March 2015 archive

Exclusive Recipe: Healthy Chocolate Mousse made in a Blender (Sugar-Free, Dairy-Free)

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Chocolate Mousse is like the little black dress (or suit jacket) of desserts. It can be gussied up with chocolate curls, or poured into glasses and enjoyed unpretentiously. 

Because of the richness of this timeless, elegant dessert, it can easily be made low carb and diabetic-friendly without sacrificing the luxurious texture and piquant cocoa flavoring of traditional mousse. The lack of sugar and the health benefits of chocolate and coconut oil make this dessert a nourishing treat.

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Did you know that you can use expeller-pressed (refined) coconut oil and still reap similar health benefits to what you would get with the extra virgin, coconut-flavored kind? Most of the studies done on coconut oil were actually performed with refined coconut oil, not with extra virgin. I recommend using expeller-pressed coconut oil in this mousse so its essence doesn’t overwhelm the rich chocolate flavor. After trying 2 brands of expeller-pressed CO, my vote goes to Jarrow Formulas, which is extracted with no harsh chemical solvents. The Spectrum brand which is widely available in grocery stores has an off taste. Of course, you can use unrefined Extra Virgin CO if you prefer. It’ll taste a bit like a Mounds bar, which definitely isn’t a bad thing!

You can almost always find a glass or two of this mousse in my fridge. Just like with my Fluffy, Grain-Free Waffles, I make a big batch on Sunday and nosh on it all week. You can grab a glass of wine mousse, sink down into the sofa, and feel extra classy eating gourmet dessert while watching Netflix in your PJ’s. Alternatively, the mousse can be dressed up with fancy curls for unexpected company. Be forewarned: Serve this mousse to unsuspecting guests, and they might want to hang around for awhile!  

Recipe Notes

This updated version of my Sugar-Free Chocolate Mousse is egg-free, dairy-free, and hassle-free. You melt the chocolate, soften the gelatin, and blend everything into a luscious vortex of molten bliss. Pour the mix into glasses, and chill in the fridge. Wait (impatiently). Whip some heavy cream (ideal) or remove your can of Reddi-wip (reality) from the fridge. Garnish mousse. Eat!

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Gelatin is the secret ingredient. Its thickening power takes the place of eggs used in a traditional mousse, giving it a velvety, dense texture and creamy mouthfeel. Because I make this recipe so often, I purchased grassfed beef gelatin since the food source of the cattle influences the nutrient quality of the collagen used to make gelatin. However, Knox gelatin from the grocery store works equally well. You could probably easily make this mousse vegan with agar agar powder, as this blogger did with a fruit-flavored mousse. If you play around with it, please leave a comment below sharing your results.

This recipe contains no added sugar and as it is written. Most of the people who provide me with feedback concerning the recipes you see on the blog seem to tolerate erythritol and stevia just fine, but what works for others might not work for you. Feel free to use other sweeteners they’re more agreeable to you. Raw honey is a delicious paleo substitute for the erythritol, although it substantially increases the grams of sugar per serving (see recipe notes). This recipe is incredibly flexible – you really can’t mess this up! 

Well, that’s not entirely true. You can mess it up if you don’t treat the gelatin with the respect that this venerable yet slightly finicky natural thickener deserves. A few months ago, I endeavored to make a batch of this mousse while talking on the phone (mistake number 1). During what I thought was an automated muscle memory sort of progression through the recipe steps, I dumped the gelatin powder into the warmed mixture of chocolate and coconut cream (second mistake). The translucent mass immediately formed an unappetizing clump, but I soldiered on, not wanting to waste precious ingredients. Ever the optimist, I threw the mixture into a blender and let it run at maximum speed for a minute or two. Sadly, that spark of creativity went unrewarded, as I distinctly remember later that day, tasting the chewy, hard lumps between mouthfuls of creamy chocolate. The silver lining is that by sharing this story I’ve brought you one step closer to achieving flawless results!

Unlike my old mousse recipe, there are no raw eggs in the mix. That means you can serve it to your elderly and pregnant friends with gusto! The sugar-free movement will spread quietly and deliciously, one dinner party at a time. Vive la revolution!

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Healthy Mint “Shamrock” Milkshake Recipe! (Sugar-Free)

Every March as St. Patty’s Day approaches, the Shamrock Shake attracts throngs of hungry diners to the Golden Arches. In all its corn-syrup filled glory, a small McDonald’s Shamrock Shake packs a whopping 86 grams of carbohydrates (73g of sugar) and 530 calories!

Fortunately, I was able to come up with a Healthy Indulgences version that clocks in at 8 grams of carbohydrates, no sugar, and 420 calories worth of protein and nourishing fats. It’s basically a meal in the form of a thick, creamy, sweet milkshake. What could be better than that?

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Weekday Waffles (Low Carb, Grain-Free, Diabetic-Friendly)

These fluffy, gluten-free, nutrient-packed waffles will get you excited about breakfast again. 

Biting into the lightly sweet, bread-like interiors, you’d think these golden brown Eggo knock offs were made from white flour. Not true! Coconut flour, cashews, and a little bit of arrowroot starch (the powdered form of a root vegetable) blend up to create a batter that makes these waffles equals part delicious and nourishing. 

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Although they look fancy and time-consuming to make, these homemade waffles are as simple as tossing the ingredients in a blender and whirling them into a smooth batter. It takes me all of 10 minutes to prep the batter, and another five for the cooking. We use and love a waffle iron similar to this one. It not only cooks up a crispy waffle, but it makes a mean cauli-hash brown… but that’s a recipe for another post! 

The name Weekday Waffles comes from the superb freeze-ability of these toothsome treats. You can make up a big batch on Sunday for a quick breakfast during bleary-eyed weekday mornings. It’s comforting, nutritious fast food. 

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