This easy holiday inspired dessert board features cookies, chocolate bark, fruit, and nuts, rounded out with a sweet chickpea-based cookie dough dip. This is a healthier version of a Christmas dessert board, with the high protein, low sugar dip. Perfect for holiday gatherings – beautiful, easy to put together, and with something everyone will love.
Hello, and welcome to my final holiday giveaway post! You can see the others here. While the other giveaways have been confined either to North American or Europe, this one is worldwide as I’m shipping the prize myself, the beautiful linen tablecloth in the photos. Head over to this instagram post to enter the giveaway!
Also, this is my first real scene. I just have a 50mm lens, a macro, and a kit lens, so this was a bit tricky to shoot. I used a 50mm which is pretty tight, so I was backed right up into the opposite corner of where the table was set up. I borrowed a friend’s house to take these and it was really fun. One of my work goals for the new year is to include myself more into pictures and this was the start of that. I think it’s always nicer when there’s a face attached to the blog.
This might look a bit complicated, but it’s the most ridiculously easy recipe. The chickpea cookie dough dip is essentially cooked chickpeas, nut butter, and a little maple syrup. Vanilla, cinnamon, and a touch of coconut oil round things out and it’s insane. I kept eating it and every time I took a bite I thought I wouldn’t like it, but kept going back. Chickpeas in sweets can be a bit weird but they’re completely invisible in this recipe.
Even with my food processor being on the brink of burning out (it’s making some scary noises these days) this blended up smoothly with no trace of bean. You can use any type of nut butter. Hazelnut and almond are my top choices, with peanut in a close second. It will taste strongly of whichever nut butter you choose, so go for one you really like. Essentially, it’s a sweet hummus, and it’s very good.
The plan was to call this a sweet hummus mezze but that sounds a bit unpleasant, and it tastes just like cookie dough (although I was torn between cookie dough and cake batter). In the end, it’s like a healthier version of dunkaroos. They were my favourite forbidden childhood snack – if you haven’t heard of them, it’s a little package of small cookies with a separate icing section to dip the cookies into, very popular when I was growing up in the 90s. Terribly unhealthy but very exciting for small children.
The chickpea cookie dough dip is a very good sneaky way to get all the good stuff of chickpeas in, even if you make it yourself. But I can see a version of this going over spectacularly with kids (or picky adults) as long as you don’t tell them what’s in it. It makes a great sweet bread for bread and crackers if that’s your jam. I can’t stress enough how awesome it is despite the arguably questionable addition of chickpeas.
Apart from the chickpea cookie dough dip, this platter includes my raw chocolate bark, vegan spice sugar cookies, and maple roasted hazelnuts. Plus some seasonal fresh fruits, dried fruits, and a few extra squares of dark chocolate. Some orange shortbread would be nice here as well, or any kind of shortbread-like cookie.
I know the pictures are fancy but this is one of the easiest recipes I’ll ever post! The plan is to be back at least once before Christmas, but fingers crossed we’ll be moving within a week or so. If everything suddenly falls into place then time might be a hot commodity, but we’ll see. I’m going to try to at least find a little time to make these beautiful gingerbread ornaments before Christmas is over. If nothing else then I’ve already shared seven new recipes in the month of December, could be worse!
So if I’m not around before the holidays really start, then happy holidays, merry Christmas, happy new year!
Chickpea Cookie Dough Dip
- 150 grams / 1 cup cooked chickpeas
- 80 grams / 1/4 cup natural nut butter
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup (to taste)
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Chickpea Cookie Dough Dip
- Add all of the ingredients to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Blend on high speed until smooth. Taste for sweetness and add more maple syrup if needed, and serve, topped with extra cinnamon.
- On a large board or platter, arrange the chocolate bark, roasted hazelnuts, sugar cookies, dried fruits like apricots, dated, and figs, pomegranate, orange wedges, and dark chocolate around the cookie dough dip.
- Add some evergreens around the board if you have them, and place the different elements scattered throughout the board instead of all clumped in one place.
• Cooked chickpeas, or canned and rinsed. I just mean not dried chickpeas.