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Sort of Paleo Makeover: Vegan Power Bites from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy
Sort of Paleo Makeover: Vegan Power Bites from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy

For me, time doesn’t usually fly. A day typically takes, well, a day. But, apparently, with cookbooks as with growing children, the days may be slow, but the years? Much less slow! So if I tell you it was well over a year ago that we did a sneak peek of the Vegan Protein Bites from page 31 of my new cookbook, GF Shoestring Quick & Easy, it might sound like Crazy Talk! But it’s the real deal. And not only are we talking about those again, but since it’s right on the heels of all kinds of my well-documented Wheat-Belly curiosity, we’re making them Wheat-Belly-friendly this time.

Since I’m knee-deep in blanched almond flour at this point, it totally made sense to me to makeover the Vegan Protein Bites from page 31 of the new cookbook into a grain-free wonder (refined sugar free, too!). This way, if a caveman happened to be wandering by, he might think me wise. I’m not sure he had smooth no-stir almond butter, or a small, heavy-bottom saucepan, but he also most likely wore a loin cloth, at best. So, you know.

Even in the bodies of my fast-growing children, these mighty little power bites are filling. Let’s put it this way: a snack for each of my children of just two of these in between Sunday brunch and dinner yesterday saved my very life. They may have been calling me “Mom,” but in their hungry eyes, my legs were drumsticks, my arms wings.

I haven’t decided which version I like better – grain-free like these, or with gluten-free oats like on page 31. Either way, give at least one version a try before another year flies by – and we’re all eating GF Rye-Free Rye Bread and Pumpernickel-Style Bagels from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread!

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 24 bites

1 1/2 cups (168 g) raw cashews, chopped

3/4 cup (84 g) raw almonds, chopped

1/2 cup (60 g) raw pepitas, chopped

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (126 g) blanched almond flour

4 ounces dried cranberries, blueberries or golden raisins (or a blend)

3/4 cup (200 g) no-stir smooth almond butter (such as Barney Butter Almond Butter Smooth)

4 tablespoons (84 g) honey

2/3 cup almond milk, or other creamy, nondairy milk

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set it aside.

  • Place the chopped cashews, chopped almonds, chopped pepitas, almond flour and dried berries in a large bowl and mix to combine well. In a small saucepan, place the almond butter, honey and milk, and cook, stirring frequently, over medium-low heat until the nut butter and honey are melted and the milk has begun to simmer and the mixture to thicken, about 3 minutes. Pour the nut butter mixture over the dry ingredients, and mix well. The mixture will be very thick.

  • Divide the dough into twenty-four pieces, roll each into a ball and then flatten into a disk. Place about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheet. Bake the protein bites in the center of the oven until they are firm and just beginning to brown on the bottom, about 10 minutes.

  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the baking sheet. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve. They will last about 5 days in the refrigerator without drying out. They can also be frozen.

  • Adapted from the book Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Quick and Easy: 100 Recipes For the Food You Love—Fast! by Nicole Hunn. Excerpted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group.  Copyright (c) 2012.



P.S. If you haven’t yet, please pick up a copy of  Quick & Easy! You’ll find the original recipe for these Vegan Protein Bites on page 31, and I can’t keep the blog going without your support!

  • Jennica

    These sound amazing, Nicole!  I have gone grain free after not experiencing relief from being gluten free alone, and I am finally starting to feel “normal” again.  I will definitely be trying these as soon as I get to the store for more almond butter!

    • gfshoestring

      Excellent, Jennica!
      xoxo Nicole

  • Jennifer S.

    These do sound amazing – lots of protein and fat for our growing kids… yea!

    Love the name of the new book. I do not know how I will possibly make it to December of this year without your new bread book! ugh!

    • gfshoestring

      Oh, you’re going to love the Rye-Free Rye Bread that I posted a picture of on Facebook, Jennifer. Just you wait. :) Yes – these protein bites are perfect for growing kids! They really keep them going, and I haven’t a hint of guilt in feeding them these!
      xoxo Nicole

  • Donia

    Oh, I am definitely going to make these!  I have every single ingredient!  And thanks so much for using moo-free milk.  My lower-GI tract thanks you.  (TMI?)  Sorry, it’s the less glamorous (?) side of food intolerances.

    • gfshoestring

      Please, Donia! Your lower-GI is, frankly, the subtext to every post on a gluten-free blog such as mine. :)
      xoxo Nicole

  • http://celiackiddo.wordpress.com/ Dana Schwartz

    Have I thanked you properly for introducing me to nuts.com? Sure I heard of them (you’d really have to be living in a cave not to), but your schmelio recipes inspired me to finally go there and I loooove it! Almond flour, dates, cashews oh my! I’m totally making these asap.

    Question about your recent wheat belly friendly choco chip cookies. I don’t have navy bean flour… Yet. Any sub ideas, grain free or not? I have pretty much every other flour except that currently :) just trying to save a few bucks but I understand if you think navy bean is the only way to go.

    Thanks again!

  • Kelly

    Do you think Sunbutter would work in place of the almond butter?

    • gfshoestring

      I do, Kelly! I bet that would work just fine, especially if you substitute by weight, not volume.
      xoxo Nicole

  • Susan

    hi nicole, i had never heard of wheat belly before you wrote about it recently. thanks for that and making this recipe wheat belly friendly.
    question-do you know how much protien there is in each bite. and you don’t put any nutrition facts on your recipes do you or anyone know how to figure out nutritrion facts for a recipe?
    thanks susan

    • gfshoestring

      I don’t provide nutrition fact information, Susan, but I understand that is pretty easy to find nutrition calculators on the Internet.
      xoxo Nicole

  • gfshoestring

    Why, you’re very welcome, Dana! Schmelio is something I can get on board with, as you know. That’s about as far as I’ll go…
    Honestly, I’m afraid the only sub I know of for the navy bean flour … would be garbanzo bean flour. And we both know that’s not acceptable. The reason I decided to use navy bean flour is because Mr. Wheat Belly likes to bake with garbanzo bean flour because it is low in net carbs and high in protein. Navy bean flour from Mrs. Glee’s has a very similar nutritional profile. I’ve got a few more must-make recipes that will make use of the navy bean flour, though, so I think it’ll be worth it. :)
    xoxo Nicole

  • donna

    they sound great…is honey vegan? i don’t really care for myself but i know vegans who say it is not and will not use it…a shame tho because it is such a wonderful natural healthful product…can’t wait to make these

    • gfshoestring

      Honey is not vegan, Donna. good point. In the cookbook, the recipe doesn’t call for honey, primarily (but rather as an alternate to another liquid sweetener I specify).
      xoxo Nicole

  • Judy

    Waiting patiently for Bread cookbook. My husband *loves* your Brown Bread, but it overflows that pan 2 out of 3 times that I’ve made it. Do I let it rise too long? (30 min in a microwave with a cup of hot water – my favorite way or “rising” bread)

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