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Carrot Cake Bites

Carrot Cake Bites


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Sweet treats don’t necessarily have to be full of processed sugar. The natural sugars found in dates and raisins satisfy those cravings just as well as any chocolate bar or slice of fat-laden cake – but that’s not to say you can’t or shouldn’t have the odd piece now and then. I’m increasingly conscious of how much cake I consume (welcome to your thirties!) and so I’ve taken inspiration from one of my all-time favorite recipes and given it a somewhat healthy twist by forming it into every seasoned vegan’s standby sweet, the incomparable (but perhaps not so appetizingly named) ‘raw ball’. And as an added bonus, these bite-size treats don’t even require any cooking – just blitz, roll, chill and eat… now that’s better than faffing about with batter any day. — Aine Carlin, Keep it Vegan.

Notes

Taken from Keep it Vegan – over 100 simple, healthy and delicious dishes by Aine Carline. Published by Kyle Books, priced $19.95.

Ingredients

  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • 5¼ Ounces medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped
  • 2¼ Cups pecans
  • 1 1/3 Cup raisins
  • Grated zest of one clementine or orange
  • ¼ Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ Teaspoon ground ginger
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ Cup shredded coconut

Servings6

Calories Per Serving486

Folate equivalent (total)15µg4%


Carrot Cake Energy Bites

In a mixing bowl, mix together oats, shredded carrots, almonds, raisins, and cinnamon.

Add almond butter and maple syrup and mix together thoroughly.

Place mixture in the refrigerator for one hour.

Like these energy balls? Try these other healthy snacks too.


Chef's Notes

Substitutions
Use ripe banana in place of the applesauce.

Flour-free
Use flax meal in place of almond flour. You may need to add 1 tablespoon of water at a time to the blended mixture to get a dough-like consistency in order to form balls.

Sugar-free
Replace the maple syrup with 1 Tbsp applesauce or banana and 3 pitted dates. This applesauce is in addition to the 1 Tbsp already included in the recipe.

Ways to relish it!
Eat them as a mid-morning or afternoon snack.

Enjoy crumbled on top of unsweetened plant-based yogurt.

Make them your breakfast alongside a cup of tea and a bowl of fresh fruit.

Enjoy them as a post-workout refueling snack!

Bring them along on a nature hike as an energizing snack.


Raw Carrot Cake Bites

These raw carrot cake bites with cashew cream cheese frosting are vegan, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free for a wholesome and delicious dessert everyone can enjoy. A fan-favorite, I think you&rsquore going to love them.

Today we are going to explore the world of RAW desserts.

Back when I started this blog, I became a bit of a raw dessert connoisseur. Raw desserts can be a bit intimidating for beginners. I know this first hand I used to be terrified of them. However, as anyone will tell you, they are surprisingly simple to make.

In 2012 I started experimenting with raw desserts and I was amazed at how a few simple ingredients could create endless flavor combinations with the most decadent and delicious tastes and textures. Better yet, there is quite a lot of room for trial and error since you can test and taste as you go. This is obviously different than most baking allowing even beginners to make incredible raw desserts.

Throughout the years, my raw desserts have been some of my most popular recipes. Such as:

But my most popular raw dessert recipe to date (and the 2nd most popular recipe on this blog next to my vegan blueberry muffins) are these Raw Carrot Cake Bites. Made with a base of walnuts, carrots, and dates, these cake bites are packed with flavor and nutrients for a dessert we can feel GREAT about biting into.


Step 1

Begin by pre-heating the oven to 160c degrees.

Step 2

Using the grating disc and spindle in your Ninja Kitchen System, grate the carrots.

Step 3

Remove the grating disc and spindle, place the grated carrots into a separate bowl.

Step 4

Add the dough blade in the bowl of your Ninja, pour in the eggs, egg whites, maple syrup, yoghurt and stevia and select low for 45-60 seconds to mix the wet ingredients together.

Step 5

Pour in the protein powder, coconut flour, cinnamon and baking powder and select low again for 60 seconds to combine the dry and wet ingredients together.

Step 6

Pour the mixture over the grated carrots and fold to combine the ingredients together.

Step 7

Pour the mixture in a baking tin lined with greaseproof paper, place in the oven and bake for approximately 30 minutes – piece to check it is baked through. Remove from the oven, allow the cake to cool slightly, remove from the tin and enjoy


Carrot Cake Bites

We made it through the Winter! I am so excited for the warmer weather, green grass, flowers and all things Spring! I don’t know about you but after one of the coldest Winter’s we have ever had… I feel such an increase in my energy levels. I almost wonder how I stayed awake at all these past few months!

Now that the weather is warming up it’s easy to start thinking about farmer’s markets and growing your own produce!

I am a seasonal eater and what I mean by that is two things:

  1. I try to shop for foods that are in season depending on the time of year. If you want to learn more about how to do this check out this ebook I created with some of my blogging friends. I also have two exclusive recipes in that book that you will want, one for Spring and one for the holidays!
  2. I love creating and enjoying recipes that are tied to the seasonal holidays.

So of course I had to come up with something carrot themed for all the bunny lovers out there! I played around with the ingredients for these carrot cake bites a few times before getting it right. In the end I ended up taking out the apple sauce to yield a slightly cakier texture. The best part is that these require no baking!

If you are like me and you love carrot cake, then you are going to want to have these little no bake bites on hand for snacking this Easter! These are the perfect treat and are so easy to make!


Carrot Cake Bites

Ingredients:

Directions:

Step 1. Put walnuts in the food processor and pulse them a few times until coarsely chopped.

Step 2. Add all the remaining ingredients and whizz together until you have a thick sticky dough.

Step 3. Scrape the dough onto a sheet of baking parchment. Wet you hands and roll the dough into a sausage shape. If it feels too sticky to shape, return it to the processor and add more oats until it is easier to handle.

Step 4. Cut the sausage into 12 equal pieces, then roll each one into a ball. Store them in a covered container in a fridge for up to a week.


Protein Bites for everyone!

So excited to be sharing this recipe for Protein Bites with you today! Me and all four of my kids adore this recipe because it basically tastes like a sweet cookie dough that just so happens to be healthy. Filled with fresh carrots, natural peanut butter, oats, flax and whey protein, you too will fall in love with this recipe.

As I was developing this recipe, I was trying to find a flavor that everyone would like and for some reason, I gravitated toward carrot cake protein bites because it was another way I could get vegetables into my kids without them realizing (for sure check out my latest veggie-hiding muffin recipe. SO GOOD.) Like I mentioned above, this almost has the texture of cookie dough, and who doesn’t love eating cookie dough? Its taste is similar to carrot cake but obviously, make a straight-up carrot cake if you want a legit amazing dessert.


Grain Free Carrot Cake Bites

And now that we’ve got all that out of the way, let’s talk about today’s recipe!

These grain free carrot cake bites are loosely based on the no bake carrot cake energy bites that I posted around 3 years ago. I came across them again while looking through my archives for spring recipes to pin, and thought it would be nice to make a grain-free version since I’ve been dabbling in that realm a lot more lately.

Whereas the original recipe has a base of oats and coconut flour, this one uses almond and coconut flour to create a soft and doughy batch of bites that are grain-free, paleo, vegan, and refined sugar-free. They’re subtly sweet with just the perfect amount of spice, and super easy to make with basically only 4 major ingredients – almond flour, coconut flour, maple syrup, and carrots. It’s that simple! I mean, there are some spices in there to liven things up, but those four are the bulk of it.

And all you have to do is toss everything into a food processor and let that do all the work. The only thing I recommend is to process everything long enough for the carrots to break down into small pieces so that you’re not eating big shreds of raw carrot. Everything should be blended up nice and smooth. Oh! And test the dough before you roll it into balls to make sure it’s sweet enough for your tastes. If it’s not, you can add a tablespoon of coconut sugar to sweeten things up a little bit more. It all depends on how you like it.

I’d love to know if you make this recipe! Leave a comment and rating down below to let me know what you think, and subscribe to our mailing list to receive new recipes in your inbox!


Brazilian Carrot Cake

Can I tell you guys something? I don’t love carrot cake. I mean, I don’t dislike it by any means. If someone served me a big ol’ slice with a pile of cream cheese frosting I’d down that in no time. But I also would never go to the effort of actually ordering it from a bakery or a dessert menu and if suddenly it disappeared and ceased to exist in the universe anymore I wouldn’t be super sad. Ya feel me?

Now Brazilian carrot cake is a different story. Most of you guys know I used to live in Brazil (doing missionary service work in my 20’s) and the first time someone served me “Bolo de Cenoura” (aka carrot cake) I was super confused. But why are there no carrot chunks in it? And why is it orange? And is that chocolate on top?! And you guys, THIS is how I like my carrot cake.

It’s absolutely nothing like American carrot cake. This is a very traditional cake in Brazil it’s not something that’s associated with Easter and spring time the way carrot cake here in the US is. It’s a super simple recipe and the carrots are actually pureed into the batter so it’s completely smooth. They add a perfect subtle sweetness and a beautiful orange color.

I found this recipe in a pile of hand-written notes I brought home from Brazil, but it’s pretty much the standard recipe that you’ll see everywhere if you look for Brazilian Carrot Cake (well except the frosting, that’s mine- more on that later.) This cake will forever remind me of my Brazilian friend Joe Miranda (who everyone called simply, Miranda), who rode around on a bicycle with a little cooler on the back selling delicious goodies made by his darling wife Delores.

Even though that was how they earned money, Miranda always pulled a slice of that carrot cake out of the cooler and handed it to me with a friendly wink because he knew it was my favorite. He, along with another man named Vandi were two of the people who impacted me most during my time in Brazil. (That’s Miranda on my right and Vandi on my left. You can tell I’ve been completely melted working out in the hot Brazilian sun and another day I’ll tell you the very entertaining story explaining why my hair looks like such a hot mess. )

They taught me how to speak Portuguese without sounding like an American and invited me and the other missionaries into their homes and treated us like family. Vandi was like father to me and would bend over backwards to help us with anything. And Miranda would often stop by the little office in the church we used to use as an office and make me say things like “alho” and “olho” (garlic and eye, respectively) over and over again until my accent didn’t sound like a gringo. He was funny and sarcastic and made me feel like I wasn’t so far away from home. When I got transferred out of that area, I missed these two guys the most. Every time I bite into a slice of this Brazilian carrot cake I’m brought right back to that city, sitting in the little chapel, joking and laughing with Miranda.

So now that you know the story, you’ve got to see the cake. Did I mention you make the entire cake in a BLENDER? That’s right, I just toss everything in the blender. No KitchenAid, no hand mixer, just blend it up. Start by tossing sliced carrots in the blender. No need to even peel those carrots, just make sure to give them a good watch, first. These get completely pureed with eggs, oil, and sugar. A couple people in the comments asked if it was necessary to cook the carrots first and the answer is no! I just leave my blender on for a full minute to make sure the batter gets nice and smooth.

Then the dry ingredients go in. I like to just take a spatula and roughly hand mix the flour first and then give it a few pulses so it gets fully incorporated.

You get this beautiful orange carrot color!

That’s it! Pour it in either a 9吉 baking dish, or a bundnt pan. I’m making a budnt because I thought it would be extra pretty for Easter, but a 9吉 works great, too.

It keeps that golden-orange color and bakes up soft and sweet.

Now the glaze I’m using isn’t traditional- it’s more of a what-Americans-have-in-the-pantry-and-fridge (ie: chocolate chips and butter). Most Brazilians I know make their chocolate glaze with a powdered chocolate mix, milk, sugar, and a little butter. It’s fairly thin and I wanted something a little richer. (TIP: To “make” a double boiler, just place a glass bowl on top of a pot with 1-2 inches of simmering water. I find sometimes the microwave scorches my chocolate, or causes it to seize a bit and this method works every time for melting chocolate nice and smooth.)

Now here’s a trick I use when frosting bundt cakes. I don’t like just drizzling frosting over them because then most of it ends up on the plate. I want each piece covered in that stuff so I use a silicone pastry brush and I first just “paint” the glaze over the whole cake.

After it’s evenly coated, then I go ahead and drizzle on the rest so it looks pretty and gets those beautiful drip lines.

If you’re making a 9吉, you’ll notice it’s a very thin layer of chocolate. That’s usually how it’s made, and especially with my richer chocolate glaze, I didn’t want it to overpower the mellow cake, but if you want to, you could certainly double or 1 1/2 it.

Inside this cake is so (I’m gonna say it) moist. The carrots add the perfect subtle sweetness. If you didn’t know it had carrots in it, you probably wouldn’t guess it. It’s a really unique flavor, but not weird at all. It’s just sweet and soft and delicious.

I hope this one joins the ranks in your own Easter traditions as it has mine!

Remember if you’d like to see more of my Brazilian recipes, you can find them all, here!


Carrot Cake Energy Bites

Ever since I had my daughter, it feels like I have unearthed a never-ending hunger. This usually results in the above interaction several times a day. I feel like I am ALWAYS hungry. This type of hunger can easily spiral out of control and lead me to snack on unhealthy items. However, I use these spurts of hunger as an opportunity to re-fuel and re-nourish my body.

One of the things that helps me grab healthier snacks throughout the week is by prepping my snacks on Sundays. You may put thought into your meals throughout the week, but snacks can be an afterthought. The problem with this is that if you find yourself hungry in between meal times and you haven’t planned out your snacks, you are likely to grab something that is high in calories, sugar, and fat.

My solution? Energy bites. They are the perfect solution for a quick snack that is healthy but also easy to eat and share with my toddler!

This month I have been loving these Carrot Cake Energy Bites. I have been craving carrot cake a lot lately so I bought a bag of carrots and have been making carrot cake version of EVERYTHING! So far I have made carrot cake scones, carrot cake oatmeal cookies, and carrot cake pancakes.

These Carrot Cake Energy Bites are the perfect mid-day treat. They are:

I love the fact that these energy bites are naturally sweetened with dates. I gave it a bit of a kick with pumpkin pie spice. If you do not have pumpkin pie spice, you can replace it with a mixture of cinnamon, ginger powder, and ground nutmeg.

Do you like carrot cake? Let me know if you would like to see other “carrot cake” recipes!



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