Easy Sugar-Free Strawberry Mousse–a Low Carb Summer Treat!

Thanks to the readers who entered the contest for the Organic Zero erythritol packets! Andrea is the randomly generated winner. Here is why she eats sugar-free:

“I live sugar-free because my life depends on it. Both of my parents died from diabetes complications and I do not want to go down the same path. We are so fortunate that there are now so many alternatives to sugar such as the product you are promoting. When I was growing up, there was just saccharin which did dnot taste very good. Thank you for your excellent information.”

And now for a surprise second winner! I ordered some vanilla beans on ebay, and have an extra bundle to give away. Rachel can have these vanilla beans if she would like them! The beans can be used as a sugar-free flavoring for baked goods, custard, ice cream, and to make vanilla extract. Here is why Rachel eats sugar-free:

“Lauren,

I eat sugar-free because it’s what my body wants. How do I know this? Sugar and carbs were ruining my life. I had no idea why I constantly craved sugar and processed carbs, and my obsession quickly turned into an eating disorder. I had no control over my cravings…my body wanted more and more and I became a slave to it. I’d binge on sugary, carb-loaded foods and then feel horrible about it and go to great lengths to undo my binges (which I will not describe in detail here). I also suffered from wild mood swings, irritability and fatigue, all of which everyone (including my doctors!) attributed to PMDD.

But I knew it was more than that. All of the treatments I tried for PMDD symptoms had failed. Eventually, completely exhausted, and my body ravaged from my bingeing cycles, I began to do desperate research into blood sugar and its effects on the body. I was shocked to find out that SO many of the symptoms I suffered from, especially the constant sugar and carb cravings, could be due to extremely unstable blood sugar levels!

I immediately stopped eating all sugar and carbs, and have never felt better. I almost never suffer from cravings anymore, I have stopped my destructive bingeing cycles, and am no longer controlled by food. My emotions and moods have leveled, and I have an energy I never knew existed…one that occurs naturally, not feuled by carbs!

I’m not really writing this for your contest, but mostly to tell you that your blog has been a godsend for new sugar- and carb-free eaters like me. I was beginning to accept that I would never be able to enjoy some of my favorite foods again, but your recipes have given me the ability to do that, while still staying within the confines of my diet and without hurting my body.

Thank you so much! I don’t know where you find the time to cook and blog like you do, but I pray that you never stop.

Rachel”

Check out of the rest of the comments from readers about why they eat sugar-free. I really enjoyed reading all of your stories, and seeing how this way of eating is helping people with so many health issues.

Healthy Strawberry Mousse

Do you crave fresh fruit in this summer heat?

I do, and tend to satisfy that desire with stevia-sweetened lemonade instead of “Nature’s Candy.” Some days though, you just gotta indulge in those natural sugars, so here’s how to on your low carb sugar-free lifestyle. Pair the fruit with fat! It dilutes the sugar carbs, making you satisfied with a smaller portion. It also stops your blood sugar from fluctuating wildly and making you hungry an hour after your fruit snack. Besides, fat makes everything tastes better, especially if it comes in the form of organic heavy cream. It’s a divine combination of flavors that inspired countless songs and many different types of desserts.

This strawberry mousse will be the first dessert in a series of easy, quick low carb desserts that require minimal effort, yet will still impress that surprise company coming over for dinner! Besides, who wants to make a big mess in a hot kitchen in this weather? This naturally gluten-free, egg-free mousse can also be made dairy-free with the use of full fat coconut milk! It can be made sugar-free using a combination of stevia and powdered erythritol, but any zero calorie sweetener would work well here. I tried this dessert with Splenda as well, because I have decided to include a measurement for it alongside my preferred natural sweeteners from now on. Although I don’t prefer the taste and chemical nature of Splenda for personal use, it is used by so many diabetics and other carb watchers who need to eat a low insulin producing diet to live. Most importantly, there little empirical evidence showing adverse side effects from its use. If by creating an option for sweetening with Splenda in my recipes, I can broaden the appeal of these healthful low carb treats, I am willing to do so. Keep in mind that combining sugar-free sweeteners yields the best taste, and allows you to use less of them overall. Use the sweetening option that works for your lifestyle, beliefs, budgetary constraints, and health concerns.

This mousse might work with honey as well, but I didn’t try making it like that since I am attempting to limit consumption of all forms of sugar. I’d start with a 2-3 tablespoons of honey, cooked with the strawberries, if you’d like to go this route.

Healthy Sugar-Free Strawberry Mousse

Strawberry Mousse
Adapted from this recipe at Sugar & Everything Nice

Makes 5 servings

Ingredients:

8 ounces fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled and sliced

Sweetener options:
1/4 cup erythritol, powdered, plus 1/8 teaspoon NuNaturals pure stevia extract
OR
1/2 cup Splenda plus 1/8 teaspoon NuNaturals pure stevia extract (or 1/4 cup more Splenda)
OR
2-3 tablespoons honey plus 1/8 teaspoon NuNaturals pure stevia extract
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon zest from an organic lemon
Pinch sea salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons unflavored powdered gelatin
1 cup organic heavy cream

Preparation:
Sprinkle the gelatin over the tablespoon of water in a small bowl, and set aside to soften. Puree the strawberries with the zest, the juice, and the salt. Heat the puree in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring together the strawberries and sweetener just until hot. Add gelatin and stir until melted. Let mixture cool. Beat the cream to soft peaks, and beat in vanilla and stevia. Gently fold strawberry mixture into cream. Pour into serving cups and chill for two hours.

For a stiff, pipeable mousse (like you see in the photos), follow these directions after soaking the gelatin:
Place the strawberries, lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt in a saucepan over medium low heat, and add the sweetener (erythritol, Splenda, or honey–don’t add the stevia yet) and water and cook, breaking up with your spatula. Stir around the pan gently until the sweetener has dissolved. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until the strawberries have slightly thickened. Add the gelatin to the pan, and stir until it is completely melted. Puree in a blender (I used my Magic Bullet) or food processor. Let cool to room temperature. Whip the heavy cream to stiff peaks with a hand mixer, and beat in vanilla and stevia. Once the strawberries are cooled, carefully fold the whipped cream into the fruit puree. Pipe mixture into serving bowls, and chill for at least an hour. I used an 8″ Wilton piping bag with the largest tip I could find at Michael’s craft store. The tip was $1.99 and the piping bag was $1.99.

~6.2g net carbs per 1/5th of a recipe using ½ cup Splenda w/stevia
~4g net carbs per 1/5th of a recipe using erythritol/stevia

mousse bite

  • foodtease

    I love dumping unnecessary amounts of fat into desserts however that looks so delicious I might have to try eating healthy! Gulp.

  • Miakoda

    Looks so luscious; the pink screams strawberries!

  • Meagan

    Looks yummy as always :)

  • Anonymous

    I will have to make this!!! Cream and berries…yum!!!

    When will you post the recipes for fluffy peanut butter pie, and mini chocolate raspberry cheesecakes?

    Just love everythin you do!

  • oneordinaryday

    Great piping! The mousse looks so yummy and light.

  • Sophie

    What an inspiring comment :) !

    I like how velvety this looks, the texture looks delicious and the picture is very pretty and summery. Strawberries are the best!

  • harcoutbreton

    It's nice to hear that she's doing great now and I agree with her. I think it's been great that you're sharing priceless effort in living our life the healthy way. Who ever said that life is no fun without sugar is definitely wrong.

    Signature: Looking for premium natural vanilla beans at a bargain? Drop by at http://www.myvanillashop.com for best value.

  • Jo

    Hi Lauren, I'm glad you adapted this recipe for those who can't take sugars. I do agree that having too much sugar is not good at all.

  • SavoringTime in the Kitchen

    What a beautiful and healthy dessert! I'd love to try it.

    Thank you for visiting me at my Garden Party and I hope you try the Zucchini Carbonara – it's wonderful.

  • HEAL ~ BALANCE ~ LIVE

    Beautiful Picture Lauren! I can't wait to make mousse.. in this heat anything cold and refreshing is on my list.

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    Beautiful Picture Lauren! I can't wait to make mousse.. in this heat anything cold and refreshing is on my list.

  • Kelly

    This is divine! I can't wait to make one like it, but with coconut milk!

  • Naomi Devlin

    You can't go wrong with strawberries and cream. I'd add honey raw rather than cooking it with the strawberries as it can make things runny and the health benefits are greater when honey is eaten raw.

    x x x

  • Esi

    What a great treat for the summer! I love using fresh strawberries in desserts.

  • MINI FAD

    I've been without a computer for a bit, and I'm excited to come back to so many yummy-looking treats!! This looks heavenly. I used erythritol and stevia to make a gluten/dairy/sugar-free chicken and apricot recipe. You got me hooked on these sweeteners- which I'm sure was obvious by my giant iHerb purchase using your code! Anyway, check it out! :) http://bit.ly/jMQnL

  • Michelle @ Find Your Balance

    The mousse looks heavenly! But I have to say, I ALWAYS recommend naturally occurring sweeteners like honey or pure maple syrup over artificial, man-made sweeteners like Splenda.

  • balanceisbest

    Hi Lauren! I just found your blog while searching for low-carb granola bar recipes. I am AMAZED! You are one talented girl! I can not wait to try out some of your recipes. Thanks so much for posting great recipes, pictures, and nutrition stats. AWEsome!

    Kaneil, balanceisbest.wordpress.com

  • Jackie at PhamFatale.com

    Your strawberrie mousse sounds as flavorful and delicious as regular egg sugar mousse. I love it, I'm going to make this with agar agar instead of gelatin (a lot of people in my family are vegetarians)

  • Maureen Jeanson cPT c MH

    I want to run to the markets NOW to buy the cream and berries to make this concoction!
    Thank you!!!!

  • Lauren

    anon – The peanut butter pie is coming up in a couple posts! Not sure about the cheesecake since that requires heating up the oven. :)

    Naomi – Thank you for sharing that tip about the honey.

    MINI FAD – Glad you're enjoying the stevia and erythritol!

    Jackie – Please share how it works out with the agar agar. :)

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  • Hannah

    Yum! I was wondering if you have any suggestions as to how to get coconut cream to whip properly? It never seems to work for me!

  • Anonymous

    Hi!

    I have been checking out your website, it is fabulous! I am also a student, with a love of natural health foods, and really foods of all types. I was curious to see if you have come across working with people who aren't so "open minded" when it comes to food?

    My inlaws have severe health problems, the predominant ones being type 2 diabetes and chronic inflammation, among a myriad of other conditions. I feel their quality of life could be greatly improved if they could replace some of their daily hamburger /french fry / diet coke, routine with more healthful food choices. Big problem though…neither of them cook! So I have been brainstorming some delicious ideas for them to try…hoping to sneak in some sugar free low carb healthy foods under the radar. I have been cooking up a storm in my teeny starving student kitchen and was hoping you might have some ideas?

    Thanks for lending me your ear,
    Alarise

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  • Jo

    Looks really delicious! I love healthy desserts. Thanks

  • Ana

    I just made this on the weekend and it was sooooo good!! I will defintely make it again, maybe with rassberries next time.

    All your recipes look great, thanks for posting them!

  • Ashley

    Hi Lauren, This looks great but is there a way to serve it all together with a crust so that you can slice it? What crust would you suggest? I want to prepare it for a party this summer and it would be hard to bring a bunch of bowls.

    Thanks! :-)

  • Carol

    It looks delicious! Not to mention healthy too!

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