7 Healthy Vegan Candy Alternatives That Won't Break Your Diet ...

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These healthy vegan candy alternatives will not break your diet. That is, they don’t contain too much sugar, and contain no chemicals, artificial ingredients, hydrogenated oils (trans fat), or high fructose corn syrup. Vegan candy alternatives still taste delicious and like the real thing, only they are ten times healthier and acceptable to have almost any day you wish. Most of these candy alternatives have chocolate in them as I chose many remakes of popular chocolate bars. So pick your old favorite, make the easy recipe, and enjoy the delicious nostalgia.

1. Snickers Bars

Snickers Bars

If you miss eating Snickers since going vegan, you won’t after you taste one of these delicious vegan candy alternatives. It contains absolutely no dairy in it, which will be hard to believe after one bite. I didn’t love Snickers as a child, but I would gladly eat one of these babies every day. The best part? This recipe actually contains healthy fats from the raw peanuts, cashews, coconut oil, and macadamia nuts. It is also sweetened pretty much with dates, which dramatically reduces the processed sugar content.

Ingredients:

(Makes 16 snack-sized Snickers Bars)

Nougat Filling (see below)

Caramel (see below)

3/4 c. raw peanuts

Raw Chocolate or Chocolate Chips (in melted form)

**

For the Nougat filling:**

1/2 c. cashews, soaked for 1-2 hours

1/4 c. macadamia nuts, soaked for 1-2 hours

1/4 c. almond or oat flour

1 date, chopped

2 tsp agave

1 tsp coconut oil, melted

dash of vanilla extract

pinch of salt

Combine everything in a food processor until a smooth dough forms. With your hands, form the bottom layer for the candy bar. Set on a plate lined with a piece of wax paper. Refrigerate.

For the Caramel:

12 dates, depitted and chopped

1/3 c. water

6 Tb agave

1 1/2 Tb coconut oil, melted

In a high speed blender, combine all ingredients until completely smooth. Will take about 5 minutes total.

To Assemble:

Combine peanuts and date caramel sauce. Using your hands, place ontop of already formed nougat bottoms. Freeze for 15 minutes. Dip each bar into raw chocolate until fully coated. Set back on plate and freeze or chill in the fridge until chocolate has set. These suckers are melty bad boys so you will want to devour immediately once out of the freezer/fridge.

Source: forkandbeans.com

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2. Healthy Twix Bars

Healthy Twix Bars

You can make this recipe free of refined cane sugar. That means this is a Twix recipe without anything artificial and without cane sugar. What more could you ask for? I guess that this recipe tastes so much better than the original, which is what I think. Plus, you get benefits of high fiber if you use buckwheat flour, healthy fats from the coconut oil, nut butter, and flax, and dates for fiber and sweetness as well. If you use coconut sugar throughout the recipe, there will be no cane sugar whatsoever. Check your local health food store for arrowroot or tapioca starch, if you are wondering where to find those items.

Ingredients:

(makes 12 bars)

1/2 cup white rice flour or buckwheat flour or sorghum flour

1/2 cup arrowroot or tapioca

2 tbsp evaporated cane juice or regular sugar or coconut sugar

3 tbsp sunflower seed butter (or another nut or seed butter)

2 tbsp virgin coconut oil

1 tbsp freshly ground flax mixed with 2 tbsp water (Allow to sit for 5 minutes before using.)

1 tbsp pure vanilla extract

Caramel:

100g pitted dates (approximately 6 dates)

3 tablespoons sunflower seed butter (or another nut butter of choice)

1 tsp water

pinch salt

Chocolate Coating:

3/4 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. Begin by preparing shortbread. Add first three ingredients to a medium-sized bowl. Whisk to combine. Then add sunflower seed butter, coconut oil, flax mixture and extract. Mix with a hand mixer or stand mixer until fully combined. The dough should stick together well.

Shape dough into twelve 3-inch cookies. To do this, scoop out about 1 1/2 tablespoons at a time into your hand and roll into a ball. Slowly shape into a long tube by rolling back and forth between the palm of your hands until it’s about 3-inches long. Set down on prepared cookie sheet and flatten with fingers. You can make the cookie even straighter by using the side of a knife to press up against the edges. Place cookies in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes until tops are slightly cracked and sides are golden. Set aside to cool. Meanwhile, place caramel ingredients in the bowl of your food processor. Process until smooth. If the mixture will not get smooth, just add a touch more water.

Once cookies are cooled, top with caramel and place on a second cookie sheet that’s lined with parchment paper. To do so, roll caramel like you did the cookies; into 3-inch tubes, and place over top of cookies. Place in the freezer and allow to set for at least 10 minutes. This will make the cookies easier to dip in the chocolate. Melt chocolate chips by dropping into a metal bowl and place over top of a sauce pan filled with water. Bring water to a boil and stir chips until melted. Remove from heat.

Remove the cookie sheet from the freezer and; one by one, coat the bars in chocolate. To do this, drop the bar into the chocolate and coat it with your fingers. Remove access with your fingers and place back on the parchment. Repeat with remaining cookies. Place back in the freezer and allow to set for 15 minutes.

Source: chocolatecoveredkatie.com

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3. Almond or Peanut Butter Cups

Almond or Peanut Butter Cups

This recipe for peanut butter cups has only 2 to 4 ingredients. To say my mind is blown would be an understatement. When I say 2 to 4, I mean I often make these without the added salt and powdered sugar, and they taste just as delicious. However, feel free to use all four ingredients if you like them to taste a little sweeter and more authentic. These seriously taste better than Reese’s peanut butter cups, and that says a lot because this was my absolute favorite candy growing up. Oh, and you can make these in the freezer instead of the refrigerator if you can’t wait that long to devour these babies.

Ingredients:

1/3 cup smooth almond butter (or peanut butter)

1/4 cup powdered sugar

12 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Sea salt

Directions:

Line a 12-cup mini-muffin pan with small paper cups. In a small bowl, mix together almond butter and powdered sugar until well-combined. Refrigerate while you melt the chocolate. Melt chocolate in a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Turn off heat and keep chocolate warm. Scoop 1-tablespoonful portions of almond butter into your hand and form into same-size balls. Place on a sheet of waxed paper and flatten them slightly. Spoon about 1 teaspoon melted chocolate into each of the paper cups. Use the back of a spoon to spread chocolate evenly onto the bottom and a bit up the side of the paper cups. Place muffin pan in the freezer until chocolate hardens. Press an almond butter disk into each cup. Spoon chocolate over the disks, spreading evenly and so the chocolate goes down the sides of the disks. Sprinkle each with a few crystals of sea salt. Place in the refrigerator for 45 minutes or until chocolate hardens.

Source: sheknows.com

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4. Homemade Peanut Butter M&M’s

Homemade Peanut Butter M&M’s

I cannot believe this recipe. I never would’ve guessed you could make any form of M&M’s at home, let alone peanut butter M&M’s! These are absolutely so delicious, and surprisingly packed with healthy protein. You get fiber from the rolled oats, and protein and healthy fats from the almonds, peanuts, and peanut butter. If you use dark chocolate, you are also getting an antioxidant boost. I highly doubt you get these kinds of benefits without other processed ingredients creating side effects in a regular bag of M&M’s. I cannot tell you how amazingly close to regular peanut butter M&M’s these taste.

Ingredients:

1/4 cup rolled oats (GF for gluten free eaters)

2 pitted dates (medjool or deglet nour)

½ cup raw almonds

½ cup roasted salted peanuts

½ cup roasted, salted natural peanut butter

1 cup (8 ounces) semisweet or dark chocolate (non-dairy for vegan)

Directions:

Add your oats to the food processor and mix until small pieces remain. Then add dates and process again until only small bits remain. Remove from processor and set aside. Next add almonds and peanuts to the food processor and mix until they turn to meal – a few small chunks are OK. Next add peanut butter to the nut meal and pulse until well combined. Then add dates and oats and process until the mixture forms a loose dough. If it seems too wet to handle, add more oats. If it seems too dry, add a couple more dates. Scoop out small bits of dough and form them into small round balls – about 1/2 tsp. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and pop in the freezer to harden for 30 minutes. Around the 25-minute mark, melt your dark chocolate over a double boiler or in the microwave in 30 second increments. Then work in small batches to coat the cookies. Take only 5 M&Ms out of the freezer at a time for dipping. To dip, drop cookies one at a time into the chocolate, flip once, pick up with a fork or your finger and tap on the rim of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. A little excess is OK. Place back on a parchment-lined baking sheet and pop back in the freezer to set. Repeat until all Peanut Butter M&Ms are dipped, re-warming chocolate as needed. For optimum freshness, store cookies in an air-tight container in the freezer or fridge until serving.

Source: minimalistbaker.com

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5. Andes Mints

Andes Mints

When I was a kid, there was a local restaurant that we would always go to that gave Andes mints out after dinner. I don’t know if that’s why I loved them so much, but when I became a vegan and could no longer have them, it was sad to have that memory disappear. That’s why I literally gave an out loud scream when I found this recipe for vegan Andes mints. This recipe really brought back great memories of those days when eating Andes mints was an option. Oh, and if you are wondering, you can make vegan white chocolate chips here: chocolatecoveredkatie.com.

Ingredients:

1/2 c. vegan chocolate chips

1/2 c. vegan white chocolate chips

1/2 tsp peppermint extract

few drops of green food coloring

Directions:

Line a baking pan with parchment paper. Cut it so it perfectly fits on the bottom and dab the corners with melted chocolate so it stays in place. Allow to set {just a few minutes} Melt chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl. Melt in 30 increments, stirring at each stop, repeat until smooth. Drop 1/4 tsp peppermint extract in and stir. Adjust to taste–add the remainder 1/4 tsp if it is not strong enough. Slowly pour HALF {or less} as the bottom layer into the pan. You want a thin layer so go slowly. Using the back of a spoon or the shake method, make sure it is evenly spread. Freeze for 2 minutes. Make sure it does not freeze completely!!! You don’t want 3 separate layers that fall apart but you also don’t want the chocolate layers to blend into it each other. Watch for the color of the top–when it is no longer shiny is a good indicator you’re ready for the next layer. While you are flash freezing the first layer, melt the white chocolate chips in the same way in the microwave. Drop food coloring in, stir until smooth. Pour green chocolate for the thin 2nd layer. Shake until evenly spread. Freeze for 2 minutes or until no longer shiny. Repeat with 3rd chocolate layer. If you need to reheat your chocolate because it is hardening a little, place back in the microwave for 10-20 seconds. Freeze 2-5 minutes. Before it sets completely, using a knife, slice the shapes of your mints. I went for the classic rectangular shape. Allow to set until dry, either on the counter or in the freezer {if you are less patient like myself}.

Source: forkandbeans.com

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6. Almond Joys

Almond Joys

There are only three ingredients you need for this recipe, most of which you probably have! You get healthy fats from the shredded coconut and almonds, and antioxidants if you use vegan dark chocolate. I never liked Almond Joys as a kid, but I love these! I can only imagine how good these will taste if you did like Almond Joys as a kid. These Almond Joys are so easy to make, that there is no excuse to not make them. They are also pretty cheap, with only three ingredients required.

Ingredients:

(Makes approx. 15ish bars)

1/2 c. shredded coconut + a dash on non dairy milk (optional)

15 almonds

vegan chocolate (to be melted)

Directions:

Blend your coconut for a good 5 minutes until almost smooth. Add a dash of non-dairy milk to help it along if needed. Roll blended coconut into small balls, place on wax paper and freeze for 15 minutes. Flatten balls out once out of the freezer. Coat mold with a thin layer of chocolate. Place almond in it’s spot; then place flatten coconut on top. Cover the remainder with chocolate. Freeze 10 minutes and then remove from mold.

Source: forkandbeans.com

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7. Super Soft Homemade Caramels

Super Soft Homemade Caramels

Healthy and soft caramel seems like an oxymoron. However, these caramels are just that! You get healthy fats from the coconut milk, and the sweetener doesn’t even have to be cane sugar in this recipe! You can try coconut sugar, xylitol, or anything that strikes your fancy. If you don’t have the Spectrum Shortening, you can also try Earth Balance ‘butter’ or coconut oil. The maple syrup in this recipe actually gives you your recommended daily dose of manganese, and has some anti-inflammatory properties as well. Plus, they taste just like gooey and soft caramels!

Ingredients:

1 cup Light Coconut Milk, canned

48g (1/4 cup) Butter Flavor Spectrum Organics Shortening

1/4 tsp Salt

112g (1/3 cup) Agave Nectar or Pure Maple Syrup

2 tbs Water

192g (1 cup) Sucanat (other dry sweeteners may work)

96g (1/2 cup) Granulated Erythritol (or more sucanat)

1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Directions:

Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. In a microwave-safe container, add the coconut milk, shortening and salt. Microwave at 20-second intervals, stirring between each one, until shortening has melted. In a medium-sized pot (preferably a tall one, but not a wide one), whisk together the agave/maple syrup, water, sucanat and erythritol. Add a candy thermometer to the pot and place over medium-med/high heat. Do not stir. When the mixture reaches 250 degrees Fahrenheit (should bubble/froth/rise in height), remove pot from heat and slowly whisk in the coconut milk/shortening mixture. Return the pot to the heat. When mixture returns to 250 degrees, turn off the heat and whisk in the vanilla. Pour mixture into the prepared pan and let sit for 3-4 hours. Give the fudge a stir until the mixture is even. Scoop the fudge onto a sheet of foil or parchment paper and loosely wrap and leave at room temperature. Moisture (a mixture of liquid/sugar) will be removed from the caramel. The next day, change the "wrapping" and scoop the caramel onto a clean sheet of foil/parchment. Feel free to do this step again to remove more liquid.

Source: dessertswithbenefits.com

**

**Just because you are vegan, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on eating candy. Even if you aren’t vegan, these healthy alternatives will keep your diet in check by offering some health benefits to balance out the sugar. You don’t have to feel guilty after eating these healthier alternatives, so make sure you enjoy them! What is your favorite candy you wish was vegan or healthy?

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