Holy cow holy cow holy cow.
I have had a long love affair with Orange Julius’s. It all started when my Grandma would take my sister and me school clothes shopping at THE MALL. We lived 2 hours from the nearest mall and it felt like magic every time we went. I don’t remember my first one but I remember the frothy orange drink and its delicious power over me. I moved on and grew up – sadly without my beloved Julius. Even before my diet makeover I had a hard time ingesting that much sugar in a drink (I could eat like 2 packs of M&Ms instead!). The problem was I knew what went into making that glorious flavor – and it wasn’t liquid sunshine (which is calorie-free you know).
Now? Problem solved! Oh, is it ever. Looking around the web for days trying to find a vegan/paleo orange creamsicle recipe yielded too many variations. Lots of the recipes used orange juice (too much sugar) and bananas (which are actually very hard frozen and I didn’t think would give me that soft sorbet fruit popsicle texture). So I decided to wing it with the recipe using the leftover coconut milk I had had in the freezer. Lucky you, this tastes so close to the real thing you have to taste for yourself. I wanted to drink it, but I abstained and made the popsicles. Good thing I have more coconut milk…
Orange Julius Creamsicle (makes ~10 pushpops)
- 10 oz. (1 1/4 cups) full fat unsweetened coconut milk
- 8 oz. crushed pineapple in juice (I don’t think the way it’s cut will matter, rings/crushed/cubed)
- 1 med-lg orange, peeled
- 1″ piece of orange peel or 1/2+ tsp orange zest
- 1/4 cup raw honey
- 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of pink salt
- Blend all ingredients until smooth. If you have a high powered blender like a Vitamix then the chunk of orange peel will puree, no need to zest.
- Pour the mixture over ice or blend with ice. For popsicles, pour into your popsicle molds. (I use a push-pop mold that is fantastic). You could also use toothpicks and an ice tray for old time’s sake.
- Freeze for at least 4+ hours. Enjoy!
These babies come in under 100 calories, 10 g of sugar and 13 g of carbs a pop. Compare that to a small Orange Julius with 210 calories, 50 g sugar and 52 g carbs!
Would you like to know what the super sweet secret ingredient to this unbelievable delicious and easy chocolate dessert is???
The crazy “weird” dried fruit that is kind of like a raisin… maybe you’ve had it in gross fruit cake or cereal as a kid, maybe you’ve never seen them but you don’t even know what you would do with them when you found them. Well relax and take note – dates are more common than you think, forgiving and as sweet as can be. Ever had a bacon wrapped date? You’re missing out. Dates do contain a lot of sugar but they also contain calcium and magnesium in a near perfect ratio (1:1), they have 1.5 g fiber, potassium, vitamin A and other minerals; that’s per date! When dates were tested for their antioxidant content, they scored 3 times higher than red plums. The recipe below can be used as a pie filling, push pop popsicle mold, eaten solo, or even as a parfait – layered with berries and Tru Whip.
Fudgesicle Filling (makes ~3 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups medjool dates (about 16), pitted and chopped (soak in water for easier blending)
- 3/4 teaspoon ground vanilla beans or 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup softened coconut butter
- 2-3 tsp coconut oil, melted
- heaping 1/3 cup raw organic cacao powder
- 1 1/3 cup purified water or leftover date water from soaking
- Soak dates in purified water for 30 minutes or more. Soak them longer if they aren’t very fresh and moist.
- Blend or use a tamper and Vitamix – all ingredients until it has a thick pudding-like consistency, add more water if necessary.
- Smooth into push pop popsicle molds. You will have plenty for 4 molds.
- Freeze for 1 day. Enjoy!
What would cashews have to do with jalapeno nacho cheese dip? Let’s consult my handy dandy 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth by Jonny Bowden… it says “A lot.” Cashews are in fact the base of this dip and before you dismiss this as hippie quackery I urge you to give it a try.
Cashews and nuts in general have been scientifically shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and attacks. It does this through its monounsaturated content which raises good cholesterol (HDL) and lowers the bad (LDL). Cashews are rich in minerals like magnesium, calcium, copper, manganese and selenium. Add to that 5 g of protein and 1 g of fiber per ounce. Have I mentioned that it’s delicious? Just ask my meat-eating-Sarah’s-a-crazy-hippie friend who said “Frito Lay Jalapeno Dip? Yeah I love that stuff! Oh but this is waaaay better.”
Jalapeño Cheese Dip (adapted from Amy Healy)
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped (fresh or roasted)
- 1 cup raw cashews (soaked for a few hours then drained – optional step)
- 1 medium slice of fresh onion, diced (or 2 tsp onion powder)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 tsp pink salt
- 2-3 T nutritional yeast (try it!)
- 4 T water +/-
- 2 T fresh lemon juice (~1/2 lemon)
- 1/2-3 jalapeño pepper with seeds
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- Blend all ingredients in a VitaMix, blender or food processor until smooth. Refrigerate.
Put it on some of these recipes or try it on any of your own:
For a comparison to Frito Lay Jalapeno Cheddar Dip let’s look at the obvious. The Frito Lay Jalapeno Cheddar dip lists MSG twice in the ingredients; once as monosodium glutamate and the other as autolyzed yeast extract (yep, that’s MSG!).