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Nov 28, 2014

Chocolate Cream Pie {gluten free + vegan}

Last year for Christmas, I made an absolutely delicious old-fashioned Chocolate Cream Pie to mix things up from the traditional pumpkin, pecan, or apple pies. The recipe, adapted from King Arthur Flour really turned out deliciously. It was such a hit that I decided that I would make that same recipe each year from now on. 

#glutenfree #vegan #chocolatepie

However, like any traditional cream pie, the filling was a custard that contained egg yolks. I made it my mission this year to make a pie just as delicious but without the eggs so that everyone in my family with food allergies could enjoy it if they wanted. 

The purpose of egg yolks in a custard is to bind and thicken the filling. I knew that the cornstarch already in the recipe would still allow it to thicken, but the eggs also add some fat for a creamy texture. Instead of using only almond milk, or another dairy-free milk that doesn't have a very high fat content, I decided that coconut milk was the way to go. Without the eggs, the recipe is essentially the same as my Chocolate Pudding recipe, which is super easy to make. The addition of the melted chocolate chips just deepens the rich, chocolate flavor. 

My friends at So Delicious Dairy Free have really outdone themselves with their Culinary Coconut Milk. I don't know what I did before I knew it existed! The original and lite versions have been a lifesaver in so many recipes for me this fall. It adds a rich, creamy flavor and texture that is sometimes lacking in dairy-free recipes! 

Now that I have further adapted the recipe to be egg-free as well, I am so excited to share it with family again this year. It'll be making its debut earlier this year for Thanksgiving, but may make an appearance at Christmas too! 

Chocolate Cream Pie {gluten free + vegan}

2/3 cup sugar
3 Tbsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp espresso powder (optional)
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups So Delicious Dairy Free original almond milk creamer (or other dairy-free milk substitute)*
1 cup So Delicious Dairy Free original culinary coconut milk
1 bag Enjoy Life Foods dark chocolate morsels
2 Tbsp Earth Balance Soy Free butter 
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 gluten free pie crust (I used Wholly Wholesome's premade gluten free crust)
So Delicious Dairy Free CocoWhip whipped topping (optional)

Bake gluten free pie crust according to recipe or package instructions. Remove from oven and allow to cool while making the filling.

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, cocoa, espresso powder, and salt (not over heat yet). Add 1/2 cup of the almond milk creamer and whisk until combined and lumps are gone. Add another 1/2 cup of the almond milk creamer, whisk, and place over medium heat. Bring mixture just to a boil and add the remaining 1 cup of almond milk creamer and the coconut milk. Continue whisking frequently until entire mixture is boiling and thickened. 

Pour the chocolate chips into a medium bowl. Add the butter and vanilla. Carefully pour the hot milk mixture over them and stir until all of the chocolate chips are melted and combined. Top with plastic wrap so a skin doesn't form and refrigerate to cool slightly. 

Once the filling has cooled some, carefully pour it into the crust and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. Slice and top with So Delicious Dairy Free CocoWhip and chocolate shavings or a few mini chocolate chips. 

*Depending on the dairy-free milk you choose to use (such as rice milk), you may need to cut back the amount by 1/4 cup or the filling may not thicken and set up as well. 

#glutenfree #vegan #chocolate #desserts

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