Health Food Focus: Natvia Natural Sweetener.

Those who know me and my style of baking are well aware that I try to use natural sweeteners instead of refined sugar in my baking projects. I am forever playing around with natural sweeteners such as coconut sugar/raw honey/date paste, in order to ‘healthify’ any dessert recipe!

You can only imagine my curiosity and excitement when a package of Natvia goodies was express posted to my door. The healthy baking goddess inside me was screaming out, YAY!

♥ Stevia Plant

What It Is:

Natvia is a natural sweetener made from Reb A stevia, and erythritol. Reb A is the purest and sweetest parts of the stevia plant, and erythritol is naturally occurring nectar in fruits, such as melons and grapes.

Health Benefits:

Natvia is 100% natural and fructose free, has 95% fewer calories than sugar, contains no aspartame, or saccharin and it’s great for baking and cooking.
Another bonus- Natvia tastes nothing like artificial sweeteners. Because it’s natural, there are no nasty chemicals and no bitter aftertaste.

Recipe Idea:

An interesting ingredient calls for an even more interesting recipe. But what could I possibly make!?!? Muffins…boring. Cookies…done that. Raspberry Streusel Bars that are both gluten free and vegan?…Delicious. These even got the thumbs up from the guys at work. Bonus!

Recipe adapted from: www.elanaspantry.com

Makes 16 bars

Crust:

– 2 cups almond meal
– ¼ teaspoon sea salt
– 2 tablespoons coconut oil
– 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
– 1 tablespoon water
• Pulse ingredients together in a food processor until dough forms a ball
• Press dough into a lined square baking pan
• Bake at 180°c (fan forced) for 12 minutes


Streusel Topping:

– ¼ cup coconut oil
– ¼ cup almond meal
– 2 tablespoons Natvia
– ½ teaspoon sea salt
– 1 cup walnuts
– ½ cup shredded coconut

• Pulse oil, almond flour, natvia and salt together in a food processor until combined
• Briefly pulse in walnuts and coconut, so they are left coarse, not pulverized
• Set streusel aside

Filling:

– 1 cup raspberries (either frozen or fresh)
– 4 pitted medjool dates (soak in water for a few hours before to soften)

• Process raspberries and the soaked dates in a food processor or blender until combined
• Spread raspberry mixture over warm crust
• Sprinkle streusel topping over raspberry mixture
• Bake at 180°c for 15 minutes
• Cool for 10 minutes, then refrigerate for 2 hours to set
• Cut up & serve!

Store remaining bars in the fridge for up to 1 week.

These bars can also be served warm as a delightfully healthy autumn dessert. Just add a little vanilla ice cream or Greek yoghurt & raw honey. See, life without refined sugar isn’t so bad at all!

Where To Find It:
Natvia can be found at Coles and Woolworths or online, try Aussie Health Products.

Find out more about quitting sugar with Sarah Wilson’s “I QUIT SUGAR” E-book!

Article by Kavisha, self confessed ‘health foodie’ who believes a little dessert is good for the soul. She is currently studying for her Master of Wellness at RMIT University and blogs at Style My Coconut.

9 comments

  1. Hannah says:

    Yummo, is natvia a 1:1 ratio with sugar in baking, or do you use less? thanks, and fabulous recipe as always 🙂 coconut oil seems to be a winning product in cutting back on sugar! x

  2. Shapewear says:

    Wao Really your recipes are very interesting. Love it.

  3. Kavisha says:

    Hi Hannah,

    Natvia is a bit sweeter so i would use less 🙂

  4. Kasey says:

    Yum! I might try this with blueberries.

  5. Annette @ Wellness WA says:

    Glad everyone is loving it! Kasey: please do! In a month! 🙂

  6. Anneke says:

    I am making this recipe right now! I’ll have to check back in 2hrs and let you know how it went!

  7. Anneke says:

    UPDATE: it was delicious!! I made a few adjustments – added some “no egg” egg replacer to the base mixture, just to give it a little more sticking-together-ness. Also I made it in a round springform tin and served it in triangular slices. Delicious and a hit with friends! Kinda ruined the healthiness of it by serving with chocolate soy ice cream though.

  8. Annette @ Wellness WA says:

    Yay Anneke! Good tips with the egg replacer, and serving it with chocolate soy icecream sounds absolutely delicious!!!! Did you take any snaps? X

  9. Claire says:

    I have just purchased a jar of Natvia and was excited to find a sweetener that seemed to be healthy and natural sugar substitute. However, I noticed that the ingredient list described Erythritol as a substance naturally found in fruit. I am suspicious – why isnt the fruit actually listed. To me it reads more as a statement, than an ingredient. I did some research and found this:

    In 100DaysOfRealFood.com erythritol is described thus, “erythritol is a naturally occurring sugar that is sometimes found in fruit, but food manufacturers don’t actually use the natural stuff. Instead they start with genetically engineered corn and then go through a complex fermentation process to come up with chemically pure erythritol.”

    http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2013/04/25/stevia-food-babe-investigates/

    Is the Erythritol in Natvia derived from fruit, or is the corn and fermentation process used? If it is the latter, this will be the first and last jar of Natvia I purchase. Drat.

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