What dessert do you think of when it comes to autumn holidays?
Pumpkin pie, of course!
The good news is that most seasonal fall recipes – when stripped down to their basics – are healthy and packed with whole foods. That means we are free to indulge occasionally without damage to our waistlines.
Over the years I’ve created several healthier versions of autumn treats:
- Healthy Pumpkin Pie Smoothie: great anytime, but especially for breakfast.
- Coconut Milk Pumpkin Crème Brulee: sounds like a dessert but if you add protein powder it’s a tasty lunch.
- Superfood Pumpkin Pie Parfait: a meal that tastes like a treat.
And now here’s one more for your list.
Mini vegan pumpkin pies.
Crustless Pumpkin Pie
Have you ever made raw vegan cheesecake? This recipe follows a similar vein.
All you do is soak cashews in coconut milk overnight, then put the mixture into a high-speed blender – you can use a food processor if you don’t have a Vitamix or Blendtec. Next, add a few more tasty ingredients, and puree. Then keep puree-ing.
The overnight soak and high-speed blending will agitate the fats in the nuts, which causes the mixture to thicken. The end result is a delicious pumpkin pie dessert that requires no baking, contains no sugar, and needs no crust.
Once you’ve assembled all the ingredients together, put them in the refrigerator and watch how nicely the pies sets up.
Because I like some crunch – and also because it’s a great seasonal flavor – I’ve added mapled pecans. And if you want to really take the recipe over the top, you can add some coconut cream whipped topping, too. But the recipe is still amazing without either topping.
Soaked Cashews Add Texture
Soaked cashews are a vegan’s best friend for delivering a creamy texture to both savory and sweet foods and adding plant-based protein as well.
They’re not just great for making creamy pumpkin pie. Take out the pumpkin and you’ll get a vegan cheesecake. Toss in some raw cacao powder and you’ll get a rich chocolate mousse – made without heavy cream and eggs.
You can buy cashews at just about any store, but I make sure to purchase organic raw cashews, which is typically most budget-friendly when purchased from the bulk bins at local health food store.
For an antioxidant boost, add fresh berries to the top, or sprinkle on cacao nibs if you’re a chocolate lover. Either way, one spoonful of our delicious and healthy mini vegan pumpkin pie will win you over!
Healthy Desserts Can Be Delicious
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Yuri Elkaim is one of the world’s most trusted health and fitness experts. A former pro soccer player turned NYT bestselling author of The All-Day Energy Diet and The All-Day Fat Burning Diet, his clear, science-backed advice has transformed the lives of more than 500,000 men and women and he’s on a mission to help 100 million people by 2040. Read his inspiring story, “From Soccer to Bed to No Hair on My Head” that started it all.