Ok, folks….for all my fellow CrossFit MVT Challengers….close your eyes for this week’s posts. I’m talking Paleo “treats” for Valentine’s Day. Yippee! It’s been awhile since I have baked anything these days so getting in the kitchen to bake was pretty fun. So the reason for treats this week? …. well we all deserve a small treat on Valentine’s Day, right? And if you are going to have one it can fit into Paleo, well for the most part it can. Another reason for treats this week is because of my little ones. We always talk about their day at school as soon as I pick them up. You know the normal… what did you do, etc. Friday, after picking them up from school, the first thing they told me was one of parents brought doughnuts in! Seriously!? That’s what went through my head but of course I didn’t say that to them. As much as I wanted to tell them all the things that are bad about that scenario, I didn’t. But seriously, for those parents trying to set healthy ways at home, should it be allowed for those parents who don’t to bring doughnuts to school for your child? Ugh! It’s a hard place to be at I suppose. Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels this way too? No matter what, I can’t control what they eat nor will I try but I only hope that how we eat at home will roll over to what they eat at school or any other social gathering in their future. This weekend they joined me in the kitchen for some fun baking time and the focus was on making “healthy” Paleo-friendly doughnuts using nothing but dates to make them “sweet”. I think getting in the kitchen together to make these made them fun too, which in a 4-year olds eyes is always very important. But I think the best thing that happened was when they took their first bite of the doughnuts and said “these are so much better than the doughnuts we had at school.” If I could I would have done a cart wheel right then and there, but instead I smiled and said they always taste better when you help to make them.
So let’s talk about these doughnuts. I did them two ways. One being a “treat” and one being a very special “treat” if you are on the Paleo road of health. Since today is my husband’s birthday and because he said no cake he got a dark chocolate coated doughnut as his birthday treat. However, for me I opted for the uncoated doughnuts and they were just as yummy. Even though I secretly wanted the dark chocolate one! But I had a small version of my trainer on my shoulder telling me no,no,no! I’ll let you make the call as to how you prefer your chocolate doughnut, but either way they were a hit in my house.
Chocolate Coconut Doughnuts
10 medjool dates, pitted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup coconut flour
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup cacao powder
½ cup coconut oil, melted
Dark Chocolate, melted (optional) – 85% cacao and higher
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously grease a doughnut pan with coconut oil.
Place the pitted dates with 1 tablespoon of water in a heat resistant bowl and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Remove and add an additional tablespoon of water and mash the dates into a paste.
In the bowl of a food processor add date paste, vanilla extract, and eggs. Process mixture to combine. Add coconut flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, cacao powder, and melted coconut oil to the bowl of the food processor and mix until all ingredients are well incorporated. Stop to scrape down sides of bowl.
Fill the doughnut pan circles about 2-3 of the way full with batter. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
Carefully remove doughnuts from the pan and continue to cool.
If topping them with dark chocolate, place chocolate in a double broiler or microwave safe bowl and heat until melted. Carefully place the top of the doughnut face down in the chocolate to evenly coat the top. Lift and turn over carefully and place the doughnut chocolate side up on a wire rack or piece of waxed paper to dry. If you would like you can also add dark chocolate shavings to the tops of the doughnuts.
Note: I stored mine in the refrigerator so they could keep longer. You could also freeze these as well.
Makes about 6 to 8 large doughnuts using a doughnut pan.