Candied Pecans

Raw Pecans
After over a year of adopting a Paleo lifestyle, I still struggle with sugar cravings. Granted, I don’t indulge myself like I used to – cookies, snacks and candies don’t have a place on my pantry shelves any more. Sometimes though, you just need a little something to curb the craving and it will pass.

These little pecan gems do just the trick. They are crunchy, slightly sweet, and full of warm spicy flavor. They remind me of pecan pie – without all of the guilt. You can adjust the seasonings to your liking, but keep in mind, after they bake, the spices will mellow. Keep a container of these in your desk drawer so when the 2 o’clock craving hits, you have something handy that you won’t regret later.

Spices
Yield: 4 cups

Ingredients
4 cups pecan halves
3 ea. egg whites
1/2 cup honey, slightly warmed
1 T. cinnamon
2 t. ground ginger
1 t. ground cloves
1 t. salt

Method
1. Preheat oven to 325ºF. Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper.
2. Set aside pecans in a large bowl.
3. Whisk together the whites and honey in a small bowl, just to combine.
4. Add all of the spices and salt, whisking again to combine.
5. Pour the egg white mixture over the pecans and toss to coat completely.
6. Spread the pecans out evenly on the parchment-lined sheet pan.
7. Roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes, checking often to ensure they don’t burn. They will still be slightly tacky to the touch, but will have a fully roasted color.
8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once cooled, they will no longer be tacky to the touch. Store in an airtight container.

Candied Pecans

Paleo Sweet Potato Pancakes

Arguably, the best part of the weekend is brunch. Enjoying a cup of coffee, catching up with friends, and gobbling up tasty syrup-covered pancakes can’t really be beat. Unfortunately, those gluten-filled babies weren’t enjoyed by our caveman ancestors. That doesn’t mean that we can’t get creative and throw down some equally delicious pillows of goodness that actually pack a healthful punch. Enter, sweet potato pancakes…

A healthy dose of cinnamon awakens your taste buds and makes these pancakes even more delicious.
A healthy dose of cinnamon awakens your taste buds and makes these pancakes even more delicious.

These paleo pancakes are fantastic. I’m a true cinnamon connoisseur and these are the perfect vehicle to deliver a variety of spices to your palate. The spices themselves can definitely be adjusted to your taste-buds, but they do more than the job that refined sugars would do in your typical pancake recipe – add a ton of flavor. I also like to use freshly ground nutmeg for an extra punch. We do our best not to add salt to any dish unless it absolutely needs it. I use the spices to give these flavor, but feel free to add a pinch of salt. I’ve posted the recipe at SparkPeople.com, which includes the nutritional information for a single batch.

Paleo Sweet Potato Pancakes

1.5 T. coconut flour
1 t. baking soda
2 t. ground cinnamon
1 t. ground cloves
.5 t. ground ginger
.5 t. ground nutmeg
.5 c. mashed sweet potatoes
3 ea. large eggs
1 t. vanilla extract
1 T. honey (for garnish)

Method

1. Combine coconut flour, soda, and all spices.
2. Combine sweet potatoes, eggs, and vanilla – whisk thoroughly.
3. Add coconut flour mixture to the sweet potatoes and stir to combine.
4. Spray a non-stick skillet with pan spray, and heat under medium-low heat.
5. Scoop batter with a #24 scoop (for 1.3 oz. scoop) into the heated skillet.
6. Allow to cook until you see bubbles in the center and the sides are set.
7. Flip and continue cooking on the second side.
8. Remove from pan and garnish with a drizzle of honey.