So here’s the deal: Vegan desserts are where it’s at. I eat as many plants as I can. While I’m not exclusively vegan, I love creating dairy-and-egg-free desserts. Why? They satisfy most of the diets of the friends and family l cook for, and they’re downright delicious. As a plus, all the recipes are below , I use natural and whole ingredients, so they’re packed with good-for-you nutrients too. Here are the top five vegan desserts that you can’t go another day without trying. All happen to be naturally gluten-free too. Feed your people, no matter their food philosophies.
1. Bliss Bites: Imagine a peanut butter cup had a baby with a no-bake cookie, and you’ve got bliss bites. They’re hands-down the most popular recipe on our website, and we love seeing people around the world make them and tag us on Instagram. They’re vegan by way of coconut oil and naturally sweetened with maple syrup. A version of the recipe is also in our cookbook.
Bliss Bites (Healthy No-Bake Cookies)
Truly bliss in a bite, these chocolate peanut butter healthy no bake cookies are made with coconut oil and naturally sweetened with maple syrup.
You know that feeling when you’re in a season of waiting and you’re literally squirming in the uncertainty? Maybe you’re waiting for news of a promotion, perhaps a new job, entry into university, or how you did on a big test. Or you’re waiting to find out whether you’re pregnant, or not pregnant, or expecting with stomach butterflies that phone call with the diagnosis (this is it, gulp). So distract yourselves with work and margarita nights with friends and weekend trips and making chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies.
How to make no bake cookies
Here’s my take on chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies. Our version features a soft peanut buttery drizzle topping, so they’re almost an inside-out peanut butter cup. Made with maple syrup, coconut oil, and oats, they’re all natural and a play on a healthy no bake cookie. Even better, make the mini version for a smaller serving size.
They’re also naturally sweet, vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free, and while all those adjectives might sound alarming, the taste is just plain bliss. I just served them as a sweet treat at the end of a meal, and when asked how they tasted, my guest pronounced “heaven”. True story, and even without coercion!
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do. Let me know what you think.
Bliss Bites (Healthy No Bake Cookies)
Truly bliss in a bite, these healthy no bake cookies are made with coconut oil and naturally sweetened with maple syrup.
- Place 9 cupcake liners into a muffin tin (or 18 liners in a mini-muffin tin).
- In a small saucepan over low heat, melt 5 tablespoons coconut oil and stir together 2 tablespoons peanut butter, ¼ cup maple syrup, ¼ cup cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 pinch kosher salt. When fully combined, remove from heat and stir in 1 cup rolled oats. Spoon into cupcake liners. Refrigerate while making the peanut butter topping.
- In a small saucepan over low heat, stir together ¼ cup peanut butter, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, and 1 tablespoon coconut oil. Spoon the warm peanut butter mixture over the chocolate oat mixture. Freeze for 15 to 20 minutes until set, or refrigerate until serving. Store refrigerated.
Keywords: no bake cookies, healthy no bake cookies
2. Balsamic Blackberry Vegan Cheesecakes: Cheesecake without the cheese might sound iffy, but creamy cashews blended with blackberries make for a tangy, flavorful base that tastes just like the real thing. Instead of a graham cracker crust, we’ve used pecans, oats, and a bit of coconut oil.
blackberry vegan cheesecake bites
- Prep Time: 3 hours
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 20 mini cheesecakes 1x
Looking for a vegan cheesecake recipe? These blackberry vegan cheesecake bites are so delicious you’d never know they’re vegan and refined sugar free.
For the crust
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1 cup oats
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
For the filling
- 1 cup cashews
- 450g whole berries in light syrup
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- Place the cashews in a bowl and cover with water; soak for 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Place the pecans on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and cool for a minute or two. In a food processor, blend the pecans, oats, coconut oil, maple syrup, and salt. Blend until fully pulverized and a sticky mixture forms, scraping down as necessary.
- In a non-stick mini muffin tin (spray or oil the tin if not non-stick), place a heaping 1/2 tablespoon of the crust mixture into each cup and pack it down, to make 20 in all (leave the last 4 cups empty). Save the remainder of the crust for the topping.
- Wipe out the bowl of the food processor. Drain the berries. In the food processor, blend the soaked cashews, 3/4 cup blackberries, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and balsamic vinegar. Blend for several minutes until very smooth and creamy.
- Place the remaining berries in a bowl and very gently drizzle them with a glug of maple and a small sprinkle of balsamic vinegar.
- To the mini muffin tin, add a heaping tablespoon of the blackberry filling on top of each crust. Garnish each with the remaining crust crumbles and 1 blackberry. (Save the remaining blackberries for future use.)
- Freeze the cheesecakes for 1 hour until set, then transfer them to the refrigerator until serving. To remove, use a spoon or sharp small knife to release one edge of the cheesecake by pulling towards you, which should release the remaining sides and twist the cheesecake out of the tin. Serve chilled for best results (cheesecakes can sit at room temperature, but the texture becomes looser as they sit). Remaining cheesecakes can be frozen for 1 to 2 months; thaw in the refrigerator before serving.
3. Fudgy Vegan Brownies: These brownies are from Laura Wright’s cookbook, The First Mess. They’re so fudgy and gooey that you’ll never guess that they’re vegan. The secret ingredients are almond butter and applesauce. I know, right?
fudgy vegan brownies
- Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 16 1x
Naturally sweet, gluten-free, and plant-based, this fudgy vegan brownie recipe is rich but nutrient dense, made fully of whole foods.
- 3/4 cup almond butter
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoons coconut flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup chopped chocolate from a 70% dark dairy-free chocolate bar, divided
- 3 tablespoons whole almonds, roughly chopped
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8-inch square pan with a piece of parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond butter, maple syrup, applesauce, and vanilla.
- To the almond butter mixture, add the cocoa powder, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to combine, ensuring that there are no dry lumps of cocoa in the batter.
- In a double boiler, melt half of the chocolate chunks. Vigorously stir the melted chocolate into the brownie batter until fully incorporated.
- Scrape the brownie batter into the prepared baking pan. Smooth the batter out evenly with a spatula, pushing it into the edges and corners of the pan. (I used a 9-inch pan, so I did not smooth entirely into one side to keep the brownies on the thicker side.)
- Scatter the reserved chocolate chunks and rough-chopped nuts over the top. Slide the pan into the oven, and bake the brownies until the top is slightly firm and appears dry and lightly cracked, about 27 to 30 minutes.
- Cool the brownies completely in the pan set on a wire rack. Then, cover the brownies and place them in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. This step is crucial. The brownies will not cut neatly unless they get adequate cooling time. (We enjoyed the brownies even more a day later after refrigerating over night.)
- Right before slicing the brownies, run a chef’s knife under hot water and dry it off, then slice into squares and serve.
4. Mocha Almond Fudge Vegan Ice Cream:You know that Baskin Robbins flavor Jamoca Almond Fudge? We created this copycat recipe when some friends challenged us to create a homemade, “healthier” version. The coffee-flavored ice cream is ultra-creamy, made with coconut milk, and studded with almonds and chocolate chunks.
jamocha almond fudge dairy free ice cream recipe
- Yield: 1 quart 1x
This dairy free ice cream recipe is a copycat of Baskin Robbins Jamoca Almond Fudge, a coffee ice cream with chunks of chocolate and toasted almonds.
- 2 15-ounce cans full-fat coconut milk
- 5 tablespoons dark roast coffee, coarsely ground (decaf if desired)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/3 cup agave syrup
- 1/3 cup coconut sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup almonds
- 2 ¼ ounces semi-sweet chocolate (¼ cup + 2 tablespoons chocolate chips), vegan if desired
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- Freeze the ice cream maker base overnight.
- Coarsely grind 5 tablespoons coffee.
- Add the coconut milk to a medium saucepan. Remove ¼ cup of the liquid to a small bowl; mix with 2 tablespoons cornstarch and set aside.
- Bring the coconut milk, ⅓ cup agave syrup, ⅓ cup coconut sugar, and coffee to a simmer. Add the cornstarch mixture and whisk frequently until thickened, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in 1½ teaspoons vanilla. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a 1-gallon Ziplock bag. If churning immediately, place the bag in an ice bath for 30 minutes until cool; if churning the next day, refrigerate 4 hours or overnight (either way, the mixture should be as cold as possible before churning).
- While the mixture cools, place ½ cup almonds in a dry skillet and toast over medium low heat, shaking often, until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool, then chop and reserve.
- Churn the ice cream in an ice cream maker until it thickens to the consistency of soft serve.
- When the mixture appears nearly the consistency of soft serve, add the chopped nuts. Place ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons chocolate chips, 1 tablespoon tahini, and 1 teaspoon cocoa powder in a glass measuring cup, then microwave at 20-second intervals until melted, stirring after each interval. Drizzle the chocolate into the ice cream, using a spoon to pour since the chocolate mixture is thick. If desired, break up larger chunks with a spoon while the mixture churns. When the chocolate is just incorporated, turn off the ice cream maker (the chocolate step should only take a few minutes).
- Eat immediately for a soft serve consistency, or for a hard ice cream texture, freeze using the following instructions: press a piece of parchment or wax paper into a sealable container, then scrape the ice cream into the container using a spatula, making sure to scrape in the bits frozen to the edges of the ice cream maker base. Freeze for 4 hours for a hard ice cream texture.
Due to the amount of time needed for the recipe, I recommend starting the day prior to serving if possible. If using decaf coffee, use a dark roast for the most flavor. If you use medium roast, you may need more coffee than specified below in order to obtain a strong coffee flavor.
5. Chocolate Sweet Cherry Vegan Tarts: Is there anything better than chocolate and cherries? Yes! Vegan chocolate mousse and cherries. You’ll be surprised how cocoa powder, coconut oil, and maple syrup can be whipped into a killer chocolate mousse. Pair it with sweet cherries and an almond oat crust, and it’s pretty darn heavenly.
chocolate cherry dessert bites
- Prep Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 9 1x
Looking for vegan desserts? These chocolate cherry dessert bites are made of clean ingredients: just cocoa, maple, coconut oil, oats, almonds and sweet cherries!
For the crust
- 1/4 cup raw almonds
- 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon Dutch process cocoa powder (baking cocoa)
- 1 pinch cinnamon
- 1 pinch salt
For the topping
- 4 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
- 5 tablespoons maple syrup
- 6 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 cup frozen sweet cherries (about 5 ounces)
- For the crust: In a food processor, blend the almonds, oats, coconut oil, maple syrup, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and kosher salt for several seconds. Scrape down the bowl, then pulse until evenly chopped and a crumbly mixture forms, scraping down again as necessary. Add wrappers to a muffin tin (optional). Place 1 tablespoon of the crust mixture into each cup and press it down with your fingers, to make 9 in all. Save the remainder of the crust for the topping.
- For the topping: Wash and dry the bowl of the food processor. Then add the cocoa powder, maple syrup, and coconut oil and blend for several seconds until creamy. Using a spoon, place a dollop onto each of the 9 crusts and smooth it out gently.
- Defrost the cherries and gently chop them, then drain of excess liquid. Sprinkle the chopped cherries on top of the chocolate, then add some crust crumbles. (A few crust crumbles may remain, which you can discard.)
- Freeze for 20 minutes to set. Let stand at room temperature for about 10 to 15 minutes to thaw before eating. Store refrigerated.