Hello my friends! So yesterday was National Pie Day and I decided to celebrate with something a little different. I decided to go with a whole foods, bake-free option inspired by the traditional apple pie. No – it is not warm or flaky, but it definitely is gooey and apple-y so if you’re feeling adventurous (or in a warmer part of the world and don’t feel like baking) then these little pies are for you!
These are perfect for anyone following any “diet du jour”. These are paleo, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and use only whole foods and no refined grains. There is no added sugar, since the sweetness comes naturally from the dates and apples themselves. They do contain almonds, so if you’re allergic you could certainly try to substitute another nut or seed. A little warning however: while these are certainly a healthier, more nutrient dense version of the traditional apple pie, these are by no means low-calorie as they include foods like nuts, coconut and dates. So indulge in one or two, by all means, but try not to eat the whole pan. 😉 It will be difficult.
If you’re craving something a little warm (and I don’t blame you, it is winter up here north of the equator so I totally get it) then feel free to warm up the apples and sauce in a pot on the stove over low heat before serving them in the little pie shells.
I hope you enjoy these delicious variations and if you try it let me know what you think in the comments below. Next Sunday, I’ll have another warm and comforting slow cooker recipe to share with you that I know you’ll love!
Mini Raw Vegan Apple Pies (makes 12 little pies)
For the crust:
- 8-9 large medjool dates, pitted
- 1/2 cup dried unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 cup raw almonds
- generous pinch of sea salt
- 1-2 tbsp. of water (if needed)
For the filling:
- 2 large organic apples, diced into 1/4 inch cubes (I used Ambrosia because it’s what I had, but any tart or flavourful apple will do)
- 1 cup mejdool dates, pitted
- 1⁄2-¾ cup water, plus additional water for soaking the dates
- 1 tsp. organic cinnamon
- 1⁄2 tsp. sea salt
- 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- a generous pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- To make the crust, pulse all the ingredients, except the water in a food processor until it begins to stick together. If it is still too dry after pulsing for a minute, try adding a tbsp. of water and pulsing until the mixture can be pressed together and hold its shape.
- Press mixture into muffin paper lined muffin tin. Place in the freezer to firm up.
- Place dates in a bowl and cover with water. Let soak for 10 minutes.
- While the pie shells are chillin’, and the dates are soakin’, cut the apples into cubes. No need to peel the apples unless you want to or are not using organic apples.
- Drain the dates and put them in a blender along with the 1/2 cup water, vanilla and spices. Blend until a pourable “caramel” consistency forms. It should be thick like syrup but not so thick that it can’t be poured. Add more water if necessary to thin it out.
- Mix apples with caramel sauce and fill pie shells with apple mixture and serve immediately. Extra apple filling is a great topper for oatmeal, yogurt, granola or to just eat on its own!