Curb Your Sweet Tooth

6-12 servings
45 min

Let's face it - we all have a sweet tooth and sometimes it's hard to control. We long for chocolate and caramel, coconut and peanut butter but most of the time, it's found in snacks that aren't too healthy.

Well hold on to your hats...here are three healthy-alternative recipes, with only 5-6 ingredients, that will satisfy that sweet tooth.

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Caramels

These soft and chewy bites of heaven have a little surprise - see below

Peanut Butter Chocolate Granola Clusters

These granola clusters are crunchy, munchy snack on the go or on top of yogurt.

Chocolate Coconut Pecan Granola Clusters

How can you go wrong with granola? These recipes only take half an hour to make, FIVE INGREDIENTS, and you make it yourself so you know what goes into it.

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Caramels are not made with sugar- packed caramel. Instead, dates provide the chewy center. Dates are high in fiber, antioxidants and benefit brain and bone health. They also help in digestion to reduce the risk of disease.

To add to the flavor punch, almond butter is added. This also gives the date center a bit of thickness.

Sea salt is added for the very popular "salty/sweet" flavor.

These are a great treat that you can share with you friends. When they bite in and make that yummy sound (you know the one) only you know they're eating a healthier alternative to candy.

But be a good friend and give them the recipe.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Granola Clusters - really all granola - start with rolled oats. Rolled oats hold their shape and give you more oat bang for your buck where quick cook are finer and rolled thinner.

Peanut butter and maple syrup add the sweetness without a lot of sugar. The coconut oil adds fat to keep the clusters together.

Walnuts add a nice crunch. They are rich in Omega-3, antioxidants and improve brain and heart health. Must I justify the chocolate? I live in Hershey, PA so no, I don't have to justify.

On top of yogurt for breakfast or lunch or just a handful at 3 o'clock, these clusters are a healthier alternative to pre-packaged snacks.

The Chocolate Coconut Pecan Granola Clusters have a rich chocolate taste without the sugar or calories.

The sweetness comes from maple syrup and a bit of brown sugar.

While the pecan pieces add a nuttiness and a nice crunch.

Let's not forget about the coconut. The shredded coconut gives your mouth a bit of a chewy texture and the coconut oil holds it all together.

These little clusters are a great grab and go snack - much healthier than candy or chips. Best of all, you know what's inside.

Recipe details
  • 6-12  servings
  • Prep time: 15 Minutes Cook time: 30 Minutes Total time: 45 min
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Ingredients
Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Caramels
  • 1 cup Medjool dates, packed
  • 3 Tbsp almond butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dark chocolate
  • coarse sea salt for topping
Peanut Butter Chocolate Granola Clusters
  • 3 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
Chocolate Coconut Pecan Granola Clusters
  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup pecans chopped
  • 2 Tablespoon light brown sugar packed
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup liquid coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Instructions
Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Caramels
Remove the pits from the Medjool dates.
Soak dates in hot water for 15 minutes. Once soaked, drain the water and squeeze out any excess moisture from the dates using a paper towel.
Place the dates into a food processor. Process until the dates are smooth and clumping together.
Add almond butter and vanilla extract and process until smooth and creamy.
Once combined, scoop out the caramel mixture and place it on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
Place the baking sheet into the freezer and allow it to chill.
Melt the chocolate in the microwave following instructions on the package. Gently stir.
Remove the caramels from the freezer and dip each one into the chocolate, making sure to coat the entire caramel. Allow to dry on a rack set onto the parchment lined baking tray.
Sprinkle with sea salt.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Granola Clusters
Preheat oven to 350° F.
In a large bowl, combine the oats and nuts.
In a small saucepan over low to medium-low heat, stir together the peanut butter, maple syrup, and coconut oil. Heat only until melted.
Pour the oat mixture onto a parchment lined baking sheet.
Pour melted peanut butter mixture over oats.
Using a rubber spatula, stir the mixture until everything is well coated and incorporated.
Flatten and press the granola down into a tight rectangle. The key here is to press everything together as much as you can, almost like a giant granola bar.
Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Rotate the tray and bake for 12 to 15 minutes more.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
Sprinkle with the chocolate chunks and allow granola to cool.
Once cooled, break into clusters. 
Chocolate Coconut Pecan Granola Clusters
Preheat the oven to 350° F.
In a large bowl, combine the rolled oats, shredded coconut, pecan pieces, cocoa powder, and brown sugar. Stir to combine.
In a small bowl, whisk together the liquid coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.
Pour the oat mixture onto a parchment lined baking sheet.
Pour the liquid ingredients over the oat mixture, and stir together until everything is coated and well incorporated.
With a rubber spatula, flatten and press the granola down into a tight rectangle. The key here is to press everything together as much as you can, almost like a giant granola bar.
Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Rotate the pan, and bake for approximately 15 more minutes.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once cooled, break into clusters.
Tips
  • All of the treats will stay fresh for about 5 to 7 days in an air-tight container.
Alicia W
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Comments
  • CC CC on Feb 27, 2022

    What can you substitute for coconut oil?

  • Janice Janice on Feb 28, 2022

    It sounds interesting and doesn’t seem too labor intensive but it has A LOT of calories. 1359 kcal per serving.

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