I’ve been dying to make a homemade date spread & yesterday, I finally got around to it!
Dates + date sugar are one of my favourite natural sweeteners not only because they’re delicious & chewy & so satisfying but also because of all their health benefits. They’re full of antioxidants, fibre, good carbs, natural sugar for quick energy boosts & make great pre-workout snacks & they’re lower glycemic than a lot of other sweeteners so they won’t cause spikes in blood sugar like refined sugars will. Many people are scared of the sugar in dates because real talk, it’s still sugar. But, a study that tested the effect of eating dates on healthy individuals and on those with diabetes found that dates do not cause significant glucose spikes in the blood, and therefore may even be beneficial for diabetics as part of a healthy diet.
They also help lower cholesterol due to their soluble fibre content & they contain minerals like selenium, magnesium, manganese & copper, all of which are good for bone health. Lastly, they’re also rich in iron, which is great for plant-based eaters like myself in order to help prevent chronic fatigue & in worst cases, anemia.
OH & LEST US NOT FORGET SKIN HEALTH. Due to their vitamin C & D content, they help naturally boost collagen production & synthesis in the body & promote healthy skin.
This spread is amazing on toast, rice cakes, crackers or as a topping for oats or cashew cream or Greek yogurt! Think of it as jam upped a notch with a kick of pure organic vanilla & an adaptogen kick from ashwagandha – great for fighting adrenal fatigue, stress relief, anxiety, energy, stamina + physical endurance + hormone regulation! You can feel free to add in your fave superfood, adaptogen, protein or collagen powder.
Here’s some inspo for how I had it the other day for a snack: Afternoon snacking is my fave. Here, I’m snacking on sweet + savoury because well, I can’t do one without the other. I topped two chestnut crisp breads (gluten-free + made with just 3 ingredients: chestnut, brown rice flour + sea salt) with:
- sweet: homemade vanilla ashwagandha date paste, 1/2 fresh fig + Ceylon cinnamon
- savoury: homemade vegan cheesy black bean hummus, carrots + nutritional yeast
- 2 cups pitted Medjool dates (unsweetened)
- 1/2 cup filtered water (& more if necessary, to thin out)
- 1 tsp. pure organic vanilla extract
- 1/2-1 tbsp. ashwagandha root powder
- Add all the ingredients to the bowl of a large food processor.
- Process until very smooth, scraping down the bowl to make sure all of the dates are incorporated. There should be no leftover ashwagandha powder. Add more water if you need to thin it out a bit.
- Store the date paste in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- ENJOY! 🙂