Try these healthy treats for a guilt-free holiday season

- Just when you think you're finally getting your weight and healthy eating under control -- boom! It's the holiday season and food is everywhere.

Holistic nutritionist Risa Groux created some healthy holiday treats for us on Good Day LA to help you have a guilt-free holiday season.

Check out the recipes below!

Quinoa Brittle

Ingredients:
~1/2 cup uncooked organic quinoa
~ ¾ cup pecans, chopped
~1/4 cup gluten free rolled oats
~ 2 tablespoons chia seeds
~2 tablespoons coconut sugar
~2 tablespoons coconut oil
~1/2 cup maple syrup
~pinch of sea salt

Directions:
~Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line a baking sheet thoroughly with parchment paper.  Add quinoa, pecans, oats, chia seeds, coconut sugar and salt to a mixing bowl and combine well.  
~In a small saucepan, add coconut oil and maple syrup.  Over medium-low heat, warm for about 2-3 minutes stirring occasionally until well combined and no visible separation.  
~Pour liquid over dry ingredients and stir to thoroughly combine and coat.  Arrange on parchment lined baking sheet and spread into an even layer with a metal spoon.  It’s important to make sure it’s even to avoid burning.
~Bake for 15 minutes then turn the pan around to ensure even browning.  Bake 5-10 minutes more and watch to make sure there is no burning. It’s done when the brittle is a deep golden brown all over and fragrant.  The edges may appear to be getting too brown, they’re just getting crisp and caramelized.
~Let cool completely then break into pieces with a knife or by hand.  It will stay fresh in room temperature or in the freezer for a month.    

Optional:  Can substitute pecans for almonds, walnuts, or cashews. 

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Cups

Ingredients:
~12 oz. dark chocolate chips (1 ½ cups) 
~¾ cup coconut butter, melted
~3 teaspoons peppermint extract 

Directions: 
~Line a 24-count mini muffin tin with liners and set aside.  Melt chocolate in a double broiler on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until smooth.  
~Using approximately 50-60% the melted chocolate, fill each liner bottom with 1/3rd chocolate and ensure that all sides are covered.  Refrigerate for 5-10 minutes. 
~If needed, melt the coconut butter until creamy by placing the glass jar in boiling water.  Place melted coconut butter in a small bowl, add peppermint extract and mix thoroughly.  
~Remove tin from refrigerator and fill cups another 1/3rd.   Keep extra coconut butter mixture.  Refrigerate and if needed, reheat chocolate until smooth and easy to stir.   Remove tin from refrigerator and if the coconut mixture has caved in, fill in holes with extra coconut mixture until leveled.  Refrigerate until hard.  
~With remaining melted chocolate, fill remaining 1/3rd until all coconut mixture is covered with chocolate.  
~Refrigerate 5-10 minutes.  Garnish with a mint leave, peppermint candy crumbles, or sea salt

Makes 24 mini cups.  Keep refrigerated for longer freshness.  

Gingerbread Blondies

Ingredients:
~1/2 cup organic almond butter
~1/3 cup coconut sugar
~2 tablespoons coconut oil, solid
~2 eggs, room temperature
~1/4 cup molasses
~2 teaspoons vanilla extract
~ 3/4 cup almond flour
~1 tablespoon cinnamon
~1 teaspoon baking powder
~1teaspoon ginger
~1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
~1/4 teaspoon cloves
~1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt

Ingredients:
~Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8×8” square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together almond butter, coconut sugar and coconut oil until smooth.  Add eggs, molasses, and vanilla extract and mix on medium speed to combine.
~In a large bowl, whisk together almond flour, cinnamon, baking powder, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt.  Add dry ingredients to bowl of wet ingredients and stir until completely combined.
~Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes, or until center is set    and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only moist crumbs.  Let cool in pan for 15 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Cut into squares or bars.  

Spiced Nuts

Ingredients:
~1/2 lb. roasted unsalted almonds
~1/2 lb. roasted unsalted cashews
~2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
~ 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil, melted 
~1 1/2 teaspoons Celtic sea salt
~1/4 to ½ teaspoons cayenne pepper 
~1/4 to ½ teaspoons cumin 
~1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
Optional: 2 teaspoons coconut sugar or Monk fruit

Directions:
~Preheat oven to 350. Spread the nuts and pumpkin seeds out on a sheet pan. Toast in the oven until warm, about 5 min. In a large bowl, combine rosemary, coconut oil, sea salt, sugar (if using), cayenne, and cumin. Thoroughly toss the warm nuts with the spiced rosemary mixture and serve warm. 

Optional: You can always add or change out different nuts and seeds, just keep the total nut quantities to 1 pound. You can also change seasoning if desired. 
 

Watch the full video above!

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