How To Kick Your Thyroid’s Ass: Join The (Dessert) Recipe Swap!
In previous installments of How To Kick Your Thyroid’s Ass, I’ve mentioned that as part of my path to wellness and balanced numbers, I eat what’s considered a high-raw diet. All that means is that most of the food I eat is uncooked or heated below a certain temperature (usually right around 115-120 degrees). This is thought to keep vitamins, nutrients, and enzymes intact and therefore be easier on the body (especially the chronically-ill body) than cooked foods. And really, though raw food eating may come off as restrictive or boring, it’s actually a very expansive, creative, delicious, and filling eating plan. That even includes desserts. Yes, healthy desserts. Who knew? So below are some recipes I’ve come across in my raw food readings and cooking that I’d like to share with you dear readers.
The benefit of these recipes is that while, yes, they do contain sugar (and calories), those are tempered with healthy things like vitamins, enzymes, fiber, calcium, good fats, protein, etc. Also you’re not ingesting any grains, dairy, gluten, or synthetics and chemicals, all of which mean good things for your thyroid. However, please note: many raw food dessert recipes call for agave nectar or agave syrup. I have a major problem with this ingredient, namely because it isn’t a raw product at all (it contains no enzymes, has usually been heated well above the raw 117 degree standards), is sometimes processed with a fungus (ew, no thank you; not in my body), and also is higher in fructose than high-fructose corn syrup (which means bad bad things for the liver); yet it’s still marketed as a health food. , It’s definitely something to keep in mind when deciding whether or not you want to use agave. Better alternatives to agave include honey, maple syrup, something a bit more obscure called yacon syrup, or even a homemade simple syrup (equal parts water and sugar, or more or less depending upon desired consistency and sweetness).
One of my favorite cookbooks (and trust me, of course, when I say I do collect them) is Rawvolution by Matt Amsden. I recommend it to anyone who wants to look into raw food and is seeking an easy and accessible eating plan. He doesn’t utilize any ingredients that are too obscure or strange, and his recipes are usually throwbacks to classic American favorites that we’re all familiar with. Minus one or two novel ingredients you may not be automatically recognize, there’s no weird or scary healthfood-y schtuff in his book (and I like that).
For my birthday this year, we had this pie instead of a traditional birthday cake. It turned out really well, but just know that in order to enjoy this, you need to really like the taste of raisins. Oh, and you’ve also got to like really rich desserts.
Sweet Virginia Pecan Pie from Rawvolution by Matt Amsden
A thick raisin filling topped with whole raw pecans, served in a sweet almond meal crust. , Serves 1 to 2.
For The Crust:
- 2 cups raw almonds, finely ground in a food processor
- 1/3 cup agave nectar
For The Filling:
- 1/3 cup coconut water
- , ¼ cup pecans
- , ½ cup raisins
To make the crust, in a mixing bowl, combine the ground almonds and agave nectar, and mix well. Press the crust mixture evenly into the bottom and sides of a 5-inch pie tin.
In a high-speed blender, combine all of the filling ingredients and blend until smooth. Spoon the mixture into the pie crust. Top with whole or chopped pecans and serve.
If I’m lucky, you remember my article on dairy and why it’s really not ideal for thyroid and autoimmune sufferers. If so, you’ll also recall my love of ice cream, and subsequently, how much I do indeed miss the casein-filled mammary gland excretions, since, after all, my family owned and operated a creamery for a few decades and my earliest childhood memories are full of the stuff. This recipe, however, is completely dairy-free, in addition to gluten-free and raw, while still being creamy and frozen and sweet.
Serves 2 to 4
- , ½ cup raw cashews
- 2 raw bananas, very ripe
- , ½ cup finely chopped Medjool dates
- , ¼ cup fresh orange juice
- 2 T. agave nectar, plus more if desired
- , ¼ t. sea salt
- , ¼ cup raw walnuts, for serving
In a blender, process the cashews until very fine, resembling a powder. Add the remaining ingredients except for the walnuts and process until the mixture is very creamy. Add agave nectar and salt to taste. Spread the mixture in a shallow pan and place in the freezer for 1 hour. Return the mixture to the blender, process until very creamy, and return the ice cream to the freezer to chill for 30 minutes to an hour longer. Serve very cold with the raw walnuts. (For an especially creamy variation, substitute the ground nuts altogether for 1/3 cup of raw cashew butter.)
This next one is a variation on a recipe from my lovely vegan and often-raw neighbor. I improvised a bit and made her idea into something more lazy-person friendly (that’s me). So there’s little effort required — it involves nothing more than throwing some shit into a food processor and then pressing the mixture into a small container. And because I have a real problem with measuring, this is all just by feel and consistency and approximation. It’s chocolatey and very rich and filling.
Raw Chocolate Spoon Fudge
- 8-10 Medjool dates, pitted
- Agave nectar
- Sea salt
- One handful of either almonds or cashews, or a mixture
- Cocoa powder (the raw variety, if available)
- Coconut oil (or any other light-tasting oil, such as grapeseed, sunflower, safflower)
Place dates and nuts in food processor and blend until combined (the mixture will be chunky). Add two heaping spoonfuls of coconut oil to food processor, along with two or three spoonfuls of cocoa powder, a few pinches of sea salt and blend. Slowly stream in agave until the mixture has the consistency of thick peanut butter and is also sweet enough to taste. Remove the mixture from food processor and press into a small container. Refrigerate for about one hour, if you prefer a firmer dough (otherwise serve at room temperature). Then cut into little squares and serve, or if you’re anything like me, get a huge-ass spoon and eat right from the container.
So now we’re opening up the comment box to hear your raw and/or healthy takes on desserts. Please share your ideas on ways to satisfy your sweet tooth without compromising your thyroid (and overall) health. What are some of the healthier and/or raw versions of cakes, cookies, ice cream, candy that you enjoy? Which dessert recipes can you simply not live without?
Until Next Week,
Enjoy! and Love Always,
Have a question, comment, story, love letter, or rant/rave to send me?: Liz@DearThyroid.com
Tags: graves' disease, hashimoto's disease, How To Kick Your Thyroid's Ass, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, thyroid disease, thyroid food resources, thyroid nutrition, thyroid nutrition column, thyroid nutrition tips, thyroid nutritional resources