Summer… it has been sweltering… and yes I’m complaining, not because of the sunshine mind you, I’m complaining because there is a distinct lack of healthy iced treats to grab out of my freezer and cool me down. I don’t know about you but I bloody love ice cream – I’ll even eat it in winter, seriously – and I actually have (probably a rather unrealistic) dream of opening an all natural, healthy, superfood ice cream parlour one day, as I don’t know about you but I’m fed up of not being able to eat anything whenever I go out! Or at least worry about what I’m eating when I go out.
This Vegan Chunky Monkey Ice Cream is a deliciously smooth banana ice cream that contains half of the carbs of the original. Filled with chocolate chunks and toasted nuts it’s sure to curb those naughty cravings. Dairy, egg, gelatin, and sugar-free.
There’s nothing I love more than a sugar-free ice cream that’s packed full of super nourishing foods and is still super tasty. And there is nothing better than ice cream that is accessible to absolutely anyone – this Vegan Chunky Monkey Ice Cream is dairy, egg, gelatin, sugar, and nut free – well nut free if you don’t add in the pecans or walnuts to your mix. The chocolate can also easily be replaced with carob if needs be too.
Recently I have been following a Keto diet in order to cut weight for my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitions and so sweet treats have been off limits, which is why this recipe has been designed with a high fat, low carb diet in mind. Roughly 1/4 (125ml) of the batch of ice cream contains 53g fat, 15g carbs, and 5g protein, which is half of the carb content of both the Ben & Jerry’s original and vegan version. If you’re a serious Keto dieter then you might want to omit the banana altogether and find an all natural flavouring to use.
Unlike with Ben & Jerry’s you’ll get a fantastic dose of good fats, vitamins, and minerals with my Vegan Chunky Monkey Ice Cream – and what’s even better is that it only contains sugar from 1 banana! I use NuNaturals NuStevia Simple Syrup in my recipe to sweeten it up which simply contains glycerin, stevia, and water and is a zero carb, zero calorie sweetener. I’m not 100% sure if it’s vegan but most food grade glycerin is usually vegetable derived. You could also use xylitol, or if you wanted to opt for a higher sugar treat, maple syrup or coconut sugar.
I use cacao butter to help to keep the fat content high and prevent ice crystals forming, but also as it gives it a more buttery and creamy dairy-like taste too. Again I’ve included pink salt and xanthan gum to help prevent ice crystals but if xanthan gum gives you problems you don’t need to use it so don’t worry! The lemon juice helps to prevent browning of the banana and cuts through the sweetness just a little. You can add as little as the juice of 1/4 of a lemon all the way up to the juice of 1/2 a lemon – just play with the taste until it’s perfect for you! The turmeric is simply for colour and the taste doesn’t cut through at all.
This recipe doesn’t require you to have an ice cream maker, although if you do have one just follow the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to pouring the base in. I like to make this when I have time to run to the freezer and stir my ice cream around frequently enough. If you don’t have time to do this however then you can freeze the base until solid (without the chocolate chips and nuts) then run it through a food processor until smooth, return to the container and stir in your nuts and chocolate, then return to the freezer until it’s ready.
If you’re looking to make the ultimate guilt-free ice cream treat why not try my Sugar-Free Hot Fudge Sauce too?
- 400ml full fat coconut milk
- 50g cacao butter
- ⅛ cup/30ml NuStevia Simple Syrup or ¼ cup xylitol granules
- ¼ tsp vanilla powder (I use Ndali)
- 1 large banana (roughly 140g)
- Juice ¼ to ½ lemon
- ¼ tsp fine Himalayan pink salt (if coarse grind)
- ¼ tsp ground turmeric
- ¼ tsp xanthan gum
- ¾ cup/70g toasted pecans or walnuts
- 60g good quality dark or raw chocolate
- Place your coconut milk, cacao butter, liquid stevia syrup (or other sweetener), and vanilla powder into a heavy bottomed pan, gently whisk the ingredients and place onto a medium heat until almost at boiling point. Reduce to a low heat and simmer gently for roughly 30 minutes until the mixture has thickened enough to evenly coat the back of a spoon. Leave the mixture to cool for 5 minutes before placing into the freezer for a further 10-15 minutes to cool completely.
- In the bowl of your food processor combine your banana and lemon juice. Process until smooth. Remove the cooled ice cream base from the freezer and begin to pour down your feed tube whilst the processor is running. Then add the fine Himalyan pink salt, ground turmeric, and xanthan gum. Process until all of the ingredients have fully combined. You may want to periodically scrape down the sides with a silicone spatula.
- Place the mixture into the freezer and stir every 15 minutes until the mixture has cooled completely.
- Whilst you are waiting cut your chocolate into chips and chop your toasted nuts. Remove the mixture and stir in your chocolate chips and toasted nuts.
- Cover the bowl with cling film, to prevent ice crystals from forming, and place the mixture back into the freezer. Stir every 15 minutes for an hour until the ice-cream becomes slightly more firm than that of the texture of ‘soft serve’.
- Scoop up and enjoy!
**All cup measurements used are UK cup measurements and so 1 cup = 250ml.