Feel Good Fudge

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There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to enjoying eating in a healthier way. Many people claim they don’t have the time to eat well, or it’s difficult to do so when you’re eating out, or that simply, it just doesn’t taste as good. I think the best way of winning people over is showing them that you can actually still eat well with tasty and delicious food and one of the best ways (in my opinion) is with dessert!

This fudge came about when I had some leftover chickpeas. They are the magic ingredient in this dessert. I didn’t want to make something savoury with them and I thought if I blended them with some cashews and added in some cacao it could wind up being a simple and quick sweet tooth fix. After leaving the fudge to sit in the freezer for a couple hours, you have a healthy decadent dessert, all of which takes you no time to prepare with only six ingredients. This recipe gives you protein, fibre, and healthy fats that help to balance hormones and manage sugar cravings in a healthier way. And they are ingredients that you’ll feel far better in consuming and are kinder to your body than the usual refined and processed sugars that make up the conventional fudge.

You can change this up to suit what you like by adding some raw cacao nibs, chopped dark chocolate, or chopped nuts. Just mix it in at the end before you pop it in the freezer. This will not only take away a chocolate craving, it will fill you up before you get the chance to finish the whole pan!


1 ¼ cups chickpeas

¼ cup cashews, soaked (4 hours minimum or overnight)

4 heaped tbsp. coconut oil

¼ cup maple syrup

1 tsp. vanilla

4 tbsp. raw cacao

Optional: 1 tsp. maca, raw cacao nibs


  1. Blend chickpeas and cashews in a food processor until combined.
  1. Add the rest of the ingredients, except for the raw cacao, and blend until smooth. Add the raw cacao and blend again until the whole mix comes together.
  1. Add to a parchment lined baking tray and pop in the freezer until firm, usually a couple of hours.
  1. Remove from the freezer, pop out of the tray, cut into squares and enjoy!

holistic vitae, Steph Matthews, fudge, chocolate, raw cacao, cacao, hormones, stress relief, organic, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, healthy, vegan, raw, raw vegan, dessert, sugar free, refined sugar free, healthy food, holistic nutrition, deliciously ella, madeleine shaw, get the glow, yoga girl, nutrition, health, holistic, healthy living, fresh, plant based, plant power, whole foods, Huffington Post


Hazelnut Pecan Nut Butter Balls

Hazelnut Pecan Nut Butter Balls, Peanut Butter Balls, dessert, Valentine's Day, gluten free, dairy free, sugar free

These are a healthy, nutritious version of a much-loved family favourite recipe I’ve been having ever since I can remember. Peanut Butter Balls are the original favourite and for every time we’ve had a holiday, they’ve always been the first to go. I get requests to make them all the time by my family in the UK and while they have always been delicious, they are made with an unhealthy amount of icing sugar. I wanted to make a healthy version but equally delicious and what a better time of year than now for Valentine’s Day?

These are made with homemade nut butter (I chose to make a hazelnut pecan blend) over peanut butter. They actually make these nut butter balls taste a bit more like a healthy Ferrero Rocher! As peanuts are quite prone to mold and contamination, I tend to favour other nuts over them. Of course, if you really love peanut butter, substitute that. Make it yourself with organic peanuts or buy a high quality peanut butter. Whichever you choose will taste great with chocolate.

Instead of using icing sugar to sweeten and make up the bulk of these I have made my own version using coconut sugar. You can simply add coconut sugar to a food processor and blend well until very fine. I keep a small quantity of this available to use in place of icing sugar if needed. For the most part I’ll use sweeteners such as maple syrup, honey, dates, etc. Feel free to use more maple syrup in these instead of coconut icing sugar if you like. I’d start with two tablespoons as it also acts as a thickener.

And if you haven’t made your own chocolate, you don’t know what you’re missing! Raw chocolate is phenomenal and you don’t ever have to feel guilty about it because the real stuff is pretty good for you. The combination of both the nut butter and chocolate is amazing and I guarantee you will love these. These make approximately 18-20 nut butter balls. So you can make some for your husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, someone special, and keep some behind for yourself!



1 cup hazelnut-pecan nut butter (or other nut butter of your choice)

3 tbsp coconut icing sugar

2 tbsp coconut flour

1 tbsp maple syrup

½ cup puffed brown rice (I used Rude Health’s; you can use some organic rice krispies)

Raw Chocolate:

½ cup cocoa butter

2 tbsp maple syrup (honey, date syrup)

½ tsp vanilla extract

pinch of sea salt

3 ½ tbsp raw cacao


Add the nut butter, coconut icing sugar, coconut flour, and maple syrup to a medium sized bowl and mix until combined. Add in the puffed brown rice. Set aside in the fridge for about 20 minutes to firm up. When you’re ready, take the mixture from the fridge, make ½ tablespoon balls, and set on a lined baking tray. You can then pop these back in the fridge for a couple of hours, or just pop them in the freezer for another 20-30 minutes.

While the balls are setting in the fridge/freezer, make the raw chocolate. Add the cocoa butter to a double boiler on a low simmer to melt. Add in the maple syrup, vanilla, and sea salt. When all is combined and melted, take it off the heat and whisk in the raw cacao. Allow this to stand to the side for 10-15 minutes so it’s not too hot when you dip the nut butter balls.

When you’re ready to dip the balls, remove from the fridge/freezer and dip them into the chocolate with a dessertspoon until completely covered, then let them set on a lined baking tray.

You can let these set in the fridge and then dip them again if you have some chocolate leftover. Dish them up on a pretty plate to serve or box them up as a lovely gift for someone to enjoy. Spread the love of chocolate with those around you and have a Happy Valentine’s Day! x

Dairy Free Cacao Coffee

Wake Me Up, Dairy Free, Sugar Free, Raw Cacao, Coffee, The Best Morning Drink

This is my current favorite morning drink that is easy to change up to suit your needs: you can make it without coffee and make a delicious hot cocoa instead, or use different milks, and make it as sweet as you like.

This is what I add to mine:

1 shot of coffee

1 mug-full of homemade almond milk

1 heaped tsp raw cacao (or high quality cocoa powder)

1 tsp coconut oil

Optional: ½ -1 tsp maca powder, ½ tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp maple syrup (or date syrup, honey, coconut sugar; to taste)


1. Take the mug you’re going to drink from and fill it with your chosen milk leaving a bit of space at the top for frothed milk.

2. Add to a saucepan and gently heat on a low simmer.

3. Add your coffee and coconut oil until melted. When your milk reaches desired temperature, remove from heat and using a hand blender, froth the milk. At the same time, add in the rest of your ingredients.

Ingredients such as raw cacao and honey have nutritional properties that can be diminished with high heat so it’s best to add these last to retain their benefits.

4. Pour into your mug, top with sprinkled cacao and/or cinnamon and enjoy.