Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

On Monday I shared a recipe for Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce and I promised a dessert recipe using that most delectable tart and tasty sauce…drum roll please…here she is…Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte!  Isn’t she BEAUTIFUL?!?   Ok…so yeah I’m probably a little biased, but I just get so excited when something turns out exactly even better than I imagined!  And just take a gander at that crust to filling ratio…I love my crust!!! 😉

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

So not only is this dessert show-stopping gorgeous, and devastatingly delicious, it’s also vegan, sugar-free, and no-bake!  C’mon…it just doesn’t get any better than that!  With a little advance prep work like making the Crockpot Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce, and the Honeyed Orange Peel, assembling this dessert is a cinch!

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Do you remember eating those orange slice candies that come in a 2 for $1.00 bag?  The kind you get at the farm supply or convenience store?  I loved those candies growing up.  My grandpa always had a bag in the glovebox of his car and every once in a while, my grandma would reach in and hand my brother and I one of those little gummy jewels!  I loved the fresh taste and the way they made my tongue tingle just a little bit!  I wanted to recreate something similar in taste and texture, but since I don’t use sugar I had to find an alternative method to and make “candied” orange peel.  In the end I came up with Honeyed Orange Peel.  It’s a little – ok lot – stickier than the kind made with sugar and water, but the taste is spot on, and even though the peels are sticky, they’re perfect in this recipe!

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.comc

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Once the cranberry sauce and orange peel is ready, it’s a pretty simple assembly process.  The crust is made in the food processor by combining pecans, almonds, walnuts, and dates with a little orange juice and zest and a splash of vanilla.  The spiced orange filling is made in the blender from soaked and drained cashews, orange juice and zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, vanilla, honey, and our honeyed orange peel!  Since it’s a raw dessert the only real thing you need to keep in mind as far as prep time is that it does need a at least a couple hours to set up in the freezer, and preferably overnight if possible.

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

This Thanksgiving instead of making 2 separate desserts – one for the vegetarians/vegans at your table, and one for everyone else – simplify your menu by making just one dessert.  This Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte is so delicious that absolutely everyone will be praising your dessert skills!  And unless you tell them – they’ll never even suspect you fed them a raw vegan dessert!  One dessert to please everyone…now there’s something to be thankful for!

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spiced Orange Cranberry Torte
Serves 14
A Thanksgiving dessert to be especially thankful for as it's sure to please everyone - from the carnivores to the vegans - at your holiday table this year!
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Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
464 calories
57 g
0 g
26 g
8 g
4 g
143 g
94 g
43 g
0 g
21 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
143g
Servings
14
Amount Per Serving
Calories 464
Calories from Fat 220
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 26g
40%
Saturated Fat 4g
18%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 13g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 94mg
4%
Total Carbohydrates 57g
19%
Dietary Fiber 5g
22%
Sugars 43g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
2%
Vitamin C
24%
Calcium
8%
Iron
15%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the Honeyed Orange Peel
  1. Peel of 3 Valencia oranges, cut into 1/4" strips
  2. 3/4 cup honey
  3. 1 cup water
For the crust
  1. 1 cup pecans
  2. 1 cup walnuts
  3. 1 cup almonds
  4. 2 cups medjool dates, pitted
  5. Zest of 1 orange
  6. 2 tsp vanilla
  7. 2 tbsp orange juice
  8. 1/4 tsp salt
For the filling
  1. 2 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water at least 2 to 3 hours, then drained
  2. 1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  3. Zest of 1 orange
  4. 1/2 cup chopped Honeyed Orange Peel
  5. 1/3 cup honey
  6. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  7. 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  8. Pinch each of nutmeg & cloves
  9. 1/4 tsp salt
  10. 1/2 cup Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce ~ link to recipe in body of blog post
For the Honeyed Orange Peel
  1. Place orange peel strips in large saucepan and cover with water.
  2. Bring to a boil over high heat, drain, and repeat 4 more times.
  3. After 5th boiling process return softened peels to the pan, add 3/4 cup honey and 1 cup water and stir to combine and coat the orange peels.
  4. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer 1 to 1 1/2 hours until peels are translucent.
  5. Watch closely last 30 minutes of cooking time so as not to simmer away all the liquids in the pan and burn the peels.
  6. When translucent, remove peels from pan to cool, then store in refrigerator.
  7. Reserve any leftover orange honey from the saucepan to include in the torte filling!
For the crust
  1. Combine all crust ingredients in a food processor.
  2. Process until mixture resembles crumbs and sticks together when a small amount is rolled in your hands.
  3. Pour crust mixture into a 9" springform pan lightly greased with coconut oil.
  4. Smooth and compress crust into bottom of pan.
  5. Place in freezer to set up slightly while preparing the filling.
For the filling
  1. Combine all filling ingredients except Cranberry Sauce and Honeyed Orange Peel in the pitcher of a high speed blender.
  2. Blend until completely smooth, adding more orange juice if necessary.
  3. When filling is smooth add chopped honeyed orange peel and pulse just a couple times to incorporate the peel.
  4. Pour filling into chilled crust.
  5. Cover with plastic wrap and return to freezer for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight, to completely firm up.
To serve
  1. Remove from freezer 20 minutes before serving.
  2. Remove rim of springform pan, spread 1/2 cup of cranberry sauce on top and garnish as desired.
  3. Cut into 12 to 16 small pieces with a very sharp knife. It's a very rich dessert - a little goes a long way!
  4. Store leftovers in freezer.
Notes
  1. As an alternative to spreading cranberry sauce over the entire torte, you could dollop a small amount on each individual piece. The leftovers are delicious even with the frozen cranberry sauce, but it stays frozen well after the leftover torte is ready to be served!
beta
calories
464
fat
26g
protein
8g
carbs
57g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/

Cashew Cream Recipe Wrap-Up

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

First things first…THANK YOU!!!!  I want every single one of you to know how much I appreciate you stopping by my little itty-bitty corner of the interweb to read my blog!  Whether you’ve read all the posts in the Cashew Cream Series, whether you’ve read just one or two, or whether this is your first read at CEBH….THANKS SO MUCH! 

Here’s  just a few of the fabulous dishes we made with cashew cream!

Cashew Cream Recipe Wrap-Up | cookeatbehealthy.com

Now that I’ve published the final recipe in the series, I thought it’d be a good idea to do a short recap of all the recipes.  Hopefully you’ll remember where it all started….Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free…this is the base upon which most all the rest of the recipes are based!  By tweaking the cashew cream with different flavors and seasonings we’ve been able to create 14 different recipes from cashew cream!  And trust me when I say…we’ve just scratched the surface…I’m pretty sure that at some point in the future you can expect more recipes using the magical ingredient that is cashew cream!

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe that started it all…Cashew Cream ~ Dairy Free

Vodka Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Next up was a recipe for Vodka Sauce ~ Vegan  that is truly one of the best vodka sauces I’ve ever eaten!  Simple, delicious, rich and creamy – give it a try on your next bowl of pasta!

Cashew Creamed Peas & Potatoes | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for “Cashew” Creamed Peas & Potaotes was a recipe that took me right back to my childhood…it’s a comfort food that reminds me of my grandparents every time I make it!

Fruit Parfait Lemon Cashew Cream |cookeatbehealthy.com

Fruit Parfaits with Lemon Cashew Cream…sweet, tart, light, refreshing…perfect for a healthy dessert, breakfast, or as a snack!

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for Spaghetti Squash with Creamy Mushroom & Garlic Sauce is perfect as a side dish, or a meatless main dish!  Spaghetti squash was one of the first vegetables I was able to get my son to eat when he was a toddler – needless to say, it’s a favorite of mine!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

I love soup!  So much so that we eat it all year round, so it’s no surprise that three different soups made the cut when it came to this series.  The first soup recipe I shared was this one for Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch.  Everyone who grew up in the 60’s and 70’s probably fondly recalls tomato soup being served not only at the family dinner table, but also the school cafeteria!  Let’s just say this bisque is a grownup version of that odd-colored gloppy soup from a can that so many of us grew up eating!

Apple Crisp with Maple Cinnamon Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

The recipe for Apple Crisp with Maple Cinnamon Cashew Cream was a nod to the days when I was a single mom and my son and I used to visit apple orchards every fall.  He’s grown now, but Apple Crisp is a favorite dessert that never gets old no matter how many times I make it, or how many times I change it up!  The Maple Cinnamon Cream is exactly what this delicious sugar-free crisp needed to take it to the next level!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Looking for a unique way to use butternut squash?  How about these Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream?!?  I seriously love butternut squash so I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate it into our diet.  These fritters were a first for me – but it certainly won’t be the last time I make them!  They were crispy, light, flavorful, and so much fun to make!

3>1 Fruit Dips | cookeatbehealthy.com

Planning a brunch or shower?  Looking for a healthful alternative to the typical cream cheese based fruit dips?  Then I’ve got the perfect solution!  In the 3>1 Cashew Cream Fruit Dip post I shared 3 flavors of fruit dip – Key Lime Coconut, Lemon Poppyseed, and Chocolate Almond.  All 3 so seriously delicious I could not pick a favorite!

Slow Cooker Bison Roast with Bourbon Espresso Gravy | cookeatbehealthy.com

When I first adopted the CEBH Lifestyle I made the decision to cut red meat from my diet, and for the most part, it’s been pretty easy to adhere to my self-imposed ban.  But my poor husband – a real meat & potatoes, farm raised kinda guy…he was missing his big ‘ol hunks of beef! 😉  Thankfully we have a source for farm raised organic bison meat that brings their products to our local farmers market.  Bison meat is incredibly healthful – even better for you than salmon – and it’s exactly what I needed to make a delicious roast bison dinner for my husband!  I know it’s not the prettiest meal I’ve ever served – but do not judge a book by its cover!  I guarantee you that this Slowcooker Bison Roast with Bourbon Espresso “Gravy” is one of the most delicious meals I’ve ever made!

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Next up I shared a dessert recipe for some yummy Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars.  Just look at how chewy, gooey, and chocolaty they look!  ‘Nuff said! 

Green Bean Casserole | cookeatbehealthy.com

Thanksgiving is is fast approaching and there are some traditional dishes that just need to be on the holiday table.  But sometimes the old standbys need a makeover – and that’s what I did with this recipe for Green Bean Casserole CEBH Style!  No canned soup, no dairy, no canned fried onions…all healthy and most importantly delicious!  In fact, I happen to think the flavor of this casserole is over and above the original!!!  But you will have to judge that for yourself when you make it!

Dairy Free Potato Leek Soup | cookeatbehealthy.com

The second soup recipe I shared is soooo good you guys!  By using almond milk, and of course, cashew cream I was able to make a potato soup that rivals – dare I say, surpasses – the traditional version that’s full of milk, cream, and butter!  My version of Dairy Free Potato Leek Soup is delicious, rich, satisfying and so good for you.  I hope you love it as much as I do!  For meat eaters – a little ham added in would be spectacular as well!

Roasted Butternut Chipotle Soup | cookeatbehealthy.com

My next to last recipe in this series as for another soup…this one featuring my favorite fall vegetable… butternut squash!  I’ve made this recipe for years and love it for its flavor profile that includes sweet, savory, and spicy.  And unlike many butternut soup recipes, this one has some ‘chew’ to it!  Read on to see what I mean about this Roasted Butternut Chipotle Soup!

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

And finally, last but certainly not least, is perhaps my favorite recipe of the entire Cashew Cream Recipe Series…Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte!  There aren’t enough “yum” words to describe how wonderful this is…that is if you love chocolate and coffee like I do!  The fact that a dessert like this can be made dairy, sugar, and gluten free thrills me!  I hope you serve it at your next dinner party, or perhaps take it to your family Thanksgiving celebration.  You’ll be the MVP of desserts with this winner!

Once again, thank you for reading!  Please remember to pin and bookmark the recipes that appeal to you, and if you would, direct your friends to my blog as well…sharing is caring! 😉

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Every once in a while I get super excited about something I’ve concocted in the kitchen, and this amazingly delicious Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte is one of those times!  This is also the final post in my Cashew Cream Recipe Series, and to be honest, I’m kind of sad about that!  I’ve had so much fun coming up with new and unique ways to use cashew cream that I kind of hate to see it end.  But like Chaucer said…”All good things must come to an end.”  

I’m so happy with the way this torte turned out.  The crust…oh my goodness…the crust is to die for!  I’ve always preferred a nice thick crust on bars, cakes, and tortes, so I made sure this one was extra thick, a little chewy, a little crunchy, a little sweet, and a little salty.  Basically it’s a perfect crust and you’re going to love it as much as I do!  But of course, a torte is not a torte without something luscious to top off that perfect crust!  This filling is so good you guys!  People who know me, know how much I love chocolate and how much I LOVE coffee, so that classic flavor combo was a no-brainer for this fantastic dessert!

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

I know you’re wondering how something this gorgeous can possibly adhere to my CEBH Guidelines – and I understand your skepticism!  But this is exactly what gets me so pumped up about cashew cream!  Before I switched up the way we eat I would never have imagined that some ground up nuts and a few other simple ingredients could result in a dessert this luscious and decadent!  The best part though – you could totally serve this to guests and they’d never in a million years guess it was a “healthy” dessert!  

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Dont get me wrong – there are still calories here!  And it’s not something you should eat everyday.  But for the occasional special treat – this would be perfect!  And for those of you who require dairy-free, sugar-free, and/or gluten-free desserts, or for those of you who only eat raw – then this is the perfect recipe!  The crust is made of walnuts, pecans, and almonds – all of which lend to its crunchy texture, while the dates lend a chewy sweetness which is enhanced with a dash of almond extract.  The filling is made of cahsews, maple syrup, organic cacao, a little instant espresso powder, another splash of almond extract, and just for fun – a handful of chocolate covered espresso beans!

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte |cookeatbehealthy.com

To make the crust, process the nuts, dates, almond extract, and espresso powder until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Then press the crust mixture into a springform pan lightly greased with coconut oil.

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Flatten and smooth it down into the pan so it’s level and well compacted.

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Then pop it into the freezer to set up while you make the filling.  I used the food processor since it was already dirty from making the crust (remember…I’m lazy), but you’ll get a smoother filling using a high power blender like a Vitamix!  Add the soaked and drained cashews, maple syrup, almond extract, cacao, and espresso powder and blend until smooth and creamy. Stir in espresso beans by hand, then pour filling into the prepared crust.  

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Cover loosely with plastic and return to the freezer to set up for several hours, or preferably, overnight.  Remove from freezer about 20 minutes before serving.  Remove springform ring, cut into 12 slices and serve as desired.

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte | cookeatbehealthy.com

Raw Chocolate Espresso Torte
Serves 12
Chocolate with just a hint of coffee in a velvety cashew cream filling, and nuts and dates that combine to make a delectable crust are the perfect union in this raw vegan torte!
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Prep Time
45 min
Prep Time
45 min
422 calories
42 g
0 g
28 g
8 g
4 g
99 g
7 g
28 g
0 g
23 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
99g
Servings
12
Amount Per Serving
Calories 422
Calories from Fat 234
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 28g
43%
Saturated Fat 4g
18%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 9g
Monounsaturated Fat 14g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 7mg
0%
Total Carbohydrates 42g
14%
Dietary Fiber 5g
20%
Sugars 28g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
9%
Iron
14%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the crust
  1. 2 cups (about 20) pitted Medjool dates
  2. 1 cup pecans
  3. 1 cup walnuts
  4. 1 cup almonds
  5. 1 tsp espresso powder
  6. 1 scant tsp almond extract
  7. 3 tsp water - if needed
For the filling
  1. 2 cups raw cashews, soaked in water at least 3 hours or up to 12, then drained
  2. 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  3. 1/3 cup organic cacao
  4. 2 tsp espresso powder
  5. 1/2 tsp almond extract
  6. 1/4 cup chocolate covered espresso beans ~ optional
Instructions
  1. Very lightly grease a 9" or 10" springform pan with a thin layer of coconut oil.
For the crust
  1. In a large food processor bowl combine dates, nuts, 1 tsp espresso powder, and scant tsp almond extract.
  2. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. If the crust is too dry, add water, 1 tsp at a time, until you're able to form a ball that holds together when squeezed in your hand.
  4. Press crust into prepared springform pan, smoothing the surface and packing it tightly together in the pan.
  5. Place the pan in the freezer while preparing the filling.
For the filling
  1. In the pitcher of a high speed blender-like a Vitamix or Ninja-place the soaked and drained cashews, maple syrup, cacao, 1/2 tsp almond extract, and 2 tsp espresso powder.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. Stir in espresso beans by hand and pour the mixture into the pan with the chilled crust. Spread evenly.
  4. Cover the pan with plastic and freeze several hours, or overnight, until the filling is completely set.
  5. Remove from freezer about 20 minutes before serving to facilitate cutting.
  6. Remove outer pan ring and cut torte into 12 pieces.
  7. Serve as desired.
  8. Store leftovers in the freezer.
Notes
  1. The food processor can be used to make the filling, but you won't get as smooth a consistency as you will with a blender.
beta
calories
422
fat
28g
protein
8g
carbs
42g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
I hope you’ve found at least one or two recipes in this Cashew Cream series that you like and want to try.  I’d love to hear from you if you do…let me know what you think! 👍

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

These bars were a special treat for my husband!  When it comes right down to it, he’s a meat & potatoes kind of guy!  Thankfully he’s also very tolerant and encouraging of my culinary adventures…and let’s just say some of them will never see the pages of my blog! 😉  And thankfully he’s also not extremely picky, so for the most part he eats what I prepare without much comment one way or another.  Unless I try serving peas…then I get some grumbling from him!  So while it’s nice that he doesn’t complain, it’s also a little frustrating that he’s rarely complimentary as well.  But the good thing about that is that when he does ooh and ahh, and takes a second serving, and actually comments on how good something I’ve made is…then I know I’ve hit the nail on the head!  And that’s what happened when he tried these bars!  Of course he had a big ol’ scoop (or 3) of ice cream with his!  If you’re an ice cream eater he highly recommends you do the same! Personally I opt for enjoying one of these with a cup of coffee or tea, and I highly recommend that as well!

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

I used to make a bar similar to this a few years ago, but there’s absolutely no way that old recipe was going to work into my CEBH Lifestyle!  It had butter, flour, sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, brown sugar, even toffee bits in the recipe.  Sooo…wow….that’s a hard recipe to try to “healthify”!  I kept the oats from the original recipe, but pretty much everything else went out the window and I started from scratch!  I managed to nix the flour, refined sugar, and dairy, yet still turn out what we thought was a super delicious dessert that satisfied our sweet tooth without feeling like we’d sacrificed anything – most certainly not flavor!  Because these are not only chewy, but also gooey and delicious!!!

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Yet here’s the thing…if you take out butter, and sweetened condensed milk, and sugar…something’s gotta go back in!  The crust is made from oats, cashew butter, eggs, maple syrup, applesauce, coconut oil, vanilla, and a little baking soda.  The gooey chocolate layer is made from more of our cashew cream, cacao, vanilla, maple syrup, and the secret ingredient – espresso powder – which really serves only to enhance the chocolate flavor of these bars!

Tip: Making your own nut butter is a simple process, though you’ll need a high speed blender like a Vitamix or a Ninja, and a fair amount of patience!  For cashew butter: Put 2 cups of lightly roasted (unsalted if you can get them) cashews in the blender and turn it on low until the nuts are ground into very small pieces, then gradually increase the speed, stopping to scrape the sides as necessary.  Continue blending on medium high to high speed about 10 more minutes, until nut butter is smooth and creamy.  It may be rather melty and hot by the time this is achieved.  At this point you’ll want to taste it and add salt as desired.  Transfer it to a jar and store it in the fridge.  Voila!  You’ve just made homemade cashew butter!  And the best part is – you can do this with almonds or peanuts too!  

For the chewy oat layer I ground 1 cup of the oats in the blender until it resembled coarse flour, then combined it with all the rest of the oat layer ingredients.  Press 2/3 of the mixture into a greased 11″ x 7″ baking dish, reserving the other 1/3 for the topping.  The bottom layer of the oat bars then gets baked 10 minutes while preparing the chocolate layer.  

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

The cashew cream in this recipe is prepared slightly differently than in our previous recipes.  For these bars, the cashew cream must be smooth and creamy, but not too thin.  To start, I added the organic cacao, vanilla, espresso powder, and maple syrup to the soaked and drained cashews.  Then I blended it all on high, adding water 1 tbsp at a time until the chocolate filling is smooth and creamy and has a consistency similar to pudding.

Once the bottom oat layer has baked 10 minutes, remove it from the oven, carefully spread on the chocolate cashew cream layer, evenly distribute the remaining 1/3 oat mixture over the chocolate layer, and return it to the oven to bake an additional 20-25 minutes.

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

When the Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars come out of the oven they’ll look wonderful, and they’ll smell wonderful, and you’ll have to force yourself to be patient once again while they cool.  First cool them to room temperature, then store them in the refrigerator.  Ours have been in the fridge for a week and they’re still good as the day they were baked!  

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars | cookeatbehealthy.com

Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars
Serves 24
Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars....'nuff said!
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Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
25 min
Cook Time
35 min
Total Time
1 hr
255 calories
29 g
16 g
13 g
8 g
5 g
74 g
35 g
6 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
74g
Servings
24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 255
Calories from Fat 111
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 5g
23%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 16mg
5%
Sodium 35mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 29g
10%
Dietary Fiber 3g
13%
Sugars 6g
Protein 8g
Vitamin A
0%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
3%
Iron
12%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the Oat Mixture
  1. 4 cups whole oats, divided
  2. 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  3. 1 cup cashew butter ~ substitute peanut or almond butter if preferred
  4. 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  5. 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  6. 1/3 cup coconut oil
  7. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  8. 1 1/2 tsp baking sofa
  9. 1/4 tsp salt
For the Chocolate Layer
  1. 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in water at least 2-3 hours, then drained
  2. 1/3 cup cacao powder
  3. 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 1 tsp instant espresso powder
  6. Water as needed
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Lightly grease an 11" x 7" baking dish and set aside.
  3. Grind 1 cup of oats in blender until they resemble coarse flour.
  4. In a large mixing bowl add ground oats, whole oats, eggs, cashew butter, applesauce, 1/3 cup maple syrup, coconut oil, 1 tsp vanilla, baking soda, and 1/4 tsp salt, and stir to combine.
  5. Press 2/3 of the oat mixture into prepared baking dish and set the remaining 1/3 aside.
  6. Place baking dish in preheated oven and bake 10 minutes, then remove from the oven.
  7. Meanwhile, in a blender, combine raw cashews, cacao, 1/3 cup maple syrup, 1 tsp vanilla, and espresso powder.
  8. Blend on high, stopping to scrape the sides as needed, and adding water 1 tbsp at a time until the chocolate mixture resembles the consistency of pudding.
  9. Carefully spread chocolate over pre-baked oat layer, then evenly distribute remaining 1/3 of oat mixture over the chocolate layer and return to the oven.
  10. Bake an additional 20-25 minutes, watching closely the last 5 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.
  11. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before cutting into 24 pieces.
Notes
  1. Store covered, in refrigerator. Bars stay fresh for at least 7 days.
beta
calories
255
fat
13g
protein
8g
carbs
29g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
I hope you’re able to try these Chewy Chocolate Oat Bars soon – I think they’d be a perfect dessert for a potluck!  And really – chocolate and oats – is there anyone who doesn’t like those?!?  Do you have a favorite “healthified” dessert recipe?  I’d love to see it – share the link in the comments!

 

 

 

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

As I write this the weather is starting to feel a bit more fall-like.  And by the time it publishes it will officially be fall.  That means most people will be in full pumpkin spice mode…lattes, cookies, muffins, ice cream, cheesecake, candles, room freshener, potpourri…it’s pumpkin spice overkill if you ask me!  I’m much more likely to usher in fall with a trip to an apple orchard than a pumpkin patch, or with a new recipe for something healthy and delicious featuring my fall favorite….butternut squash!

Butternut Squash | cookeatbehealthy.comI’d like to take a minute to appreciate this perfect little squash…and to the woman at the grocery store who does not share my affinity for perfect produce…I apologize if I freaked you out with my enthusiasm for this little cutie!  😉

So…back to business.  Today I’m sharing a recipe that continues our Cashew Cream Recipe Series, but also one that is perfect for fall because of the flavors and ingredients featured in these Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream!  Butternut squash is one of my favorite foods because of it’s flavor, obviously, but also because of it’s versatility!  It’s equally delicious as an ingredient in a savory dish as it is a sweet one.  So while many people are celebrating the arrival of fall with a PSL from Starbucks, I’m celebrating by creating these simple and tasty fritters with another fall favorite – butternut squash!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

 

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

These fritters are so easy to make because you don’t even have to pre-cook the squash!  The ingredients for the fritters are cooked quinoa, raw shredded butternut squash, eggs, garlic, shallots, salt & pepper, panko, and fresh sage, with a little coconut oil for frying.  The cashew cream sauce includes cashews, prepared horseradish, fresh sage, and salt & pepper. All in all it’s a pretty humble list of ingredients that yields fantastic fritters!

Sage is one of those herbs that I don’t use a lot, but whenever I do, I wonder why I don’t use it more! Sage has a very earthy and peppery flavor and it pairs perfectly with the butternut in these fritters. Plus the health benefits of sage are quite impressive. It helps keep skin healthy, improves digestion, it’s rich in antioxidants, helps in growth and development of bones, boosts cognitive development and the immune system, and helps to reduce inflammation and overall health! As for the horseradish – I think it’s a love it or hate it thing, and I happen to LOVE it! It’s got several health benefits as well including that it can aid in weight loss, help prevent cancer, and boost the immune system – just to name a few. So the combination of sage and horseradish is not only delicious, but incredibly healthful as well! I love learning about the health benefits of different foods and herbs that I use…it makes me feel even better about living the CEBH Lifestyle!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

And if you think the sage and horseradish are packed with health benefits…just wait til I tell you about the rest of the ingredients!  Butternut squash helps prevent high blood pressure, promotes regularity, improves eyesight, keeps bones strong, boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation, and aids in weight loss!  Quinoa is one of the most protein dense foods we can eat, it’s high in fiber, rich in iron, lysine, magnesium, riboflavin, and manganese.  Coconut oil can help you burn fat, helps prevent infections, reduces hunger, improves cholesterol levels, acts as a natural sunscreen, and boosts brain function.  WOW!!!  Everybody to the kitchen…STAT….it’s time to make some Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream!

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Tip: Peeling the squash is easily accomplished with a regular vegetable peeler.  If you find it’s difficult to hold onto, rest the bottom of the squash in the sink drain while you’re peeling!  After the squash is peeled, cut it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, and then shred it.  I used my food processor, but you could certainly get the job done with a box grater as well…and you’d get an arm workout at the same time! 😉

Bonus Tip: This recipe calls for 2 cups cooked quinoa which is easily made by combining 1 cup uncooked quinoa with about two cups water, bringing it to a boil, then covering the pan, reducing the heat to low, and simmering approximately 15 minutes – or until all the water is absorbed.  Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.  For this recipe I make the quinoa earlier in the day and refrigerate it until I’m ready to make the fritters.

Making these little gems is super simple!  Once the butternut is shredded and the quinoa cooked, all the fritter ingredients are mixed together and the fritters are pan-fried in just a smidgen of refined coconut oil until they’re golden and crispy, then set on a paper towel to drain any excess oil!  The horseradish & sage cashew cream can be made while the quinoa is cooking, or, preferably it can be made a day ahead and stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve the fritters.

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters | cookeatbehealthy.com

Butternut & Quinoa Fritters with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream
Serves 10
Freshly shredded butternut squash and quinoa lend a real taste of autumn to these light and tasty fritters served with horseradish and sage cashew cream.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
246 calories
33 g
74 g
8 g
10 g
2 g
77 g
194 g
1 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
77g
Servings
10
Amount Per Serving
Calories 246
Calories from Fat 73
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8g
13%
Saturated Fat 2g
10%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 74mg
25%
Sodium 194mg
8%
Total Carbohydrates 33g
11%
Dietary Fiber 4g
14%
Sugars 1g
Protein 10g
Vitamin A
3%
Vitamin C
2%
Calcium
7%
Iron
17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the fritters
  1. 1 small butternut squash, peeled and shredded
  2. 2 cups cooked quinoa
  3. 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  4. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 1 medium shallot, minced
  6. 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  7. Salt and pepper to taste
  8. Chiffonade of 5-6 fresh sage leaves
  9. 3-4 tbsp refined coconut oil for frying
For the cashew cream
  1. 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in water for at least 2-3 hours, then drained
  2. 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh sage leaves
  3. 2 tbsp prepared horseradish (more or less to taste)
  4. 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
  5. Filtered water as needed to reach desired sauce consistency
For the fritters
  1. Combine everything except the coconut oil and mix well.
  2. In a non-stick pan, melt 1 tbsp coconut oil over medium heat. When oil is hot and shimmering pack a portion of fritter mixture into an ice cream scoop, gently release into hot oil, and flatten slightly.
  3. Fry fitters in batches, being careful not to crowd the pan. I cooked 4 at a time.
  4. After 3-5 minutes, when the bottom side is golden brown, turn carefully and continue cooking the flip side another 3-5 minutes until it's golden brown.
  5. Remove from pan and drain on clean paper towel.
  6. Continue cooking in this manner, adding small amounts of coconut oil to your pan as needed, until all the fritters are completed.
  7. Serve immediately with Horseradish & Sage Cashew Cream Sauce.
For the cashew cream
  1. In a blender or food processor combine drained cashews, sage, salt and pepper, and 1 tbsp horseradish. Blend on medium speed, adding water a tablespoon at a time until the sauce smooths and is almost the desired consistency.
  2. Stop the blender and taste the sauce. Add more horseradish if desired, and water if needed, then continue blending until smooth and creamy. (I really like horseradish so I used about 4 tbsp total)
  3. Store sauce in refrigerator until ready to serve fritters.
Notes
  1. I found a regular sized ice cream scoop was exactly the right portion size for these fritters.
  2. You might consider making the horseradish and sage cashew cream a day in advance as it keeps well in the refrigerator, and the flavors develop over the course of 24 hours.
  3. Leftover quinoa would be perfect for this recipe - plan ahead and that's one less ingredient to prepare the day you make the fritters!
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calories
246
fat
8g
protein
10g
carbs
33g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Just today my friend and I were fantasizing about winning the lottery and paying off houses, cars, and college tuition bills so we could retire, travel, and live the “good life”.  But she was right when she prefaced all that with good health – because without that, we couldn’t enjoy all the riches our lives have to offer!  So here’s to Cooking, Eating, and Being Healthy, while enjoying every single morsel of food we put in our mouths, in order to live as rich a life as possible!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

Hands up if tomato soup takes you back to your childhood!  It sure does for me!  I remember coming home from school for lunch (yep – we lived that close) and being thrilled to walk in the back door and find grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup on the table!  There is something undeniably comforting about that warm bowl of tomato goodness that I’ve never outgrown.  What I have outgrown however, is any sort of desire to eat soup from a can!  And as it happens – I really like to make soup.  In fact, I’d say it’s one of my favorite things to make – and to eat!  While I tend to make more soups in the winter, I still enjoy stirring up a pot of soup other times of the year as well!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

Fall recently started, and I thought this would be a good time to whip together a Roasted Tomato Bisque with some of those end of season tomatoes I’ve been spying at the last few farmers markets.  Unfortunately our city is suffering some devestating near-record flooding and this weekend’s market was cancelled.  I feel horrible for everyone affected by this disaster.  Personally our home is unaffected, as is my business location, but the pain is felt by everyone, as we all know someone affected by the flooding.  On the flip-side, our community has come together once more and worked to build levies, donate emergency supplies to those evacuated from their homes, and prayed – there’s been a lot of praying going on here!  Anyway…no market meant improvising by using store bought tomatoes instead of garden fresh, but by roasting them the flavor is naturally enhanced and the soup turned out fantastic!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

I cringe a little when I think back to the tomato soup I grew up eating.  Sorry Mom!  But that gloppy, blobby, yukky, (all technical culinary terms – at least for me 😉) odd colored soup from a can is pretty gross!  And of all the junk they add to canned soup, there’s one very important ingredient they forgot…the FLAVOR!!!!  Store bought canned soup simply does not compare to the healthfulness and flavor of homemade!  Plus making soup is so simple!  Pretty much anything goes, so it’s perfect for picky eaters (sneak in those veggies)!  It’s perfect for health conscious folks like me because by making my own soup I’m in control of the ingredients, i.e. NO ARTIFICIAL CRAP!  Soup is perfect for warming bellies, hands, and hearts on the coldest of days.  For all those reasons and more soup is one of my favorite foods…it’s like a hug in a bowl.  Or in a mug – yeah – soup is a hug in a mug – that’s my new motto! 😉

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

So for today’s soup I used Roma tomatoes, an orange and green bell pepper, Vidalia onion, garlic, organic tomato juice, olive oil, salt & pepper, a little basil, and to give it that final creaminess – cashew cream.  Its meals like this when I really, really, really, wish I could still eat more than the occasional nibble of cheese, because this soup would be fantastic with a delicious gooey grilled cheese sandwich!  I’ll be the first to admit that as delicious as tomato soup is all on its own, something savory and crispy just seems to enhance that wonderful tomato flavor.  So since I nixed the sandwich idea, I thought I’d try a savory granola to sprinkle on top.  And it is fantabulous!  I don’t know why I didn’t think of this a long time ago!  I combined oats, sunflower seeds, pepitas, white and black sesame seeds, olive oil, and some seasonings – tossed it all together – and toasted it in the oven for 25 minutes.  It’s savory, salty, spicy, crucnchy – just perfect to top off a warm bowl of Roasted Tomato Bisque!

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

So I started off by making the savory oatmeal crunch with which I garnished the soup.  It was super simple – I placed the oats and seeds in a gallon bag, dumped in the seasonings, olive oil, and worcestershire sauce – gave it all a good shake to evenly coat all the ingredients, poured it all in a baking pan and stuck it in the oven for about 25 minutes.  I stirred it once halfway through the baking time, removed it when it was done, and set it aside to cool.

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

While the oatmeal crunch was baking I prepped the tomatoes, onion, peppers, and garlic for roasting.  Because this is a blended soup, the vegetables don’t need to be perfectly chopped!  I halved the tomatoes, and rough chopped the peppers and onions, then tossed them with some extra virgin olive oil and spread them on a baking sheet.  I also sprinkled them with a little salt and pepper.  

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

The roasted garlic is such a delicious component of this recipe.  I love – like LOVE – garlic, but sometimes it can overwhelm a dish because of it’s strong pungent flavor.  But roasting it…you guys…it’s like garlic candy!  Sweet and aromatic, and so much more mellow than unroasted garlic.  And it couldn’t be easier to make, especially since we’re already roasting the rest of the veggies.  To oven roast garlic, cut the top about 1/4 off an entire bulb.  Drizzle it with olive oil, wrap it securely (I use 2 layers) in aluminum foil, and roast it in the oven for 30-40 minutes.  Which just happens to be exactly how long the tomatoes, onions, and peppers need to roast to slightly caramelize! 😉

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

After the vegetables are roasted, pour them into a large stock pot, and set the garlic aside to cool a bit.  I use a much larger pot than really necessary simply because I’ll be using an immersion blender and I feel like it’s a bit safer if I’ve got a larger pan –  I’m less like to splatter hot liquid all over myself that way!  To the pot of roasted vegetables, I add the tomato juice and bring it all to a simmer.  While the soup simmers, carefully unwrap the roasted garlic, and when it’s cool enough to handle, gently squeeze from the bottom of the bulb and the roasted cloves will pop right out!  Add the garlic to the soup pot, remove the pan from the heat and blend it with an immersion blender.  If you don’t have one – and I highly recommend you purchase one if you don’t – the soup can be very carefully transferred in small batches to a regular blender and blended that way.  Please just exercise extreme caution if you use this method.  Once the soup is blended, return it to low heat, add the basil and cashew cream, and heat thoroughly.

Ladle the soup into bowls, top it with some of the delicious savory oatmeal crunch, serve it along with some bread – or a classic grilled cheese sandwich, and enjoy your amazingly delectable dairy-free, 100% vegan, Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch!!!  Warm your belly (and the bellies of those you love) ~ and warm your heart at the same time! ❤️

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch | cookeatbehealthy.com

Roasted Tomato Bisque with Savory Oatmeal Crunch
Serves 8
This dairy-free tomato soup will warm your heart as it warms the bellies of your loved ones!
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Prep Time
1 hr
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
Prep Time
1 hr
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr 15 min
515 calories
49 g
0 g
32 g
14 g
5 g
497 g
179 g
17 g
0 g
26 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
497g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 515
Calories from Fat 277
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 32g
50%
Saturated Fat 5g
27%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 7g
Monounsaturated Fat 19g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 179mg
7%
Total Carbohydrates 49g
16%
Dietary Fiber 9g
34%
Sugars 17g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
60%
Vitamin C
153%
Calcium
13%
Iron
32%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the soup
  1. 2.5 pounds of fresh tomatoes, halved or quartered, depending on size
  2. 2 bulbs garlic, tops cut off
  3. 2 medium sweet onions, cut into chunks
  4. 2 bell peppers, cut into 12-16 large pieces
  5. 1 container - 46 ounces - organic tomato juice
  6. Salt and pepper
  7. 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  8. 1 tbsp frozen (or fresh if available) chopped basil
  9. 2 cups cashew cream ~ see the link in post
For the Savory Oatmeal Crunch
  1. 1 cup whole oats
  2. 1/4 cup unsalted roasted pepitas
  3. 1/4 cup unsalted roasted sunflower seeds
  4. 2 tbsp white sesame seeds
  5. 2 tbsp black sesame seeds
  6. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  7. 2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  8. 1/4 tsp each salt and ground black pepper
  9. 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  10. 1 tsp chili powder
  11. 1/4 tsp cayenne
For the Savory Oatmeal Crunch
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. In a gallon size food storage bag, combine oats, seeds, seasonings, oil, and sauce.
  3. Shake to coat completely.
  4. Pour into a small baking dish and toast in pre-heated oven for 25 minutes, stirring halfway through the baking time.
  5. Remove from oven to cool. Store in covered container.
For the soup
  1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Toss the cut up tomatoes, onions, and peppers with 2 tbsp of olive oil and transfer to a large baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Prepare garlic for roasting by placing on a square of foil and drizzling with a generous amount of olive oil. Wrap tightly in foil, then add a second layer of foil and wrap that securely as well.
  4. Place on baking sheet with vegetables, and roast for 35-40 minutes, or until vegetables are starting to caramelize and the garlic yields to pressure when squeezed with an oven mitt.
  5. Remove pan from oven, set garlic aside to cool, and pour vegetables into a large stock pot, set over medium heat.
  6. Add tomato juice and bring to a simmer, but not quite boiling.
  7. Once garlic is cool enough to handle, remove from foil and squeeze bulbs from the bottom to remove roasted cloves and add them to the simmering soup.
  8. Remove the pan from the heat, and using an immersion blender, blend the soup until it's completely smooth and no pieces remain.
  9. Return to heat and bring back to a simmer.
  10. Add basil and cashew cream, stirring well to incorporate.
  11. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as desired.
  12. Serve piping hot with a sprinkle of savory oatmeal crunch.
Notes
  1. Soup may be blended in small batches in a standard blender, but extreme caution must be exercised to avoid being burned!
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calories
515
fat
32g
protein
14g
carbs
49g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/
Do you have a favorite childhood memory associated with a particular food?  I’d love to hear about it – share your story in a comment!

Spaghetti Squash with Creamy Mushroom & Garlic Sauce

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic | cookeatbehealthy.com

Here we are on #5 of the CEBH Cashew Cream Recipe Series…time flies when you’re having fun!  And I am having so much fun coming up with new and interesting ways to use my new culinary secret weapon – cashew cream!  Today I’m sharing a recipe that is simple and rustic, yet so incredibly flavorful, and still special enough to serve to guests.

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic | cookeatbehealthy.com

I may as well start with a confession – I’m in love with spaghetti squash!  I discovered this amazing vegetable about 30 years ago when my son was a toddler – a typical kid who preferred not to eat vegetables, and then only if they were drowning in cheese sauce!  😕  But the day I brought home a spaghetti squash was a turning point.  And boy oh boy – did we ever eat a lot of it the first few months after I discovered he liked it!  Of course, he ate his fair share of cheese-sauce drenched spaghetti squash, but he also ate it with marinara sauce and even just with butter, garlic, salt, and pepper!  I think part of the appeal was that I’d let him help “turn it into noodles”!  Kids love to help in the kitchen, and even at 3 1/2 years old he could easily help shred the squash once it was cool enough to handle!

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

The sauce is what makes this dish so rich and delicious!  It’s loaded with garlic and mushrooms, plenty of salt and pepper, seasoned to perfection with a generous amount of thyme, and of course, finished with delectable cashew cream to give it the creaminess you might expect from a decadent cream and butter laden Béchamel sauce.  When I say it’s loaded with garlic I mean it’s got some….loaded to me would be probably twice what I used in this recipe, but some people (my husband) prefer it when I use at least a modicum of garlic self control!  Nevertheless, the garlic really shines through and pairs so perfectly with the thyme!

Cashew Cream | cookeatbehealthy.com

I wish I could share some special secret for selecting the best spaghetti squash at the market, but honestly, I have never gotten a bad one!  As with all produce I obviously try to select squash with no obvious bruises or soft spots, but mostly what I consider most is the size!  Typically I buy what I’d consider a medium squash (about football sized), this yields 4-6 cups of cooked squash which is enough as a side dish for 4, plus a little leftover for the next day!  Of course only you can judge how much you’ll need to feed your crew, but for this recipe I used a medium sized squash and 24 ounces of cremini mushrooms to yield a generous 6 servings!

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic | cookeatbehealthy.com

Tip: To prepare the spaghetti squash, cut it in half lengthwise and remove the seeds.  Place the halves cut side down in a roasting pan large enough to accommodate them.  Add about 1″ of water to the bottom of the pan, pierce the outer shell of the squash a few times with a sharp knife, then place in a 375 degree oven.  Check for doneness after about 30 minutes and continue baking, checking every 5 minutes until done.  Squash is done when a sharp knife glides through the outer shell.  Remove from oven and carefully transfer to a working surface to cool.  When cool enough to handle, shred the inner flesh with a fork until it resembles spaghetti noodles.

To prepare the sauce, simply clean and slice the mushrooms, garlic, and shallot.  Then sauté them in a large skillet over medium heat until they are softened and the liquids produced by the mushrooms have mostly cooked away.  After that it’s a simple matter of adding the cashew cream, salt, pepper, and a generous amount of thyme, stirring it all together and warming it through, then pouring it over the cooked and shredded spaghetti squash.

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

Sautéed Mushrooms | cookeatbehealthy.com

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce |cookeatbehealthy.com

Spaghetti Squash Creamy Mushroom Garlic Sauce | cookeatbehealthy.com

This is a dish that is rustic but yet classy at the same time!  I served it to family, but wouldn’t hesitate to serve it to guests!  And for me – it qualifies as comfort food!  It’s rich and meaty from the mushrooms, sauce, and seasonings, yet light and very healthy thanks to the spaghetti squash!  It’s a meal in itself for me, but for my family I paired it with some grilled chicken and a side salad.  We all enjoyed in immensely, as I hope you do too!

Spaghetti Squash with Creamy Mushroom & Garlic Sauce
Serves 8
A delicious and rustic side dish, or vegan main dish, that's pure comfort food - yet sophisticated enough to serve guests!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
1 hr
55 calories
4 g
0 g
4 g
3 g
1 g
93 g
24 g
2 g
0 g
3 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
93g
Servings
8
Amount Per Serving
Calories 55
Calories from Fat 33
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
6%
Saturated Fat 1g
3%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 24mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 4g
1%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 2g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
9%
Calcium
2%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 medium to large spaghetti squash
  2. 24 ounces baby bella mushrooms
  3. 8 cloves fresh garlic
  4. 1 medium shallot
  5. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. 4-6 tbsp fresh thyme
  8. 1 recipe cashew cream (link in body of post)
For the Squash
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Place cut side down in roasting pan with an inch of water in the bottom.
  3. Pierce the squash a few times with a sharp knife, then bake 30-45 minutes, checking for doneness after the first 30 minutes. Squash is done when a sharp knife easily glides through the outer shell.
  4. When done, remove from oven and carefully transfer baked squash to a work surface until cool enough to handle. Once cool, scrape the squash flesh with a fork until it resembles spaghetti noodles.
  5. Place in serving bowl and set aside.
For the Sauce
  1. After placing squash in the oven begin prepping sauce ingredients by slicing the mushrooms and garlic, and dicing the shallot.
  2. Drizzle a large skillet with olive oil and place over medium heat.
  3. Sauté shallot and garlic for just a minute or two until fragrant and slightly translucent.
  4. Add mushrooms and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until liquid from mushrooms is evaporated and mushrooms are tender.
  5. Stir in cashew cream and thyme and heat through.
  6. Adjust seasoning to taste by adding salt and pepper as desired.
  7. Pour warm sauce over shredded spaghetti sauce and serve piping hot!
Notes
  1. I recommend using at least 6 tbsp of fresh thyme, but adjust the amount you use to suit your preferences.
  2. This recipe easily serves 6-8 depending on the size of the squash and whether it's being served as a side or main dish.
  3. Refrigerate leftovers.
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calories
55
fat
4g
protein
3g
carbs
4g
more
Cook Eat Be Healthy http://cookeatbehealthy.com/