Summertime! I really love the hot days, long evenings and outdoors activities that summer has to offer. To counterbalance the heat, from time to time it is an excellent idea to give yourself a cold treat. Sure, there is plenty of vegan ice cream on the market. But do you find a whole food version of it, that has no added sugar and is exploding with nutrients? Here you have it: a crunchy chocolate peanut nicecream entirely based on whole foods.
The benefits of making nicecream over regular icecream
Compared to classic ice cream, a fruit-based nice cream is more beneficial regarding nutrients and lighter in calories. This becomes obvious once you compare the typical ingredients side by side:
|Regular Ice Cream
Comparing these ingredients directly shows the potential benefits of swapping store bought ice cream with all natural nice cream:
- Healthier Fats: Nicecream uses healthy fats from peanut butter and cashews, a better choice than the saturated fats in heavy cream.
- Natural Sweetness: Ripe bananas provide natural sweetness without the need for added refined sugar.
- Fiber and Nutrients: Bananas are a good source of dietary fiber and essential minerals and vitamins like potassium, vitamin C, and B vitamins.
- Antioxidant Boost: Cocoa powder and cocoa nibs are rich in antioxidants.
- No Artificial Additives: Nicecream avoids artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives entirely.
- Lower Calories: Nicecream typically contains fewer calories per serving, making it a lighter and guilt-free dessert choice. You can lower the calories further by reducing the peanut butter used.
How to make nicecream?
Frozen fruit is the base to any nicecream. Depending on what flavours you like, you can blend anything imaginable. Since this recipe asks for strong chocolate flavor, frozen banana is a good choice to get started, for it is less dominant in taste and highly flexible in texture creation.
Picking ripe bananas creates a creamy nicecream
That's right. The riper a banana becomes, the more soft and mushy its meat will be. And this is the perfect texture to blend into an ice-cream.
This means that you should wait a couple of days before freezing bananas. I usually buy my bananas for the week, and purchase 2 or 3 more. I will eat most of the bananas in time, but the ones I do not eat, then get peeled and frozen for the next icecream oportunity.
Adding protein and fats to the nicecream
Peanut butter comes into play to change the texture to something even more creamy. The fatty contents of PB soften up the whole picture painted on your tongue. And on top of that, you also add a good amount of protein to your ice cream. Protein + Ice cream. Hear that? Nice!
Chocolate flavoring the banana nicecream
The soul of this nice cream is chocolate. So let’s not forget about it. In this recipe I used pure cocoa powder and nothing else. That’s it. Those 3 ingredients form your base of your nicecream. Here, we are already doing good, but to go to excellent, we should not forget about texture contrast.
Adding the crunch to your crunchy chocolate peanut nicecream
What could be a better contrast to soft and creamy than crunchy? Tossing in a few pieces of chocolate or cookie would fit great here, but let's stay on the whole foods train instead.
To finish the blend, I decided to use cashews and cocoa nibs. Transfer everything into your food processor and start working on the mass slowly. We want to break down the nuts but without transforming them into a homogeneous mass that is no longer crunchy.
Once done with the blending, that’s basically it. Serve your crunchy chocolate peanut nicecream quickly before it melts away. Decorate with more chocolate and other stuff like cocoa flakes. You know the deal.
Variations of banana nicecream
Crunchy chocolate and peanuts are great! But there is no need to stop here. You can infuse this basic recipe with many different flavors. Here's some ideas to get you going:
- Forest Fusion: Add frozen berries like raspberries and strawberries to the banana to make a sorbet with forest fruit.
- Topical Mix: try different fruits like mango, pineapple, coconut, and your banana to get some Caribbean vibes.
- Chai spiced nicecream: what works with tea and milk also works with frozen bananas. Try spicing things up with cinnamon, cardamom and other warming spices, or add a splash of concentraded chai infusion right away.
- Apple crumble style: Try freezing baked apple and blending it to a nicecream. Round up with cinnamon and green cardamom.
Enjoy the summer and have a happy life.
Crunchy Chocolate Peanut Nicecream
- Food Processor
- 2 Medium bananas Super ripe and frozen
- 1 tbsp Peanut butter
- 2 tsp Cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp Cashews
- 1 tbsp Cocoa nibs
- 1 tbsp Coconut Flakes
- Give everything into your food processor and blend it for around 5-10 seconds on slow to medium speed. The idea is to mix and mingle everything, without powderizing all crunchy ingredients. If in doubt, first blend and then add the crunch.
- Give a good scoop to a bowl or plate. Decorate with more cocoa nibs and some coconut flakes
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