), roughly chopped
  • 1½ cups puffed, whole-grain cereal (such as rice puffs)
  • ¼ tsp flaky sea salt
Preheat the oven to 325° F.

Line a brownie pan with parchment paper.

Place the oats and almonds on a rimmed baking sheet, trying to keep them as separate as possible, and bake, stirring once or twice, until the oats are golden and have a toasted aroma, 12 to 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven, let cool and roughly chop the almonds.

In a small saucepan, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Add the honey, tahini and vanilla; whisk thoroughly until fully combined.

Remove saucepan from the heat.

In a large bowl, combine the cooled oats and chopped almonds with selected dried fruit, puffed cereal and salt. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and stir quickly to mix.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared brownie pan and, using slightly damp hands, press it firmly into the pan, especially around the edges and corners.

Set the pan in the fridge for a couple of hours to firm up, then remove and slice into 14 bars.

Store the bars in a tightly sealed container in the fridge for up two weeks or wrap them individually for to-go snacks.


Reprinted from Naturally Nourished: Healthy, Delicious Meals Made with Everyday Ingredients. Book and photos ©2017 by Sarah Britton.

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