[The perfect healthy obsession! These Salted Caramel Protein Cups are vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free, nut-free, yeast-free, and low glycemic. Suitable for Stage 2 and beyond on an anti-candida diet.]
When I first heard from Naked Nutrition inquiring if I might be interested in trying their products for a sponsored post, my response was a no-brainer. Of course I’d be interested!
I’d seen mention of their simple, often single-ingredient protein powders all over the internet, and every review seemed to be unequivocally positive. Plus, they had a variety of plant-based products that appealed to me.
Now, because I’m an anti-candida kind of gal, that means I was, sadly, unable to partake of the PB powder . No worries! The HH and The Girls both pounced on the simple peanut butter cookies I whipped up (sweetened for the HH, sans sweetener for the Girls).
I loved the products and think you will, too. Here’s why.
About Naked Nutrition
In this case, the company name is definitely apropos: the philosophy at Naked Nutrition is to provide supplements and health products stripped of non-essential ingredients or additives, with only clean ingredients so that you know what you’re getting with no extra “fluff.”
Even the website is minimal with its black-and-white theme. As their About page says, “We strip away all of the marketing and gimmicks that many companies use today. We sell products with only the purest ingredients.”
The products I received each contained only one ingredient, and even the containers are stripped down with really simple labeling on clear jars to showcase the contents.
Even better, these protein powders were both certified gluten-free and certified vegan; plus, the pea protein is also GMO-free and dairy-free (which makes sense if it’s vegan!). They convert yellow peas to the protein powder using a water-extraction method without the use of chemicals. The Naked PB is third-party tested for heavy metals.
And since there’s no added sugar, it’s perfect for those of us on anti-candida diets or keto diets–or anyone who follows a sugar-free lifestyle. I also love that they are grain-free for those days I want to go without grains!
If you follow a plant-based diet, you could also choose from among the Chocolate or Vanilla Pea Protein, or the Rice Protein options (the rice is also certified organic).
What does it taste like?
When I’ve purchased one-ingredient protein powders in the past, they’ve usually been made from hemp. While I adore hemp seeds on their own, I’m not too keen on plain hemp protein, which (to my palate) has an unpleasant taste.
Naked Pea was different. Like most grain-free protein powders I’ve had, the texture was very fine and powdered. This powder also blends well and has a fairly neutral taste, like a “natural” protein powder you might get from other brands.
How can you use it?
I tried the Naked Pea in a smoothie, in protein waffles, and in these Salted Caramel Protein Cups. In all cases, the powder provided a smooth, neutral taste that didn’t overpower any of the other flavors and combined well with the texture.
But don’t stop there! If you’ve been around here a while, you know that I love using protein powders in my recipes. You can add it to a smoothie, of course, but how about making a protein-rich nut or seed butter? Or pancakes or other baked goods? I even add protein powders to my porridge in the morning or even puddings. Anything goes, really. And, of course, there are always classic protein balls!
For today’s recipe, I wanted something a little less like a healthy snack and more like an indulgent treat. Because who says you can’t have indulgent treats made with protein powder?
I opted for the tantalizing combination of salted caramel and chocolate. I have to admit I wasn’t always a fan (the idea of salt + caramel made me go, “Ewww!” in an Alexis Rose sort of way), but then when I tasted it paired with chocolate, I was immediately smitten. And it’s been eternal love since then.
These confections are great as a dessert, a delectable snack, or portable treat (just be sure they don’t get too warm or the chocolate will melt). The filling is firm when eaten straight out of the fridge and soft and velvety when allowed to warm up to room temperature.
However you eat them, you’ll love them. And you’ll know you’re having a delicious, protein-rich treat made with simple, whole ingredients, too.
Salted Caramel Protein Cups
Super healthy meets incredibly indulgent in these little gems! A creamy, velvety filling sits inside sugar-free chocolate cups so you can grab a treat that’s both protein-rich and good for you, any time you need one.
For the filling:
3 Tbsp unsweetened smooth sunflower seed butter or almond butter
1/2 cup (120 ml) sweet potato puree (can be homemade or purchased; see note)
3 Tbsp (45 ml) Naked Pea protein powder
2 tsp (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
1/4-1/3 cup (60-80 ml) sugar-free icing sugar, to taste
1/8 tsp (.5 ml) fine sea salt (or to taste, if using plain caramel stevia)
Flaked sea salt, for garnish (optional)
For the chocolate coating:
1 cup (240 ml) sugar-free chocolate chips
1 Tbsp (15 ml) coconut butter (not oil)
Make the filling: Set out a silicone mini muffin tray (with a dozen mini muffins) or four regular-sized silicone muffin cups.
In a small pot over lowest possible heat, melt the sunflower seed butter and coconut butter. Remove from heat.
In a small food processor, blend the sweet potato and protein powder until smooth and creamy. Add remaining ingredients including the sunflower seed butter and coconut butter and blend until very smooth. At this point, you could use the filling as a salted caramel frosting! If using in the cups, proceed as follows.
Divide the filling evenly among the muffin cups. Freeze until solid (at least 6 hours or over night). Pop out of the silicone cups and onto a plate that is lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Return to the freezer while you make the coating.
Make the coating: In a small, heavy-bottomed pot over lowest possible heat, melt the chips and coconut butter until smooth.
Finish the cups: Using a fork, dip each cup into the chocolate until fully immersed. With the cup still on the fork, allow any excess chocolate to drip back into the pot by tapping the bottom of the fork lightly on the side of the pot. Slide the cup onto the plastic-lined plate. The chocolate will begin to firm up quickly, but if you are doing all twelve mini-muffins at once, you might want to do half at a time and keep the others in the freezer so they don’t begin to soften too much.
Once the cups are all coated, use any extra chocolate to decorate the tops by drizzling it over them. Sprinkle with flaked salt as garnish. Store in the fridge until ready to eat.
Makes 12 mini-cups or 4 large cups. May be frozen.
Note: I prefer homemade, baked, sweet potatoes for this recipe. As they bake, the potatoes naturally caramelize, making for a darker, richer flavor in the cups. But pre-made is fine, too!
Suitable for: ACD Stage 2 and beyond; refined sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free, nut free, yeast-free, vegan, low glycemic.
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Naked Nutrition, but they did not in any way influence my review of the product. Also, links in this post may be affiliate links. If you choose to purchase using those links, at no cost to you, I will receive a small percentage of the sale.
Subscribe for recipes and more about living well without sugar, gluten, eggs or dairy! Click here to subscribe to RickiHeller.com via email. You’ll receive emails sharing recipes and videos as soon as they’re posted, plus weekly updates and news about upcoming events. A healthy lifestyle CAN be sweet!