Dessert Family Friendly

Chocolate Amaranth Bars

Chocolate Amaranth Bars

The puffed grain in these bars gives them a light and crispy texture similar to wafer cookies. 

Makes 12 bars, about 12 servings


  • 4-6 Tbsp uncooked amaranth – use enough to yield ~1 1/2 cup (or 45 g) popped/puffed amaranth
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips or pieces 
  • 4 Tbsp creamy unsweetened almond butter 
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil  
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Line a standard loaf pan (or similar-sized dish) with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Popping Amaranth:
    1. Heat a large heavy bottomed pan (or Dutch oven) over medium-high to high heat. Set a bowl to the side to hold the popped amaranth. Heat the pan for at least 3 minutes. Once the pan is very hot, add 1 Tbsp un-popped amaranth and cover with a lid. Shake the pot back and forth over the heat to keep the grain moving. If your pan is at the correct temperature, the grains will start popping almost immediately and be done popping by 10 seconds. Quickly empty into the mixing bowl. Don’t worry if there are some un-popped grains left. (If the pan is not hot enough the grains will be slow to pop and may brown or even burn instead. If this happens, discard the batch and increase the heat, allowing the pan to fully warm before adding more grain.  Do not worry, you will soon have it down.)
    2. Continue in batches until you have about 1 ¼ cup popped grain.
  3. In a medium bowl, add the chocolate chips, almond butter, and olive oil. Heat in the microwave in 20-second increments, stirring after each session until the chocolate is melted and you have a smooth batter. Alternatively, the mixture can be heated over a double boiler.
  4. Stir in the salt and vanilla.
  5. Add the popped amaranth to the bowl and stir in gently until the amaranth is evenly coated in chocolate.
  6. Transfer to the parchment-lined pan and smooth into an even layer. Refrigerate until set (about 1 hour), then slice into about 12 bars. Store in the refrigerator.


Adapted from Minimalist Baker

Family Friendly Mains

Lentil Sweet Potato Loaf

Lentil Sweet Potato Loaf

This loaf (adapted from a recipe by Dreena Burton on Veg News) will satisfy your meatloaf cravings and makes a great main dish for a meat-free holiday meal. Leftovers are great in sandwiches or wraps. Also, this recipe can be used to make delicious meatballs.

Makes 6 servings.


  • 2 cups cooked brown lentils, divided 
  • 1 cup cooked sweet potato flesh, cooled 
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced 
  • ¼ cup tomato paste 
  • 3 tablespoons tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 3 tablespoons dried onion flakes 
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax seeds 
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 
  • 1 tablespoon tahini (or other nut or seed butter)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano 
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme 
  • ½ teaspoon celery seed 
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper 
  • 2 cups rolled oats 
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds 
  • 4 tablespoons ketchup or barbecue sauce, for topping (best is a combination of both!)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a loaf pan and line with parchment paper, letting paper overhang sides of dish (so that you can lift the loaf out later).
  2. In a food processor, combine 1 cup of lentils, potatoes, garlic, tomato paste, tamari, onion flakes, flax, balsamic, tahini, oregano, thyme, celery seed, and black pepper. Pulse until well combined and coarsely blended.
  3. Add remaining 1 cup lentils, oats, and pumpkin seeds and pulse a few times, scraping down bowl as needed, until mixture is combined but still has lots of texture. With the blade removed, mix a few more turns by hand.
  4. Transfer mixture to the prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top. Spread ketchup or barbecue sauce on top. 
  5. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 8 minutes, until topping is set. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Lift loaf out of pan (using parchment) and transfer to a serving dish. Slice and enjoy.