It’s Easter weekend already? Seriously where does the time go these days?!
I was doing some brainstorming to decide what type of recipe I could do for this Easter inspired post, and I got some great suggestions on Facebook (thanks everyone!). I decided to go with the carrot cake idea!
I’m not really sure what it is about carrot cake that reminds me of Easter/Spring.. maybe it’s the carrots… and the Easter Bunny.. and bunnies eat carrots.. so therefore carrot cake is Easter related?
Well, whatever the connection, it seems to be the dessert that comes around at Easter time, so I’m stickin’ with it!
This recipe is an interesting take on the traditional carrot cake.. in a few ways.
First, it’s raw – so no baking, yay!
Second.. it’s vegan, so no eggs or dairy in this “cake”.
Third.. it isn’t really a “cake” at all.. more like a carrot cake/energy bar kind of hybrid dessert!
I used my food process to incorporate all the tastes and flavors of a traditional carrot cake… we’ve got the walnuts, the shredded carrots, the raisins, the pineapple, and the coconut! I used almonds ground into a fine “flour” as the base, and dates work to add the natural sweetness!
Cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom add in that familiar carrot cake aroma and spice!
These carrot cake bites are seriously delicious!
When it came to the frosting I struggled a bit. I wasn’t sure whether to stick with the traditional “cream cheese” frosting and lighten it up by using light cream cheese and stevia, or go with something totally different.
Then the idea of incorporating my favorite protein powder popped into my head! If I could make a pudding like consistency with the vanilla protein powder that would harden when the carrot cake bites were kept in the fridge/freezer..I just might have a tasty, healthy, and high protein “frosting/icing” substitute!
So I whipped up the “frosting” and poured it over the “carrot cake” stuck it all in the freezer and waited anxiously to test out this Easter recipe creation!
It tasted delicious when I finally dug in – the ONLY drawback is that the frosting gets quite hard over time, and needs some thawing time before it is soft enough to bite into with ease.
I would like to try doing a vegan “cashew cream” icing the next time I make these as I think that would work a little bit better for these little carrot cake bites!
The recipe for cashew cream icing can be found –> here <– if you decide to try that with these carrot cake bites instead of the protein frosting!
One of the things I love most about this dessert is that it truly is loaded with raw, vibrant, nutritious carrots, and you can barely taste “carrot” without tasting the delicious “cake”!
What a great way to sneak veggies in for those picky eaters in the house who won’t touch a veggie with a ten-foot pole! They’ll never know with these I promise!
And of course, it is Friday, so I have compiled a fantastic favorites list of Healthier Easter Inspired Treats! These are all fantastic treats to bring to Easter dinner this weekend that are healthier alternatives to the traditional goodies normally enjoyed at Easter!
- ¾ cup raw almonds or almond meal
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- ¼ cup raisins
- ¼ cup dried pineapple (unsweetened)
- ½ cup soaked dates
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut (I use Bob's Red Mill brand)
- 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
- ¼ - ½ cup water or unsweetened almond milk
- ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
- raisins and shredded coconutfor garnishing
- Place the almonds in a food processor and process into a powder/flour consistency, or skip this step if you are using almond meal and just put almond meal into the food processor.
- Add in the raisins, pineapple, dates, walnuts and process until everything is well incorporated - you may need to add in 1 or 2 tablespoons of water while processing if the mixture is too dry.
- Add in the coconut, carrots, and spices, and process again until well incorporated (about 2-3 minutes more)
- Transfer the mixture to an 8x8 baking pan lined with parchment paper, and press down firmly and evenly into the pan.
- For the frosting, in a small bowl slowly at water/ almond milk to the protein powder, stirring continuously, until a thick pudding-like consistency is reached.
- Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Pour the icing over the carrot mixture in the pan, and sprinkle with raisins and coconut.
- Freeze for 1 hour to set, then cut into small squares.
I hope everyone has an amazing Easter weekend!
Easter bunnies and chocolate eggs aside, I always take time on this weekend each year to remember and mediate on the true meaning and incredible blessing behind this holiday!
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.
– John 3:16-17
Christal // NITK