Tag Archives: Christmas

Holiday Paprika Popcorn

Holiday popcorn is a festive yet healthy treat made with whole grains, healthy fats, herbs and spices, and not too much added oil. It’s easy to pop your own popcorn on the stove, and healthier than microwave popcorn. Microwave popcorn bags are lined with perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), which are potentially dangerous for our health and the environment – so make it yourself, and save money as well!

Holiday Paprika Popcorn | Healthy, plant-based, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, easy, great for Christmas | guesswhoscooking.com

Holiday Paprika Popcorn

Serves 8
Prep time 5 minutes
Cook time 5 minutes
Total time 10 minutes
Holiday popcorn is a festive yet healthy treat made with whole grains, healthy fats, herbs and spices, and not too much added oil. Microwave popcorn bags are lined with perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), which are potentially dangerous for our health and the environment - so make it yourself, and save money as well!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil (or other high heat oil)
  • 1/3 cup popcorn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley

Directions

Step 1
In a large stock pot, heat the oil and 3-4 kernels of popcorn, covered, over
medium heat until all kernels pop.
Step 2
Holiday Popcorn Pot
Pour in the remaining kernels, cover pot and shake to distribute. Remove pot from heat for 30 seconds. Return pan to heat, shaking pan continuously, leaving the lid slightly ajar for crisper popcorn, if possible. To do this, you can wear two oven mitts (ones that cover your wrists or beyond are best), hold the lid slightly ajar while holding onto the pot handles and shaking the pan as pictured. If you have a lid with a vent, you could just open the vent, or use any other preferred popcorn popping method.
Step 3
When popping slows to 2-3 seconds between pops, remove from heat. Pour popcorn into a large bowl, removing any unpopped or partially popped kernels.
Step 4
Combine the paprika, garlic powder, and salt. These measurements are general and you may want to add more, but the beauty of this recipe is that the quantities don't have to be exact.
Step 5
Drizzle the olive oil over the popcorn, then sprinkle with the spice mixture. Toss to combine. Add more spices if desired. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Holiday Paprika Popcorn | Healthy, plant-based, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, easy, great for Christmas | guesswhoscooking.com

Chocolate Pumpkin Pie (no bake)

This recipe is from Chocolate Covered Katie, a healthier dessert blog. It is very easy to make, and quick because there is no baking involved. It tastes like a rich chocolate cream pie, but is made with a vegetable (pumpkin) instead of cream, making this recipe lower in saturated fat, higher in beneficial nutrients, and can also be made vegan/dairy-free! This recipe can be made gluten-free if you skip the pie crust, making it into more of a mousse, or making your own pie crust with a nut base. I found that the mixture has a stronger pumpkin taste at first, but tastes more just like a chocolate pie after chilling for one day.

If you’re highly motivated, you can make this pie with fresh, homemade pumpkin puree. If not, use canned. You may find that certain brands, especially organic brands, have a different taste from the canned pumpkin with which you are more familiar. That is because canned pumpkin can be made with different blends of pumpkin and other squash. This may be off-putting, but again, this pie seems to lose the strong pumpkin flavor after one day.

You may find pumpkin in an aseptic carton (brand name Tetra Pak) rather than a can. Please note that these cartons are not recyclable in all areas, so check here to find out if these shelf-stable cartons can be recycled where you live.

Chocolate Pumpkin Pie (No Bake)

Serves 8
Prep time 10 minutes
Dietary Diabetic, Vegan, Vegetarian
Meal type Dessert
Misc Serve Cold
Occasion Casual Party, Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving
It tastes like a rich chocolate cream pie, but is made with a vegetable (pumpkin) instead of cream! This makes the pie much lower in saturated fat and higher in nutrients, and also can be made vegan

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (look for dairy-free/vegan if making for a crowd with vegans or milk allergies)
  • 1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree (or 1 can (not pumpkin pie mix))
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
  • 16 drops liquid stevia (or replace with a little extra sugar to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 store-bought pie crust

Directions

Step 1
Melt chocolate in a bowl in the microwave, heating for 30 seconds at a time and stirring, repeating until just melted.
Step 2
Place pumpkin, sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt in food processor and puree. Add melted chocolate and puree until very smooth. You can taste the mixture at this point and add a little more sugar if necessary.
Step 3
Pour pumpkin mixture into pie crust and use a spatula to smooth it out. Refrigerate until firm, at least 4-6 hours. This pie seems to taste more like a chocolate cream pie and has less pumpkin flavor after being refrigerated for one day, which you may consider a good thing! Serve chilled.

Chocolate Pumpkin Pie (no bake) | GuessWhosCooking.com | Healthy, easy, dairy free, egg free, vegan, vegetarian, low carb, less sugar added, can be made gluten-free

Shown in a whole grain pie crust, which you may be lucky enough to find at your grocery store!

Holiday Gingerbread Granola

Give a healthier gift this year! This homemade granola is lower in sugar and added fat than most recipes. The gingerbread flavor and colors, red cranberries and green pistachios, make this a festive treat. Substitute pumpkin puree for the applesauce for pumpkin gingerbread granola. One batch will fill about 2-3 standard size mason jars, which make a great gift! Recommended serving size is 1/4 cup. Try this granola over plain yogurt or with a little bit of milk or milk alternative.

Since most oats are cross-contaminated with gluten, look for certified gluten-free oats if you need this recipe to be gluten-free.

Gingerbread Granola - a healthy Christmas or holiday gift - lower sugar and fat, dairy-free, & can be made gluten-free. Guesswhoscooking.com

Holiday Gingerbread Granola

Serves 18
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 30 minutes
Total time 40 minutes
This holiday granola has less added fat and sugar than most traditional recipes, and is made with whole, natural ingredients. The red cranberries and green pistachios make it a festive gift that would look beautiful in a decorated mason jar!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup organic unsweetened applesauce (or substitute with pumpkin puree)
  • 2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, or other oil (melted)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon molasses
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup (or agave)
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup shelled pistachios

Directions

Step 1
Preheat oven to 325° F.
Step 2
In a large bowl, combine oats, coconut flakes, pumpkin seeds, and almonds. Mix ginger, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl, then toss with oat and nut mixture.
Step 3
In a medium bowl, combine coconut oil, applesauce, molasses, maple or agave syrup, and vanilla, then stir to combine. Pour mixture over oat mixture and toss until oat mixture is well coated.
Step 4
Spread granola mixture evenly on a baking sheet and bake for about 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes and watching carefully for the last 10 minutes to prevent burning. Remove from oven when granola is golden brown and almost completely dry.
Step 5
Let cool, then add pistachios and dried cranberries.

Gingerbread Granola - a healthy Christmas or holiday gift - lower sugar and fat, dairy-free, & can be made gluten-free. Guesswhoscooking.com

Rosemary Sesame Pecans

Give a healthier gift this year! These savory roasted pecans are free of added sugar but full of flavor. Serving size is about 1/4 cup, so this recipe makes about 16 servings. Pack them into mason jars for festive and healthy holiday gifts!

Adapted from this recipe.
Rosemary Sesame Pecans = Healthy homemade Christmas or holiday gift - low carb, dairy free, gluten free, sugar free. Guesswhoscooking.com

Rosemary Sesame Pecans

Serves 16
Prep time 5 minutes
Cook time 25 minutes
Total time 30 minutes
Meal type Appetizer, Snack
These savory roasted nuts make a healthy Christmas or holiday gift without all the added sugar of most holiday treats.

Ingredients

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary (minced)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1lb pecan halves, raw (about 4 cups)

Directions

Step 1
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Step 2
Whisk egg whites in a large bowl.
Step 3
Mix sesame seeds, rosemary, and salt in a small bowl.
Step 4
Add pecans to egg whites and stir to combine well. Add sesame seed mix and stir to distribute evenly.
Step 5
Spread pecans evenly on the baking sheets in a single layer. Bake 20-25 minutes until coating is dry.

Rosemary Sesame Pecans = Healthy homemade Christmas or holiday gift - low carb, dairy free, gluten free, sugar free. Guesswhoscooking.com

Chickpea Blondies Have More Fun

These blondies are made with pureed chickpeas and contain no flour. They are vegan, dairy-free, grain-free, and gluten-free, assuming you don’t use honey or chocolate chips with dairy. These blondies are moist and delicious, and no one will know that they are made from chickpeas! They would make an excellent healthier holiday gift.
Chickpea Blondies - healthier, vegan, grain free, gluten free, dairy free. Guesswhoscooking.com

Chickpea Blondies

Serves 9
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 30 minutes
Total time 40 minutes
Meal type Dessert, Snack
These chickpea blondies are flour-less, gluten-free, dairy-free, and can be made 100% vegan.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 tablespoon virgin coconut oil (for greasing)
  • 1 can chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup or agave (or honey, if not vegan)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup mini dark chocolate chips (look for vegan chocolate if you want 100% vegan or dairy-free blondies)
  • coarse sea salt or Himalayan salt (for sprinkling)

Directions

Step 1
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 8x8 baking pan with coconut oil.
Step 2
In a food processor, puree all remaining ingredients except for chocolate chips and salt. Blend until completely smooth. Stir in chocolate chips, then spoon batter into prepared baking pan.
Step 3
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until lightly golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool, then cut into squares and sprinkle lightly with salt.

Chickpea Blondies - healthier, vegan, grain free, gluten free, dairy free. Guesswhoscooking.com