Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwich (Vegan + Gluten Free)

One of my favourite treats (pre-vegan) was Ben & Jerry’s cookie dough Ice cream but I had never found a vegan, healthy-ish replacement, until now…. I present the cookie dough ice cream sandwich recipe that isn’t ridiculously complicated but is bloomin’ delicious. It even fooled my non-vegan brother.

Cookie dough also has a special place in my heart as it conjures up memories of my younger years when I luckily lived in California. We had regular bake sales at school and they would hand out buckets (yes buckets!) of cookie dough. I won’t lie to you, a good portion of those tubs never fulfilled their baked cookie destinies. Sorry cookies.

So here is the vegan, gluten free, dairy free (obviously), refined sugar free, oil free (basically everything free, except for taste!) answer to my (and hopefully your) cookie dough ice cream cries!

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This recipe also doesn’t use coconut milk as a lot of the vegan ice cream recipes do. I don’t know about you but coconut milk is not my fave in recipes which it can’t be more masked in…

I also love this recipe because you don’t need any fancy kitchen tools whatsoever – no -churn and no snazzy blender. Because seriously who can afford a vitamix!?

Enjoy!

 

Ingredients:

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Makes 8 cookies

COOKIE DOUGH ICE CREAM
70 g Cashew Butter 100g Cashew Butter*
125g Rice Syrup (or 100g Maple) 100g Rice Syrup (or 80g Maple)
200g Oat Flour/ Gluten Free Flour 150ml Almond Milk*

Optional:

1 tsp Vanilla Extract Dash (about ¼ tsp) of Vanilla Extract
75-100g Chopped Dark Choc
Pinch of Baking Powder (for a real cookie dough taste)
Pinch of Salt

*I like to use 100g cashew butter and 50g tahini – so yum!

*I’ve only tried this recipes using Rude Health Almond Drink – it’s creamier than other almond milks. So if you’re using other almonds milks such as Alpro or Almond breeze, you might want to reduce the milk by 1/2 to make sure it doesn’t go icy due to the lower fat content!

*For a more convincing light vanilla colour raw cashew butter (not toasted) will give a better result (along with rice syrup). If you have a decent food processor you can make your own nut butters, just throw ’em in and keep grinding! But give your processor regular breaks!

I use an electric whisk to mix my ingredients, but you could also use a food processor or good old fashioned hand whisk as shown below.

COOKIE DOUGH:

ICE CREAM:

Simply slice and serve – no need to thaw!

stacking cookie dough ice cream

 

Easy Vegan Gluten-Free Brownies Recipe

BROWNIESSSSSSSSSS!

Just had to get that initial excitement out, ok let’s carry on.

Brownies are certainly up there, at least in my book of indulgent dessert favourites, so I thought I would share an easy, fudgy yet cakey-topped recipe that also checks all the “healthy-ish” boxes: Vegan, dairy free, gluten free, refined sugar free.

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Unlike Coco Chanel’s rules for accessorizing, the rule of thumb for brownies is: more is better, when in doubt chuck another thing either in or on! Nuts, more chocolate chips, caramel, peanut buttery bits,crunchy crispy things, you name it, you chuck it! You can add whatever you want to this recipe – I love a bit of peanut butter caramel or mint choc chip ice cream!

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For my brownie base this has been the most foolproof and yet delicious brownie recipe since my vegan journey began. It is also both friend and family approved.

As are all the best recipes, this is a one bowl stop shop. Start off with the melty bits and then keep adding everything into the same bowl, mix and you’re done 🙂

Let me know if you try this and what your ultimate brownie add-on is? I am always intrigued, and occasionally horrified, to hear what others deem as the best brownie bud.

Happy chomping!

Lara

I thought I’d add a quick step-by-step picture recipe thing, because I think it’s helpful, particularly for any of my fellow brain-foggy people 🙂

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1. Preheat oven to 180C. Melt 100g Dark Choc and 150g cashew butter together, then add 250g Maple and 2 tsp Vanilla extract.
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2. Mix/whisk together.
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3. Add dry ingredients: 130g GF flour, 1/2 tsp Baking powder and 1/4 tsp Salt.
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4. Mix/whisk together until thoroughly combined.
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5. Pour batter into a lined tin and bake at 180 C for 17-18 minutes
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6. Once baked allow the brownies to completely cool before cutting. Enjoy!

Makes 12 brownies

Ingredients:

100g Dark Chocolate (I used Green & Black’s 70% –  no refined sugar)

150g Cashew Butter

250g Maple Syrup

2 tsp Vanilla Extract

1/4 tsp Salt

130g Gluten free flour ( I used Dove’s Farm)

1/2 tsp Baking Powder

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C.
  2. Melt your chocolate and cashew butter*.
  3. Once melted, add in maple and vanilla extract and whisk or mix together.
  4.  Add in the flour, baking powder and salt.
  5. Mix again until well combined – takes less than a minute with an electric whisk.
  6. Spoon mixture into a lined baking tin – mine is approx. 22 x 22cm.
  7. Bake on the middle shelf and check with a knife after 15 mins* – I baked mine for 17-18mins.
  8. Let them completely cool, they need to be left to gel together properly (I know it’s hard but i promise it’s worth it!)

You should end up with the perfect mix of a slightly cakey top  and beautiful fudgy, chewy bottom 🙂

Brownies are also perfect for freezing, just wrap them up and they can be stored in there for weeks. then  defrost them for 30 minutes to an hour and they’re just as lovely as when first baked.

*I used a make-shift bain marie: I set my mixing bowl over a bowl filled with hot water from the kettle – easier and less likely to burn myself!

*The knife should come out clean or with a tiny bit of brownie on the bottom, you want the bottom half to be fairly fudgy! If you like fudgey brownies of course, if not bake for a little longer!

Nutritional info: 220 calories per brownie

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Vegan Mint Choc Chip Ice Cream Recipe

 

In the spirit of St. Patrick’s day yesterday I thought I would share something green – an easy, dairy-free, mint choc chip ice cream brownie recipe(try saying that 5 times fast). I know it’s still a bit on the chilly side it’s bloody cold, but let’s face it, if you live in England like I do then there aren’t often ice-cream-friendly weather conditions, even when it’s mid-summer, so why not mid-March!

 

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I’ve been nibbling my way through these bars this week as my glands have been even more swollen than usual (Fun fact: lots of people with M.E.have constantly swollen lymph glands and sore throats) and in times of frustration and pain they’ve given me little moments of enjoyment and relief – thanks ice cream!

Now I don’t have an ice cream maker, and I sure as heck don’t have the energy to be freezing and whisking a mixture every 30 minutes (something I foolishly once attempted, but had collapsed by the time round 2 of whisking was upon me). So, I needed an easy ice cream recipe whereby my blender did all the work for me, and the end result wasn’t an impenetrable chunk of ice… and I’ve come up with a few so watch this space…

I try to stay away from fake colourings and additives wherever I can, so spinach is the one to thank for the pretty mint green-ness here – but don’t worry I promise it is totally undetectable in taste!

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This recipe is:

Vegan

Dairy free

Gluten free

Refined Sugar Free

Oil free

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Makes 8 squares or 16 mini squares

Ice Cream:

150g or 1/2 Can of Coconut Milk* (refrigerate overnight, you only need the solid cream)

150g Cashews (soak overnight)

100g Maple Syrup

Small handful of spinach

¼ tsp Vanilla Extract

¼ tsp Peppermint Extract

Pinch of salt

30g Dark Chocolate for decoration*

Easy Raw Brownie:

– You could make an extra healthy raw brownie using dates, nuts and cacao powder but I didn’t have the energy to clean the food processor so this is my easier version!

50g Cashew Butter (or 30g refined coconut oil/30g cacao butter/30g dark choc + no cacao powder)

50g Maple Syrup

60g Gluten-free flour or Oat flour (blended oats or whole oats if you fancy)

1 tsp Raw Cacao Powder (or replace with 20g melted dark choc,and 20g less cashew butter)

A pinch of Salt

1/2 tsp Vanilla

  1. Soak cashews in water overnight or for at least 4 hours in warm water.
  2. Drain and rinse cashews.
  3. Scoop out the coconut cream and discard(save) the water from the can. Melt the coconut cream – unless you have a powerful blender.
  4. Pop all ice cream ingredients in your blender, except the chocolate! Blend until super smooth – this took a few minutes in my blender, and I gave it a rest break or 2 because it’s not a super snazzy one!
  5. For best results, chill mixture for a few hours in fridge. This means the ice cream is less likely to become icy, which nobody wants.

– If you just fancy the ice cream without the brownie, then pour the chilled ice cream mix into a tray covered with baking paper and then sprinkle on your chocolate chunks, cover and freeze for 6hrs minimum. Et Voila!

  1. Brownie time: Mix cashew butter, maple syrup, cacao powder, vanilla and salt together. Microwave the nut butter slightly if it’s a bit tough to mix. If you use coconut oil or cacao butter replacement these will need to be melted.
  2. Add flour and mix, then pour and push down into moulds or a tray covered with baking paper and freeze.
  3. Once the ice cream mixture has chilled, pour on top of brownie mixture and sprinkle dark chocolate chunks on top. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.

Enjoy!

Lara

*You only need the coconut cream so refrigerate the can of coconut milk the night before and the cream will separate. Turn the can upside down and open, this means all the water is easy to pour off and you’re left with scoop-able coconut cream. You can also sub 100g cacao butter instead of coconut cream and add 50g more of the soaked cashews.

*I used 70% Green and Black’s chocolate as all ingredients are organic, it’s dairy free (as dark choc should really be) and they use raw cane sugar 🙂

Valentine’s Strawberry Cheesecake

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I have been meaning to write up and post my recipes on here for literally ages, but as the M.E. game goes, you don’t always get to do what you want when you want! So I’m very pleased to finally be getting round to it. I’m not the best recipe keeper i’ll admit, so it will be handy to get some of my favourites online!

It’s Valentine’s Day this Sunday, an often dreaded day by us singletons! If you’re feeling a bit downhearted about Valentine’s day (or not!) then this cheesecake will make you glad there isn’t a boyfriend or girlfriend that you have to give the last piece to! Equally if you’re all loved up this could be the perfect treat for you and your partner to indulge in (sorry that you have to share). I’m looking forward to it as we are having a few of our family around which will be lovely and of course it’s the perfect excuse to whip up a tasty, healthy-ish dessert! And obviously for a valentine’s treat, strawberry and chocolate came to mind…

 

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I have to warn you, I think this dairy-free strawberry cheesecake is pretty delish, and the chewy brownie bottom is just…you’ll see. I would advise to only tuck in with other people in the room, otherwise there is a good chance you might end up eating, well, all of it (if you’re anything like me!). It feels like a Rachel/Chandler cheesecake fiasco waiting to happen.

This recipe is:

Vegan

Gluten free

Dairy free

Refined sugar free

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Strawberry Brownie Cheesecake

Serves 4 – 6

Makes a mini cheesecake (10cm tin)

Ingredients:

Brownie Base:

70g or 1/2 cup Cashews

10g or 2 tbsp Cacao powder

100g or 3/4 cup Medjool dates

10 – 20g or 1 -2 tbsp Maple Syrup

2 pinches of Salt

3-4 drops Vanilla essence

Strawberry Cheesecake:

100g cashews (soak for 4 hours minimum)

50g melted coconut oil (I don’t use raw as it has a less coconutty flavour)

60g Maple Syrup

150g strawberries + a few more for decoration

Optional:

Pinch of salt

Squeeze of lime

(This makes a small cheesecake measuring 10 x 10cm so I think double or even triple the amount would make a normal sized cheesecake.)

  1. Soak  100g of your cashews in water for at least 4 hours, you can also leave to soak overnight.
  2. For the brownie base: blend dry cashews in food processor until fine (don’t worry if there are a few little chunks)
  3.  Add the medjool dates and maple syrup, blend until it starts to come together in a big gooey ball, yum! (If your medjool dates are on the dry side or your processor is on the weak side, soak in warm water for 5 -10 mins)
  4. Add remaining brownie ingredients and blend until thoroughly mixed.
  5. Line your cheesecake pan with baking paper and push brownie dough into bottom with fingers. Pop it in the freezer!
  6. For the cheesecake: drain and rinse soaked cashews and then chuck all cheesecake ingredients into your blender. This took around 1-2 minutes in mine.
  7. Pour the cheesecake into the cheesecake pan, cover and refrigerate. If you need it to set faster put it in the freezer for at least 1 hour.
  8. Tuck in and enjoy!

 

I think raw desserts like this are perfect for  busy people or very unbusy people like myself who have to ration out energy expenditure, as I can make this as much as a week in advance and keep it in the freezer. Then serve up a lovely little creation to family/friends – no muss, no fuss.

Have a Happy Valentine’s Day!

Lara