Pop-tarts Made Vegan and with a Healthy Twist
By Aylin Erman, EcoSalon
A childhood favorite gets a massive revamp.
Pop-tarts may look like fun and games, but their festive colors and playful sprinkles are where the goodness ends. These famous breakfast treats are no way to start the day.
One Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts Frosted Strawberry pastry contains 200 calories, 5 grams of fat, 170 milligrams of sodium, 2 grams of protein, and 16 grams of sugar. Its ingredient list includes the likes of wheat flour, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar, coloring, preservatives, and a slew of other hard-to-pronounce artificial ingredients.
The most alarming feature of store-bought pop-tarts is their sugar content. With 16 grams of sugar and less than 1 gram of fiber, the famous treat is not fit for breakfast. Its white flour and sugar content only offers something to chew on, not thrive on. And with two pastries per bag, the risk of having more than just one is worrisome, ultimately doubling all the aforementioned statistics. This begs for a recipe that lets you get some pop-tart love, without the handles.
These Strawberry Spelt Pop-Tarts use a simple spelt flour crust and no-added-sugar strawberry preserves. For a sweet and decadent finish, coconut butter is infused with strawberry flavor and slathered on top of the pop-tart. When all is said and done, you’ll be licking your lips and asking for more.
Spelt is a better alternative to white flour because it contains more B-vitamins, protein, and complex carbohydrates. It is also easier to digest. Coconut butter and oil are among the healthiest fats on earth. Most oils change biochemically when cooked at high temperatures, rendering them toxic and acidic in our bodies. Coconut oil has a relatively high burning temperature and is thus a better bet when cooking and baking. Studies have shown that coconut oil and butter both contribute to increased HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
This recipe should be tweaked to your fruit preferences. Use any flavor preserves you like! Make the dough on a Sunday night and each morning of the following weak, roll out a piece of the dough, assemble pieces with preserves, and bake to a crispy finish, all under 15 minutes. It’s deceivingly simple. Now, let’s get poppin’!
Strawberry Spelt Pop-Tarts
For the crust
- 2 cups spelt flour
- 1/2 cup coconut oil* (semi-hard)
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 3 tablespoons ice cold almond milk
For the Filling
- 3 tablespoons strawberry preserves
For the Icing
- 1/2 cup coconut butter*
- 2 tablespoons strawberry preserves
*Note: coconut oil and butter are not the same thing. Coconut oil is extracted from coconut meat, while coconut butter contains the meat.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a medium bowl mix together the spelt flour and sea salt. With a fork, begin to press the coconut oil, which should be soft but not melted, into the flour.
Add the almond milk and knead the dough with your hands until it holds together in a ball.
Form a disk and cover with plastic wrap. Place into the refrigerator for at least an hour, so that it becomes easier to work with and roll out.
I make one pop tart at a time. Sprinkle spelt flour on the counter surface, take a handful of the dough, and roll it out until it is 1/4-inch thick, using more spelt flour when needed to prevent sticking.
Use a pizza wheel to cut two, 3×4-inch rectangles. Place 1/2 tablespoon of preserves onto one of the rectangles, leaving a half-inch space between the preserves and the edges.
Place the other dough slice on top of the one with preserves. Use the edge of a fork to seal the edges.
Place the sealed pop tart on a baking sheet greased with coconut oil. Brush a layer of coconut oil on the top layer as well. Bake for 12 minutes or until the edges are slightly browned.
While the pop tart bakes, prepare the icing by mixing together the coconut butter and strawberry preserves until evenly combined. Each pop tart will get a hefty teaspoon slathered on top.
Garnish with strawberries and mint and pop ‘em in your mouth! Enjoy!
Aylin Erman currently resides in Istanbul and is creator of plant-based recipe website GlowKitchen.
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