Photo by Allison Wojtowecz

Who says you have to choose between sweets and healthy eating? This question caused Susan O’Brien of Malibu to begin experimenting in her backyard kitchen in Dallas to create something that fused the two worlds of sweets and healthy together. Her endeavors eventually became the Hail Merry brand of snacks and sweets.

Hail Merry has several different products: macaroons, “miracle tarts,” “grawnola” and mixes of nuts and seeds. All of these products are certified gluten-free, vegan, kosher, raw, fair trade and mostly organic. Normally, foods that follow even one of those dietary guidelines sound like they wouldn’t taste too great; however, I don’t follow any of those diets myself and I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I’m a huge fan of chocolate, so of course I was drawn to that flavor first. Both the chocolate macaroons and chocolate mint tarts are divine. The tarts look like giant Reese’s cups and have the texture of a brownie with a little layer of raw fudge on the top for good measure. The macaroons don’t look too pretty, but what they lack in looks they make up for in flavor. There is a slight coconut texture to them, as this is a main ingredient. Normally I’m not a huge fan of coconut, but the chocolate flavoring is done so well that I didn’t even taste it.

Photo by Allison Wojtowecz 

There are many flavor choices for the macaroons including lemon, chocolate, strawberry, blonde and their newest, chocolate chip cookie dough. The miracle tarts also have several flavors including chocolate, lemon, chocolate almond butter, persian lime, coconut vanilla and chocolate mint. Check out all the flavors at Whole Foods or Central Market. (Note: Be aware of serving sizes because it is VERY easy to eat the entire bag.)

Due to the natural and raw ingredients used to make these treats, it is important to keep the tarts and macaroons refrigerated until you’re ready to consume them because their oils will begin to melt at 72ºF. That may seem odd, but it’s great when you eat them because they literally melt in your mouth.

So next time you get a craving for something sweet, give these healthy treats a try. Your taste buds and summer body will thank you for it.

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