Hemp hearts are a food that comes up daily in my practice. I recommend it to many of my clients as a great plant-based complete protein that offers a wide nutrient profile including omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium and zinc. Generally my focus is on breakfast, where most people struggle with getting in a good protein source – ”add 3tbsp of hemp hearts to your oatmeal” or ”make a chia pudding using Homemade Hemp Milk“. The beauty of hemp is its versatility, and so it doesn’t get confined to just breakfast I wanted to share this Vegan Hemp and Sunflower Seed Pâté. Hemp hearts give this pate a nice rich creamy consistency and provide 13g protein per serving. Serve it with some seed crackers or cut up cucumber for a tasty afternoon treat, or as a light lunch.
“Hemp foods contain Omega-3 and the rare Omega-6 Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA). GLA may help with cholesterol, inflammation, skin and hair health, balancing hormones, and general heart health.”
Basic nutrition schooling tells us to “limit omega-6 fatty acids and increase omega-3s”. I have written about Getting Your Omega-3s For The Vegetarians in the past, and we know that too much omega-6 can limit the conversion of plant based omega-3 (linolenic acid) to EPA and DHA. Unfortunately this doesn’t give credit to Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) which is found in a limited variety of foods including evening primrose seed oil, black currant seed oil, borage seed oil and of course hemp. Clinical trials have shown that at a dose of ≥1400 mg/day for at least six months may be effective in improving some symptoms in individuals with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a painful autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the joints. Research is ongoing on its effects on the heart and other inflammatory conditions.
This recipe offers almost 3 tbsp of hemp hearts per serving which provides us with our daily needs of omega-3 fatty acids, 50% (%DV) of our daily needs of magnesium, 25% for zinc and 16% for iron. Sunflower seeds are a great source of vitamin E and one serving of this pate provides us with 75% of our daily needs as well as 25% of Selenium.
This Hemp and Sunflower Seed Pâté was adapted from Julie Daniluk, TV host, author and Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN). I’ve reduced the amount of dill from ½ cup for a more subtle flavour and increased the amount of turmeric for its anti-inflammatory benefit and also for colour. I used unpasteurised apple cider vinegar in place of lemon as lemon does not grow here on the island and apple cider vinegar has the beneficial live bacteria cultures (see 9 Common Fermented Foods Your Probably Have At Home). Swapping out the lemon, using local hemp seeds, and the fact that this dish can be made 100% raw gets major points for sustainability.
Easy Hemp and Sunflower Seed Pâté
Adapted from Julie Daniluk (RHN).<p>
This Pâté is so simple to make and is full of high quality, nutrient dense ingredients. Serve it with some wholegrain crackers, or slices of cucumber and have it as a light lunch, or serve it as an appetizer with friends.
- 1 cup raw sunflower seeds soaked*
- 1 cup raw hemp hearts
- ¼ cup dill chopped
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp cold-pressed oil I used argan, olive oil or any nut oil would do
- 2 tbsp red onions or scallions chopped
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar unpasteurised
- 2 cloves of garlic
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until paste-like.
Serve immediately, or to form a pate shape place mixture in a small rice bowl and let sit in the fridge for up to an hour. Turn bowl upside down on a serving plate until pate is released.
Store in a container in the fridge for up to a week.
*Option to soak sunflower seeds for 6 hours prior to use. The recipe will taste just as good if you didn't have a chance to soak the seeds.
Gluten Free: Serve it with gluten-free seed crackers or sliced cucumbers.
Make it oil free: Replace the oil with water.
Amount per one of six servings
Total Fat: 26.7g
Saturated Fat: 3.0g
Vitamin C: 3mg
PEN – Evidenced Based Nutrition – GLA