salted dark chocolate almond turtles

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles…sweet, salty and crunchy with raw caramel gooeyness!

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

A few steps are needed to create these little beauties, but it’s well worth the effort!  Whip together raw caramel by blending dates and coconut oil, melt dark chocolate chips in a double boiler, then let the assembly begin!

First, place clusters of three almonds evenly on parchment paper:

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

Then, top with a generous glob of raw caramel:

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

Lastly, drizzle with melted dark chocolate:

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

Add a pinch of high-quality chunky sea salt and let cool in the refrigerator…. then dig in!

Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

salted dark chocolate almond turtles
Makes 12 turtles
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 12
  • For the raw caramel:
  • 1 cup Medjool Dates, pitted
  • ½ tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • For the turtles:
  • 36 almonds or nut of your choice
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • high-quality large grain sea salt
  1. For the raw caramel:
  2. Soak dates in warm water for 10 minutes, drain water and add to a food processor with melted coconut oil. Blend until a paste is formed, occasionally scraping down the sides. Set aside.
  3. For the turtles:
  4. Melt chocolate in a double boiler.
  5. Arrange almonds in cluster of three on a lined baking sheet.
  6. Top with a glob of raw caramel.
  7. Cover with melted chocolate and top with a pinch of sea salt.
  8. Place in the refrigerator and allow chocolate to set.
  9. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Calories: 160 Fat: 8 Carbohydrates: 25 Sugar: 21 Fiber: 3 Protein: 1

 Salted Dark Chocolate Almond Turtles ~vegan, gluten free~

Wishing everyone a happy weekend!

salted caramel and almond butter dip ~vegan~

What can I say, i’m into dips lately…

salted caramel almond butter dip ~vegan, no sugar added~

We planted an apple tree last year and despite being completely ignored, it produced beautiful apples this year!  Two to be exact, but they tasted like heaven!  I’m sure there were more, however this poor tree was so neglected that we forgot to pick them.  Sorry little apple tree, we will show you more love from now on!

Apple slices pair very nicely with this no sugar added, vegan, caramel almond butter dip.  Perfect for an after-school snack for the little ones :)

salted caramel almond butter dip ~vegan, no sugar added~

Salted Caramel and Almond Butter Dip

10 dates, pitted

1/4 cup almond butter

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

almond milk

-In a food processor, blend all ingredients together adding almond milk one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.  (I added about 5 tablespoons of almond milk)

-Sprinkle with coarse sea salt.

-Serve with almond slices or celery sticks and enjoy!

salted caramel almond butter dip ~vegan, no sugar added~

almond date bites and why I love running


I did it!  I signed up for a half marathon!!!  The Zooma Cape Cod half marathon on September 28th, which leaves me 6.5 weeks to train…gulp!

I used to run a lot…hours on end.  It’s my moving meditation.  Running clears my head, gives me energy, grounds me and helps me to remember how lucky I am.

I was born with a congenital dislocation of my right hip.  My hip-joint was deformed leaving my thighbone to “slip” out of the socket.  When I took my first steps as a baby my mom knew something was wrong.  It took years of doctor’s visits, traction, hospitalization and multiple surgeries to repair my hip-joint and return the bone to the socket.  My worried mom asked the surgeon if I would be able to walk without a limp.  He assured her I would, but stated “she won’t be a marathon runner.”  Kids are put on this planet to prove adults wrong and I did just that!  In 2005 I ran my first marathon, the San Diego Rock and Roll marathon.  I didn’t break any records, but I finished and that was good enough for me!  Since then I was hooked.  Every time I start out for a run I remember how lucky I was to be born in a time of modern medicine and in a place where healthcare was accessible.  If I didn’t, my life would be very, very different then it is now.

My love for running started as a teenager.  In high school I was on the field hockey team.  I was bad downright horrible!  I was granted the “best team spirit” award each year which translates into “the coach feels bad she never played you and needs to give you some kind of award to make up for it.”  I didn’t care that I didn’t play.  My best memories are from the friendships I made (and still have!) from that field hockey team!

Since field hockey wasn’t my thing, I tried cheerleading.  Big mistake.  I knew I wasn’t athletic, but I soon found out that I sure as hell was not coordinated!  (thank you to my friends and family who supported me in that endeavor! I know it was painful to watch!)  Simply put, I can’t dance.  My best and only dance move, the chicken dance comes out at weddings after one too many drinks (ok,  it only takes one drink).  It’s ugly.

I knew I couldn’t play sports and couldn’t dance, but I could run!  One foot in front of the other and you’re doing it Peter!  I’m not fast, I’m not graceful, but my two feet can cover some miles!  Since becoming a mom, it’s hard to find time to run.   I haven’t clocked many miles since before I was pregnant….I miss it.    Some days I’m too worn out from chasing Noah around to even think about going for a run!  But, when I do, I feel great!  That’s why I signed up for the half marathon.  I’m setting a goal for myself, leaving no excuses as to why I can’t go running.

I’m super excited for this event!  I have my “crunch-time” training schedule all planned out and I checked a 7 mile run off the list this past monday…it feels good to be back!  The Zooma event benefits a charity called “every mother counts” which was started by Christy Turlington.  Maternal wellness is something that I am very passionate about.  Proceeds of the event will help mothers around the world get the care they need for a healthy pregnancy and delivery.

Every two minutes, a woman around the world dies from complications due to pregnancy or childbirth, creating a rippling effect that devastates children, families, and communities. But 90% of those deaths are preventable.  

I’m not one to ask for donations, but if you have a little extra to spare you can donate here

And, if you don’t have money to donate download this app and get moving to raise money for a charity of your choice!  For my training, I will be running for every mother counts!

Ok…enough about running!  Here is a recipe for almond date bites!  The combination of carbs and protein make them a perfect pre-run snack!

almond date bites ~raw, vegan, gluten free~

Almond Date Bites

6  dates, pitted

dash cinnamon

12 raw almonds

dried shredded coconut

-Place pitted dates and cinnamon in a food processor and pulse until a paste is formed.

almond date bites ~raw, vegan, gluten free~

-Use your hands to cover an almond with a small spoonful of paste, mold into a ball.

almond date bites ~raw, vegan, gluten free~

-Roll in shredded coconut and store in the refrigerator.

almond date bites ~raw, vegan, gluten free~