Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie (Dairy-Free)

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Chocolate & Peanut Butter, a match made in Heaven. As good little Weston Price followin’ sugar hatin’ unprocessed foodies, we have to get our peanut butter cup flavor fixes the homespun route. We must conjure up low carb alternatives with nut flours, healthful saturated fats, sugar substitutes, and pure unadulterated cacao. Our desserts don’t come easy and don’t come cheap. There’s no vending machine button for this stuff.

But the payoff for some serious kitchen time is so worth it.

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So sorry to keep y’all in suspense about this low carb, sugar-free, gluten-free and dairy-free (whew!) Chocolate Peanut Butter Tart recipe. The photo for my initial test run is apparently the most popular image at my flickr album. I was just tweaking the recipe to provide a couple of options for ingredients. After some tinkering, I hit upon two different fillings with slightly different consistencies, only one of which requires xanthan gum. Xanthan gum acts as a no carb replacement for the cornstarch used in typical pudding recipes. It is a specialty ingredient that I’ve blogged about before. Xanthan gum costs around $13 for a small bag that will last you for years if you’re a low carber (not a high starch gluten-free baker!). There are many applications of this natural gum thickener, some of which include thickening your low carb smoothies to a luxurious “milkshake” consistency, and making cranberry sauce. It’s an innocuous ingredient with a strange name. Just a tiny pinch goes a long way!

Now let’s talk dessert! The recipe I made the first time yields a more loose “pudding” tart, with a light tasting lower fat filling. It makes a dainty pudding pie, with a creamy texture and crunchy crust (which could be doubled for more peanut buttery goodness). The Chocolate Pudding Tart is what you see in the following photograph.

Sugar-Free-Chocolate-Peanut-Butter-Pie

To make either of the recipes completely sugar-free, use xylitol in place of honey if you can tolerate it. I can handle xylitol in normal portions (one cookie, one piece of pie, etc.), but had to ingest it regularly for a few days to “adjust” to it. Xylitol works much better than erythritol in cookie-type recipes that do not contain much moisture. How you count the carbs in xylitol is up to you. Some people count half, because it does not have a glycemic index of zero like erythritol. I buy xylitol locally at Whole Foods (instead of ordering it) for convenience. It retails for a better price than erythritol, so per pound it is the same price as ordering online (unless you buy in bulk). Xylitol is a great stand in for erythritol in a pinch if you need your sweet “fix”!

Chocolate Pudding Tart with Peanut Butter Cookie Crust (Dairy-Free)

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:
Peanut Butter Cookie Crust:
2 tablespoons nonhydrogenated shortening (or unsalted butter)
1 cup roasted salted peanuts
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/4 teaspoon pure stevia extract

Chocolate Pudding Filling:
1 can coconut milk
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
3.5 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup erythritol OR 3 tablespoons honey
3 egg yolks
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon coconut oil or nonhydrogenated shortening (or butter)
1/4 (scant) teaspoon pure stevia extract

Preparation:

Instructions for crust:
Melt shortening or butter in a microwaveable bowl. Whisk in honey and stevia extract. Grind peanuts in a food processor or Magic Bullet, until you get as fine a meal as possible. The peanuts should be the consistency of a crumbly paste. Add peanut paste, baking powder, and vanilla, stirring it together with a spatula until you have a smooth dough. Press into a greased 9 inch pie plate lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 275 degrees, or until browned around the edges. Leave crust in oven and turn off the heat while you prepare the chocolate and start heating the coconut milk.

Instructions for filling:
Chop the unsweetened chocolate bar finely. In a sauce pan over medium low heat, whisk coconut milk, erythritol or honey, and sea salt until mixture bubbles around the edges. Remove tart crust from oven and place in freezer to cool. In a separate bowl, stream 1/3 cup reserved coconut milk into cocoa powder, whisking to form a paste. Continue whisking while adding egg yolks to cocoa paste mixture. Measure out 1/2 cup of hot coconut milk from saucepan and stream into cocoa paste yolk mixture, whisking. Turn down heat to low and slowly pour the cocoa paste yolk mixture into saucepan, continuing to whisk. Cook for about three minutes, stirring continuously, until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon (to see what this looks like click HERE). Your finger should leave a trail if you drag it across the coated spoon. Remove immediately from heat and add shortening (or butter), vanilla extract, xanthan gum, and stevia. Pour through a fine mesh sieve (I use a regular wire strainer) on to chopped chocolate, and whisk just until the filling is smooth and glossy. Blend in a blender for an ultra smooth consistency. Pour into baked tart crust. Transfer to refrigerator and cover with a paper towel covered with aluminum foil, careful not to let the paper towel touch the top (I pull it tightly over top and secure the covering with more plastic wrap). Chill overnight.

~9g net carbs per 1/8th of a recipe (using honey in the crust)

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Below is the more decadent Chocolate “Silk” Pie filling, topped with a layer of sugar-free Peanut Butter Chocolate Ganache! It makes a larger, more impressive tart. The crust is less sweet and a bit cakey, which balances out the intensity of the rich chocolate. I’ll be making this version from now on, just because of how utterly satisfying it is. A tiny slice is all you need to feel like you’re being naughty! With desserts like these, who needs sugar?

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For an extra smooth silk pie filling, blend the filling in a food processor or blender after you stir in the chocolate.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Silk Pie (Dairy-Free)

Serves 8-10

Ingredients for Peanut Butter Crust:
1/4 cup creamy natural peanut butter
2 tablespoons unsalted butter OR nonhydrogenated shortening (I like Spectrum Organic)
2 tablespoons beaten egg
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup blanched almond flour, packed
1/2 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup xylitol, powdered, OR 2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon good-tasting pure stevia extract

Chocolate Silk Filling:
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup erythritol or 4 tablespoons honey
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped (like Ghirardelli)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 tablespoons coconut oil, nonhydrogenated shortening, OR organic unsalted butter
3 egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon (scant) pure stevia extract

Preparation:

Instructions for peanut butter crust:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Melt peanut butter together with butter in a heat proof bowl. Stir in vanilla, egg, and honey or xylitol, if using. Add dry ingredients and stir to form a dough. It may be sticky, but will come together. Press up the sides of a 9 inch tart pan or pie plate, greased and lined with a circle of parchment paper. If you’re making the crust with honey, turn down oven to 275 degrees, and place tart on middle rack. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn off oven and do not open the door. Chop the chocolate and set your coconut milk heating. If you’re making the crust with xylitol, bake at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until slightly browned around the edges.

Instructions for chocolate silk filling:

Heat 1 1/4 cup coconut milk, erythritol or honey, and salt, and simmer on low. Whisk together rest of coconut milk, and cocoa powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg until foamy. Stream 1/2 cup of the warmed coconut milk mixture from the saucepan to the eggs, whisking constantly, and then add egg mixture into saucepan. Keep whisking! Cook for 3-5 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring until mixture coats the back of a spoon (see above instructions for visual). Immediately remove pan from heat, and stir in vanilla, shortening (or butter), and stevia extract. Once butter has melted, strain mixture through a fine mesh sieve on to chopped chocolate. Stir until filling is a smooth, glossy consistency. Blend in a blender, briefly, for an ultra smooth consistency. Pour filling into tart shell, almost to the brim. You might have some filling left over, which you can pour into muffin cups and freeze for snacks. Cool tart uncovered in the freezer until the top becomes firm, then transfer to refrigerator and cover with parchment paper and plastic wrap. Store pie slices in an airtight container to keep the filling moist.

~8g net carbs per 1/10th of a recipe (using honey in the crust)

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Before serving, top filling with this smooth, candy inspired dairy-free topper if you’d like an alternative to real whipped cream. Make this. It’s the BEST part of the pie!

Sugar-Free Peanut Butter Cup Ganache Topping

1.5 ounces unsweetened chocolate
3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter (no-stir or extra smooth ground)
1 tablespoon nonhydrogenated shortening or butter
2 tablespoons erythritol OR 1/4 cup xylitol, powdered
1/8 teaspoon good-tasting pure stevia extract (if using erythritol)

Powder erythritol in coffee grinder or Magic Bullet for about a minute until finely ground. Lettle settle in container for a minute or two. Melt chocolate, peanut butter, and butter in microwave on HIGH for 35 seconds, stirring until completely melted. Melt for 10 more seconds if necessary. Stir in erythritol and stevia with a spatula, smoothing out the chocolate until it is glossy and lump-free. Spread on to tart. Let topping set in the refrigerator, and cover tart again for storage.

~1.3g net carbs per 1/10th of a recipe

  • Chris

    Oh my! I’ve been looking forward to this recipe ever since you posted the picture. I can’t wait to make it. It looks like the kind of thing that both the low carbers and sugar-lovers in my life will gobble up (if I decide to share it with them).

  • Erin

    My jaw just dropped through my lap and landed somewhere by my feet and the spoonful of peanut butter I was guiltily licking when I saw this post. Yes, you have my attention…The recipe looks great, especially the crust, which is super simple.

    Just one question: do you have a recommendation for making the filling vegan as well? mainly, the egg yolk dilemma…I can experiment, but I would love it if the result tastes as good as yours looks like it does…thanks!

  • mac24312

    Oh MY!!

    Now you post this!! LOL I just made a pie from Kevin. I will have to try this for my Easter treat!!

    HUGS
    Christina

  • ms. v

    I can’t wait to give this a go! thank you so much for posting it! :)

    you’re a GENIUS!

  • Meagan

    I love this recipe! It’s so easy. I could make this- I have all the ingredients with me in my dorm room! Also when you journey next to Whole Foods, look out for their RAW organic valencia peanuts! Hopefully you have some over there on the East Coast.. but I got some here for 3.99#!

  • Elizabeth

    I just made version 1 and I have some notes.

    Crust:
    The directions call for vanilla but it’s not listed in the ingredients so I just used 1/2 tsp.

    Filling:
    The filling calls for stevia but then it’s never used in the directions. I winged it and added it in in the step where you whisk the hot coconut milk into the cocoa powder/egg yolks.

    The filling also calls for xanthan gum but it’s not in the directions either. That’s ok since I didn’t use xanthan anyway. I don’t have any, so I used agar agar flakes instead. I put the chopped chocolate and 1.5 T agar flakes into a blender and in the last step I just poured everything on top and blended it all. It worked too well actually! The mixture got too thick for the blender so some of the agar flakes ended up not getting broken down by the blades and therefore the filling isn’t 100% smooth. Ah well. This is only the second time I’ve ever used agar so I’m still learning how to get it to work right. :)

    Anyway, recipe notes aside, the filling is FABULOUS. I was licking the blender clean! It’s all in my fridge chilling right now and I can’t wait to have it for dessert tonight. :)

  • Rachel C

    Nice! Thanks for the xanthium gum info, I am always debating about buying it because of the cost, but I think I finally understand it a little better now.
    GOOD NEWS! I found a better chocolate bar- Valrhona (oh yes, you know the name) has 75% and 85% bars now too and they are more delicious and less carbs! I got them for $4 a bar (ouch) at Trader Joe’s, which is about .50 more than I pay for the lindt bars, worth it! I live in NY so probably my groceries cost more than everyone else’s….
    Thanks again for always posting such delicious things!! :)

  • Elizabeth

    Ok I just ate the pie I made earlier. WOW! The agar that was lumpy when it was warm totally disappeared after sitting in the fridge and I was just left with an exceptionally smooth, rich filling.

    This has to be one of the best things I’ve ever cooked. Thank you Lauren! My husband wants to thank you too, lol.

  • bethinNC

    Lauren-not sure if you’ll see this, but I have the crust in the oven as we speak and the filling waiting to go in. How long do I leave the pie shell in the unopened oven? just til the filling is ready? Til completely cool?

    Just double checking :) I’ll figure it out if you don’t get back to me.

  • Lauren

    Hi Beth! Real quick–leave the crust in the oven until you’re warming the coconut milk up, then stick the crust in the freezer while you cook the custard. :)

    If you used xylitol, you can just pull it out after it looks brown and immediately stick it in the freezer.

  • Carla

    I am so excited that you finally have the recipe for this! I made it last night was going to save it for today but had to have a sliver before bed. Yum, yum, yum!! So yummy and creamy smooth. DH and the kids complained it wasn’t sweet enough but it is perfect for me, a very dark chocolate lover. I used some flax in the crust which added a nice taste but I thought the crust could use more of a peanut taste so I’ll adjust that next time (I made the second one). I was also a little confused with some of the instructions but just went with what I thought sounded right and it came out, so that’s good :) . So two big thumbs up

  • Carrie

    WOW… I MUST TRY THAT!!!! Oh dear that looks sinful!!

  • Sweeteater

    Wow! That looks awesome! Love the thickness of it and the crust is gorgeous! Thanks for all your hard work and beautiful pictures.

  • Violaine

    Dear Lauren,

    Just a testimonial from France to thank you for your blog ! I’ve made this chocolate peanut butter pie last week as a first test of recipe from your blog, and it was so yummy that I’ve just made your honey nut cookies, wich taste amazingly like sugared ones…

    Basically searching for good recipes using stevia, I’ve found out thanks to you that the key of success lies in a combination with honey (at least for me, because I haven’t got any xylitol nor erythritol, which are difficult to find here). In fact I’ve got a question about this : do you think I may use honey instead of these two -ols in your other recipes ?

    Thank you again for sharing your wonderful work and please keep it on !!

  • Lauren

    Yum! This looks so good! Also, I have a surprise waiting for you at my blog =D.

  • moonstruck

    Hey Lauren, love your blog. I’ve been following it since day-1, through the evolution of your baking and am so greatful to you for the indulgences I am now allowed in this lifestyle.

    Have you ever considered doing videos for some of these things? Underground Wellness has taken things by storm and I think you’d be a fantastic in that medium.

    Take care.

    -Edward

  • The Gluten-free ‘Dish’

    I’m drooling at the thoughts of this!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03357615732853348757 The Gluten-free 'Dish'

    I’m drooling at the thoughts of this!

  • Gfron1

    Nice work here! I saw your comment about my PB pie – I liked the Paula Dean recipe but the cream cheese gave it a twang that I didn’t really like, and it took away from the peanutbutteriness.

  • Winnie

    Looks really scrumptious and can’t wait to try this recipe!

  • Ricki

    I can’t believe how great that pie looks! So rich and creamy–and the ganache frosting–oh! my! :) Never used xylitol, but I’m sure agave could sub.

    Thanks so much for your comment on my blog, and for reading! I am currently using ONLY low-starch flours (if any flours) and nut meals, as I’m on a candida cleanse and anything with gluten is out, as are most grain-based flours. So you may see a few more low-carb recipes pop up! If you check the gluten-free recipe index, you may find a few more items of interest as well. :)

  • Lauren

    Carla – Thank you for the feedback! I modified the instruction a bit to clear things up. Glad your tweaked crust worked out, and happy to hear your family liked the pie. :)

    Carrie – DO it!

    Sweeteater – Thank you for the nice comment.

    Violaine – Great to hear from a reader abroad! Good to know that xylitol and erythritol are not available overseas–I will keep that in mind as I formulate new recipes. I have some cupcakes coming up that cater to your use of honey! Please me about specific recipes where you’d like to exchange the sweetener.

    Lauren – Wow, thanks so much!

    moonstruck – Thank you so much, Edward! Making videos seems like quite a project, but it’s a great suggestion that I will keep in mind. Youtube is the medium of the future, no?

    The GF Dish – Haha, thanks!

    Gfron1 – Your pie looks great, and I will have to try it sometime!

    Winnie – Good luck with the recipe.

    Ricki – Agave would likely work too since the honey does in this recipe. I can’t wait to see more of your low starch experiments, Ricki!

  • Jana Victoria

    This really looks yummy! great pictures by the way!

  • Naomi Devlin

    Wow Lauren! This looks just incredible. I love the contrast between the silky filling and the dense PB cup topping. Hang on, I just have to wipe some drool away…..

    I came over to ask if you had any cake recipes using just stevia? I have a patient with a bad candida problem who is really craving cake – they are fine with wheat but it could also be gluten free. I don’t have anything because I went over to the SCD before I could start experimenting with stevia and it’s verboten for me now.

    I saw a few delicious recipes that use stevia and honey or zylitol too – is that because stevia has a distinctive taste – particularly taken with the coconut joy bars (bounty bars to me). Hey, it all looks good!

    I’d really appreciate a pointer if you have time.

    Naomi x x x

  • Amanda

    Where do you get this extra smooth/no stir PB? The only one I could find which was “natural” had palm oil (okay) and sugar (not). So I will be making version 2 without the ganache today.

  • Lauren

    Hi Amanda, I use Kroger brand all natural peanut butter, but it unusually smooth for a natural peanut butter. Whole Foods natural peanut butter has the same perfectly smooth consistency. I just recommended no-stir (like Maranatha–does have a tiny bit of sugar) so people would be sure not to get the grainier ground Smuckers creamy peanut butter. Hope that helps!

  • Mee-Lise

    Okay, I’m back in the baking saddle for this one! Thought I’d save it for Easter dessert, as I was never one for creme eggs. :-)

    I love peanut butter, but have been trying to break the addiction, so I made pecan butter to sub. No ganache, but there will be coconut milk coffee ice cream.

    Thanks for another brilliant recipe!

  • Anonymous

    Omg! We made this for Easter! This is so incredibly rich and so decadent! This really hit my chocolate craving over the head! Hope it freezes well! Thank you so much for this awesome recipe! I was wondering, we tasted the filling before it went in the fridge and it did not seem all that sweet (which was fine) then the next day at Easter it seemed quite a bit sweeter. Does that tend to happen with erythinol / stevia? Have you found that in your experience Lauren? Thanks again for your incredible recipes!

  • Justin Schwartz

    whoa, this looks amazing too? why don’t you have one of those follower boxes on your blog page so I can keep track?

  • monkeymom

    I made this last week, but I didn't have all of the ingredients for any one of the recipes, so I combined bits and pieces of each and came up with my own delicious version! Thank you so much for posting this! I can't wait to try more of your recipes!

  • Mee-Lise

    Hi Lauren – just made this for the office potluck, and it was the most popular dish! (And no one knew it was sugar free.) Thanks again!

  • nora

    Wanted to thank you for all your amazing recipes! Been sugar free now going on 2 years, and your blog has helped me to feel like I can still eat a treat here and there! I love eating dessert now, and not feeling sick after (due to no sugar)!
    I wanted to say I used this recipe, and altered it to make a coconut cream pie. Left out the cocoa, and chocolate. Was very simple, and delicious! I did cheat though and served it with whipped cream, so it was not dairy free.
    Thanks again for all you do!

  • Raina

    Hi. I found your blog on All Things Food. I love that your focus is healthy. I am so needing to learn some healthy recipes. Summer is coming and I have to get my act together and stop being bad. Your blog looks great..glad I found it.

  • Debbi

    Just made this pie for my dh and his study group. Let it set in fridge overnight as directed and made the chocolate peanut ganache 40 min. before serving,letting it set in the fridge. WOW It was very rich and satisfying. I substituted liquid spenda and Sweet Perfection for my sweeteners. You are amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    What size can of coconut milk are you using? I have 2 sizes in my pantry.

  • Kaitlin Slavinsky

    I see you're using a lot of sugar alcohols. Where do you buy them? Do you cook often with them?

  • Lauren

    Anon – I just use Thai Kitchen brand coconut milk from the grocery store. It has a high fat percentage, which works well in this recipe. :

    Kaitlin – Great question! I order them from iherb.com (erythritol, which I use often; xylitol in very small quantities!). Erythritol agrees with me best, and works well to boost the sweetness of stevia in sugar-free baking. :)

  • Anonymous

    Is the crust supposed to be so wet? When cooked it has a cake like quality instead of a graham cracker crust like crust.Is that how it is supposed to be?

  • shitjennylikes

    this looks AMAZING.

  • Generic Viagra

    its yummmyyyyyyyy……
    Thanks for sharing…

  • jsprik

    i am totally making this…as soon as i get all the ingredients… :D

  • lowcarbfoodie

    This looks incredible! I'm going to make it for my husbands birthday this weekend.. can't wait to try it! Thanks Lauren :)

  • Generic levitra

    Hay how yummy cake slice image looking and thanks for sharing your recipe I like it very much and definitely try it.

  • Ashley

    The one with two layers is very delicious but it is tricky to find the ingredients. I found xylitol at Whole foods for $17.

  • Carol Bailey

    What kind of unsweetened chocolate bar do you use for this recipe? I used Bakers unsweetened chocolate bar, and it turned out WAY too chocolately and bitter! I am guessing you must have used a not as strong. Thanks for your many fabulous recipes!! Carol

  • Jlp330

    I just made the Silk filling one. A little confusing on directions as to mix eggs mixture with cocoa mixture. I winged it, and all worked out.I did not have coconut milk so I used regular milk then added 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Wasn't quit sure how that would compare, but the batter tasted amazing! As far as the topping, I had a hard time getting it smooth so I put it in food processor and it made it way too thick. I added about 1. Cup of milk and stirred with spatula then spread on top! This is by far the most amazing dessert I've ever made……..including ones with "real" sugar! Thanks so much for sharing all your recipes!!! I've just completed hcg diet and I'm in the maintenance phase….which is anything but sugar, starch and grains. So I'm really thankful I came across your blog!

  • Lisa

    Ok we just made this the other day…in my husbands words…”This is stupid good!!”. I used the peanut butter cookie crust with the chocolate silk filling!! YUMMY!

    Also, we've made your chocolate cake with a secret! Soooo good. I can't wait to try something else…my son's b-day is coming up, perfect opportunity!!

    Thanks for the great recipes.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12992918908739085132 Lauren

    Lisa – Your husband's comment made me laugh. So glad you loved the pie! Hope your son had a wonderful birthday. :)

  • Sage

    Hi Lauren, I just want to say happy Holidays and to tell you I’ve made this pie for holiday gatherings every year since the year you posted it. Every year it’s a hit, and every time I bring it, Healthy Indulgences gets a few more fans because no one can believe it’s sugar free!

    • http://www.healthyindulgences.net/ Lauren Benning

      Sage, I’m so glad that this pie has been a hit at your holiday gatherings. Please continue to share the low sugar dessert love! I appreciate your feedback so much. Am going to make this recipe printable right now for ease of sharing it with friends. Will have to post a few more decadent pie recipes in the new year to give you other options. If you have any suggestions, I’d be open to hearing them.