Another pantry recipe for you since my vegetable/fruit selection is a little random at the moment. Usually this is where my creative juices tend to shine, but I thought I’d share these superfood brownie bites because I’ve been making versions of these for so long, and feel almost wrong for not sharing them with you. Also, because I entertained making a cabbage, shell pea, pickled red onion, and zucchini pasta (you should see how sad my crisper drawer is); I knew that I kinda HAD to change gears if I was going to entice you all in any way ;)
A scoop of vegan ice cream or basic sweets like these are more my pace when it comes to dessert these days. Low effort = more life for living. Also, I think most of you know how I feel about baking/dessert-crafting in general. The projects always start out innocent enough, but they usually end in melodramatic swearing and temporary life failure vibes.
Sometimes you have to come face-to-face with your strengths AND weaknesses, look them straight in the eye, recognize that you’re ready to change something, and go forward. I think all of this just points to the fact that I hate following recipes–even my own! I stick with what makes me happy or what challenges me in a positive way. I have enough self-awareness to know that spontaneously embarking on a gluten/dairy/sugar/grain/nut-free cake adventure is going to end with rage-snacking on the couch later because I couldn’t get it perfect on the first try. Not a quitter, just focused on my strengths.
Versions of this recipe populate the internet like whoa. I might be overly confident because this is a recipe that I’ve tweaked over time, but I really do think they’re the best. They’re fudge-y like the gooey middles of a proper brownie and totally silky all the way through. The chocolate flavour is enhanced by maca, mesquite, and cinnamon, and I dip them in a cacao glaze to really take it all over the edge. I do some cute little natural sprinkles too, but you could stop at the pre-glaze step and still have yourself one deliciously lush snack/mini dessert.
Date and nut bites were one of the first things I learned how to make when I decided to go vegan, cuz snacks! It’s funny how I always go back to making these little things when I’m trying to get back on track or establish more of a routine with food. I get that same rush of curiosity and feeling of investment in my health and wellness every time I make them too. Doing the pre-game to help yourself make the best choice will never stop being a source of empowerment for me.
SUPERFOOD BROWNIE BITES RECIPE
Print the recipe here!
SERVES: Makes about 30 bites
NOTES: If you don’t have the mesquite or maca powders, feel free to leave them out. You may not need the tablespoon of non-dairy milk at the end if you do this though. I think both powders work so well here and would encourage you to give them a go here if you haven’t tried them before. Even my local, small town bulk store sells these powders now and they add a special sweet, malt-y, and flavourful quality to the bites.
1 ½ cups raw pecans
⅓ cup raw cashews
¼ cup raw cacao powder
1 tablespoon mesquite powder
1 tablespoon maca powder
½ teaspoon vanilla powder
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup pitted Medjool dates (they should be soft)
1 tablespoon coconut butter
1 tablespoon non-dairy milk (I used coconut)
1 ½ tablespoons virgin coconut oil
1 tablespoon raw cacao powder
½ teaspoon maple syrup
finely shredded coconut
bee pollen (not vegan)
hulled hemp seeds
flaky sea salt
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “S” blade, pulse the pecans and cashews until you have a meal consistency. Add the cacao powder, mesquite, maca, vanilla powder, sea salt, and cinnamon. Pulse to mix evenly.
Add the dates and coconut butter to the food processor and run the motor on high, scraping down the sides of the bowl here and there. The mixture should just hold together if you pinch it with your fingers. Flip the motor on to high again, and pour the non-dairy milk in through the feed tube. The dough should ball up and appear glossy, but not too sticky and wet.
Scoop out the brownie bite mixture in 1 ½ teaspoon measures. Roll the portioned mixture into balls, set on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and slide into the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
Make the cacao glaze: In a small saucepan, combine the coconut oil, cacao powder, and maple syrup. Whisk over low heat until combined. Set aside.
Retrieve the superfood brownie bites from the refrigerator. Dip each bite into the cacao glaze and set back on the parchment-lined baking sheet. While the glaze is still wet, sprinkle each bite with the sprinkle of your choice.
Store superfood brownie bites in the refrigerator.