Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding and Banana Cream Parfaits {No-Cook, Vegan}

If you’re reading this post, that must mean that you haven’t given up on me despite my sporadic posting as of late; and for that, I wholeheartedly thank you! Life is happily crazy with two kiddos, and I am having difficulty finding time to devote to the blog. Nevertheless, I’m not giving up developing recipes and sharing them with you, so please stay tuned for more posts in the coming weeks!

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So. These parfaits. We’re in the middle of a few day heat wave here in Massachusetts, and I’m mostly gorging on an abundance of fresh summer fruit… but chocolate hath no season, (neither do bananas, for that matter), so these parfaits are perfect any time of year. The dark layer is a rich chocolate peanut butter avocado pudding, and the light layer is a luscious banana “cream” made from cashews.

Obviously the flavor combination is a win, but what also works beautifully together is the dense texture of the pudding juxtaposed with the airy “whipped” consistency of the cream. Neither layer is overly sweet, which allows you to actually taste the flavors in each component.

An added bonus is that these parfaits require zero cooking! All you need are a good blender and food processor, and you’re set to go. Just grab a spoon, and dig in!

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Pudding and Banana Cream Parfaits {No-Cook, Vegan}

by Lauren Zembron

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Ingredients (4 servings)

    For the chocolate peanut butter pudding:

    • 1 medium-sized ripe Hass avocado, (it should have black skin & yield slightly when gently squeezed), peeled & pitted
    • 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
    • 3 Tbsp smooth natural unsweetened peanut butter (the only ingredients should be peanuts and salt), preferably organic
    • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • tiny pinch salt
    • 2 Tbsp nondairy milk of choice

    For the banana cream:

    • 1 cup raw unsalted cashews, soaked in cold water for at least 8 hours (or 4 hours if you have a high speed blender)
    • 2 medium-sized overripe (brown-skinned) bananas, peeled
    • 1/4 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (this is to prevent the cream from browning; even with the addition of lemon juice, discoloration may occur if the cream sits for too long)
    • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
    • 2 Tbsp pure maple syrup

    Instructions

    For the pudding:

    Place avocado, maple syrup, peanut butter, and vanilla extract into the bowl of a food processor and process until well-blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

    Add in the cocoa powder, salt, & milk, and process until well-combined.

    For the cream:

    Drain the soaked cashews and place in a blender along with the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth.

    For the parfaits:

    Layer the pudding and cream into small glasses, refrigerate until chilled, and enjoy.

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    Strawberry Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries {no sugar added}

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    Although it’s not technically strawberry season quite yet, the plump red berries have been juicy, sweet, and downright delicious lately; and they take center stage in these delectable little treats.

    The “cheesecake” filling is comprised of neufchâtel (reduced fat) cream cheese, a touch of vanilla extract, and this glorious apple juice-sweetened strawberry spread:

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    I prefer jams/preserves that contain no added sugar, and this Rigoni di Asiago Fiordifrutta fits the bill perfectly! It is everything you want in a strawberry spread, minus the sugar.

    These cheesecake stuffed strawberries would be perfect as a healthy Easter dessert, part of a Mother’s Day brunch spread, or as a sweet everyday snack. You could add some graham cracker crumbs sprinkled on top in keeping with the cheesecake theme, but they are perfectly tasty unadorned.

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    *I received free product in exchange for this review & recipe. All opinions are my own.

    Strawberry Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries {no sugar added}

    by Lauren Zembron

    Prep Time: 20 minutes

    Cook Time: 0 minutes

    Ingredients (10 stuffed strawberries)

    Instructions

    In a food processor, combine the softened neufchâtel, Fiordifrutta, and vanilla extract. Process until smooth & fully combined.

    Snip the corner off of a zip top plastic bag, spoon in the strawberry cheesecake filling, and let chill in the fridge for at least an hour.

    Cut the green tops off of the strawberries, as well as a bit of the bottom (tip) end so they can stand upright. Carefully hollow out the insides of the strawberries to create a space to pipe in the cheesecake filling.

    When the cheesecake filling has chilled and firmed up a bit, pipe it into the hollowed out strawberries. Either serve immediately, or transfer to a container with an airtight lid and store in the fridge.

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