I’m often asked by clients what they can do as parents to promote a healthy diet for their children. In a time when processed foods, soda, sugars are constantly being being pushed upon them, this is no easy feat. I share the same tips that have worked on my own family, finding healthy substitutes that pass the “kid test”.
My cashew yogurt is proof that you CAN sneak plant based substitutes into your family’s routine with no issue – and this recipe reduces sugar content and eliminates dairy. A small amount of dairy can be compatible with a healthy diet, but consumption in the U.S. is enormous and way beyond what is optimally healthy.
Using cashew as the base for the “yogurt” provides a healthy fat that support levels of good cholesterol. The high copper content of cashew is vital in energy production and antioxidant defenses. In addition to the protein digesting enzyme bromelain, discussed further here, pineapple is a high source of vitamin C and manganese, both which protect against cell damaging free radicals and stimulate energy production.
Vegan Pineapple Cashew Yogurt
1 cup raw cashew, soaked minimum of 12 hours
½ cup fresh pineapple juice
1 T fresh lemon or lime juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract (or 2-4 drops of vanilla stevia for slightly sweeter mixture)
2 medjool dates, soaked, peeled, and pitted
1/2 tsp. psyllium husks powder
1/3 cup water
Fresh pineapple, coconut flake for garnish (optional)
Add ½ tsp. psyllium husk powder with 1/3 cup water and whisk well, until mixture is thickened and smooth, and set aside.
In a Vitamix or high powered add cashews, pineapple juice, lemon juice, vanilla (or stevia), dates and sea salt and blend until completely smooth. This could take a minute or two of blending.
Pour yogurt mixture into storage container, and add a tablespoon of the psyllium husk mixture. Stir well, this should give the yogurt a creamy consistency, if desired slowy add another spoonful of the psyllium gel mixture.
Place in fridge and allow to chill, serve with fresh pineapple or fruit of your choice or simply enjoy on its own.
Mixture is good for up to five days in refrigerator.