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As 2015 draws to a close, head into the New Year prepared to snack smarter and healthier! Why wait to make changes to your diet when the following nutritious snacks are easy to keep on hand to combat cravings!

Pure VanillaPure Vanilla Almond Bars

Simple, wholesome, and organic, the new Vanilla Almond bars from Pure are the perfect go-to snack when cravings strike! As with all Pure products, these delicious bars are certified organic, gluten-free, non-GMO verified, vegan and kosher, and will satisfy your sweet tooth, while providing balanced nutrition for your body. “Mom” loves tucking these in her purse for a great sourse of energy while on-the-move with little ones in tow!

Pure Vanilla Almond is the newest flavor to be added to the popular Ancient Grains line. Pure’s crispy ancient grain blend, made with quinoa, amaranth, flax seeds, and hemp, is now enriched with Sacha Inchi, an exotic seed that is a source of complete vegan protein. Combining mouth-watering vanilla with whole grains and almonds, the Pure Vanilla Almond bar has only 150 calories and 6g of sugar, and has fiber and antioxidants as well as 4g of protein. Learn more at www.thepurebar.com.

pure_clusterscp_chocolatepeanutPure Crispy Clusters

Mom” is loving these little handfuls of goodness and flavor that are decadent and delicious! These healthy alternatives to sugary and salty snacks are a win-win for taste buds and health! A perfect blend of crunchy and nutty, Pure’s new Crispy Clusters are a light and healthy snack that are great at any time of day. Made from healthy whole grains, Crispy Clusters have only 110 calories, less than 5 grams of sugar and provide 3 grams of fiber per serving. They also contain complete protein, from ancient grains like quinoa and amaranth, making them an ideal snack suitable to people with dietary restrictions. To top it off, all three flavors are low in sodium, containing 140mg or less per serving. Learn more at www.thepurebar.com.

SuperSeedz Maple SugarSuperSeedz

Who knew pumpkin seeds could be seasoned so perfectly! “Mom‘ discovered these nutritious and absolutely delicious gourmet pumpkin seeds that are perfect to keep on hand for a quick yet healthy snack! SuperSeedz boast up to 9g of plant-based protein per serving, and are peanut-free, tree nut-free, egg-free, dairy-free, fish-free, shellfish-free, soy-free and made with gluten-free ingredients. Plus, they are Non-GMO Project Verified! The newest flavor, Maple Sugar & Sea Salt, joins the brand’s eight other existing flavors which includes Really Naked, Sea Salt, Cinnamon & Sugar, Coco Joe, Tomato Italiano, Curious Curry, Somewhat Spicy and Super Spicy, and can be enjoyed as a standalone snack, or as a welcome addition to cereal, yogurt and more! Keep SuperSeedz within reach when temptation strikes as we head into the New Year! Learn more at www.superseedz.com.

Endangered Species Chocolate - Dark Chocolate & Sea SaltEndangered Species Chocolate

Eat chocolate and do good? Yes – it is possible! Endangered Species milk and dark chocolate bars and bites are made with ethically traded, shade grown cacao and natural ingredients. 10% of net profits from your purchase are donated to support conservation efforts! You can learn about at-risk species by reading the inside of each 3oz. bar wrapper, and know that each bite you enjoy is doing good, too! Choose from a variety of flavors to tantalize your taste buds and learn more at www.chocolatebar.com.

*Companies generously provided samples and images for this piece.*

Pure Bar Founder, Veronica Bosgraaf, has developed a delicious recipe for eggnog this holiday season – made without eggs! Rich, creamy, and full of spice, the recipe below serves 4 people. Yum! The recipe can be found in her cookbook, Pure Food.

Vegan Eggnog

Ingredients

2 cups almond milk, homemade or store-bought (“Mom” prefers Orgain Organic Protein Almond Milk)
¼ cup spiced rum (optional)
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
⅛ teaspoon sea salt
½ to 1 cup ice

Preparation

1. In a blender, combine the almond milk, rum, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, salt, and ice. Blend on low speed until smooth and serve immediately.

Serves 4.

*Recipe and image courtesy of Veronica Bosgraaf, founder of Pure Bar and cookbook author of Pure Food.

Pure Bar Founder, Veronica Bosgraaf, has developed these decadent, gluten-free Peppermint Brownies, which are perfect for serving this holiday season! The recipe can be found in her cookbook, Pure Food.

Peppermint Brownies

Ingredients

Grapeseed oil or coconut oil spray, for greasing
½ cup white rice flour
½ cup brown rice flour
2 teaspoons tapioca starch
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt
½ cup coconut oil, at room temperature
1 ½ cups organic cane sugar blended
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon peppermint extract
4 large eggs
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preparation

1. Preheat the oven to 325ᴼF. Grease an 8-inch square baking dish with oil and line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the white and brown rice flours, tapioca starch, baking powder, and salt.

3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or using a handheld mixer, beat the coconut oil and sugar on medium speed until well combined, about 2 minutes. Add the cocoa powder, vanilla, and peppermint extract and beat until incorporated. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture ½ cup at a time, beating until just combined. Stir in the walnuts and spread the batter in the prepared pan.

4. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out nearly clean, about 40 minutes. Let cool to room temperature before cutting and serving.

Makes one 8-inch square pan.

*Recipe and image courtesy of Veronica Bosgraaf, founder of Pure Bar and cookbook author of Pure Food.

This Halloween, offer trick-or-treaters healthier versions of favorite treats and snacks that they are sure to enjoy! “Mom” has compiled her picks for the upcoming festivities that are tasty and keep little ones away from overly sugary, processed treats. Both kids and parents alike will love these treats!

Pure Organic Fruit-and-Veggie-Strip-Strawberry-ApplePure Fruit & Veggie Strips

Hand out a healthy snack that both kids and parents will love this Halloween! The Pure Fruit Snack product line now offers Pure Fruit & Veggie Strips made with wholesome fruit and vegetable ingredients, with no added sugars, artificial sweeteners or preservatives. The Pure Fruit & Veggie Strips come in two yummy flavors including Strawberry Apple and Wildberry Apple. Our toddler gobbled them up, loving both of the delicious flavors! We were able to sneak in a bite of both and had to agree – they were really good!

Pure Fruit and Veggie Strips are certified organic, non GMO, vegan, gluten-free, soy free, kosher and made with fruit and vegetable juices and purees. The company uses no cane syrups or cane sugar, no artificial flavors or colors and the fruit snacks are produced in a peanut-free facility. The snacks retail for $1.09 for 1 bar/strip and $19.20 for a box of 20. Available at various Whole Foods nationwide, Sam’s Club or online at www.thepurebar.com.

Crispy Greens Crispy Fruit GroupCrispy Fruit Snacks from Crispy Green

Scare away the ghoulish consequences of unhealthy treats this Halloween by providing Crispy Fruit snacks from Crispy Green! Freeze-dried to perfection, these snacks are 100% pure fruit, nothing else! Kids love to munch on these delectable and satisfying treats – and so do moms and dads! With seven great flavors to choose from in convenient snack-size pouches, it’s a snack you can take anywhere and will be a welcome addition to any child’s trick-or-treat stash! These crispy little packs of delightful fruit were quickly devoured in “Mom’s” household, as they satisfy your snack attack with their light, crispy texture and fresh fruit taste. Our three year old loved the Pineapple, Asian Pear and Mango flavors the most! The best part is that you can recognize the fruit since it has been freeze-dried! Crispy Fruit Snacks contain no additives or preservatives, no fat or cholesterol, no skins or cores, and are Non-GMO Project Verified. At only 55 or less calories per serving, this is the ideal little snack to tuck in treat bags, lunch boxes, or backpacks! www.crispygreen.com

Justins Maple Almond Butter Snack PacksJustin’s Snack Packs

Hand out wholesome, tasty snacks this Halloween! Dip into Justin’s Snack Packs, which are sure to wow parents and kids alike. Each pack comes with gluten-free pretzels, in three decadent flavors, including Chocolate Hazelnut Butter, Maple Almond Butter and Classic Almond Butter. Yum! www.justins.com

Justins -BaggedMinisJustin’s Organic Mini Peanut Butter Cups

If you want to give out a healthier version to an old favorite, peanut butter cups, Justin’s Organic Mini Peanut Butter Cups are bite-sized treats of pure perfection for the candy lover in you that is looking for an organic treat to indulge yourself, I mean trick-or-treaters, in! According to Justin, “they’re every bit as tasty as my regular peanut butter cups with the added benefit of being smaller, more shareable, and let’s face it, more adorable.” Right now, Target is offering them in a bulk-size bag perfect for stocking up before Halloween, and if you use the Cartwheel App, you can save a bit, too! www.justins.com

Annie's Halloween Bunny GrahamsAnnie’s Halloween Bunny Grahams

We are crazy about Annie’s line of products at ‘Mom’s‘ house, so these single-serving packets that contain a mixture of honey and chocolate flavored bunny grahams made with organic wheat are perfect for handing out to tiny trick-or-treaters this year! Hopefully there will be some left over to tuck in lunchboxes next week, too! Annie’s Halloween Bunny Grahams can be found at Whole Foods Market as well as Target. www.annies.com

*Companies generously provided samples and images for this article.*