If you plan to make a vegan chocolate pudding or mousse, there are basically three options for a rich dessert that doesn’t use dairy ingredients. First, you have avocado, a surprisingly versatile and mild-tasting fruit that easily blends with chocolate to provide structure and creaminess. There is also the silken tofu option that, when whipped with melted chocolate, transforms into an airy indulgence. Finally, there’s a raw, vegan version of chocolate pudding that’s usually made with cashews and sweetened with dates and raw agave nectar. I’ve never made this recipe, and while I’ve had outstanding examples at the hands of skilled raw chefs, I’m a lost puppy when it comes to creating raw recipes.
I’ve had some success with the chocolate and avocado n the past, so I decided to create this recipe. Most important to me was having a high-quality chocolate flavor, fully obscuring the avocado taste. (I love avocados, but detest the flavor in chocolate pudding, so I aimed to cloak it with lots of rich, dark chocolate). The added benefits of using nutrient-rich avocado are its cholesterol and blood-pressure-lowering qualities, high amounts of antioxidants, and nutrients like potassium and B6.
While you may typically think of avocado in savory dishes like guacamole or in soups and salads, it is widely used in parts of Africa, Asia and South America in cakes and frostings as well as blended into fruit juices.
If you’re looking for an airy, whipped texture like chocolate mousse, I would probably go with a silken tofu recipe (something I’m planning to create in the coming weeks), but for a concentrated pudding texture, this avocado version is dense, chocolatey and hits the spot.
[Note: Served with a topping, this recipe could work for 4 dainty dessert eaters, but if you devour sweets like me, plan for 2-3].
- 4 1-ounce squares of semi-sweet chocolate
- 2 ripe avocados
- ¼ c unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 T agave nectar
- pinch of salt
- peanut butter (or other nut butter), vanilla extract, cinnamon, chili powder or instant coffee
- sliced bananas, mint leaves, cashew cream topping or granola for garnish
- In a bowl set over simmering water, melt chocolate.
- In a food processor, combine avocados, cocoa powder, agave nectar and salt. (Include any optional add-ins at this point). Stir in melted chocolate. Blend several minutes until smooth and shiny.
- Transfer to a medium bowl or 4 small ramekins.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Add optional toppings before serving.