Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe
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 Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato is actually down right virtuous! Isn’t it great to have a dessert that is rich, indulgent and virtuous? I think so.
- 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.
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