Gluten Free & Superfood-Boosted Treats for Santa

December 24, 2012
Categories: Holidays, Recipes

It’s Christmas Eve, and that means Santa and his reindeer have a very busy night tonight – they have to travel the whole world and deliver presents to the good little boys and girls – so they are going to need energy!

At our house, we are going to leave some Gluten-free superfood-boosted treats out for Santa and his reindeer that will help give them the energy they need to get their job done!

For the Reindeer…

During the Winter months, reindeer typically eat something called lichen, which is a composite of a fungus and an algae – they especially like to eat especially reindeer moss. They also eat the leaves of willow and birch trees.  But even though it is not something reindeer would usually eat, carrots and apple slices would be a real treat for them, so that is what we are leaving at our house for Santa’s reindeer.

For Santa…

Traditionally, Santa gets cookies and milk.  This year, we will be leaving Santa a choice of several different Gluten free cookies and some superfood boosted treats and hot chocolate (see recipes below):

  • Superfood Hot Chocolate (see recipe)
  • Superfood Peppermint Bark
  • Gluten Free Double chocolate peppermint stick cookies
  • Gluten Free Molasses Ginger Spice cookies
  • Superfood Snowballs (raw gluten free cookies)

Superfood Peppermint Bark

This bark is unique in that it is made with dark chocolate and coconut oil – both superfoods!


  • 3/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 T. clear Natures Agave organic
  • 30 drops of stevia liquid
  • 1/8 teaspoon of peppermint oil (or extract)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2 cups of dark chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup of crushed organic candy canes


  1. Mix together all the ingredients (except chocolate chips), stirring well to combine.
  2. Melt chocolate chips on a double boiler – keep an eye on to make sure not to burn.  Once melted, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  3. Line a small loaf pan with parchment paper.
  4. Spread the chocolate on the parchment paper.  Put in freezer for 5 mins to harden.
  5. Then spread the coconut oil mixture on top.
  6. Sprinkle the crushed peppermint candy canes across the top.
  7. Put in freezer for 10 minutes.
  8. Break it into pieces with a fork or knife.
  9. Store in an airtight container in the freezer or refrigerator.

This recipe was inspired by this recipe for Peppermint Patties from Elana’s Pantry, a great resource for organic and gluten free cooking.


Double Chocolate Peppermint Stick Cookies


  • 1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour blend
  • 1/4 cup blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature (or coconut oil, or palm shortening)
  • 1/2 cup palm date sugar
  • 1/3 cup agave nectar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 12 oz. semisweet chocolate chips (or whatever you like)
  • 1/4 cup of organic peppermint candy canes, crushed (or more if you like)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine the first 6 (dry) ingredients, set aside.
  3. Beat together the butter, palm sugar and agave until light & fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined.
  4. In a small bowl, coat the chocolate chips with a few tablespoons of the dry mixture, set aside.
  5. Add the rest of the dry mixture to the wet mixture, stirring to combine. Fold the chocolate chips into the batter.
  6. Drop teaspoon sized balls onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for about 14 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with the crushed peppermint while still hot.
  8. Let cool on the sheet for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.
  9. Store in an airtight container.


Gluten Free Molasses Ginger Spice Cookies 


  • 3 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 3 Tablespoons organic raw sugar (or you could substitute agave or honey)
  • 3 tablespoons palm shortening (or you could use butter for a non-vegan version)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut milk (or your favorite milk or non-dairy option)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Organic palm date sugar (or organic raw sugar) for rolling cookies – about 2/3 cup


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a sauce pan, heat molasses until it just comes to a boil.
  3. Add maple syrup, palm shortening, sugar and coconut milk to sauce pan, stirring to combine, then remove from heat.
  4. Combine all dry ingredients in a medium to large bowl.
  5. Pour wet ingredients into the dry, and stir to blend.
  6. Spoon out batter with a teaspoon and roll them into a ball in your hand, then drop into the bowl with palm or organic sugar, and coat completely with sugar.*
  7. Put balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet, pressing flat to about 1/4 inch thickness with your palm.
  8. Bake in a 350 degree oven for approximately 12 minutes.
  9. Cool on wire rack.  These make a chewy cookie.

*Alternatively, this batter could also be rolled into gingerbread men – after step #5, put the batter into the refrigerator for approx. 30 mins to chill.  Then roll out dough between parchment or saran wrap, or on a silpat sheet under saran or parchment.   Cut with cookie cutters.  Bake as directed.

Inspired by this recipe from The Food Lovers Primal Palate.


Superfood Snowball Cookies (raw & Gluten free) – these are a great snack for anytime of year! Perfect for an athlete!  These are raw cookies – so no oven needed!


  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 6 pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea or pink Himalayan salt
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil (melted)
  • 2 Tablespoons ground chia seed (you could use flax meal if you can’t find ground chia)
  • 3 Tablespoons Natures Agave nectar, or your favorite sweetener (use more/less to adjust sweetness)
  • 1 scoop of greens powder (Barleans choc silk greens works great)
  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder (optional)
  • Shredded unsweetened coconut for rolling.


  1. Put the almonds in the food processor and process till finely chopped.  Remove almonds.
  2. Put the dates in the food processor and pulse until very finely chopped, add 1 tablespoon water to make it like a paste.
  3. Put back in the finely chopped almonds, and add in the cacao, greens powder, chia, and salt and pulse till mixed well.
  4. If using, add the protein powder.
  5. Add the coconut oil, and agave – it should come together into a big lump.  If it does not, add water a little at a time until it does.
  6. Roll into balls, and then roll the balls into the coconut.  You can also roll in chopped nuts – pistachios would be great for the holiday!
  7. Best stored in an airtight container in the freezer or refrigerator.

Sara Vance Article written by Nutritionist Sara Vance, author of the book
The Perfect Metabolism Plan A regular guest on Fox 5 San Diego, you can see many of Sara’s segments on her media page. She also offers corporate nutrition, school programs, consultations, and affordable online eCourses. Download her free 40+ page Metabolism Jumpstart eBook here.

*This article is for educational purposes only. The content contained in this article is not to be construed as providing medical advice. All information provided is general and not specific to individuals. Persons with questions about the above content as how it relates to them, should contact their medical professional. Persons already taking prescription medications should consult a doctor before making any changes to their supplements or medications.

©2015, all rights reserved. Sara Vance.

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