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Product Review and Recipe: Tyrrells English Chips

22 Jun

Tyrrell's English ChipsSometimes when I have a craving for salt the easiest and most satisfying thing (albeit not the healthiest) to eat is a bag of chips. There is something about their light, crispy texture that leaves me wanting more. Here’s an interesting fact if you didn’t already know: what we refer to as “chips,” the English refer to as “crisps.” Luckily for us, Tyrrells English Chips, based out of Leominster, Herefordshire in the UK, have kindly used the word “chips” on their U.S. packaging to prevent any confusion. Offering hand cooked potato chips and mixed vegetable chips, Tyrrells USA currently offers five flavors that are completely plant-based.

Tyrrells leaves the skins on their spuds which provides more fiber. The potatoes are then thick-cut and cooked in small batches, spun in their Big Spinny Thing™ to remove excess oil, and finally tossed with their special seasonings, none of which are artificial (source). The result is a crispy chip with a pleasant amount of flavor. This company has some spunk and I like it. A quick look at their website alone was enough to convince me!

Oddly enough I have not had the opportunity to try Tyrrells English Chips until now, even though they are sold in stores all over the United States. So, without further ado, here is my review of their five plant-based potato chip flavors:

Tyrrells Lightly Sea Salted Chips Lightly Sea Salted
These chips are exactly as described. With just a touch of salt, Tyrrells Lightly Sea Salted chips have less sodium than your typical bag of chips. In fact, 1 ounce of these chips provides 70mg sodium, whereas the same serving of another popular brand has a whopping 170mg! If you want to have your chips and eat them too, this would be the flavor to choose.

Tyrrells Sea Salt & Cider Vinegar Chips Sea Salt & Cider Vinegar
Tyrrells lovingly describes their Sea Salt & Cider Vinegar chips as having a “burly kick,” and boy, do they! With three kinds of vinegar seasoning these chips, they are sure to please any vinegar-lover and would go excellent alongside something sweet. I envision these chips being crumbled atop a fresh salad with sweet dressing.

Tyrrells Sweet Chili & Red Pepper Chips Sweet Chili & Red Pepper
I was expecting these chips to be too hot for my sensitive tongue, given that they contain cayenne pepper and jalapeño chili pepper, but was pleasantly surprised to find that they give off just a slight kick as an after-note. With just a touch of sweetness to accent the slight kick, I find this flavor to have a nice balance of sweet, salty and sassy.

Tyrrells Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper Chips Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper
Black pepper is often the more dominant flavor in a chip, but these chips provide a nice balance of salt and pepper and are perhaps my favorite of the bunch. These Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper chips compliment any sandwich or soup, and even have the most protein out of the five flavors I’ve tried: 6.3g per serving to be exact!

Tyrrells Veg Chips Veg Chips
Rather than using traditional potatoes, Tyrrells uses beetroot, carrots and parsnips for this version of their chips. With only 5 ingredients total (including the aforementioned vegetables), these Veg Chips are slightly sweet with a bit more salt than the rest; 170mg per serving, to be exact. I prefer a little less sodium but that doesn’t mean these chips are any less tasty.

Potato chips are becoming increasingly popular in recipes and serve as an excellent stand-in for salt, breading and toppings. Fashioned after traditional shortbread but reminiscent of Russian tea cakes or Mexican wedding cookies, these light and airy Potato Chip Pillow Cookies utilize Tyrrells Lightly Sea Salted Chips and are sure to satisfy your sweet (and salty) tooth.

Potato Chip Pillow Cookies

Potato Chip Pillow Cookies
Yields approximately 14-16 (2-1/2 inch) cookies

1/2 (5.3-ounce) bag Tyrrells Lightly Sea Salted Chips
2-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/3 cups solid butter-flavored vegetable shortening
2/3 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Pour chips into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until thoroughly crumbled. Combine with flour and salt; set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together shortening, powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth.

Add flour mixture and stir on low until combined.

Scoop mixture out onto a clean, flat, lightly floured work surface and roll out until 1/2 inch thick. Cut into 2-1/2 inch circles (or whatever size you prefer) and place cookies at least 1 inch apart on a baking sheet.

Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until very light golden brown. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before consuming.

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NOTE: The products noted above were free samples provided by Tyrrells, which has no affiliation with Vegan Food Addict. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely that of Vegan Food Addict and do not necessarily reflect that of others.

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Product Review and Recipe: FoMu Ice Cream

8 Jun

FoMu Premium Alternative Ice CreamOne thing I love about the vegan lifestyle is that many of those involved are committed to the environment, and the folks at FoMu are no exception. Specializing in premium alternative ice cream, the company’s ingredients come from local sources, their disposables and packaging are compostable or recyclable, and their stores are built from recycled materials (source).

Based out of Watertown, MA, FoMu (short for “faux moo”) started making and selling their gourmet ice cream in 2011. FoMu’s products are 100% plant-based and certified kosher, using organic ingredients whenever possible, and sweetened with agave nectar and unrefined cane sugar. Not only are their ice creams, toppings and inclusions made from scratch, most of their ice creams are coconut-based, some of which are free from gluten and nuts.

Upon first glance at their list of ice creams, my interest in FoMu was piqued when I noticed flavors such as Avocado and Bourbon Maple Walnut. Alcohol in ice cream? Yes, please! Should you not be the adventurous type when it comes to ice cream, have no fear, among their current selection of 21 flavors, FoMu offers classics such as Mint Chip, Strawberry and Vanilla Bean.

If you don’t live on the east coast, this will come as great news to you: FoMu ships their ice cream to nearly anywhere in the Contiguous United States! With summer just around the corner, now is the perfect time to enjoy some of this sweet, creamy goodness.

FoMu Banoffee Pie Ice Cream Banoffee Pie
The word I would use to describe this ice cream is magical. FoMu’s Banoffee Pie is a banana and toffee ice cream studded with dark chocolate chips and graham crackers. Basically it is a pie turned into ice cream. Clever! The various inclusions in this ice cream go very well together, with each bite giving you different flavors to enjoy. Banoffee Pie is perfect for anyone, especially the kids.

FoMu Cake + Batter Ice Cream Cake and Batter
Tied for first place as my favorite FoMu ice cream, Cake and Batter is vanilla cake batter ice cream with chunks of homemade cake. I find this particular flavor to be refreshingly sweet, and the chunks of chocolate cake bring it to the next level. This is one of those ice creams that someone could easily eat a whole pint of if left to their own devices. It’s sinfully delicious!

FoMu Dark & Stormy Ice Cream Dark and Stormy
The most creative and mature ice cream of the bunch, Dark and Stormy is fashioned after the popular cocktail, which features dark rum, ginger and a hint of lime. With a softer texture, this gluten-free ice cream is ready-to-eat right out of the freezer. Upon first bite, Dark and Stormy has a strong ginger flavor, which is a bit overpowering for my tastes; however, this ice cream is an excellent choice for those who like the spice. The ginger provides a very slight kick, which is accented by the rum undertones.

FoMu Salted Caramel Ice Cream Salted Caramel
I like salted caramel and am somewhat of a self-proclaimed caramel snob. There is a particular sweet to salty ratio that needs to be met in order for me to approve of it. When I tried FoMu’s Salted Caramel ice cream, I was very impressed! The salted caramel flavor is excellent and keeps me going back for spoonful after spoonful. One minor thing I noticed, however, is a slight burnt aftertaste. Depending on how you look at it, it can be a good thing as it adds an extra dimension of flavor. This gluten-free ice cream is tied for first place as my favorite of the bunch.

I’ve always enjoyed going against the norm by having breakfast for dinner, so why not have dessert for breakfast? Feeling adventurous, I wanted to try melting one of FoMu’s ice creams and using it in pancake batter…it worked! These pancakes are gluten-free (if you use a gluten-free ice cream) and can be flavored with any ice cream of your choosing.

Banoffee Pie Ice Cream Pancakes
Banoffee Pie Ice Cream Pancakes (pictured above)

Gluten-Free Ice Cream Pancakes
Yields 8 (5-6 inch) pancakes

Dry Ingredients:
1 cup sweet white sorghum flour
1/2 cup + 4 teaspoons gluten-free oat flour
1/2 cup + 4 teaspoons potato starch
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon gluten-free baking powder
pinch salt

Wet Ingredients:
3/4 cup gluten-free FoMu ice cream, melted*
1 cup regular unsweetened almond milk
2 tablespoons canola oil

In a medium-size bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients and stir just until combined.

Heat a non-stick frying pan or pancake griddle over medium heat. Pour approximately 1/3 cup batter into the pan.

Allow pancake to cook for 30-60 seconds, or until bubbles form and edges lose their gloss. Flip over and cook an additional 30-60 seconds on the other side. Remove and place on a paper towel-covered plate.

Repeat until all batter has been used. Allow to cool slightly before consuming.

*There are currently four FoMu ice cream flavors that are not gluten-free: Banoffee Pie, Chocolate Brownie, Cake and Batter, and Cookie Dough.

Salted Caramel Ice Cream Pancakes
Salted Caramel Ice Cream Pancakes (pictured above)

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NOTE: The products noted above were free samples provided by FoMu, which has no affiliation with Vegan Food Addict. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely that of Vegan Food Addict and do not necessarily reflect that of others.

Carrot Cake Smoothie

19 May

It’s no secret that a great deal if us have what we lovingly refer to as a sweet tooth. We crave sugar, which is a carbohydrate that our bodies convert into energy. The most beneficial forms of sugar to consume are unrefined sugars that occur naturally, such as in fruits, sweet vegetables, and liquid sweeteners such as raw maple syrup.

Cake happens to be one of my favorite desserts. With its sweet flavor and moist, soft texture, I find myself craving it…and often. When I want cake but not the guilt, I typically choose something like carrot cake; this way I am getting a serving of vegetables. One medium-size carrot contains approximately 2.9g sugar, which is a little over 1/2 teaspoon (source). With their low glycemic index, carrots are excellent for those who are watching their blood sugar levels. For more information on the health benefits of carrots, check out my Whole Wheat Carrot Zucchini Muffins post.

Below is a recipe for a healthier carrot cake in smoothie form. Made with pecans for a hearty texture and sweetened with maple syrup, this smoothie can be enjoyed any time of day, especially as an after-dinner treat. Enjoy!

Carrot Cake Smoothie

Carrot Cake Smoothie
Yields approximately 2 servings

1-1/2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 tablespoons maple syrup, or to taste
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 (16-ounce) bag carrots, peeled and sliced with ends discarded
2/3 cup whole pecans
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients in a high-speed blender* and puree until smooth.

*If you do not own a high-speed blender (i.e. Blendtec or Vitamix), first process carrots and pecans in the bowl of a food processor until finely chopped. Pour mixture into a blender and add remaining ingredients, pureeing until smooth. Add extra almond milk for a more liquid consistency.

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars

22 Mar

The lemon, said to be a hybrid between sour orange and citron, is an evergreen tree native to Asia. Forever prized for its sour flavor, a lemon tree’s fruit juice is approximately 5-6% citric acid, therefore making it a great source of Vitamin C (source).

When used in desserts, the flavor of lemons is brought to a whole new level. I found this delicious and easy recipe on Pinterest the other day and it inspired me to make my own version. Utilizing a mixture of cashews, macadamias and coconut oil to achieve its creamy consistency, my Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars have just the right amount of sweet and sour notes to please your palate.

Not only does this dessert contain Vitamin C, both the almonds and cashews contained within have high amounts of Magnesium. This mineral helps prevent asthma, diabetes, osteoporosis, heart attacks, strokes, and even relieves constipation. What’s more, Magnesium alleviates the symptoms of fibromyalgia, premenstrual syndrome and migraines (source). One cheesecake square provides approximately 28% DV Magnesium*, so eat a couple, if you please, and enjoy them without the guilt!

* Sources: almonds, Deglet Noor dates, cashews, macadamias, lemon

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars

Nearly Raw Lemon Cheesecake Bars
Yields approximately 9 servings

Crust:
1-1/2 cups raw unsalted almonds
12 pitted Deglet Noor dates
1/2 rounded teaspoon salt
1-1/2 teaspoons water

Filling:
1/2 cup melted refined coconut oil*
1/2 cup raw agave nectar
zest and juice of 1-1/2 organic lemons (approximately 1/3 – 1/2 cup juice)
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup raw unsalted cashew pieces
1/2 cup raw unsalted macadamias**
1/8 rounded teaspoon salt

Begin with the crust by combining almonds, dates and salt in a food processor or high-speed blender. Process just a few seconds, or until almonds and dates are finely chopped. Be careful not to process too long or the result will be similar to almond butter.

Add water and process a few seconds longer until clumps start to form.

Scoop crust mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish, flattening evenly with your fingers or the back of a spoon. Set aside.

Next, place all filling ingredients in a high-speed blender and puree for 30-60 seconds, or until smooth. If using a regular blender, puree for 1-2 minutes, stopping occasionally to stir.

Scoop filling into dish and spread evenly over crust. Refrigerate for 6-8 hours, or until set. Slice into squares and serve.

* If you enjoy the aroma and flavor of coconut and want to make this recipe completely raw, you may substitute unrefined coconut oil instead of refined coconut oil.
** Raw macadamias can be a little tricky to find, not to mention expensive. Should you prefer, dry-roasted salted macadamias may be used instead. Simply follow recipe as directed but omit the salt in the filling.

Mini Apple Streusel Pies with Peanut Butter Drizzle

10 Nov

November brings with it one of the biggest fall holidays, which are often filled with more sweets than you can shake a spoon at. A favorite dessert during this time is, no doubt, homemade apple pie.

Dating back to the year 1381, apple pie was enjoyed by the English and often included figs and raisins, in addition to using saffron as a coloring agent. Many pies during this time were not sweetened using sugar, but instead were sweetened by fruit. Since then, apple pie has evolved to become an American staple, including actual sugar, and should a dutch apple pie be preferred, cinnamon and lemon juice (source).

These Mini Apple Streusel Pies are made in a cupcake pan and are perfect eaten with a dollop of non-dairy whipped cream or ice cream. Enjoy!

Mini Apple Streusel Pies

Mini Apple Streusel Pies with Peanut Butter Drizzle

Crust:
1-1/2 cups all-purpose or white whole wheat flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup butter-flavored solid vegetable shortening
4-6 tablespoons cold water

Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup all-purpose or white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oats
1/4 cup vegan buttery spread
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Apple Filling:
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3 Fuji, Gala or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Peanut Butter Drizzle (optional):
3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon refined coconut oil

Preheat oven to 375º F.

Begin with the crust by combining flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Cut in buttery spread and mix until pea-sized pieces form. Add cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to mixture and stir just until dough comes together.

Pour dough out onto a clean, flat and floured work surface and roll into a circle approximately 1/8-inch thick. Cut 3.5-inch circles out of dough, combining dough scraps, then rolling and cutting out additional circles until remainder of dough has been used. You should end up with 12 circles of dough.

Place one circle of dough in each spot of a cupcake pan, flattening dough against bottom and sides. Place pan with dough in refrigerator until ready to use.

For the streusel, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix with a fork or pastry blender until pea-sized pieces are formed; set aside.

For the filling, combine cornstarch and lemon juice in a medium-size bowl. Add remaining filling ingredients, mixing to combine.

Remove cupcake pan from refrigerator and fill each spot with apple mixture, dividing evenly among the 12 spots. Sprinkle streusel topping evenly over top of each, then bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

For the peanut butter drizzle, combine both ingredients in a small bowl, and using a fork, drizzle over top of pies.

S’mores Crispy Treats

7 Jul

The S’more is said to have first been printed in a 1927 publication entitled “Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts.” Assumed to be short for “some more,” the s’more is a popular campfire treat among Americans and Canadians consisting of marshmallows and chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers (source).

The thought of s’mores and crispy treats brings me back to my childhood. Both were two of my favorite desserts growing up, and now that I’m vegan, this doesn’t mean I can no longer enjoy them. Luckily for us, there is a plant-based version of nearly everything out there, and that includes marshmallows. Chicago Vegan Foods creates Dandies, which act almost exactly like traditional marshmallows, whether you roast them over a fire, or melt them over the stove.

Enjoy these S’mores Crispy Treats and try not to eat the entire batch in one sitting!

NOTE: Many grocers carry original Nabisco grahams, which come in a red box and are vegan.

SmoresCrispyTreats-2

S’mores Crispy Treats

1/4 (14.4-ounce) box vegan graham crackers
1/4 cup + 1/2 cup softened vegan butter, divided
1 (10-ounce) bag vegan marshmallows
5 cups crispy rice cereal
1/2 cup semi-sweet non-dairy chocolate chips

Lightly grease a 9-inch square baking dish and set aside.

Place graham crackers in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until a crumb texture is reached. Add 1/4 cup softened butter and pulse another few seconds until mixture begins to stick together.

Pour graham cracker mixture into prepared baking pan and spread evenly, flattening with your fingers or the back of a spoon. Refrigerate while you prepare the marshmallow mixture.

Place 1/2 cup butter and marshmallows in a large pot. Heat over medium, stirring often, or until butter and marshmallows have melted, approximately 5-7 minutes.

Turn off heat and quickly stir in rice cereal, mixing until combined. Pour out into prepared baking dish and flatten with the back of a spoon. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until cool.

Remove crispy treats from refrigerator and slice into squares. Remove from pan with a spatula so as not to break apart the graham cracker crust. Carefully turn upside down and place on a cooling rack or plate with the graham cracker crust side facing up.

Meanwhile, melt chocolate chips in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring often. Dip a fork into melted chocolate and drizzle over crispy treats.

Raw Nut Butter Cookie Balls

19 May

Having a sweet tooth doesn’t mean giving into unhealthy desserts. The big not-so-secret secret is using fruit to satisfy your cravings. Naturally sweet and unrefined, dates are a very popular fruit used to achieve the level of sweetness we crave. According to Dr. Michael Greger M.D., though dates are 80% sugar, they have no adverse affects on blood sugar or weight, and actually improve triglycerides and antioxidants (source). In addition, Medjool dates, in particular, contain a variety of essential nutrients such as Copper, Manganese and Potassium (source).

Ready for a sweet treat? Say goodbye to the guilt and make yourself a batch of these Raw Nut Butter Cookie Balls. Not only are they raw, they are delicious and healthy with added protein and a touch of cinnamon.

Raw Nut Butter Cookie Balls

Raw Nut Butter Cookie Balls
Yields approximately 9-10 balls

1 cup raw, unsalted cashews
1/2 cup uncooked quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups pitted dates
4 tablespoons raw nut butter of your choice

Combine cashews, oats and cinnamon in the bowl of a food processor and process for 30-60 seconds, or until the consistency of cornmeal is reached.

Add dates and nut butter and pulse until mixture is combined, stopping occasionally to scrape sides. Mixture should be moist enough to form into balls and hold their shape. If not, add an additional teaspoon nut butter and mix. Repeat if necessary.

Using approximately 1 tablespoon of the mixture at a time, roll into balls and place in an air-tight container and refrigerate until ready to eat.

NOTE: Due to the nature of preservative-free foods, these cookies are best if eaten within one week, otherwise they may be frozen until ready for consumption.

Green Tea Coconut Cookies

11 Mar

Matcha is a finely milled, high-quality green tea common in Japanese culture. Used not only to flavor various foods and beverages, this form of tea is also utilized as a dye because of its rich green color. It is produced by first growing tea plants under the cover of shade. These plants take longer to grow which causes their leaves to turn a darker shade of green. Once the desired point of maturity is reached, the leaves are stripped away and laid flat to dry. They are then de-stemmed, de-vained, and finally, stone ground to produce the powder known as matcha (source).

These melt-in-your-mouth cookies are fashioned after the ever-popular Russian Tea Cakes, also known as Mexican Wedding Cookies, Butterballs or Snowball Cookies (source). With the addition of matcha and coconut, these green beauties boast an exciting flavor and various health benefits, and are an excellent St. Patrick’s Day treat.

Due to a high amount of Epigallocatechin gallate (an antioxidant), matcha helps protect against cancer and HIV, and is said to protect against bad breath and assist with weight loss. In addition, matcha is a good source of the amino acid L-theanine, which is said to provide an anti-stress and relaxing effect (source).

Green Tea Coconut Cookies

Green Tea Coconut Cookies
Yields 24 (1-1/2 inch) cookies

1/2 cup vegan buttery spread
1/2 cup unrefined coconut oil (not refined)
2 tablespoons matcha green tea powder
1/4 cup + 1/2 cup powdered sugar, divided
1/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut (optional*)
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 400º F.

Cream together buttery spread, coconut oil, green tea powder and 1/4 cup powdered sugar until smooth. Add shredded coconut and flour and mix until combined. Mixture will be somewhat crumbly but should stick together.

Roll dough into 24 balls, approximately 1-1/2 inches in size. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes or just until set.

Meanwhile, place 1/2 cup powdered sugar in a wide, shallow dish; set aside.

Remove cookies from oven and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes. Roll each cookie in powdered sugar and set aside until completely cooled.

* If you prefer to use unsweetened shredded coconut, increase ¼ cup powdered sugar to 1/3 cup and proceed with recipe as directed.

Green Tea Coconut Cookies

Strawberry Cheesecake Pie

10 Feb

Valentine’s Day is the perfect day for strawberries. These beautiful red berries are a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Manganese and Vitamin C, and a good source of Folate and Potassium (source). Thanks, in part, to these vitamins and minerals, strawberries have multiple health benefits (source):

  • Protection against diseases such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and diabetes
  • Increased red blood cells, which improves the antioxidant sufficiency of blood
  • Assistance and prevention of memory decline and loss
  • Protection against inflammation

It doesn’t matter whether or not you have a significant other, Valentine’s Day should be a special day for everyone…a day when everyone enjoys a decadent dessert without guilt. To satisfy this should-be requirement, make yourself some Strawberry Cheesecake Pie and drizzle with chocolate syrup. If you eat it all by your lonesome I won’t tell!

Strawberry Cheesecake Pie

Strawberry Cheesecake Pie

2 (8-ounce) containers regular imitation cream cheese
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup strawberry purée*
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 (6-ounce) graham cracker pie crust

Preheat oven to 325º F.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add strawberry purée, mix thoroughly, then add cornstarch and continue to mix, scraping sides of bowl to ensure entire mixture is combined.

Pour into graham cracker pie crust and bake in preheated oven for 60 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool; filling should set during this time. Cool completely before slicing and drizzle with non-dairy chocolate syrup if desired.

* To make strawberry purée, thoroughly wash approximately 4 ounces fresh strawberries. Remove and discard green tops. Purée berries in a food processor or blender for approximately one minute, or until smooth. If, like me, you are not a fan of strawberry seeds, simply use ½ cup strawberry juice if you are able to find or make it.

Pumpkin Cookies with Cinnamon Drizzle

7 Oct

Well friends, it is officially Fall again. And what does that mean? Pumpkins!!! These lovely orange beauties are part of the squash family and are thought to have originated in North America. Approximately 1.5 billion pounds are produced in North America each year, and approximately 95% of those intended for processing are grown in Illinois (source).

The recipe below features, you guessed it, pumpkin. Complimented by sugar and spice, and everything nice, these moist, soft cookies are perfect for those upcoming Autumn-inspired festivities. This recipe provides nearly 30 cookies, excellent for sharing with multiple people.

While you’re waiting for these sweet treats to bake, check out some of the health benefits of pumpkin here and enjoy yourself a Pumpkin Spice Martini while you’re at it!

Pumpkin Cookies with Cinnamon Drizzle

Pumpkin Cookies with Cinnamon Drizzle
Yields approximately 28 cookies

Cookies:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
pinch salt
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup vegan buttery spread
1 (8-ounce) container imitation cream cheese
¾ cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Drizzle:
1 cup powdered sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1½ teaspoons vegan buttery spread, softened
3-4 teaspoons regular unsweetened almond milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350º F. Lightly grease two large cookie sheets and set aside.

For the cookies, combine flour, cinnamon, baking powder, ginger, nutmeg and salt in a small bowl; set aside.

In a larger bowl, beat sugar and buttery spread together until smooth. Mix in cream cheese, pumpkin and vanilla. Slowly stir in dry ingredients and mix until combined.

Place approximately 2 tablespoons dough, 1-2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheets. Bake in preheated oven for 16-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cookie comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire cooling racks and allow to cool completely.

Meanwhile, for the icing, combine powdered sugar and cinnamon. Add buttery spread, milk and vanilla and beat until smooth. Using a fork, drizzle icing across tops of cooled cookies.

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