We love preparing gelato at home as we can give it a healthier spin using natural, plant-based ingredients. For today's recipe, we decided to revisit a summer classic: salted caramel ice cream. We made it vegan and sugar-free, with just three wholesome ingredients. Let us show you how we did it!
While classic caramel ice cream includes white sugar, double cream, eggs, butter, and whole milk, we made ours with only canned coconut milk, ripe bananas, and soft dates. First, we blended coconut milk with bananas to make the ice cream base. Then, we blitzed dates with water and salt to make a smooth caramel sauce. Finally, we swirled the date caramel into the frozen ice cream and job done!
Our caramel ice cream is not only dairy-free and egg-free but also lower in fats and sugars compared to the classic one. Salted caramel ice cream is surely a decadent dessert, but it's so easy to turn into a healthier treat if you use the right combination of ingredients.
Fats and sugars are what makes ice cream tasty, soft, and creamy. In our recipe, we relied on coconut milk for richness and ripe bananas for sweetness. Weight by weight, coconut milk has half the fats and saturated fats than double cream making it a healthier choice. Bananas have only a tenth of the sugars of white sugar, and they become incredibly creamy when blended and frozen.
If you don't have an ice cream machine, you can still make this ice cream without it. We'll give you step-by-step instructions on how to churn the gelato by hand. It's a simple process that will require very little work: just give a good stir to the ice cream every 4-5 hours while it freezes. When we did it, we started the recipe in the morning, churned the ice cream throughout the day, and made the caramel swirls before bedtime. Then, we let it freeze overnight, ready for the next day.
Now that you know how healthy and easy-to-make is this vegan caramel ice cream, we hope you'll make a big batch of it. It will keep you happy during the hot summer days without derailing your diet. Let's get started!