Who loves chocolate? Raise your hand. Yep, that’s what I thought…everyone!
Chocolate is great, and once in a while a nice piece of dark chocolate or Giddy YoYo is a special treat, but on Valentine’s Day we can all get carried away and forget that one little piece does not make a whole box..
I’ve found some healthy alternatives to the heart-filled box of empty calories that will make you and your sweetheart happy without bouncing off the walls from the overload of sugar.
- Make it yourself. Everyone loves a home cooked meal, the kind that you sometimes reserve for the weekend because you just don’t have the time during the week. Luckily Valentine’s Day this year falls on Saturday, so if you’re tired you’ll have Sunday to recover. Make a salad to start with lots of healthy veggies, maybe even adding some fruit for sweetness. A lean, grilled protein and a side of oven-roasted sweet potato, asparagus, zucchini and eggplant will definitely be sure to melt your partner’s heart.
- Go for the gold. Golden yellow pineapple is an amazing treat. It’s sweet and satisfying and can make a beautiful dessert. Buy a whole pineapple, wash it and slice it in 2 lengthwise then carefully cut out the flesh and cube it. Put some of the fruit back into each shell and toss in some raspberries, strawberries and blueberries for a great antioxidant and there you have yourself an easy and delicious dessert that you both can share.
- Think outside the box. Yes, it’s nice to receive a pretty red heart shaped box of sweets, but what about the day after, when you’ve come down from your sugar high, you feel crappy and guilty and you know that there was a better way to go. Well here it is. If you feel like you really need a treat to celebrate the day, then go ahead and make these sweet and tart squares below and box them up with a ribbon and give them as a gift to yourself or your better half! Your waistline will thank you.
Raspberry Oat Squares
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 cups spelt flour
1 tsp aluminum free baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
2 tbsp unsweetened apple sauce
1 egg (or 1 tbsp ground flax or chia soaked in ¼ cup water for 5 minutes)
1/2 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
1 tbsp organic cornstarch
- Preheat oven to 425o F. and grease a 10” square pan.
- Blend oats, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, yogurt, milk, apple sauce and egg. Toss raspberries with cornstarch and stir in.
- Spread into pan and bake 10-15 minutes or until fully set.
- Cut into squares, approx. 2×2 inches.
1 square is 1 serving