Joyous Blog

Two-Bite Chocolate Chip Nuggets, Nut-free!

Aug 29, 2014 BY Joy McCarthy

Hurray! A raw cookie recipe that is nut-free and gluten-free. I created these two-bite nuggets for all the joyous readers out there (and your kids) who cannot eat nuts but can eat seeds.

Nutritional Highlights:

  • Contains all the must-haves for brain health: protein, fiber, good fat, complex carbs. These macro nutrients are essential for blood sugar balance, keeping your belly satisfied and your energy high. (note: fiber is not technically a macro nutrient)
  • Source of key minerals: Iron, selenium, magnesium, zinc, potassium, chromium.
  • Source of key vitamins: B1, B3, B6, folate, vitamin C and E.
  • Rich in antioxidants: polyphenols, catechins, and epicatechins. Antioxidants protect your cells from damage.
  • Healthy dose of a variety of amino acids due to the plant powered protein powder.

Most schools in North America do not allow peanuts, so this is a wonderful raw cookie recipe that as long as your school allows seeds, you can make these for your little ones as a wonderful snack! Be sure to watch my segment from the Morning Show below on healthy lunchbox ideas for back to school!

I personally love these two-bite chocolate chips nuggets as a mid-afternoon powersnack to keep me joyous and energized!

Sweets + Treats
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • ¼ cup sunflower butter
  • 1 cup oat flakes or quick cooking oats
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips
  • ¼ cup chocolate protein powder (see brand below) or raw cacao powder*
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup coconut flakes or coconut sugar
  1. In large bowl, mash bananas with a fork. Add sunflower butter and oats, stir together. Get in there with your hands, it's much easier to mix it all up!
  2. Add cranberries, chocolate chips, protein powder and cinnamon. Stir together until fully combined.
  3. Roll in into balls and then roll in coconut flakes or coconut sugar.
  4. Give the nuggets a taste test. You can add more of any ingredient to make it taste exactly how you desire! Refrigerate or enjoy immediately.


*If you use raw cacao powder instead of protein powder you will likely need to make the nuggets a bit sweeter because raw cacao is quite bitter. You could add honey or maple syrup.
Makes 15-18 nuggets if you make them 2-bites worth. :)

 I suggest 1-2 as a snack. Of course that all depends how large you make them!

In the segment this morning, the lunchbox ideas I shared are as follows:

Salmon salad sandwich. I used the dressing from the Creamy Potato Salad from chocolate avocado pudding. The protein powder I used for the 2-bite nuggets is Genuine Health's vegan proteins+, chocolate.

Maple Banana Grilled Sandwich from Joyous Health. Instead of almond butter, I used sunflower seed butter.

Nut-free Trail Mix Recipe:

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

1/4 cup dried organic cranberries

1/4 cup dairy/nut/gluten-free chocolate chips

You may have noticed that I had little love notes on some of the lunch boxes I shared on the segment. When I was a little girl my mom would do this for me. It always made me feel joyous! You could also put in thoughtful quotes or funny jokes. Spread the love!

Any questions, please ask or comment below.

Have a joyous day and all the best for back-to-school!


ps. The lunchboxes were BPA-free plastic. I bought them at a little kitchen store in Owen Sound when I was doing a radio show/book signing up there called Stokes.

Aug 29, 2014 BY Joy McCarthy
Christine   •   September 9, 2014

Hello Joy! I made your two bites nuggets this weekend and they are so good! I found them maybe a little bit soft. Is it normal? Thanks you and have a nice day!

Kate McDonald Walker   •   September 9, 2014

Hi Christine, Did you refrigerate them? We say in the recipe that you can refrigerate or eat them right away, but I find that sticking them in the fridge tends to firm them up a bit. Kate - Joyous Health Team

Sharon   •   September 17, 2014

Would almond butter work in place of sunflower butter?

Kate McDonald Walker   •   September 18, 2014

Hi Sharon, Sure! We just went with sunflower butter to make them friendly to schools with nut-free policies, but you can swap out any nut butter you want. Kate - Joyous Health Team

Kathy   •   September 30, 2014

I was wondering what the protein powder brand is...I looked in your post but must have missed it. Thank you, there are so many brands to choose from, would appreciate the insight! Kathy

Joy McCarthy   •   October 1, 2014

Hi Kathy, I really like Genuine Health's vegan proteins plus in either vanilla or chocolate. They also have a fermented one now that is available in a natural flavour. However, the key with protein powders is to make sure they are as clean and additive free as possible.

Laurie   •   November 5, 2014

Hi Joy, I have recently had to give up eating bananas because of finding out I have a food intolerance to them :o(. Can you tell me a good substitution for them? I'd love to try you chocolate chip nuggets but... Thank you for any suggestions you can give! Laurie

Kate McDonald Walker   •   November 5, 2014

Hi Laurie, You might want to try experimenting with applesauce or almond butter in place of the bananas. (Please note we haven't tried swapping out the bananas ourselves, so we can't guarantee it will work. This is just our best guess based on previous banana swaps in recipes.) Kate - Joyous Health Team

Elizabeth Ramsay   •   November 10, 2014

I saw you speak at Goodness Me and you made this great smoothie, it was like a Creamsicle. I was just wondering where I would find the recipe? I do have your book but it doesn't seem to be in there. If it is, could you give me the page number? Thanks Elizabeth

Joy McCarthy   •   November 11, 2014

Hi Elizabeth, here's the Creamsicle Smoothie recipe, enjoy!!

Ann Rohm   •   February 12, 2015

Hello Joy! I was wondering a good substitute for coconut flakes and coconut sugar? It's rather hard to find even in my town's local markets.. Thank you! x

Joy McCarthy   •   February 15, 2015

This is a really tough one! I think you could sub in hemp seeds (hearts) for coconut flakes for texture, but not taste. As for coconut sugar, you could use raw honey or maple syrup for sweetening but of course this will change the texture of what ever you are cooking/baking. However, I always recommend to my clients who live in small towns to order their health food products online. It's often cheaper than in-store, and incredibly convenient :) Try, or

Lynsey Hannah   •   February 21, 2015

Hi joy! I love all your recipes and your book!!! Curious if you would suggest freezing the raw cookie dough balls? Thanks!

Kate McDonald Walker   •   February 21, 2015

Hi Lynsey, They should freeze fine as long as you ensure no extra moisture gets packed in with them, and you may want to pack them in such a way that they don't stick together during freezing. Kate - Joyous Health Team

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