Friday FAQs: Toddler-friendly snack ideas, naturally sweetened vegan chocolate, and more!

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This week found me testing a bunch of tasty new recipes, like one-pot lentil stew and a vegan milk chocolate, as well as an allergy-friendly revamp of an old favourite—my Chia Power Doughnuts with a grain-free twist (sadly, these got off to a shaky start as I forgot baking powder in the first two trials…whoops!). I’ll be sure to share any successes that I have in the near future. By the way, do you have any Valentine’s Day recipe requests? I’d love to hear them while I’m brainstorming a few ideas next week. 

Q1. I’m trying to cut out all refined sugars. The only sweeteners I want to use are raw honey and maple syrup. Do you have any recipes for homemade milk chocolates that can be sweetened naturally? 

A. Hey Darlene, My Crazy Good Coconut Oil “Chocolate” Bark is really good and sweetened with maple syrup. It’s not a “milk” chocolate, though you could try adding some soy or coconut milk powder for a similar version. I’ve been testing some milk chocolate recipes and will be sure to share if I make one I love!

Q2. Hi! I am in love with your 8-Minute Pantry Dal: Two Ways and it’s on regular rotation in our house. I’m starting to think about Passover, which for many does not permit any beans, lentils, chickpeas, soy etc. Do you think I could make this without the lentils? 

A. Hey Andrea, I think my Pantry Dal can definitely be made lentil-less with a bit of adjustment! I’d suggest reducing the broth (since the lentils won’t be soaking it up as they cook), and adding another veggie—maybe cauliflower rice to thicken the dal in place of lentils.

Q3. Hi Angela, I saw on Insta Stories that you posted an updated version of your Whole-Grain Carrot Cake Loaf with a healthier lemon glaze to your recipe app. Is there any chance you can post this updated recipe in a blog post too? 

A. Hey Rebecca, I’d be happy to! You can now find my updated version above the original recipe (with an updated photo to boot). I’d love to hear what you think if you try it. Happy baking. :)

 Q4. I am having trouble finding white spelt flour. Where do you get it, is there an online source? 

A. Hey Dale, It can have a couple different names from what I’ve seen. I’ve seen it called “all-purpose spelt flour” as well as “light” or “white” spelt flour. Yes, you can buy it online from various sites. I buy a Canadian brand called Oak Manor from a grocery store called Organic Garage. If you’re thinking about making my Whole-Grain Carrot Cake Loaf, you’ll find the recipe works wonderfully using whole-grain spelt flour (which is a bit easier to find) instead. In a pinch, another option might be to sift whole-grain spelt flour with a sifter to refine its texture.
 

Q5. Can I freeze your All-Purpose Vegan Cheese Sauce

A. Hi Karin, You can freeze it, although I find the texture changes slightly when thawing (the cheese sauce gets a tad bit grainy). But the taste is pretty much the same! 

Q6. I’m needing help with toddler snack ideas. My daughter is 14 months and doesn’t have many teeth. She loves banana bread and almond butter, she’ll also drink smoothies, but she’s become picky with veggies. Any suggestions?

A. Hey Christal, I’d love to help out! Here are some ideas:

Veggie options:
Carrot Cake Smoothie (blog)
– Pumpkin Pie Smoothie Bowl (OSG App)
New Year Glow Smoothie Bowl (blog/App)
Classic Green Monster (blog/The Oh She Glows Cookbook)
Roasted Carrot and Dill Hummus with thin crackers or rice crackers (blog/App)
– Blend cooked veggies into traditional hummus (minus the garlic), and spread on whole grain toast or crackers (The Oh She Glows Cookbook/Oh She Glows Every Day)
Heavenly Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal, cooled in fridge and cut into squares or cubes for finger food (blog/App)

Nut/seed/grain options:
– Vanilla Superseed Granola (Oh She Glows Every Day), pulsed once or twice in processor, soaked in chosen milk to soften or served stirred into chosen yogurt
Chia Pudding Parfait, minus granola (blog, and both cookbooks have chia pudding recipes too)
– Coconut and Chia Seed Pudding, finely chop the fruit (Oh She Glows Every Day)
PB & J Thumbprint Breakfast Cookies, made thinly (blog/App/Oh She Glows Every Day)
– Whole Grain Toast with almond Butter or sunflower seed butter and/or Berry Chia Seed Jam (blog/App/recipe options in both cookbooks)
– Healthy Kiddo Cookies (App only)
Whole-Grain Carrot Cake Loaf (blog/App)
Vegan Banana Bread, which you can top with nut or seed butters or chia jam (blog/App)

The above recipes all include make-ahead options so you can prepare the full recipe and freeze or refrigerate for quick and easy snacks.

Another fast idea is to top thinly sliced banana rounds with a drop of almond butter and some shredded coconut. Finally, as baby ages and can chew more, you can take advantage of the kid-friendly label in Oh She Glows Every Day as well as the kid-friendly recipe search filter in the Oh She Glows App (iOS/Android). A special thanks to Nicole, OSG’s recipe tester, for all the great ideas!

“Thank you so much, your work is so funny and creative, and…delicious!!!! My girlfriend is a HUGE fan of your food, and since all your books—and your App—are like the Holy Bible in our kitchen, I had the pleasure to meet your culinary art more than often. But it’s the first time, though, that I will try a recipe of your site on my own (shame on me and my boring comfort food!!!), since I am the house hummus maker. Thanks to you again, your food make my taste buds buzz everyday!!! David, from la province de Québec :)”

David I love your comment…thanks for the smile! Okay I’m a bit nervous now…your first OSG recipe…well, I hope it lives up to your expectations! Eek. Haha. I’d love to hear how it goes. And that’s so amazing you and your girlfriend have enjoyed so many recipes…I’m really flattered!

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Petra January 27, 2018

Lol did you know that dal means lentils? Lentil-less dal is a misnomer. It’s just a vegetable dish then.

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2 Angela (Oh She Glows) January 27, 2018

haha yes I do :)

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3 Lynn Trevisan January 27, 2018

I have been tweaking the chia seed donut recipe too – it is my go-to breakfast. We double the recipe but use only the single 1/3c maple syrup and add an extra 1/3c water. I have also started adding about 1/3-1/2 cup almond flour and reducing the chia by about half that amount. I tend to eat two at a time and was finding it was just too much chia. The almond flour (from dehydrated almond milk pulp) does tend to suck up the moisture so need to add more water again. The batch fills two donut silicone molds nicely. And my kids like them with 6 choc. chips. pushed into the top of each donut :). Will be interested to try the grain-free version!

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4 Angela (Oh She Glows) January 27, 2018

Hey Lynn, Oh I love your tweaks!! I’ve found it’s pretty forgiving too (even with my grain-free versions where I forgot the baking powder!). I too think the sweetener can be reduced so I’m playing around with that too. And a double batch is always a good idea as they can be frozen as well (not that 12 really lasts that long anyway heh).

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5 Ruthe January 29, 2018

Hey Angela,
In case you looking for ideas for a future FAQ (ha! I’m sure u get lots of questions)…
Been wondering how to use the end of the almond butter jars, the part that’s a bit hard. Any suggestions?
Thanks!

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6 Angela (Oh She Glows) January 29, 2018

Hey Ruthe, I usually just eat chip away at it with a spoon…lol! Or toss it into a smoothie. :)

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7 Jen January 30, 2018

I’ve really been enjoying the Friday FAQs and have a non-food related question for you that I’ve been wondering about…probably since your daughter was born, haha. How is Sketchy? Last I remember he had cancer, but one I thought had a high cure rate. That was a long time ago! I hope he’s still around!

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8 Angela (Oh She Glows) January 30, 2018

Hey Jen, So glad you’re enjoying the series again! And thank you for thinking of Sketchie!! Sadly, he passed away from his cancer a few years ago. :( He had a great life, but we miss him dearly!

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9 Jen January 31, 2018

Ooh! I’m so sorry to hear that (and for misspelling his name)! I completely missed that he passed away. He was such a gorgeous cat. 💙

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10 Angela (Oh She Glows) February 1, 2018

Oh my goodness don’t worry one bit! I really appreciate your thoughtfulness. :)

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11 Stephanie February 1, 2018

Another toddler snack idea is to mix puréed fruit and veggies with yogurt (I use whole milk yogurt but I’m sure a vegan yogurt would work as well) and drip/drizzle it on a baking sheet that’s oiled or lined with a silicone baking mat. Then freeze for a few hours and transfer the drops to a jar to keep in the freezer. My toddler of the same age loves these.

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12 Angela (Oh She Glows) February 2, 2018

What a GREAT idea!! Thanks Stephanie! I’ll be trying this…especially as Arlo is cutting teeth.

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13 Emily February 7, 2018

Stephanie – thanks for the idea about the snack idea for toddlers. I think my teether will love these. Just wondering if you have flavour suggestions or combinations that you have tried.

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14 Stephanie February 10, 2018

She likes apple/kale/avocado and also blueberry/banana! Also banana and avocado are yummy together but I haven’t tried that combo as a yogurt drop yet.

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15 Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2018

Thanks Stephanie!

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16 Mich February 4, 2018

I just tried your Chia Power Donut for the first time today and I love, love, love them! I was searching through your website hoping you had made variations of it when I ran into this post and re-read it. I’m new to baking and am not very comfortable deviating from recipes just yet so I eagerly await any re-vamped version you end up having for these. Might I suggest a chocolate version for Valentines Day? 😊

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17 Angela (Oh She Glows) February 5, 2018

Hey Mich, So happy to hear that! Thank you. I don’t have any other versions posted, but I will keep working on them! :)

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18 Laurie L. February 9, 2018

Hello! Great toddler snack ideas!
That said, they’re all sweet, except of the hummus recipies. Can you create some ideas for savoury snacks?

I have a two year old who is clearly a vegan foodie. I give him snack/afternoon tea at 4 PM and once a week try to provide a savoury snack.
Daiya cream cheeze in very small celery sticks has been a hit.

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19 Angela (Oh She Glows) February 10, 2018

Absolutely, thanks for the suggestion Laurie! Our go-to’s are pretty basic…crackers and veggies with hummus or nut butter, but I need to get more creative with them so this is a good challenge.

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