Since I eliminated dairy, I’m often asked how I get enough calcium. It’s understandable, as when we think of calcium, cow’s milk is usually the first thing that springs to mind.
But you know what? There are plenty of plant-based calcium sources: almonds, Brazil nuts, broccoli, collards, kale, spinach, beet greens, Swiss chard, parsnips, parsley, tofu, kidney beans, raisins, blackstrap molasses, kelp, raisins, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, oranges. And these are good sources, too – they don’t have calcium in piddly amounts.
Sesame seeds, which are ground into a paste called tahini, offer more than 1,000mg of calcium per 100-gram serving. Of course, 100 grams is a lot of sesame seeds – about ¾ cup – which is more than I would eat in a single serving, as they are also rich in calories and fat. But they are very nutrient dense, and also contain things like magnesium (nature’s relaxant), iron, zinc, fibre and tryptophan, which induces sleep and boosts mood.
I quite enjoyed these bars; they were mellow and satisfying. I’d use less coconut oil next time, maybe ¼ cup or so, as the bars melted quickly in my hand as I was eating them. And then add in some more tahini or almond butter to make up the difference.
How do you make sure you get enough calcium?
Butterscotch Tahini Bars
From Sketch-free Vegan Eating
1/3 cup coconut oil
¼ cup tahini
¼ cup lucuma powder
1 tbsp coconut sugar, or 20 drops of stevia
¼ tsp vanilla extract or vanilla powder
Sesame seeds, for topping
Melt coconut oil, then combine with tahini, lucuma, vanilla, coconut sugar and salt. Stir until combined. Pour into mold of choice (I used a loaf pan lined with parchment). Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Freeze and then cut into bars.