I eat nuts in some form every day. Peanut butter spooned onto something (or straight from the jar!), walnuts sprinkled over porridge, pecans baked into a recipe, or snacking on Brazil nuts – they are just very basic examples. Years ago I used to be afraid of the fat content but after reading up on the wealth of vitamins and minerals nuts contain, I started enjoying them as part of my diet – it’s just about keeping an eye on the quantities, as I’m sure like many of us, trying to stop at one spoon of nut butter is hard 😉

That’s why it’s a pleasure to work with California Walnuts once again as part of their ‘Wellness Cracked’ campaign, aiming to champion the many health benefits of this ‘super nut’. Because California walnuts are grown in unique conditions, they have a milky, sweet and naturally creamy taste, plus they are bursting with plant-based goodness. Here are just some of the reasons to love them:

  • Boost your energy
  • Help to keep your heart healthy
  • Protect your natural defences
  • Packed with plant-based Omega-3s
  • Help to fight tiredness
  • Support vision and brain function
  • Help to nourish skin and hair
  • Can keep teeth and bones healthy
  • Bursting with good fats
  • A nutritious, high protein snack


  • 125g dried prunes soaked in 100ml boiling water for 10 minutes
  • 100g dark chocolate, broken up into pieces – can be dairy-free/vegan/no added sugar (I used Montezuma’s)
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil (I used Indigo Herbs)
  • 150g brown rice flour (I used Indigo Herbs)
  • 40g coconut sugar or stevia (I used Natvia)
  • 2 tablespoons cacao or cocoa powder (I used Bioglan)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 100ml almond milk (I used Alpro)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 pears, peeled, cored and diced
  • 50g California Walnut pieces

Get making!

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C and grease and line a 9x9in baking tin.
  2. Place the soaked prunes and their water in a food processor or blender (I use my Ninja Kitchen Auto IQ) and whizz up until smooth.
  3. Gently melt the chocolate and coconut oil then allow to cool a little.
  4. Add to the blender/food processor and whizz up again.
  5. Mix together the flour, sugar/stevia, cacao/cocoa and bicarb of soda in a bowl. Pour in the prune chocolate mixture along with the almond milk, vinegar and vanilla and mix to combine. Fold in the pears and walnuts.
  6. Spread evenly into the tin and smooth out evenly. Bake for 25 minutes until firmed up and leave to cool in the tin. Cut into 9-12 pieces then enjoy!