Another no-bake treat coming your way! If you can’t tell, I’m ALL about nuts and seeds these days. I can’t get enough almonds, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, pistachios, peanuts and pepitas…high calorie or not, nuts have been my go-to snack, baking ingredient and add-in around my kitchen.
I found myself adding a handful of walnuts, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds to a huge bowl of cooked quinoa that was also sprinkled with nutritional yeast. Yep, that was my quick lunch one day. No judging, please…it’s better than eating 12 of these treats for lunch with a glass of almond milk, right?
I guess this recipe could be called “salted mixed nut candy” or even a brittle, but the word “cluster” makes me giggle so I went with that.
I even enjoyed these goodies roughly chopped over a salad of grilled chicken, mixed greens, raspberries and blue cheese for dinner one night…YUM. Just like candied nuts but homemade and refined sugar free!
Salted Mixed Nut Clusters
1/4 cup chopped, sliced or slivered almonds*
1/4 cup chopped pecans*
2 Tbsp chopped walnuts*
2 Tbsp unsalted pistachios*
sea salt to taste (I used a medium pinch)
2/3 cup granulated sweetener (palm sugar, sucanat, etc)
1 Tbsp liquid sweetener (maple syrup, agave or honey)
2 Tbsp coconut milk
2 Tbsp creamy nut butter (peanut butter, almond butter, sunflower butter – use one that is more liquid than solid for easy incoporation)
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp flaxseeds
Flavor variation ideas: add 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon or ginger, a couple shakes of cayenne for a sweet and spicy treat or even 2/3 tsp garam masala spice for an exotic flair.
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper and set aside.
2. In a dry skillet, toast all nuts over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Stir frequently and watch carefully to avoid burning. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with sea salt, toss and set aside to cool.
3. In a medium saucepan, add sweeteners and cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes until granulated sweetener dissolves. Stir frequently to avoid burning.
4. Add in coconut milk, nut butter and vanilla and stir until smooth. Increase heat to medium-high and let boil for 1-2 minutes until slightly thickened.
5. Remove from heat. Stir in toasted nuts and flaxseeds and let cool for about 2 minutes or so until mixture starts to thicken.
6. Drop by tablespoons onto prepared baking sheet, drizzle with remaining mixture and let cool until hardened.
Makes about 12-18 clusters, depending on size you prefer
*Use your favorite combination of nuts and seeds in this recipe to suit your tastes – walnuts, sunflower seeds, pepitas, peanuts, brazil nuts, hazelnuts, etc can all be used!