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Happy Halloween Y'all!

Updated: Nov 1, 2020

Since this holiday tends to be so sugar-focused, I thought I'd whip up some more nourishing treats that still satisfy that desire for something fun and special while you gather 'round the bonfire or watch "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" With a little help from my junior chefs, who also are apparently aspiring apple-jugglers and floor-applesauce makers, here are four yummy apple dips that are a low-sugar twist on caramel apples and won't rip your Dracula fangs out either. Go ahead and reach for that candy bar if you still want it, but feast on these first!

1. Pumpkin Pie Apple Dip

Five simple ingredients here: pumpkin puree, low-added sugar vanilla Greek yogurt or Skyr (Siggi's has only 6g per 2/3 cup), pumpkin pie spice, 1 stevia packet, and graham cracker crumbles. I used these lovely whole grain Brewer's Crackers that I found at Misfits Market (sorry if you are tired of hearing about them! - or if you want to join, use my 30% off discount code: COOKEWME-YX0GQX). My kids enjoyed this as a spread on their morning waffles, and that was before I even added the sweetener. Daniel is shown here displaying his Halloween creation. Please don't ask me why my children don't like to wear clothes!

2. Cannoli Apple Dip

This was my teenager's favorite. I love that she is getting so much calcium from the low-fat ricotta. Vanilla, orange zest, and cinnamon "suggest" dessert, but the only sweetness comes from mini semi-sweet chocolate chips. I apologize that the pics are out of order, but did I mention, that I had 5 kids "helping"? Emma (the 16-year-old) also commented that my messy kitchen is part of my "vibe". Let's go with it!

3. Maple Walnut Apple Dip

So simple, so good. This one got my vote: more Ziggi's, maple syrup (or zero-sugar maple extract), and brain super-food: walnuts for the ghoulish gang. You can also use unsweetened plain yogurt with a dash of vanilla extract. If you find Greek yogurt/Skyr too sour, another option is to drain the whey from thinner yogurt using cheesecloth or a wire mesh strainer to make yogurt “cream cheese” (message me for details). How good would this be on a toasted sprouted-grain bagel, by the way? Yay for leftovers!

4. Vegan Peanut-Butter/Honey/Coconut Apple Dip

Great job, Josie! Just the three ingredients listed in the name. Full of natural energy and will keep little trick-or-treating tummies full. I've used Teddy's with flaxseed oil forever, such an easy way to get in some anti-inflammatory Omega 3. Omit the honey if you want strictly sugar-free. The coconut does lend natural sweetness. Or switch it up with almond butter and cocoa powder. Stir in oats + flaxseed meal, roll into balls, and refrigerate for a no-bake bite that makes fantastic fuel for sports and workouts. ❤️🎃👻

Have fun and stay safe, friends!

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