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Tasty Holiday Recipes

Spiced Pepitas

These crunchy pumpkin seeds are lemony, salty, spicy and zesty, all at the same time. A handful of these toasted tidbits whets the appetite.

Yields: 2 cups

2 cups raw pumpkin seeds

1 Tbsp grated lemon zest

1 Tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp salt

1 tsp ground cumin

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

½ tsp ground coriander

½ tsp ancho chile powder

½ tsp cayenne pepper

¼ tsp garlic powder

¼ tsp sugar (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375° F.

In a medium bowl, toss together the pumpkin seeds, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, cumin, pepper, coriander, chile powder, cayenne, and garlic powder.

Spread the mixture on a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes.

Remove the baking sheet from the oven and shake to redistribute the seeds, and then bake for another 3 minutes. Pull it out to shake the pan again. Then finish baking for 1 to 2 minutes or until the pumpkin seeds are crispy and golden without burning them.

Transfer to a cool baking sheet and cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Courtesy of Sandra A. Gutierrez, SandrasKitchenStudio.com

Truffle Spiced Popcorn

This wicked, fresh, piping-hot popcorn is kissed with a simple blend of rosemary, onion, and truffle oil.

Yields: 9 cups

2½ Tbsp grapeseed oil

A bit less than ½ cup popcorn kernels

1 Tbsp truffle oil

2 Tbsp nutritional yeast

½ Tbsp onion granules

½ tsp fresh rosemary, minced

Sea salt to taste

On medium heat, warm the oil in a large saucepan with a lid.

Remove from the stove and add all kernels in an even layer on the bottom of the pan.

Cover for 20 seconds to allow all the kernels to become coated and reach equal temperature so they all pop at once.

Place the covered pan back on the heat and shake it while it’s on the burner. The kernels will slowly begin to pop; once they start, crack the lid slightly to let out a bit of steam. Continue shaking the pan over heat until the popping stops.

Remove from the stovetop immediately and pour all popcorn into a large bowl.

Drizzle with truffle oil, nutritional yeast, onion granules, minced rosemary and sea salt. Shake and mix well before serving.

Courtesy of Chad and Derek Sarno, WickedHealthyFood.com

Beer-Miso-Sriracha Roasted Chickpeas    

Any favorite beer will work.

Yields: 2 to 4 servings

1 (15½ oz) can chickpeas or garbanzo beans, drained and set aside

1 Tbsp sriracha

1 Tbsp organic miso paste (any color)

⅓ bottle of beer

Black and white sesame seeds

Dried chili to taste

Smoked salt for garnish to taste

Preheat the oven to 375° F.

Whisk wet ingredients until mixed well. Toss mixture with chickpeas.

Place mixture on baking pan and roast for 20 to 30 minutes, shaking and stir periodically until mixture is evaporated and chickpeas begin to get color; beware of burning.

Garnish with sesame seeds and dried chili, maybe a little smoked salt.

Courtesy of Chad and Derek Sarno, WickedHealthyFood.com

Frothy Hot Chocolate with Pistachio Milk    

Cozy up and indulge in this thick, creamy and rich hot chocolate made with whole food ingredients.

Yields: 2 servings

Pistachio Milk

½ cup raw shelled pistachios

2 cups filtered water

Cocoa

½ to ¾ cup unsweetened baking cocoa or cacao powder

¼ to ½ cup date paste

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla extract

Dash of Himalayan pink salt

For the pistachio milk, soak the nuts overnight in a bowl of water.

Rinse before placing them into a high-speed blender with the 2 cups of water. Blend until the mixture is completely puréed and milky.

Strain mixture through a nut milk bag or cheesecloth; then add the nut milk back into the blender.

Add all other ingredients and blend at a high speed until thick.

Note: If using a regular, slower blender, re-warm the hot chocolate on the stove top. It may not be as thick and frothy but will taste good.

Courtesy of Sophia DeSantis, VeggiesDontBite.com