Here are some great healthy treats which we should be feeding our kids, and ourselves. Halloween does not have to mean lots of sugar, artificial colours, and nasty preservatives – making your own is  fun, creative and satisfying, while you also get to spend quality time with your kids in the process. 

PUMPKIN MUFFINS

Ingredients

2 cups wholewheat flour
1/2 cup raw coconut palm sugar
1 tsp each baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon
1/2 tsp each nutmeg, all-spice
pinch of salt
8oz puree pumpkin
1/2 cup water
1/2 unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

 

Directions

1. Mix together all dry ingredients
2. Add pumpkin, water, applesauce and stir until just mixed.
3. Fold in pecan or other nuts – if using
4. Bake in preheated oven, 350 degrees for 25-30 mins

 

SPICED PUMPKIN RAISON COOKIES

Ingredients

1 cup wholewheat flour
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
2/3 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp all-spice
pinch of salt
1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup puree pumpkin
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup raisins

 

Directions

1. In a medium bowl mix all dry ingredients
2. In a second bowl whisk pumpkin puree, coconut oil, applesauce and vanilla
3. Fold the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture; stir in the raisins.
4. Drop a ball of batter onto a greased baking tray (use knob of butter or coconut oil).
5. Flatten to cookie shape
6. Bake for 17 – 20 minutes in 350 degree heated oven

FYI, further to a recent post on making healthy substitutions when baking..the cookie recipe called for:
* 3/4 cup raw sugar; here we use 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
* 1/3 cup vegetable oil; here we use raw coconut oil
* 2 tbsp maple syrup (more sweetener?); here we use 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

With the natural sweetness from the raisins, apple sauce and spices, there is certainly no need for all the sweeteners the original recipe called for..

 

Nutrition Notes

Pumpkin are part of the winter squash family, closely related to butternut, acorn and other squash. With their rich orange colour, they are high in carotenes (from vitamin A) making them an effective antioxidant supporting skin and eye health. Pumpkin are also high in vitamin C, fiber and a good source of minerals including manganese and potassium. With their natural sweet flavour, pumpkins are great in a sweet as well as savory dishes, including, cakes, sweet sauces and desserts.

Oats have a high mineral content, particularly in manganese and phosphorous, and they are also high in fibre and vitamin B1. Oats do contain small levels of gluten due to cross-contamination, but gluten-free oats are readily available. Oats are specifically known to help reduce cholesterol, and also to help stablilize blood sugar levels. Oats are a great satisfying start to the day, and form the base of healthy cookies and cakes, along with replacing breadcrumbs in savory dishes.

Cinnamon adds a natural sweetness to baked goods and dishes, but also aids in controlling blood-sugar levels. It is therefore a great spice to add to many dishes if you’ve a sweet tooth, or if at risk of type 2 diabetes. This warming spice is high in manganese with helps in lowering cholesterol, and cinnamon is also report to give our brain cells a boost!

Liza Rowan

Holistic Nutritionist

When not not busy in my favourite role as mother to my two boys,  I dedicate my time to educate, motivate and inspire us all to lead healthier, happier lives. This involves hosting Nutrition courses (in-class and online), corporate wellness talks, workshops and when I have time, private consultations.

 You can follow me on one or more of the following channels:

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