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Candy Cane Churro Bites {Gluten Free & Vegan} Disneyland Inspired Recipe

'Tis the season to walk down candy cane lane and sprinkle it on everything. Now is the time to stock up on candy canes so you can enjoy them into the new year! Disneyland has many different holiday churro flavors year! They are all over the happiest place on earth and, once I saw their Candy Cane Churro, I knew I had to figure out how to replicate that at home. I think I came super close using a very unusual product from Trader Joe's!

Here's the sugar, gluten and dairy filled version from Disneyland -- you can get this bad boy over in Disneyland's California Adventure. It's near Grizzly River Run and The Little Mermaid - Ariel's Undersea Adventure ride. I had to get one for research purposes only. (hah) My hubby enjoy 95% of it, and I took a bite to see what the hype was all about. Yeah, it was pretty good, but way too sweet for me.

I must say that the only way I really like Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi is in the air fryer and the texture is pretty on-point to a churro -- crunchy on the outside and soft and doughy on the inside. I believe Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi was made to be air fryer churros for sure!

Obviously, you can use whatever sugar you prefer. I used coconut sugar and cinnamon to coat my gnocchi churro bites, drizzled chocolate and added some tasty crushed candy cane on top. If you aren't a fan of the candy cane or chocolate, just omit that part and enjoy plain churro bites.

This is the air fryer that I have, use and love. I bought it over a year ago and use it pretty often. It's great for cooking salmon, meatballs, veggies, meat or choice and even reheating leftovers. It's very easy to use, and it's definitely an appliance that I actually use enough to make it worth it.

I wrote a post on Instagram recently talking about my attitude towards food allergies, intolerances and special dietary restrictions. It's so easy to just be super bummed that you can't eat all the yummy holiday treats at Disneyland or even at holiday parties, gatherings and festivals. Seeing a bunch of tasty treats that I can't eat doesn't get me down but in fact inspires me and motivates me to be creative in the kitchen. I see something I can't have and figure out how to make it myself. Read more about that here.

Let's get to the Candy Cane Churro Bites! Wishing you lots of candy cane adventures as Christmas quickly approaches and inspiration to create yumminess in the kitchen the rest of the Holiday season!

You need an air fryer for this recipe. While the churro bites ARE paleo, the candy canes are not so that is why they are paleo-ish.



3 TB Coconut Sugar (or sugar of choice)

1 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 cup chocolate chips, melted

coconut or avocado oil spray


Open the bag of Trader Joe's Cauliflower Gnocchi and place in air fryer in one single layer. Make sure that the gnocchi is separated and none of it is sticking together. Coat the gnocchi with avocado spray and make sure all sides are sprayed.

Cook the gnocchi at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Open the air fryer halfway through and shake the basket to make sure gnocchi isn't sticking to each other and to cook evenly.

While the gnocchi is cooking, place coconut sugar and cinnamon in a medium size bowl.

After 10 minutes, shake the basket again and makes sure the gnocchi is still in one single layer and that none is sticking to each other.

Cook another 10 minutes, halfway shake the basket again.

Remove the basket from the air fryer and spray a light coating of avocado oil again making sure all sides are coated.

Place the cooked gnocchi in a bowl of cinnamon and sugar and toss with a spoon so all is coated in tasty cinnamon sugar.

Melt the chocolate over a double boiler. (Fill small sauce pot 1/4 with water and bring to boil. Turn on medium to simmer. Place a medium size glass bowl on top making sure the water isn't touching the glass. Place chocolate chips in glass bowl and stir until melted).

Crush candy canes using a rolling pin and set aside.

Place the cinnamon sugar coated gnocchi in a small serving bowl and drizzle with melted chocolate. Sprinkle with crushed candy cane and serve hot.


About Me

Hey! Welcome to Krysten's Kitchen... I guess I can say, "my kitchen." I am all about creating delicious recipes that are made with yummy, real ingredientsI love recreating old family favorites, sweets and everything in between. You'll find a touch of Disney, lots of amazing products and laughter along the way. I launched Krysten's Kitchen with the mission to share my years of research on healthy alternatives to everyday foods that most people can no longer eat due to dietary restrictions, food allergies or special eating lifestyles. 


In 2018, I received the Rising Star Award at ShiftCon & in May 2019 I lobbied on Capitol Hill with the Organic Trade Association and in October 2019 I received the Best Healthy Recipes Blogger at ShiftCon. You can learn more about me, my family and my story, here.

Welcome to Krysten's Kitchen. I hope you'll stay and eat awhile.

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