I just love this Keto Nut-Free Turtles recipe and I hope that you’re going to love it to. That’s right, you heard me correctly; I am talking about keto nut free turtles.
How is this possible since one of turtle’s main ingredients is pecans? For this recipe I’m substituting roasted pumpkin seeds instead of roasted pecans and you know what? It’s delicious! So exciting right!?!
Now, for the record, I had no idea the main ingredient was pecans. I thought it was peanuts, to be honest. Indeed, this is my limitation when creating these recipes – I have no idea what the real thing tastes like. At times, this part in the design process can result in disaster (I’ll go into more detail when I finally post my nemesis recipe: pumpkin seed pie).
However, having learned my lesson, I mitigated catastrophe with the assistance of Greg, my brother-by-appointment and valiant helper for all things La Femme Nikketo, to make sure this recipe aligned with the real thing.
For me, this recipe is a bit like vindication. As a tween, among the inventory of teasing my older sister, as sisters do, was to demonstrate how good and delectable nut-filled chocolate candies such as turtles were, knowing full well that I was deathly allergic. Sisters!
It’s okay, redemption is mine. I can make my own turtles now, they have no sugar, are totally keto, nut-free and I’m sharing this with the world so no other children will get tortured like I did. I know, this is so good of me. My benevolence is as outstanding as my humility 🤣!
Actually, a little sidestep here. While I spoke lightly about my sister teasing me, in some cases it’s more serious than innocent teasing. Food allergy bullying is quite common for children, tweens, and teenagers with this type of allergy.
I don’t think there is a kid with food allergies that hasn’t had another kid wave chocolate treats in their faces with a ‘‘you can’t have this” type chant. They think they are being funny and don’t realize they need remedial help on their comical skills.
When I was diagnosed with a peanut and tree-nut allergy, no one really knew about it. That really is where my philosophical quest to create recipes that would make everyone feel included was born. What’s great is that now, many people are far more educated about this type of severe allergy.
That said, there are still people that don’t get it. While we can’t educate everyone, we can try. Regardless if you, or someone close to you, are being bullied about their food allergy, tell someone. Seek help to develop a safety plan. You or your loved ones’ safety is always the priority.
There are also some good articles on this subject for those who are looking for more resources:
Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team (FAACT) on bullying is very comprehensive.
Parents Canada has a good review for parents, Handling Food Allergies in Highschool.
To find international help lines, go to Child Helpline International.
Getting back to my sugar-free turtles recipe, you may surmise after that brief pause of seriousness, that this recipe is close to my heart since it is a completely suitable replacement so a child with a nut allergy would not feel excluded. With that, my Keto Nut-Free Turtles recipe follows my philosophy: ‘let’s use what we can’t have as an opportunity to invent a safe alternative that we’ll all love’.
The bottom line is, with these keto nut-free turtles, there is no deprivation; I assure you. They are perfect! So, the moral of this story is that it can be fun to accommodate those with food allergies so you have safe treats for everyone.
The process for making them is fairly simple once you have the caramel. I love using my Sugar-Free Caramel recipe for this. You can also use my Sugar-Free Dulce De Leche recipe as well, if you want. Myself, I prefer the traditional caramel but it really is up to your preference. If you use the Sugar-Free Dulce De Leche, it may be a bit runnier requiring more set time in the fridge.
For the chocolate you can either use sugar-free chocolate or even my Keto Milk Chocolate recipe. It’s up to you.
First, put some parchment on your cookie sheets and give them a light coat with non-stick spray. It’s handy to make sure ahead of time that your baking sheet will fit in your fridge and you’ve made room for it. The last thing you want is to struggle getting the baking sheet into the fridge or even have to switch baking sheets as the caramel is melting into the tray!
If you haven’t roasted your pumpkin seeds in advance, you want to start with that and let them cool a bit. Then it’s time to put them together. There are two methods to do this. Both methods can get messy and can be a bit persnickety or as my late-grandmother use to say, it makes me ‘meshugge’.
If you are making your Keto Caramel specifically for this recipe then keep it warm, and mix your roasted pumpkin seeds in the warm caramel. Then place spoonful’s on your baking sheets in rows of three or four depending on how big it is.
If your caramel is cool then we’ll put together your turtles in an alternate way. Either way, putting them together is easy.
For the cool method, place your pumpkin seeds in rows on your baking sheet. Then put your pile of caramel on top, and with gloves mix them together to form a ball.
No matter which method you use, the outcome is the same. The caramel can be soft, so sometimes the caramel balls flatten easily requiring you to take them out of the fridge and shape them into a ball. Once they have set, it’s time to dip them in chocolate. You can use a double boiler or a chocolate melter. It’s also wise to wear gloves for this so you don’t transfer heat from your hands or get finger prints on your newly made keto nut-free turtles.
Now it’s time to melt your chocolate. Chop the chocolate up and set some of it aside. Once the chocolate has melted, add the remaining pieces that you set aside. This will temper the chocolate. That is what will give it that shine when they are done.
Dip pieces one at a time in the chocolate and put back on your parchment paper. This will get messy.
Once they are all dipped, return them to the fridge to set. After, with gloves on so you don’t melt the chocolate with your hands or get marks on your fresh Nut-Free Keto Turtles, carefully trim the edges of each turtle.
You can also use a squeeze bottle for decorative touches at this time as well. Keep your trimmed chocolate too! It makes a great garnish, for so many things, including for the side of a cake – yum! Or you can simple enjoy the trimmings as a reward for your hard work!
You can store the turtles in your freezer for when the occasion for a decadent chocolate treat strikes.
Once your keto nut-free turtles are set, they are ready to go. You can store them in the fridge for about three weeks. Before serving, let them warm to room temperature so the caramel will have the perfect stretch and melt in our mouth feel when you bite into them! My recipe follows. Post your pics and tag me if you make them.
Hope you enjoy them as much as my family & I do.
Nutritional Information and portions are estimated from the USDA Food Database. Net carbs exclude fiber, sugar alcohols, and products like allulose, because they do not generally affect blood sugar. I try to be accurate, but feel free to make your own calculations.
Like this post? share on social media
Yup, that’s me with my eyes closed while my hubby takes the picture. Totally me. I’m in my happy place doing one of my favourite things: on a hike in the Cape Breton Highlands.
I started my low-carb journey three years ago, for health reasons, determined to make a Low Carb, High Fat, Keto diet work for me as a lifestyle, without the exercise in deprivation with constant calls to the fun police.
I thought, as someone with a severe peanut/tree nut allergy, I am already a pro at adapting recipes to my nut-free existence, so adapting Keto to also be nut-free is something I can master. Truly, I love both the experimentation and the glee when I hit upon something fabulous and all with no sugar! It’s here where the idea was born for lafemmenikketo.com. I feel like a superhero baker and cook with a whisk in hand, whipping the carbs gone to make fabulous nut-free treats without the sugar. This, to me, is simply joyous. I hope you think so too!