Why a sustainable Christmas Guide?
In the last years my philosophy around Christmas has changed quite a bit in a way that I have stopped spending money on stuff that no-one needs, that pollutes the planet and is made under inhumane conditions. So rather than investing time in stressful shopping sprees, I invest my pre-Christmas-time in purposeful DIY’s, the search for local products that actually make a difference somehow for the person that is being gifted, the environment and society.
With this Sustainable Christmas Guide we want to inspire YOU this year to make a change and choose good gifts. Gifts that give back, do not harm the environment, are made under fair conditions and offer a true value to the person gifted. In doing so, we also want to introduce you to a few companies carefully selected by us that create purposeful products that will make amazing gifts for your loved one.
So let’s make some sustainable changes this year, shall we?
For this Guide I have teamed up with my sustainability expert and close friend Rosa who will be hosting this project on her blog too! So make sure, you hop over to check out her blog post too! In total we are looking at 4 weeks filled with inspiration around a more sustainable Christmas, each week dedicated to a particular theme.
Week 1: Food For the Soul
Lets make a head start with my favorite category: Food for the soul. For this category we are partnering up with Lebensbaum, the expert for organic spices and teas since 1979. Since its origin Lebensbaum sourced their teas, spices and coffee solely from organic farmers. Single tea bags are made from biodegradable wood fibers and the entire production operates in a CO2 neutral manner. We think you couldn’t pick a better manufacturer for spices, coffee and teas.
So Food for The Soul week it is! If you have such beautiful spices, we figured, we should use it for a truly special but classic Christmas treat.
The Best Gingerbread you have ever had
There is truly so much beauty and fun in making your own Christmas sweets instead of simply getting them from the supermarket! Plus, you know exactly what’s in them while avoiding huge amounts of plastic wrappers. So we decided to make the most of our Lebensbaum spices and turned a classic German Christmas treat into a vegan Wholegrain Gingerbread. This Gingerbread is soft, but still chewy, sweet but heavenly aromatic with a punch of gingerbread spice. Our secret ingredient though is a good heap of the chocolate porridge spice by Lebensbaum (which I can really recommend but is totally optional, you could replace with it with more gingerbread spice instead).
Never tried a vegan gingerbread before? Well, you are in for a treat! Cause just with two easy swaps, you turn your gingerbread into a vegan version. First of, we use flax eggs instead of usual eggs! Never heard of those? Mixing 1 tbsp of ground flax seed with 3 tbsp of water and adding it to the gingerbread, replaces a normal egg. When it comes to the butter, simply go for plantbased butter (Alsan for example).
Lastly, we decided to go absolutely wild with the toppings on our Gingerbread! A dark chocolate coat as the basis works wonders before topping the gingerbreads with vegan marshmallows, pistachios, cranberries, white chocolate chunks, vegan speculoos, and pink pepper. But add a personal spin to your gingerbread and choose the toppings you love most!
The perfect foodie gift
If you haven’t eaten those babies right after you decorated them, there is a good chance your family and friends would love these as yummy gifts too. To save on wrapping paper, we used leftover wrapping paper to craft little envelopes. Stamp the envelopes or seal them with little messages from your label maker (we ave used a golden label instead of black). Add a mistletoe to make the Gingerbread envelopes extra festive. Now you are ready to go!
One last note before I let you check out the recipe. If you would like to give the organic Lebensbaum spices and teas a try too, watch out for the giveaway that we will be hosting on Instagram!
So here is our famous Vegan Christmas Gingerbread with all the toppings you age ever dreamed about! Let us know if you have tried it and tag us on Instagram @consciouslifestyleofmine + @whensweetbecomeshealthy so we can check out your beautiful creations!
Vegan Christmas Gingerbread
- 100 g vegan butter (f.eg.Alsan)
- 200 g brown sugar
- 200 g sugar beet molasses
- 2 Flax eggs
- 1 tsp ground vanilla
- 500 g spelt flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 tsp gingerbread spice (by Lebensbaum)
- 4 tsp chocolate porridge spice (by Lebensbaum)
- 200 g dark vegan chocolate
- 1 handful vegan mini marshmallows
- 100 g white vegan chocolate (chopped)
- 100 g speculoos
- 1 handful pink pepper
- 1 handful vegan gummies
- 100 g chopped pistachios
- Prepare the flax eggs by mixing 2 tbsp. ground flax with 6 tbsp. of water. Let sit for 10 minutes.
- Let the vegan butter warm up to room temperature.
- Add the brown sugar to a bowl and add the butter. Beat with a handmixer until well combined.
- Add the sugar beet molasses, flax eggs, and vanilla and mix well.
- In a seperate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the molasses mixture and keep beating it with your handmixer. You might have to use your hands since the dough gets pretty solid.
- Flour a surfasce and roll out the gingerbread dough. Cut big rectangle shapes with a long knife.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Bake the gingerbreads for 10 minutes.
- Let them cool for 30 minutes preferably somewhere cold.
- Melt the chocolate over a waterbath. Spread a teaspoon of chocolate onto each gingerbread piece and get creative with the decoration! Drizzle with a bit of chcocolate once you are done decorating. Let cool until the chocolate has hardened.
- Store in a cookie tin for up to 4 weeks.
If you are feeling all christmassy now and would like some more festive inspiration, go check out my:
Favorite Christmas Cookie Selection