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Apr 12, 2014

Chocolate Bird's Nests {gluten free, vegan + nut free}

Last Easter, I made and shared a few Easter treats that were delicious and fit our restricted diet needs at that time. Since going gluten-free over a year ago, I decided to remake those recipes and share them again. This time sans gluten!

Our Chocolate Haystacks are a super quick and simple treat that only require a couple of ingredients. Once we'd made them, we decided to rename them Chocolate Bird's Nests, which I think is much more fitting. Mason loves to help me make them, and they turned out so cute! My recipe from last year called for chow mein noodles. I searched high and low and was unable to find gluten-free chow mein noodles (short of buying stock in them and having enough on hand to supply the whole town for a decade...).

#glutenfree #dairyfree #easter #treats #chocolate

I decided to substitute the noodles for gluten-free pretzel sticks. To be honest, I have never cared for pretzels, so trying a gluten-free version never crossed my mind. I picked up a bag of gluten free pretzel sticks, not intending to be impressed by how delicious they are. The flavor is amazing, especially in comparison to "regular" pretzels, which I've always found to be bland and dry. (These pretzels do contain soy, but you could easily substitute another safe brand.)

This recipe is one of my favorites not just because of how simple it is, but also because I can use a couple of other favorite brands which I know and trust to be safe, delicious, and much healthier than the alternative. Enjoy Life Foods chocolate chips are one of our always-stocked, absolute go-to products.

Surf Sweets Organic Jelly Beans are another top-notch item I always stock up on around Easter. Made with all natural, organic products, safe from our allergens, I can rest easy about letting the kiddos enjoy them. An extra perk for me? They're tasty without being sickeningly sweet like many other candies out there!

#glutenfree #dairyfree #easter #treats #chocolate

Chocolate Bird's Nests {gluten free, vegan + nut free}

  • 1 bag Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks (the mini chips or dark chocolate morsels will work too)
  • 1 Tbsp Earth Balance Soy-free butter 
  • 3 cups gluten-free pretzel sticks 
  • 1 pkg Surf Sweets Organic Jelly Beans

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Place the chocolate and butter in a microwave safe glass bowl. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute, then remove and stir. Put in for another 30 seconds and stir again. Continue until the chocolate is just melted and mix well. 

Pour the pretzels into the chocolate/butter mixture and fold until all pretzels are coated. Using two spoons, scoop the chocolate covered pretzels and place on the parchment-lined pan, leaving about an inch between each pile. I ended up with eight "nests," but you could make them whatever size you choose. 

Working quickly, pile several jelly beans in the middle of each pretzel nest. (We put five jelly beans on each one.) 

Place the pan in the refrigerator until set. Keep cool until ready to serve. 

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