Sunday, 6 May 2012

Dairy Free Sorbet

One of my biggest struggles with food sensitivities and feeding disorders is having to say "no" to a lot of foods that we used to think of as staples of childhood.  Just take a moment to think about ice cream on a hot summer day.  Walking around a busy street lined with cafes and patios, all of them promising cool creamy treats. Families wandering around with ice cream cones in hand, the creamy goodness dripping down the side as it melts. Think of birthday parties with cakes that are always laden with milk or milk products, and the cool, creamy ice cream almost always served on top.  I've even heard it said that ice cream is the best way to end a perfect day.
Stop the drips!  A marshmallow in the bottom of the cone helps control flow!

Now imagine having two kids that can eat it, and one kid (the tiny one that rarely asks for food) that can't.  He never cries if I say no to food.  But my heart breaks every single time.

As luck would have it, I have an ice cream maker, and I am stubborn.  Truly a great combination.  I've tried  a number of ice cream recipes over the past year and often been disappointed with the results.  Not creamy enough, too eggy, too solid to scoop.  The list goes on and on.  And perhaps the worst part- most of the ice cream I've made to date was full of milk products, so it was something that we grown ups ate if the kids were in bed.  We've tried some commercially made "ice creams" that are made with milk substitutes but they always fell way short of awesome.  So I started looking for dairy free sorbet.  But since they are fat free and only around 80 kcals per serving I needed something a bit richer for my skinny little guy.

Creamy, Dreamy Coconut Milk.  What would happen if I added half coconut milk and half water to a sorbet recipe?  The answer, my dear readers, is an excellent, dairy free, super rich summer treat.  This is as close to "ice cream" as you can get without milk ingredients.  So rich that you only need a mini scoop to feel like royalty.  And best of all, in our house, we got to see all three monsters with chocolate ice cream dripping from their chins.  That is a memory that will last forever!  This may look labour intensive, but other than cooling and freezing time you can whip it up in less than 15 minutes.

Chocolate Sorbet

1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp high quality cocoa
4 oz semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate*, finely chopped (you can use chocolate chips if you prefer)
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp espresso
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup coconut milk (go for organic full fat, not "lite", trust me!)
1 shot of alcohol (Bailey's Irish Cream*, vodka, rum, Chambord, Grand Marnier, brandy, Cognac, Bourbon) 

Freeze ice cream maker bowl according to manufacturers directions.

In a saucepan, combine water and sugar.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 4 minutes.  Meanwhile, chop chocolate and place in a bowl.  Sprinkle with cocoa.  Pour hot sugar syrup over the chocolate and cocoa, whisking until smooth.  Add salt, vanilla and espresso.  Place chocolate mixture in the fridge for 4 hours, or overnight.
Whip cold coconut milk until fluffy- about 2 minutes.  Add the chocolate mixture to the coconut milk and blend well.  Pour into ice cream maker and process for 20-30 minutes (this will depend on your machine).  Scrape in to a freezer safe bowl.  Enjoy!

*If you are going dairy free, make sure you double check the chocolate you are using for milk ingredients, and avoid the Bailey's Irish Cream.  Vodka leaves the least amount of flavour in your sorbet.

Chocolate Sorbet on home made Chocolate Chunk Cookies


  1. Mmmm nyam nyam. I will make this but will use maple syrup instead of sugar to make it vegan and even healthier. Thank you!

    Maria @

    1. You certainly could, or you could use a simple syrup made from honey, or agave:) Not my healthiest treat but still better than ice cream full of chemicals! For the scientist in you- sorbet must be 30% sugar in order to freeze properly-! LOVE the new blog by the way!