Four vegan substitutes for your favourite sweet treats

Charlotte McGarry 4 February 2016

For a long time, going vegan meant saying goodbye to all deserts.  Out with the chocolate tarts, in with the disappointing fruit salads (anyone who has ever ordered a vegan meal at formal will know what I mean).  But luckily, with ethical plant based eating on the rise, chefs and food bloggers across the country are getting more creative with their non-dairy deserts.  From avocados in chocolate tarte to bananas instead of ice cream, there’s a whole new world of indulgent puddings opening up for vegans – and not a watery melon cube or tinned tangerine segment in sight.

1) Chocolate tarte: Swap cream cheese for avocado

Vegetables in your pudding? It might sounds strange, but the smooth, rich consistency of the avocado lends itself as a perfect base for vegan chocolate mousse.  Blend the avocado flesh with agave, cacao powder and nut butter until completely smooth, then use it to fill a superfood pie crust made from dates and nuts. 

2) Victoria Sponge: Swap whipped cream for coconut cream

Packed with vitamins and healthy fats, coconut cream is a nutritious alternative to dairy cream which still provides that fantastic texture of the original.  Make your own by whipping up a can of coconut milk with a few spoonfuls of icing sugar and a dash of vanilla essence.

3) Chocolate: Swap dairy milk for the proper stuff

Foregoing dairy doesn't mean an end to chocolate! Nearly all varieties with a cocoa content higher than 70% are vegan friendly, and are much better for you too. Hotel Chocolat even does an entire dairy free range which is just as rich and creamy as its original counterpart. There are lots of great flavours of dark chocolate out there – going vegan is a perfect excuse to try them all!

4) Ice cream: Swap dairy ice cream for frozen banana

An ingenious swap that’s been known for a while in health food circles, blending frozen bananas creates a sweet, creamy frozen desert which can easily satisfy the strongest of ice cream cravings. This might not be feasible during term time due to limited kitchen facilities, but it’s definitely worth the wait. Simply freeze two very ripe bananas, blend in a food processor with a splash of almond milk until smooth, then sprinkle with all your favourite toppings for a delicious vegan sundae. Culinary magic.