Care of Amy Symington at ameliaeats.com 

If you lead a mostly plant based diet, you are very familiar with the versatility of the cashew nut. Creamy, sweet, savoury, spicy, and salty – the possibilities are actually endless.

The good news is that cashews as part of a whole-foods, plant-based diet are also beneficial to your health! Cashews, along with all nuts, contain heart healthy, monounsaturated fatty acids and high levels of beneficial antioxidants that have been shown to significantly reduce one’s risk of coronary heart disease if consumed regularly (Kelly and Sabate, 2006). Cashews are an excellent source of copper which aids in bone and connective tissue health, and a good source of magnesium which aids in muscle relaxation, manganese, an important component found in antioxidants, and zinc, which boosts our immune system and aids in digestion.

It is important to ensure that your cashews and cashew butter are kept dry in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator to avoid rancidity. So, for good health enjoy those cashews (among other nuts) toasted in your favourite trail mix, as a creamy dairy free mac and cheese sauce, atop your morning parfait, or in a treat like these Cinnamon Bun Cookies!

References

Kelly JH Jr, Sabate J. Nuts and coronary heart disease: an epidemiological perspective. Br J Nutr. 2006 Nov;96 Suppl 2:S61-7. 2006. PMID:17125535.

Cinnamon Bun Cookies

Makes 24 cookies Serving size: 1 cookie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2-1/2 cups spelt flour
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • ¼ tsp salt

Cinnamon filling:

  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp spelt flour
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Cashew cream icing:

  • 1 cup cashews
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a medium bowl using a hand mixer, combine the coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. Mix until fully combined, about 2 minutes.

3. Next, in a small bowl whisk together flour, flaxseed and salt. Using the hand mixer, slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet.

4. On a flat, dry and floured surface using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to a 12×12 square.

5. Next, in a small bowl, using the hand mixer mix together the cinnamon filling. Spread evenly on to the square. Ensure that the top of the dough is completely coated in the filling.

Roll the dough into a log, wrap in parchment paper and place into the freezer for 20 minutes, until the dough is firm and sliceable.

6. Once the dough is firm, slice the log into 24 even cookies and place on to baking sheets.

7. Bake for 12 minutes or until cookies are golden brown.

8. Meanwhile in a food processor add all icing ingredients. Process until smooth and drizzle over cookies. Allow to set before packaging cookies in 2s, 3s or 4s.