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Two Great Recipes and an Awesome New Ingredient!

Robyn Openshaw - Dec 21, 2011 - This Post May Contain Affiliate Links

I recently gave a lecture in St. George, Utah and stayed with my longtime friends, vegan raw foodists Denley and Jan, whose kitchen and fridge contents always inspire me.

Denley was raised on sodas and Twinkies, and eventually he was so ill that he discovered that he could recover his health ONLY when he eats vegan and virtually 100% raw. They have raised their six children on a plant-based diet. They made that shift when their twin daughters were born with cystic fibrosis. Now both are mothers of 6 and 7 children and are healthy vegans even though most with CF don’t live past 25.

Jan made us a fabulous dinner when we pulled into town, and Kristin and I couldn’t stop eating apples with her fruit dip. It tastes like marshmallow cream, but it’s all raw with no sugar, so it’s guilt free! (I can eat it without having to pay Matthew $10,000—we’re both going strong, by the way, after 3.5 months. Easy!)

Denley and Jan keep a jar of Irish Moss gel in their fridge, which is a whole-food thickener, gel, and emulsifier. It’s the raw, nutritious form of carageenan that you’ve seen in ice cream, etc. You can get it on Amazon and many other places online or possibly in your health food store. Buy unbleached Carageen Raw Irish Moss so you’ll get the sun-dried rather than bleached product. The Irish eat it with potatoes and cabbage!

In addition to its function, it’s a nearly flavorless seaweed that, like other algaes, is an excellent source of iodine, minerals, A and B vitamins, and protein. It is soothing to mucous membranes and thus may help with indigestion, constipation, and skin conditions. Some use it in water to ease coughing associated with colds, bronchitis, and pneumonia.

You’ll have fun using it for ice cream, shakes, puddings, and more. Give it a try! I personally am so excited to discover this ingredient. Having enough ingredients and habits that you love is KEY in making a transition to raw plant foods easy and “deprivation-free.”

Fruit Dip/Topping


  • 1 cup macadamia nuts
  • 2 tbsp raw almonds, sesame seeds, or cashews, soaked overnight and drained
  • 6 tbsp water
  • ¼ cup Irish Moss gel (see below)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup raw, organic agave, or raw honey
  • 1/8 tsp Original Crystal Himalayan Salt


  1. Blend almonds, sesame seeds, or cashews in water, in turbo blender until creamy, about 90 seconds.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
  3. Refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.

Dip will last 3-4 days. Use as a dip for fruit or as a topping for a pie.

Strawberry Shake


  • 1/2 cup Brazil nuts
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • ¼ to ½ cup Irish Moss gel (see below)
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 8 drops liquid stevia, or ½ packet dry stevia
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla or pinch of a vanilla bean


  1. Soak Brazil nuts several hours. Drain and rinse.
  2. Blend soaked nuts in 1 ½ cups water for 90 seconds or until very smooth, in a high-speed blender.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and blend on high until creamy.

This is a low-sugar treat your children will love and you won’t feel guilty about.

How to Use Irish Moss Gel

Keep the dry moss refrigerated in a sealed bag or jar. Soak a handful in a quart jar full of water for 3-5 hours on the counter. Drain and rinse well (you may have to pick out bits of shell/sand). Blend ¼ cup soaked, packed Irish Moss, with 1 cup filtered water until smooth. Store in fridge in a glass jar for up to 2 weeks. Use in potatoes, gravy, ice creams, puddings, etc.

Posted in: Recipes, Whole Food

18 thoughts on “Two Great Recipes and an Awesome New Ingredient!”

Leave a Comment
  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Robyn, I think carageenan is used in almond and soy milks to thicken them and make them creamier. My health food store will probably carries Irish Moss, so I’m excited to find out! I guess it can’t be green if it’s used in milks?

    Thanks for the info!

  2. Anonymous says:


    Thanks for the great sounding recipes and the tip about Irish Moss. I’m going out to look for some to fancy up a bunch of smoothies, dips and to make a real attempt at home made dairy-free ice cream for those special treat times. Have a great holiday!

  3. Hey Robyn! I love the sounds of this and want to try it! I just did an amazon & a google search but didn’t come up with much? Where do your or your friend buy yours??

  4. Anonymous says:

    Robyn, I’ve enjoyed your blog, products, and group buy very much. Thanks for your efforts and research which gives us informed choices as we work to keep ourselves and our families healthy. I’ve wanted to ask you for a while how you handle the hard/soft water problem in your home. We opted not to have softened water many years ago, but with a newly remodeled home, I’m struggling to keep dishwasher and new bathroom tub and sink from build up. I know the hard water is also not good for the pipes in the house. I do not want to drink or bath in soft water, but also want to protect my new appliances. Any solutions? Thanks!

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Della, I have had water softeners for many years. However, I’ve been looking into getting a whole-house filtration system that takes out the salt. I already don’t drink the salt (we drink R.O., then ionized water) but i don’t want to bathe in it either.

  5. Anonymous says:

    No sugar ?? What do you think agave or honey is ?

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      I meant refined sugar. I figured that was understood.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I want to try the Irish moss gel and went to purchase on amazon but noticed there is Irish moss powder would this be as good? Same measurements? Thanks

  7. Anonymous says:

    Hey Robyn,

    Very interesting post… I am excited to try this moss. I have a question off the subject. I ordered with your group buy and received an email verifying my purchase and the payment has gone through. Have you heard on when those shipments might be coming? I ordered to pick up in Lindon. Sorry if I have missed the info on this. I don’t mean to put redundant work on you but couldn’t find any info. Thanks for your help!

    GI Jill

  8. Robyn Openshaw says:

    Jill, the later orders still haven’t shipped in the group buy because we are still receiving almonds (all but the last 1,000 lbs. this week). Kristin is out of town but next week you should hear from her about your pickup time!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Very Interesting, what price range is good? Would you want fresh?

    I’ve found dehydrated at Mtn Rose. Would that work?

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thanks so much for all you are teaching us! Please, may we have more dietary info. for helping those with CF? Your friends sound amazing and like they have the experience and answers our friends need. Thank you!

  11. Anonymous says:

    About the Irish moss, you made a comparison to “carageenan” and a while back when we were first learning to avoid additives and such, carageenan was listed in my nutrition books as being the same thing as MSG, I guess because of the glutamates, and we have thusly avoided it like the plague. Irish moss is not going to be the same thing, is it? Thanks! You are always awesome, Robyn!

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Tammy, Irish Moss is an algae plucked right out of the sea and dried. NOT MSG. You’ll know—after you soak it you be picking little things and having to rinse it several times because it looks…..exactly like something that got plucked out of the ocean. 🙂 Have fun.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Go GREEN!! In March, 2011 I came to FL from UT to help a 73yo cousin
    who is battling prostatic cancer. Put him on 80% raw, starting the day
    with green juice blend. His PSAs fell from a dangerous 240 to 10.2 in
    9 mos, he lost 50#, stopped all medications (high blood pressure, cholesterol
    statins, etc.

    He looks so healthy, nobody believes he has cancer.

    My 74 yo brother recently was diagnosed with the same and NO elevation
    in PSAs, just a slight change upward, but still ‘normal’. He was taking oral
    insulin, etc. Went on the 80% raw, NO SUGAR, NO DAIRY, NO FRIED, etc.
    and has lost 15# in three weeks, feels so much better, off meds, etc. It is

    We are fortunate to have an organic ‘U-Pick’ produce farm close by and go
    twice weekly to get the best fresh we can find. It works!

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Naomi, that’s inspirational. I’ve had several other prostate cancer patients tell me very similar stories. One came up to me at an Idaho class I taught in June and handed me his story, printed and bound. His PSA dropped to near 0 eating all raw foods too. Exciting!

  13. Very Interesting, what price range is good? Would you want fresh?

    I’ve found dehydrated at Mtn Rose. Would that work?

  14. Anonymous says:

    I learned about carageenan and the need to put it on my avoid list when I developed thyroid problems. The iodine it supplies can raise havoc (or be downright dangerous) if you are, or are prone to being, hyperthyroid,

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