Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream is the perfect dessert for these crazy sunny winter days (I’m definitely daydreaming about Springtime). Coconut Milk ice cream is dairy-free and made simply, quickly in a Blendtec blender! Salty pistachios combine with rich dark chocolate in a cardamom-spiced  coconut milk ice cream. 

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Ice Cream  // treatswithatwist.com

Is it super sunny where you are? I swear I was wearing shorts yesterday! In January! Isn’t that crazy?! Are you getting what I’m getting at…?

Ice cream in January is an amazing idea. I’m not one of those people that can only have ice cream in the dead of summer and I’m guessing you’re not either. I’m sure you’re slowly mixing a hot chocolate and thinking, “I wish this was ice cream…but I won’t admit that out loud…”

Well, I’ve done it for you!

And making this ice cream is SO easy, you’ll be making it everyday. You can totally blame me for that.

I made this incredible Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream in a Blendtec 725 blender! Trying out this blender has been such a fun adventure! I love that it has a touch screen! You can select from preset cycles like Whole Juice, Salsa, Ice Cream, Dry Grinding, Hot Soup, or the Clean cycle, OR you can control the sliding panel and choose your own speed (or pulse!). And because it has the “Wild Side+” jar, which is a flat extra side, you don’t need a plunger to push down ingredients into the blade.

I also have the Twister Jar. I just have to say, this is SO cool. It’s a smaller jar attachment for the blender that has little scraping twisting blades coming from the lid so you can make really thick things, like nut butters, without constantly stopping your blender and scraping down the sides! Trust me, as someone who has other “professional” blenders and equipment and makes her own nut butters, this is amazing. 

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 1

 

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 3

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 2

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Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 4

Back to the ice cream! This ice cream is made totally from coconut milk (the real, full fat, unsweetened stuff in the can, not a carton). It’s smooth and creamy and so delicious. It is sweetened with coconut sugar (keeping with the theme) which gives it a golden caramel color and makes the ice cream subtly sweet without spiking your blood sugar. It is lightly flavored with cardamom and vanilla, then studded with chips of dark chocolate, pistachios, and toasted coconut. The healthy fats, antioxidants, and decadent flavors will keep you satisfied and rock your taste-buds!

There’s a trick to making ice cream in the blender, and the Blendtec specifically. You need to freeze your coconut milk in an ice cube mold. Then only add minimal liquid to it when you’re blending (no more than 3 Tbs). The Blendtec will whip it all up into a soft-serve consistency! [Trust me, I made this recipe 3 times before I got it right, always adding too much extra coconut milk or coconut cream to the blender, resulting in just a bunch of milkshake…tastes good but totally not what I wanted. Minimal liquid = ice cream.]

Then, you stir in any add-ins [I pulsed chocolate and pistachios in the blender before I started] and either eat it right there or put it in the freezer to freeze up a bit.

Secret ingredient? Vodka! Trust me. Stirring in ½ tsp. of vodka keeps this coconut milk ice cream scoopable. If you don’t add it, your ice cream will freeze into a brick (no bueno). The flavor is 100% undetectable. If you’re just plain uncomfortable with it, try adding 1 tsp of a starch (like corn starch or tapioca starch) to the ingredients in the blender when it is blending. But it won’t work as well. I’m not a huge drinker (ie I’m all about the wine) so I bought one of those tiny airplane sized bottles of Vodka just for this, that way I’m not left with a huge bottle at the end of the day.

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 5

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 6

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream 8

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Ice Cream 9

I can’t wait to hear what you think of this ice cream after you’ve made it! It’s a definite favorite in my house!

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream from treatswithatwist.com

Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream
Pistachio Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream is the perfect dessert for these crazy sunny winter days (I'm definitely daydreaming about Springtime). Coconut Milk ice cream is dairy-free and made simply, quickly in a Blendtec blender! Salty pistachios combine with rich dark chocolate in a cardamom-spiced coconut milk ice cream. (makes 1 pint)
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Ingredients
  1. 1 (12.5 oz) can coconut milk (full fat, unsweetened)
  2. ½ cup coconut sugar
  3. ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  4. ¼ tsp. ground cardamom
  5. ½ tsp. vodka*
  6. 3 Tbs. dark chocolate (chips or bar)
  7. 3 Tbs. roasted, salted pistachios
  8. 1 Tbs. unsweetened coconut, toasted
Instructions
  1. PREP: Shake your can of coconut milk vigorously for 30 seconds. Open the can and pour the contents into 1 ice cube tray (if your tray doesn’t have a cover, try lightly covering with plastic wrap). You’ll have about 1/3 cup of coconut milk leftover. Put the tray into your freezer and the leftover milk into the fridge. Freeze for at least 4 hours, until solid.
  2. In your Blendtec, pulse (individually or together) the chocolate and pistachios until broken into small pieces. Set aside. Rinse out your blender or put it through the “cleaning” cycle. Dry your blender jar.
  3. In your Blendtec blender, combine the frozen coconut milk cubes, coconut sugar, vanilla, cardamom and 2 Tbs. of the remaining coconut milk. Press the “Ice Cream” setting and let it all blend together (this is so quick! It will quickly whip it all into ice cream!).
  4. When the cycle stops, you have your base! It should be the consistency of soft serve (or like the popular “Frosty” consistency). Add the dark chocolate pieces and pistachio pieces, toasted coconut, and the ½ tsp. of vodka. Stir with a spatula to distribute.
  5. Pour it into an ice cream container (or line a loaf pan with plastic wrap, pour the ice cream into the loaf pan, then wrap really well with several layers of plastic wrap) and freeze for 2 more hours, until slightly more solid. It’s ready! Serve it up!
  6. Clean your Blendtec blender jar by putting it through the “Clean cycle”.
Notes
  1. Note: If you like more solid ice cream, freeze the finished ice cream for 4 hours or overnight.
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/
 

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No Bake Halva Cookie Bites

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites are my lower-sugar, satisfyingly flavorful version of halva, all wrapped up in a cookie bite! Don’t let the word “cookie” fool you though, these make an incredibly satisfying snack or treat. Halva lovers unite! 

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites // treatswithatwist.com // #glutenfree

I don’t know if you’re a halva addict. I am.

I didn’t know what halva was until I started dating my now-husband. I’d heard of it but never even tried it. Then, when we started staying at his dad’s house for relaxing weekends, and I was introduced to halva…at breakfast! His dad sets out a huge spread at breakfast, including a frittata, lots of fresh Persian basil and mint, various flat breads, homemade blackberry jam, feta and halva.

Halva is sweet. Really sweet. But pleasant. And addictive. And I love combining it with all of those savory items because the balance is perfection. I love the little pieces of pistachio in it and the creamy, mellow flavor of tahini and pistachios together.

I’ve become hooked. I see the word “halva” and immediately go nuts. Seeing “travel sized” bars of halva at World Market made me want to buy ALL of them. I think of Molly Yeh and the crazy halva love she has and feel like her soul sister because of it (She made a cake with halva in the frosting! THAT is love.). I also think of Renee and her love of Tahini and natural desserts. I’m in wonderful company.

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites 1

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites 2

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites // treatswithatwist.com // #glutenfree

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites 4

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites 5

So, I’ve made No Bake Halva Cookie Bites. I haven’t made a no bake cookie bite since my Oatmeal Chocolate Chip ones, and this is a crazy wonderful encore. These are super simple too. And they’re not CRAZY sweet like halva can be, so you can eat more of them. You’re welcome.

Simple ingredients come together quickly and then are rolled in a mixture of pulverized pistachios, coconut and coconut sugar. I made a lot of the rolling mixture so I could sprinkle it all over everything else in my life (pancakes, yogurt, porridge…). I highly recommend you do the same!

Enjoy these No Bake Halva Cookie Bites as dessert, a snack with friends (sheesh you’re nice), or a satisfying mid-day treat. The healthy fats are so nourishing. The flavor is so addictive. 

No Bake Halva Cookie Bites
No Bake Halva Cookie Bites are my lower-sugar, satisfyingly flavorful version of halva, all wrapped up in a cookie bite! Don’t let the word “cookie” fool you though, these make an incredibly satisfying snack or treat. Halva lovers unite! (makes 20 bites)
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Ingredients
  1. ½ cup tahini
  2. ¼ cup coconut butter
  3. ¼ cup honey
  4. ½ cup oats
  5. 1/3 cup pistachios
  6. ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  7. 3 Tbs coconut sugar
Instructions
  1. PREP: In a blender, pulse the oats until they’re broken down and small, but not as fine as flour. Set aside. Pulse the pistachios and coconut in a blender until fine with a few slightly larger pieces (but not many, because the smallest pistachio “dust” will cling to the cookies the most). Combine the pistachios and coconut with the coconut sugar in a jar, stir (or shake) together.
  2. In a bowl, combine the tahini, coconut butter, and honey (TIP: warm the tahini and coconut butter until very soft in the microwave first). Add ¼ cup of the pulsed oats and 1-2 Tbs. of the pistachio/coconut/coconut sugar mixture. Use a wooden spoon to mash it all together until well combined (this should resemble a cookie dough!).
  3. Use a cookie scoop (mine is 1.5 Tbs.) to scoop out the cookie dough, roll into a ball in your hands, then roll through the pistachio/coconut/coconut sugar mixture, pressing the pistachios into the cookie bite. Do this until your dough is gone.
  4. Your cookies are done! I like to refrigerate mine for at least 30 minutes before “serving them,” then I keep them in a sealed container in the refrigerator (snacking on them throughout the day).
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/
PS I have a KILLER Coconut Milk ice cream recipe on Wednesday that would go perfectly with these! 

Fabulously Fit Friday 57

Fabulously Fit Friday is getting snacky! I’m going to share my favorite fit snacks with you, and I want to hear yours! 

Fabulously Fit Friday post from treatswithatwist.com

Hey hey!!

So I last time we talked shop, I blabbed all about my new favorite workout tunes and little finds. Fun! Ok, since then, I’ve endured two more weeks of grueling Bikini Body Guide workouts. I love it though! I feel so so motivated to keep going.

I think my primary motivation to keep participating is my husband. I’ve never seen him so dedicated to a challenge, especially fitness-related. And he has lost 10 pounds as of last week! That’s so crazy. His heart is so big and he’s so driven right now. And he loves the way he feels.

I don’t know how much of a physical change I’ve gone through over the last 4 weeks, if any, but we have “progress pictures” to take Sunday morning. I’m so nervous about that! But I know that I’m more motivated to see my progress after week 12, and I’m more excited about the mental progress I’ve made.

Ok, so today’s fitness theme just has to be snacks!

A few of my favorite snacks while staying healthy are:

Greek yogurt with toppings (I reach for a healthy granola with low sugar, nuts, nut butter or/and fruit). For a dairy-free option (which I reach for just as often), I like cultured coconut yogurt or almond yogurt. 
Protein shake: I love Vega protein powders for a vegan shake (they just released two new flavors!), or Quest protein powder for a whey shake. * 
Protein bar: I’m VERY picky and rarely reach for a bar. Sometimes a Luna bar, Kind bar or Quest bar is thrown into the rotation, but other than that I steer clear.
No-Bake Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites: This is an old recipe I’m going to remake soon, but it is still SO good. They make healthy cookie bites which are actually perfect snacks
Veggies with hummus: I’m currently hooked on Sabra’s Tuscan Herb hummus!
Fruit: I have really been on an apple with peanut butter kick lately! Yes!

What are your favorite healthy snacks lately?

 

We are now entering Week 5 of BBG! I can’t believe it! 

Note: this is not a sponsored post! 
Another note: I’m going to rearrange some of my Fabulously Fit Friday posts, renaming them with numbers (like this one is) so they’re easier for you to keep track of! Love ya! 

*I am a Blendtec Affiliate! If you want to try a Blendtec blender and have your mind blown, click here

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting is my new favorite flavor combination. Slightly sweet almond cake (gluten free) is layered with rich and honey-like fig jam, then tied together with a warming, Spring-like coconut butter frosting. The flavors marry together perfectly, creating a sophisticated yet casual dessert, perfect for a birthday or a Tuesday night.

  Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com  

Anytime I make a layer cake, my happiness meter shoots WAY up. How could it not? I always feel like I’ve tackled an amazing feat, solved a tremendous puzzle. True satisfaction.

I’ll admit, it’s actually a stress-reliever for me too. It gets easier and easier the more I do it and I find myself more organized during the process.

This cake is a true beauty. The cake has that slightly sweet and fragrant almond flavor, from true almond flour and from almond extract. Then I used my favorite fig butter in between the layers (try to use a fruit butter, because it has more fruit than sugar, which makes it ultra rich and thick, perfect for a filling! I find mine at Trader Joe’s.). I could seriously eat that stuff with a spoon. Then the frosting, which I made from coconut butter that I made myself, but you can buy some from the store.

My frosting is quite yellow, no? That’s my fault. I decided to use a coconut/palm shortening (do they call it margarine too? I hate that word. Lets not call it that.) that was bright yellow (made by Nutiva, in a white container), even though I’ve previously purchased a white version. If I had purchased the white one (I think Earth Balance makes the white one, which comes in a blue container) my frosting would be a snowy white. Lesson learned. I decided to go with the flow and just work with it. Who am I??

I shared the cake with my parents, who came to visit us this weekend. I love pulling out a beautiful layer cake when we have guests, because I feel like I get brownie points as soon as I do. Mental stars. Whatever keeps you going, right?

  Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

I hope you make this cake! It’s truly lovely and so delicious. If you make the cake layers a day in advance then place it in the fridge, and make sure you have all of the ingredients on hand (if you’re making coconut butter, blend unsweetened coconut flakes until they make butter, then keep in a tightly fitting jar), putting it together will happen in a snap! 

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting #glutenfree treatswithatwist.com

Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting
Almond Cake with Fig Jam and Coconut Butter Frosting is my new favorite flavor combination. Slightly sweet almond cake (gluten free) is layered with rich and honey-like fig jam, then tied together with a warming, Spring-like coconut butter frosting. The flavors marry together perfectly, creating a sophisticated yet casual dessert, perfect for a birthday or a Tuesday night. (makes a two-layer 6" cake)
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Cake
  1. ¾ cup brown rice flour
  2. ¼ cup almond meal
  3. 2 Tbs. tapioca starch
  4. ¼ tsp. sea salt
  5. 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  6. ¾ cup coconut sugar
  7. ¼ cup coconut oil, soft (but not melted)
  8. 2 eggs, room temperature
  9. ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  10. 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  11. ¼ tsp. almond extract
  12. Fig jam (I use Trader Joe’s Fig Butter)
Frosting
  1. ¾ cup coconut butter (I used homemade)
  2. ¼ cup coconut palm shortening*
  3. ½ cup powdered sugar
For the cake
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Spray two 6” cake pans with nonstick spray (I use a coconut oil spray) and line the bottoms with parchment.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat together (with a stand mixer or electric hand mixer) the coconut oil and coconut sugar until soft and creamy. Next, add the eggs, one at a time, beating until well incorporated. Finally add the milk and extracts, letting them mix together (turn down your mixer speed so you don’t slosh everywhere).
  3. Turn off your mixer. Add all of the dry ingredients. Turn your mixer on slowly and let it mix until your cake batter comes together.
  4. Divide your batter evenly between your cake pans. TIP: I pour all of my batter into a large glass measuring cup. I take note of what half of the batter would be, then pour half into each pan.
  5. Bake your cakes for 20-22 minutes, until golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean.
  6. Let the cakes cool on a wire rack before removing them from the cake pans. Then let them cool completely. Wrap each in plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge for a day before frosting and assembling.
For the frosting
  1. You want your coconut butter and coconut shortening to be at room temperature.
  2. In your mixer, mix the two butters on medium until well whipped together. Then, add your powdered sugar with your mixer on low and let that completely incorporate into the frosting. Use immediately.
Assemble your cake
  1. Place the bottom layer on your cake stand (or a plate). Spread a thin layer of the Coconut butter frosting on top (I made mine as thin as possible so I could save most of my frosting for the outside of the cake). Then, spread a thick layer of fig jam on top.
  2. Use an offset spatula to spread an even, thin (but not as thin as the interior layer) layer of frosting on the top of the second layer (we haven’t stacked them yet, but I like to frost the top of the top layer before stacking, because it’s much easier). Then stack that top layer on top of the bottom layer.
  3. Use the rest of your frosting to carefully frost the sides of your cake. This may take patience and manipulating, because the frosting is quite thick, but the cake is sturdy and shouldn’t crumble if a slight amount of pressure is put on it.
  4. If you need help and you feel like your frosting just doesn’t look even, try dipping your spatula into a cup of hot water, then wipe off any excess water. The heated spatula will help things spread.
  5. Top with extra coconut if you wish. Slice and serve!
Notes
  1. *My frosting turned out quite yellow because my shortening was yellow. This was frustrating. I know that there are white shortenings out there, so if you can get your hands on that, your frosting will be white. Either way, it tastes amazing!!
  2. Note: You can prepare the whole cake, then wrap in plastic wrap and foil, then place in the fridge or freezer until you’re ready to serve it! You can make your cake up to 2 weeks in advance, or save it for another special time (a Tuesday, or whathaveyou). Just give it plenty of time to defrost before slicing and serving.
Adapted from Dolly and Oatmeal
Adapted from Dolly and Oatmeal
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/

Cocoa Maca Porridge

Cocoa Maca Porridge is a rich and satisfying breakfast that only seems decadent. The antioxidants and hormonal nutrients from cocoa and maca powders make this porridge (or oatmeal) a true superfood delight. This recipe is vegan and gluten free and makes one portion. 

Cocoa Maca Porridge from treatswithatwist.com #glutenfree #vegan #breakfast #chocolate

Do you ever have that feeling that your eyes are SO heavy? I mean, besides everyday around 3:00? 

I got back from a wonderful trip to Washington, D.C. on Monday after waking up for a from-Hell early flight (why do I do that to myself??) and I swear I still haven’t recovered. Something crazy came over me and I decided to complete that day’s workout I had on the schedule. And so I was panting with my eyes closed, my hopeless attempt to workout and be sleeping at the same time and I think I seriously hurt myself in the weirdest way…

Tangent short, I hardly slept last night because I have this intense pain in my forearm that was throbbing SO hard, I had nightmares that I had a blood clot and then a staff infection. Craziness and totally wrong. Anyways. I hardly slept while I was away and then I slept terribly after getting back. My eyes hurt. 

Cocoa Maca Porridge from treatswithatwist.com #glutenfree #vegan #breakfast #chocolate

Cocoa Maca Porridge from treatswithatwist.com #glutenfree #vegan #breakfast #chocolate

Cocoa Maca Porridge from treatswithatwist.com #glutenfree #vegan #breakfast #chocolate

BUT, I have this amazing Cocoa Maca Porridge staring at me, so I guess the world is alright. How can it not be when you have chocolate for breakfast? AND it’s healthy! 

Maca is something I’ve talked about several times here, but it is a crazy amazing superfood. It comes in powder form and lasts forever (I keep mine in the freezer and use 1tsp a day, so it lasts a long time). It has an earthy, sweet taste that is very potent, so I pair it with sweet breakfasts or in sweeter shakes that contain chocolate, sweet potato or chai spices, so it doesn’t stand out. No, I don’t like the taste on its own. But yes, I believe it is amazing so I slip it into my foods (and my hubby’s…don’t tell him!). It helps with hormonal balance and tissue repair, among many other things!

I think the crazy amazing tip of the iceberg thing about this bowl is that melty chocolate on top, right? A little not-so-secret: it’s Vega’s dark chocolate maca bar. So you’re getting a double-hit of everything. And who doesn’t love a melty pool of chocolate on their breakfast? 

If you like your porridge or oatmeal a bit thinner, add up to 1/3 cup more of almond milk. I definitely go back and forth on how thick I like mine, so I understand if you need more liquid. Totally cool. 

Cocoa Maca Porridge from treatswithatwist.com #glutenfree #vegan #breakfast #chocolate

Have a wonderful breakfast! I’m going to go close my eyes now…

Cocoa Maca Porridge
Cocoa Maca Porridge is a rich and satisfying breakfast that only seems decadent. The antioxidants and hormonal nutrients from cocoa and maca powders make this porridge (or oatmeal) a true superfood delight. This recipe is vegan and gluten free and makes one portion.
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Ingredients
  1. ½ cup old fashioned oats
  2. 2 tsp. flaxseed meal
  3. 1 cup water
  4. ½ cup unsweetned almond milk
  5. 2 tsp. cocoa powder
  6. 1 tsp. maca powder
  7. ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  8. pinch sea salt
  9. 2 tsp. maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
  10. Optional: maca chocolate bar, for topping
Instructions
  1. In a pot on the stovetop, combine oats, flaxseed meal, water and almond milk. Stir over medium heat until simmering, then turn the heat down to medium low. Stir while simmering until thick and oats have absorbed much of the liquid (several minutes). Then, add the cocoa, maca, vanilla and sea salt. Stir well until smooth. (add sweetners now if you desire)
  2. Pour into a bowl, top with some chopped maca chocolate bar, then eat!
Notes
  1. Additional addins: hemp seeds, chopped Brazil nuts, egg whites (however you prefer!)
  2. I buy Maca at Whole Foods and use Navitas Naturals brand.
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/
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