Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on September 19, 2011

Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipes I believe firmly that  no living thing thrives with deprivation. That is why it makes me so happy to create gluten free recipes for desserts that are rich and indulgent. If I can create a dessert that is not only gluten free but also sugar free and is STILL rich and indulgent then I am not just happy, I am ecstatic!

I just can not think of the words “chocolate” and “deprivation” in the same thought!  Seriously, who is going to punish you by making you eat chocolate? And I am willing to bet that one does not think “gelato” and then think “diet”. And yet one of my fairly guilt-free go-to desserts is Chocolate Gelato!

Did you know that gelato is lower in fat and calories than ice cream? Well, it is. Gelato is traditionally made with milk and typically has between 4 and 8 percent butter fat versus ice cream’s 14 to 16 percent butter fat content (at least in America).

So if gelato is lower in fat and calories than ice cream why does it seem so much richer? First of all the lower fat content of milk vs. cream makes it so that the flavors come through much more vibrantly. If you want a rich and sinful dairy free dessert make this with the dairy free milk of your choice – just make sure the fat content is similar to that of whole cow’s milk.

Secondly, I think the silken texture has something to do with it. In commercial gelato that silken texture is achieved by the use of corn syrup. It does something technical (that I could pretend to understand and explain but don’t and won’t) to the milk. But you can get the same result with agave nectar AND have the added benefit of a dessert that is free of refined sugar. Since agave is non-crystallizing it keeps the gelato smooth and silky without those little bits of rock hard frozen sugar that can ruin a good frozen treat.

So if we combine lower fat and calories with refined sugar free and the health benefits of chocolate which include everything from lowering blood pressure and possibly fighting cancer to preventing tooth decay, this Chocolate Gelato is actually down right virtuous! Isn’t it great to have a dessert that is rich, indulgent and virtuous? I think so.

Gluten Free Recipes | Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato

Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe


3 cups whole milk (or dairy free milk)
1 pinch kosher or fine sea salt
2/3 cup organic raw blue agave
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1½ tablespoons cornstarch


Heat 2 cups of the milk with the salt and agave in a saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining cup of milk with the cocoa powder and cornstarch. Add the mixture to the heated milk and agave mixture. Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Continue to boil and stir for 1 minute. Strain the mixture into a clean bowl and let cool to room temperature. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, about 6 hours. (To hasten the chilling process put the mixture in the freezer for approximately 1 hour instead.)

Pour the mixture into an ice cream machine and process for 20 – 30 minutes or according to the manufacture’s directions. Place in a covered container and freeze until hard, about 6 hours. The gelato will keep for a week in the freezer, covered.


A gluten free recipe that makes 1 quart of gelato.

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Ready for dessert?

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Categories:    Dessert
  • InTolerantChef

    I toatally agree, this recipe is so virtuous it would almost sinful not to make it- again, and again, and again!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Haha – you and I think very much alike!!!!

  • Alisa Fleming

    This looks amazing Carol, and I love that you use a liquid sweetener!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Alisa!

  • Shirley @ gfe

    I didn’t even write a long comment this time and it timed out. :-( Shorter version … Channeling Austin Powers: “Yeah, baby!” And totally agree on deprivation statement. Will report back with review soon!


    • Carol Kicinski

      hmmm, what timed out? Is it an issue with my site or your computer? Remember, I am technically challenged here!

  • Maggie

    We ate A LOT of gelato when we were in Switzerland. There was nothing dairy-free or sugar-free about it though :) Fortunately that was before our diagnoses! I can’t wait to try this! Thanks Carol.

  • Lexie

    Oh Carol, be still my heart. Look at that rich chocolate, YEAH!


  • Kim (Cook It Allergy Free)

    Oh my, this looks way too amazing and rich! I love gelato. Unfortunately for my waste line, there is an amazing gelato store right by my boys school. Every now and then, when I am feeling like being an extra cool mom, we make a little stop there on the way home. Shhh…. This recipe looks super decadent! Will just have to try it out now!

  • Nancy@

    This looks incredible. Unfortunately I don’t have my ice cream machine with us when we are on the road, but whipping up a batch of this gelato will be a priority once we get back home. Thanks.

  • Elsie Hodges

    It looks yummy. What kind of ice cream maker do you use?

    • Carol Kicinski

      I have a cuisinart ice cream maker :)

      • Elsie Hodges

        Well of course! It would have to be Cuisinart, wouldn’t it? I should have known. I just got a Cuisinart ICE 21 with Airmiles. Have tried it once. I MUST try this recipe. Probably won’t last a week in the freezer at our house.

        • Carol Kicinski

          I like thier products, they seem to hold up well :) It never lasts a week in my house either!

  • Pingback: Weekly Gluten-Free Roundup – September 25, 2011 « Celiac Kitchen Witch

  • Ali

    Oh Carol looks really good, I always love my dessert to have a choco flavor :) Care to share a scoop :)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Love to share Gelato :)

  • Angie

    This looks decadent! I will try this out, but not with agave. I’ll try raw honey or date syrup. Will let you know how it works out :)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Angie – would love to know how it turns out!

  • Nancy

    Loving this and the recent Chocolate pie recipe.
    From Sept 2011, I have omitted the grain so these recipes will rule in my eating plan.
    Thanks for the supportive words!
    Ciao Bella

  • michelle

    If I use agave, do you know what the carb/sugar count is per serving? How many servings does this make? Thanks from a newly diagnosed diabetic.

    • Carol Kicinski

      Ok, I am not a nutritionist so please, you should get correct advice here but by doing some rough math there are about eight 1/2 cup servings in this recipe which means that there is about 1 1/3 tablespoons of agave in each serving. I looked at the lable on my agave and it lists the following for a 2 tablespoon serving: Fat – 0 , Sodium – 0, Total Carb. – 32g, Sugars – 32g. Does this help?

  • Shannon

    I’ve never made ice cream so I’m alittle confused. You cool the mixture for 1hr in the freezer then use the ice cream maker? Or is it either or?

    • Carol Kicinski

      Yes cool the mixture first, just to get the mixture cool enough so that it will freeze well in the ice cream maker otherwise the machine will spend all its time cooling the mixture and not freezing it.

  • ashley

    While this seems amazing, I am not a chocolate fan at all. Have you made any adaptations or other varieties? If so, which worked best?

    • Carol Kicinski

      I have only made this in chocolate but I am thinking fruit would work. I will tell you what, I am going to play with this but I am guessing that about 3/4 cup of pureed fruit would be lovely.

  • Rachel

    I know you said dairy free milk in parenthesis, but does this recipe work with soy milk? (just want to make sure)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Sure, should work just fine. I don’t use soy milk but I see no reason why it wouldn’t work. Enjoy!

  • Judi

    Hi Carol, what could I substitute the cornstarch for? I’m off corn completely

    • Carol Kicinski

      Hi Judi, You can use either arrowroot powder or tapioca starch. Enjoy!

      • VaLin

        Or rice flour!!

  • VaLin

    Agave Syrup is high in carbs — is it really sugar free?

  • CarolKicinski

    It is not refined sugar so it is considered sugar free.

  • CarolKicinski

    Yes, rice flour is sugar free. But not carb free – if you are looking for low carb treats, try some of the recipes made with almond flour.

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