It is only natural that my next blog after “What is Paleo” would be Paleo Sweets. When faced with any lifestyle change, the first thing that causes anxiety in people is….WHAT ABOUT MY SWEET TOOTH?! Or something of the sorts. While I am going to give you some much healthier options, this next sentence will be hard to read. Just because they are paleo doesn’t mean we have magically taken the carbs and fat our of them. While the ingredients are more wholesome and natural, those macros are still there.
If you are looking to bake for yourself, please know these few tricks.
- You can NOT substitute regular flour straight out with almond or coconut flour. Flour has that little thing called gluten in it that causes baked goods to magically stick together into fantastic goodness (which also sticks to your insides, but I digress). Once you get a few paleo desserts under your belt, you will understand what everything does and doesn’t do.
- Not all paleo baked recipes will be a success. True story, but keep at it because there are some delicious ones out there!
- You may have to tweak or trade out the sweetener. Some recipes that I have found call for entirely too much coconut sugar or honey. To each is own, do your thing!
One of my favorite “desserts” is surprisingly Paleo Num Yums Cornbread. Wait, what? Yep, our cornbread. It is kind of like a sweet bread, and made with no corn. I like this because of its versatility. It is perfect base for a good batch of spicy collard greens and then turns into a different after dinner perfection in the form of “shortcake”. I have topped it with strawberries, blueberry compote, even baked apples. Then I top it with coconut whip cream. You heard. I have included the cornbread recipe for you to experiment with.
See, the glory of this whole eating healthy craze we are in, is that there are some fantastic food replacements. Enter coconut milk whip cream. Simply whip the coconut fat, or coconut cream, and add your paleo sweetener of choice. This could be stevia, coconut palm sugar, or even a little honey. It. Is. Delicious. For those rolling their eyes that I just told you to pull out your mixer and yada yada, you can buy it at the grocery store, right next to the OG cool whip. You’re welcome.
Dates, often called natures sweetener. Open mind, remember. This too, is a fantastic and versatile food. Spread a little almond butter or natural peanut butter for a very filling and sweet/salty snack. Wrap in bacon and bake at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes, and you will thank me. Blend in a food processor with whatever you want (chia seeds, nuts, oatmeal, almond butter, chocolate chips), roll into balls and refrigerate for a great energy snack. For those, like me that are super active, dates are a fabulous pre- or post-workout.
Chocolate. No dessert blog is complete without it. Depending on your level of paleo, there are different options for chocolate. Milk chocolate, just as the name suggests, contains milk. The darker the chocolate, the less milk. You can also find dairy free, or vegan chips, Enjoy Life Brand is my favorite and easiest to find. I have found the ultimate brownie recipe, and it happens to be paleo. By saying that, I mean I would choose our brownies over the “real” thing. Now, you unless you have a Paleo Num Yums in your area, that brownie recipe is ours. But here’s a hint, it started with a recipe on our Pinterest page. My lazy sweet snack is super technical….get a spoonful of almond or peanut butter and stick it in the
chocolate chips bag. Whatever is stuck to the peanut butter is what you got. This usually gives me 3 delicious bites and I am satisfied and move on.
Whatever your weakness, I urge you to find a healthier alternative. It is all about balance, and a that being a realistic balance. Remember you are on a lifestyle change, not a diet, and you are looking at changing the way you eat for the rest of your life. So don’t remind yourself of all the foods you can NOT have, but those foods that you CAN have.
¼ cup coconut oil
2 Tablespoons honey
¾ cup almond flour
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1. Preheat oven to 325
2. Whisk all ingredients together, and pour into a greased 8x8 baking dish.
3. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown