No-Bake Date Bars

Yumm. I got this recipe from my mom who got it from someone on facebook… or something like that. Basically, I have no idea where it originated. I tweeked it a little bit for allergies and taste preference.

Eventually I would like to make this recipe with nuts that have been soaked and dehydrated first to help improve digestion and absorption. I’m currently hung up on the dehydrating step 😛

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14 medjool dates (pitted)
1/2 cup pecans
1/2 cup cashews
3/4 cup shredded coconut
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp cocoa powder (optional)

In food processor, chop the nuts and coconut until fine.
Add the dates, coconut oil, water, and cocoa powder and pulse until a dough forms.
Press into 8×8 baking dish and refrigerate for 2 hours.

Keep these refrigerated.

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Gracie’s Meatloaf

When done right, meatloaf can be incredibly delicious. I set out to create a dairy, egg, sugar, and gluten-free meatloaf and came up with excellent results!
Because it contains no dairy or eggs, I wanted to call it Vegan Meatloaf, but I realize that makes absolutely no sense 😉

Glaze:
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/4 cup maple syrup
4 tsp apple cider vinegar

Mix well.

Meatloaf:
1 TBSP coconut oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup sweet potato, cook and mashed ****
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk (water may work just as well, I’m not sure)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
2 TBSP parsley
2 pounds ground beef (or lamb, or mixture of the two)
2/3 cup bread crumbs (gluten, egg, dairy, and sugar-free! I used Food for Life Gluten-Free Rice and Millet loaf)
1 TBSP vinegar

Saute the chopped onion in coconut oil until it begins to turn translucent.
In large bowl, combine sweet potato and coconut milk and mix until well combined. Then add the rest of the ingredients, including sautéed onions, and mix well.
If the mixture sticks to the bowl, add a little coconut milk until it no longer sticks.
In greased (olive oil or coconut oil) 9″ x 13″ glass baking dish, mold the mixture into a free-form loaf. The free-form, as opposed to using loaf pan, gives the meatloaf a nice texture.
Brush half the glaze over the meatloaf.
Cook at 350F for 45 minutes. Brush on more glaze and cook an additional 15 minutes.
I had leftover glaze, so I diluted it with water and added more to my serving of meatloaf.

Serve meatloaf with simple spinach and olive oil salad and coconut oil sautéed yellow summer squash!

*** I like to have already cooked and mashed sweet potatoes on hand to add to recipes. An easy way to cook sweet potatoes (or regular potatoes) is to cook them in a crockpot on low for about 6-7 hours, with just a little water in the bottom. They turn out great and it’s so easy.