Posted by Justine Fritz on Thu, Nov 10, '16
During the winter months, many worry that they won’t be able to enjoy seasonal desserts without negatively impacting their health. People with diabetes risk a spike in blood sugar levels after enjoying a sugar-filled treat, and others working towards weight-loss goals may worry that indulging in a few treats will derail their progress.
Our Vegan Pumpkin Coconut Mousse looks and feels like an indulgence, but it really isn’t. Our Chief Nutrition Officer, Dr. Lisa Davis, PhD, PA-C, CNS, worked with our Culinary Creative Director, Libbie Summers, to develop a recipe that is nutritious, gluten-free, and only modestly impacts blood sugar levels.
Here are some of the benefits you will get from this dessert. (Yes, we said benefits and dessert in the same sentence!)
- Modest impact on blood sugar levels. The main ingredients in this dessert - pumpkin, coconut cream and agave nectar - all have a low-glycemic load. Glycemic load is the combined carbohydrate content and glycemic index of a food. If the score is between 0 and 10, the score is considered “low.” Several recent animal studies even support the role of pumpkin in the regulation of blood sugar levels.
- Heart-healthy spices. The flavoring of this dessert comes from healthful spices, ginger and nutmeg, and diabetes-friendly cinnamon. Several small studies have shown that just one teaspoon of cinnamon may help improve both blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Like pumpkin, cinnamon contains polyphenol antioxidants with potent anti-inflammatory actions that help protect the body’s blood vessels, including those that supply blood to the heart.
- Gluten free. Unlike traditional desserts like pies and cookies, mousse does not rely on gluten to bind, allowing this recipe to remain gluten free.
- Vegan. Another benefit of using the low-glycemic load coconut cream in this recipe is that is no longer contains dairy and is vegan! This is a great choice if you are serving anyone who needs a vegan or dairy-free dessert this holiday.
- Built-in portion control. This recipe is designed to only make two servings. Of course, you can double or triple it if you are cooking for a crowd. You have 100% control to only make the amount you actually need to reduce temptation.
Keep reading for the recipe developed by Libbie Summers.
Vegan Pumpkin & Coconut Mousse (serves 2)
Calories – 263
Vegan + Gluten-Free
Allergens – Contains Tree Nuts (Coconut)
Excellent Source of – Fiber and Vitamin A
Good Source of – Iron
**Glycemic Load of 2 Tbsp. of Agave: 9.6
What you need:
1 cup organic canned pumpkin
½ cup plus 2 teaspoons *coconut cream, divided
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon agave syrup, divided
1 teaspoon plus a pinch of ground cinnamon, divided
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
1 tablespoon unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted
#TKHack: Can’t find coconut cream? Use the cream that rises to the top of a can of coconut milk.
What to do:
Make The Mousse: In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, ½ cup coconut cream, 2 tablespoons agave syrup, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and pinch of salt.
- Divide mousse between two jars, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.
- Make The Cream Topping: Just before serving, stir together the remaining coconut cream, remaining agave syrup and remaining cinnamon.
To Serve: Place a small dollop of the topping on each jar of mousse and garnish with toasted coconut.
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