Date Paste – The Ultimate Whole Foods Sweetener
One of the most essential changes to make for better health is removing those highly refined foods and sugars. I’m sure you all know by now just how horrible they are for your body. Along with increasing vegetable and whole food intake, choosing healthy sweeteners is key. Luckily, there are several great alternatives, but the one that I seem to use the most is dates. The perfect replacement because they are so incredibly sweet and a whole food. I like to call them God’s ‘candy.’ Although even healthy sweeteners should still be limited (don’t go eatin’ this by the spoonfuls!), I want my sweeteners to have benefits, rather than refined sugars which provide you with zip-o except empty calories and inflammation. I believe one of the reasons why God put fiber in fruit is to minimize any blood sugar spike from the sugar (yay fiber!!). Using nutrient-dense, whole foods is best! Not only is there that much needed fiber, but dates are full of a wide array of nutrients. They’ve got potassium, calcium, iron, B vitamins, many other vitamins and minerals, and even some protein!
There are so many ways to enjoy them. Just eating one date is a great way to satisfy a sweet tooth. Or, pulsing together with nuts and seeds makes a great energy bar! They can even be made into a decadent caramel sauce. I love blending them with a little water in order to make an incredibly sweet date paste, which is what I have here. It can easily be used in any recipe and is the main sweetener I use. I use this in so many of my creations. My No-Bake Pumpkin-Cheesecake, raw or baked granola and cookies, Fudgy Brownies, date-sweetened ketchup, 3-ingredient fudge, hard-shell chocolate sauce, or even just to lightly sweeten my morning porridge. The list goes on! It’s so easy, very sweet, and pretty darn cheap, but the most important part is that it’s a nutrient-dense, whole food! It’s just spectacular!!
- Dates, pitted
If using dried dates: soak in warm water for 10 or so minutes until soft again.
If using fresh dates: make sure the pits are removed.
Put your dates into a blender or food processor with enough water to begin blending. I always start with just enough water and then add more as needed. It does thicken as it blends so you may need to add as they chop up.
Blend until smooth and creamy.
Pour into a jar and store in the fridge. It keeps in the fridge for about a week and a half. This also freezes very well, so making in bulk is very easy. Just portion into jars, store in the freezer, then remove and let thaw as needed.
You can add additional water to make something more like a syrup, depending what you want your sweetener for.
*For those that don't know, my recipes are made as whole and nutrient-dense as possible, but still incredibly satisfying. I share my recipes without measurements and hope they equip you to not feel confined to a recipe, but rather confident in your kitchen to be able to create something unique, nourishing, and delicious all on your own. So take this recipe as inspiration and enjoy! Head on over to my IG @noelle.parton and tag me if you try this out, or contact me if you have questions or comments.
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