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It’s no secret I’m a fan of balls. Ahem. Dessert balls people!! This is a family friendly site.

So I love balls.  And I love the flavour combination of chocolate, cherry and almond.  Each on their own is good but together is just heavenly.  So chocolate-cherry almond balls seem perfect right?

Maybe a visual is necessary to illustrate my point…

Convinced?  Good.  

Chocolate-Cherry Almond Balls

Ingredients

1 cup almonds
1/4 cup cashews
1 cup Medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips or a dark chocolate bars, chopped
1/3 cup dried cherries (the no sugar, no sulfite variety)
1 tsp raw cacao powder
pinch of sea salt

Directions

1. Add almonds and cashews to a food processor and process until crumbly.  Careful not to over-process, this will let too much oil out of the nuts.  Remove, place in a large bowl and set aside.

2. Add dates, chocolate chips, dried cherries, raw cacao powder and sea salt to food processor and process until well combined.  Remove and add to bowl of nuts.

3. Using a wooden spoon or fork combine nuts with date mixture.  You can use your hands too to help combine the ingredients.

4.  Once all the ingredients are combined, roll into small balls and top with a whole almond and chocolate chip.

5. Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes before serving.

Makes about 18-20 small balls.

In business, the term “diversify” is often thrown around.  I understand it to be defined as varying a company’s products or when investing, to reduce risk by having a variety of assets.

If we take this idea of diversifying and apply it to our health, it makes total sense to me.  If we look at our bodies as companies and the food we put in them as our assets, we get either profit or loss depending on the choices we make.  When we add variety to our diet and lifestyle whether it be through new foods we consume or a new activity, we are essentially diversifying and thus reducing our risk of disease and increasing our livelihood.

Obviously there’s a reason I went into health and not finance…

While on a recent grocery shopping trip, I picked up a couple of guavas.  Having never tried guava before and feeling that I needed to diversify my life a lil’ I bought them.  Once I got home, I was totally stumped with what to do with these guavas, I did what I always do – stick ‘em in my Blendtec.  What came out was a gorgeous ice cream like treat.

Mango-Guava Soft Serve

Ingredients

1 cup mango, frozen
1 guava, small or medium, seeds removed
2 Medjool dates

Directions

1. Remove peel and seeds from guava
2. Combine all ingredients into high-powered blender, such as a Blendtec or into a food processor and blend until smooth
3. Pour mixture into bowl and freeze for 1 hour.  Once frozen, scoop out and top with fruit. 

Guava has a large amount of pectin, which are complex carbohydrates found in the cell walls of plants.  It helps to bind the gauva and mango together to form a creamy texture.  Guava is also a rich source of Vitamin C and fibre.

Carrot cake is one of my most favourite desserts.  A tall, moist cake with lots of vegan cream cheese icing is like a dream. 

But I swear up and down that just dreaming about carrot cake makes my butt get bigger.  Trying to rationalize that because carrot cake is made with carrots it can count as healthy.  Right?

Nope, sorry.  Ain’t happening.

That’s why these carrot cake balls are just so freakin’ good.  All the deliciousness of a rich carrot cake without all the added and unnecessary crap.

Win!

Raw Carrot Cake Balls

Ingredients

1 cup almonds
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pecans
6 Medjool dates, pitted
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup coconut, shredded and unsweetened
1 tsp coconut oil
2 large carrots, chopped or shredded
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
1 tbsp flax seed, ground

Directions

1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until combined.  Mixture can still be chunky.  Careful not to over-process nuts as these releases too much of the oil.

2. Shape into balls and roll in coconut or cinnamon.

3. Refrigerate for 1 hour and enjoy.

Note – If you want variety, try adding pineapple (fresh or dried) and grated ginger for some kick.  If your mixture is too moist, add additional ground flax seed.

It’s no secret.  I like love would give up my first born for Larabars.  Their simple ingredients, their delicious flavours, their cute packaging.  I love all of it.

That being said, with only a few ingredients listed on the label I knew that I could make Larabar’s Chocolate Chip Brownie bar myself.

And did I ever.

I don’t have many words for this other then amazing.  Really really amazing.

Chocolate Chip Brownie Bar
Inspired by Larabar

Ingredients

1 cup almonds
1/2 cup walnuts
8 large Medjool dates, pitted
2 tbsp raw cacao powder
1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips

Note – Larabar uses salt however I omitted this from my bars, if you choose to add this, use a high quality sea salt

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients into high-powdered blender or food processor and blend until combined
  2. Shape into bars and refrigerate until ready to consume

Makes 6 bars

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