Raw Food Dinner Party Ideas to Entertain Guests With

One of the questions I get asked all the time is what do you do when you have guests over? Especially if your guests are not raw or even aware that you’re into eating more raw food.

Well there’s a simple way to deal with that. It’s all about making food that most people would recognize, except instead of buying it in a can or a box you make it yourself.

With that in mind, I’d love to share with you a recipe that is a huge hit with both raw and non-raw friends and family.

My Wicked Guacamole Recipe

Press Play to Watch Wicked Guacamole Video

Most people will thank you for serving up such a fresh wholesome snack. With the rampant access to unhealthy snacks, everyone is working hard to make healthy choices. You’re actually making it easy for them to eat right!

If you’re really worried that people will want something that’s not raw – you can pair this guacamole recipe with some organic corn chips or some raw crackers.

The dinner itself can be a more traditional dinner with some cooked options. But you can rest easy knowing that you’ve plied your guests with more than their recommended dose of veggies for the day!

More Raw Snack Recipes Coming Your Way…

On the guacamole video page you’ll notice a sign up box to get more recipes. Once you’re on that list you’ll get access to my upcoming free recipe book.

So go ahead, get on the goodies list – and let’s make some delicious snacks for ourselves!

Love, Nathalie

Raw Pate Recipe with Collard Wraps

Collard wraps and raw pate are some of the most delicious, familiar, and easy to make raw recipes out there.

Raw Pate Recipe with Collard Wrap
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Raw Pate & Collard Wrap Video


(If you can’t see the embedded video, click here.)

Indian-Inspired Raw Pate Ingredients

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3-4 soaked sundried tomatoes
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of cumin
  • Pinch of curry
  • A few drops of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Place all of these ingredients in a high speed blender (Vitamix or Blendtec) or a food processor and process until it forms a pate consistency. I don’t recommend you use a regular blender, because it won’t be able to process the ingredients properly and may overheat.

I love this pate because it’s got an Indian feel to it, but it uses the simplest and most easily available vegetables as a base.

Now you can use this pate to top your salads, make wraps, or with raw crackers.

How to Use A Raw Pate For Collard Wraps

To make a collard wrap all you need are a few large collard leaves. Collards are great because they are dark leafy greens with tons of nutrients and fiber. They’re also sturdy and easy to wrap into a delicious burrito-like meal!

The first step is to wash your collard leaves. Next cut off the protruding end of the stem.

Place the leaves face down and use a knife to slice off the extra tough middle rib. This will allow for the collard leaves to fold more easily when you wrap them up.

Turn the leaves over, with the darker side facing down. Take 2 or more leaves and overlap them.

Spread some of the raw pate in a horizontal line on the leaves. Then add any other fillings you’d like: marinated mushrooms, sprouts, shredded vegetables, etc.

To prepare the wrap, fold in the two sides, then roll up the edge nearest you. Keep rolling and tuck in the sides as you make each roll. Watch the video to see this in action!

Get Creative!

Try this pate or invent your own! The beauty of raw food is that you can pretty much always invent a new raw recipe based on what you’ve got in the fridge. Play around with the spices and ingredients and come up with a new family favorite.

Give the collard wrap idea a go, and see how easy it is to make wraps out of super healthy ingredients!

Let me know how it goes and what recipes you come up with in the comments below! :)

Love, Nathalie

Raw Christmas Dessert Recipe: Meet The Raw Snowman

Raw Vegan Christmas Recipes
Snowy the Raw Vegan Snowman

It’s a snowy winter holiday, and what’s a raw vegan gal to do? Make fun snow-people out of all raw ingredients of course!

This is a super simple, delicious, and fun activity that you can enjoy with your whole family. Once you get the hang of making snow men, you can also make snow families, and even venture out into making raw gingerbread houses.

This is also a great dessert to bring to events, just be sure to find a humane way of cutting our little snow friend.

Raw Snowman Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup cashews
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 6-10 dates
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes

For decorations…

  • Grape stems for the arms
  • Pumpkin seeds for the eyes (substitute as necessary)
  • Goji berry for the nose
  • Chia seeds for the mouth
  • Mung (green) beans for the buttons
  • Extra sprinkles of coconut flakes for extra fun
  • Cinnamon stick to hold as a prop

How to Make this Raw Holiday Recipe

    How to make raw cashew flour
  1. Place dry cashews into a food processor, magic bullet, or high speed blender (like a vitamix) and process until it looks like flour. Or is finely chopped. It doesn’t need to be perfect here. Remove from food processor and set aside in a mixing bowl.
  2. In the same food processor, or blender add the lemon juice, the dates, and a few sprinkles of coconut flakes. (This is to help the machine process properly, and so that it doesn’t spin with all the food under the blade.)
  3. Put the lemon-date mixture into the cashew flour and mix together with a spoon. At this point you should have something that resembles dough.
  4. Take a handful of dough and roll into a ball. Repeat for a total of three balls.
  5. Take each ball and roll it in some extra coconut flakes to add that snowy white feel to it.
  6. Stack the largest cashew ball on the bottom, the medium one next, and the smallest one on top.

How to Make Raw Dessert Decorations

Raw Cashew Balls

Now you’ve got the makings for a great snowman! It’s time to add the finishing touches that are really going to make this little guy come alive. (Well, he is alive… it’s all live food. Haha.)

  1. Use grape stems for the arms, and simply push them into the sides of the trunk.
  2. Place 2 seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, etc) for the eyes. Notice how this actually gives the face some depth too.
  3. Add a goji berry for the nose.
  4. Use chia seeds for the mouth. This one was tricky, and I used a spoon to stick the seeds in a round shape. Another idea might be to use a toothpick or fork.
  5. For the buttons, push in a set of mung beans. You could use other nuts or seeds too.
  6. Just for fun, add a cinnamon stick in one of the hands. I figured a cinnamon stick looked like a rolled up “crazy carpet”. I used to slide down the snowy hills in those things as a kid, but maybe that’s just me.

How To Eat Your Snow-People

Okay, so it looks great but it’s a pretty big portion to eat all on your own. You can definitely slice this snowman, or even reshape it into balls or cookies.

You don’t need to dehydrate this dessert at all, and it will naturally dry out if you leave it out. If you’d like to preserve it, you can freeze it in a sealed container. Simply let it thaw out before you eat it.

And yes, I realize the irony of freezing a snowman and thawing it out before you eat it. ;)

What Other Holiday Treats Have You Got in Store?

What are you planning to make this holiday season? If you’re not sure you have everything you need to make this recipe, drop a hint to Santa about the Holiday Gift Guide!

Happy Holidays!
Love, Nathalie

Healthy Desserts: 28 Healthy Dessert Recipes in the Raw

In my article on healthy foods vs. unhealthy foods I mentioned that there are certain foods that we all agree to be healthy. Desserts tend to fall in the unhealthy food category.

kiwi-colorful
Photo by Klaus Post

Somehow we inherently know that eating too many desserts and sweets is not good for us. Either we’ve been told this growing up, or we just don’t feel so good after we overindulge our sweet tooth.

Why do we crave sweets and desserts?

Since I’ve got a wicked sweet tooth, I thought it would be interesting to investigate why it is that we crave sweets and desserts. (Or at least some of us.)

Sweetness is an Indication that Food is Edible

I was speaking to my dad about this the other day and he mentioned reading an article about sweets that said sugar is an indication that food is not a poison.

This made sense to me, if something tastes sweet then it is probably safe to eat. Think of eating bitter unripe fruit, you immediately get a bad taste in your mouth and push it away. However if the fruit is ripe, it is sweet and edible.

I’m sure this doesn’t apply across the board, and that there are exceptions to this rule. But I can accept the fact that we use our taste-buds and the sweetness factor of a food to determine whether to eat it or not.

The Bacteria/Yeast Connection

Another reason I believe we are big on eating sugar and sweets is the connection between bacteria and yeast. I don’t want to get too deep into this topic, but I have observed it in my own body.

At one point the balance of beneficial bacteria in my gut had been broken and there was an overgrowth of yeast. I’m not talking about female yeast infections here, because anyone can have too much yeast and not enough beneficial bacteria.

I noticed that whenever I ate lots of sugar, I had a huge rash on my stomach. That was the yeast flourishing. Yuck much? Luckily, I knew there were alternatives to traditionally high sugar sweets and desserts.

Can Healthy Desserts Really Exist?

The short answer is yes! Why else would I “give up” my old favorites, if I couldn’t have something equally delicious?

Healthy Desserts That Taste Good

Healthy desserts get a bad rap. Think of desserts made without any sugar, and these seem bland, granola, a little boring.

But what if you could get the richest, most decadent of desserts without all the junk that most processed desserts come with? It’s totally possible with raw, naturally sweetened desserts.

A Healthy Dessert Doesn’t Mean Just Fruit

28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day

Okay, you might be thinking that the only thing raw foodies can eat for dessert is fruit. Fortunately, there’s a lot more to raw desserts than fruit.

Take a look at these:

  • raw chocolate puddings
  • raw apple pies
  • raw fudge
  • raw ice cream
  • raw cup cakes
  • raw brownies

28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day

I’ve put together free a downloadable ebook called “28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day”. Yep, that’s right I’m giving it away for free!

Grab your free copy of the 28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day ebook now.

Feel free to share this ebook with all of your friends and family. I really want as many people as possible to experience these healthy desserts.

Because it’s time for us have our cake and eat it too. After all, health is wealth and what would our life be without a little treat now and then?

Get your dessert fix here.

Love, Nathalie

Raw Food Dehydrators: What, Why, and How To Dehydrate Snacks

Do you still crave that warm chewy-comfort food feeling from your raw food? Then chances are the dehydrator is what will solve your issues.

raw-food-dehydrators

What is a Dehydrator?

(Click here to watch the video on YouTube if you can’t see it here.)

Why Dehydrate… aka What Does a Dehydrator Do?

A dehydrator is a tool that uses low temperatures and a fan to dry food. It essentially removes the water from food, but it keeps the enzymes of your raw food intact.

In my opinion dehydrated foods are not the easiest thing for your body to digest: it’s not the closest thing to nature. Essentially you don’t have the water content and that means it’s not the ideal food.

That being said, I think dehydrated foods are a great way to transition to raw food, and even as a great gluten-free treat. Most of the dehydrated foods can replace the textures and tastes of the most addictive foods like bread, cookies, and chips. Who wouldn’t want that?

How to Dehydrate Raw Food

Most dehydrators come with a temperature setting, and as long as you are dehydrating at temperatures below 112-118F you’ll be keeping your ingredients “raw”. (See what is the raw food diet here.)

dehydrating-for-preserving-produce
Photo by Jacqueline

Use a Dehydrator to Preserve Excess Produce

If you’re lucky enough to have an abundant garden (or just a great deal of fresh local produce) then you can use a dehydrator to preserve your harvest.

Simply clean and cut your fruits or vegetables and place on your dehydrator trays. Depending on how watery the produce is you might need to dehydrate for a longer time. Dehydrated fruits and veggies make great snacks, or can be used to top salads or in sauces and soups. Yum!

Make Raw Kale Chips

In my weekly ezine I wrote about a recipe for yummy kale chips. (Subscribe if you want to receive recipes every week!)

  • 1 Bunch Kale
  • Sea Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Diced Garlic
  • Juice of Half a Lemon
  • Pinch of Cumin

Wash the kale and then cut it into 3 inch long strips. Keep in mind that these chips will get smaller as they dehydrate. Put the sliced kale in a large bowl and add the olive oil, sea salt, diced garlic, lemon juice, and cumin, all to taste. Get your hands in there and massage the ingredients into the kale.

Wait for 10 to 20 minutes: the kale leaves should have shrunk a little bit. Now place your marinated kale on a dehydrator tray and turn the dehydrator on to dry for about 7 to 8 hours at 115F. You’ll be crunching these awesome kale chips so fast you’ll need to make a second batch! Be sure to experiment with different spices and mimic your favorite chips.

If you want a closer look at the process of making kale chips take a look at this post by Dhrumil of We Like it Raw.

Make Fruit Leathers

Making fruit leather is one thing that reminds me of being a kid and eating those sugary processed fruit roll-ups. Of course when you’re in charge of what goes into your fruit leather you can make them as healthy as you want! Why not dehydrate a green smoothie to take with you on a hiking trip?

  1. Blend your favorite mix of fresh fruits (and/or vegetables!) until smooth. You may need to add a bit of water if your blender cannot process it well, but try not to add too much.
  2. Spread the mixture on a teflex sheet or piece of cellophane. It should be about 1/4 inch thick, but you can experiment with different thicknesses.
  3. Place the sheet in your dehydrator and dry at 110F-118F for about 4 hours.
  4. When the leather is dry enough, peel it off the sheet and flip it over to dehydrate on the other side, and place it on the mesh of your dehydrator. So that both sides dry. Dry for another few hours until it reaches a malleable but dry consistency.

Enjoy as a snack or use it to wrap other ingredients in, let your creativity run wild.

Unlimited Uses for a Dehydrator

Although I always tell people that they should consider investing in a blender before a dehydrator, dehydrators can be fun. I’ll definitely be posting new recipes and ways to make use of your dehydrator.

Recommended Dehydrators

Depending on how much you care to spend you can get a really good Excalibur Dehydrator or pick up one of the less expensive types at most kitchen stores.

I’ve had my Excalibur Dehydrator for almost 3 years now and I love having the option to make dehydrated crackers, cookies, and fruit leathers.

What’s Your Favorite Dehydrated Snack?

If you’ve ever bought dehydrated snacks or have your own dehydrator, what’s your favorite recipe? Let us know in the comments!

Love, Nathalie