To me, it just wouldn’t be the holidays without a little holiday baking. And when I say a little, I mean a whole lot. My list of yearly “must have” holiday treats grows a little bit longer every year. Of course, every member of the family has a different favorite treat, so just making sure they all get their favorite means I spend a lot of time in the kitchen each December. I don’t mind one bit because baking is my number one stress reliever.
The one drawback of holiday baking is that it involves a lot of not so great for your waistline ingredients. Sometimes its just too much and I need a fun treat that isn’t going to make me feel guilty. Enter my guilt-free candy cane truffles. These are gluten-free, vegan and they cut way back on the refined sugar. In fact, if candy canes aren’t really your thing, you could roll them in crushed peanuts, tree nuts or cocoa powder and you would cut out the refined sugar completely. I like the little peppermint kick though, so I’ll be sticking with the candy canes.
Our family is divided over these truffles; We either love them or we hate them. Hate is probably too strong of a word… David said, “they’re ok” which, in David speak, means he’ll eat them, but he’d prefer a more traditional sugar laden sweet. My younger son and I don’t have much of a sweet tooth and we are big dark chocolate fans, so these are totally our jam. The rest of the family, like David, prefers their holiday treats with a whole bunch of refined sugar.
Guilt Free Candy Cane Truffles
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 6 Tablespoons maple syrup
- ¼ cup virgin coconut oil
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 candy canes, crushed
- Place candy canes into a large Ziploc, or similar, bag and, using a rolling pin, crush the candy canes into tiny pieces (the smaller the better). Place in a small bowl and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, combine cocoa powder, maple syrup, coconut oil, sea salt and vanilla extract and mix until combined. The mixture will be very sticky.
- Using your hands, roll the mixture into teaspoon sized balls and then roll through the crushed candy canes.
- Place on wax paper and refrigerate until ready to serve.