Even though it's been -40 with the windchill in recent weeks, you still need to have ice cream once and a while! This recipe at its most basic only contains 2 ingredients, banana and a milk alternative (almond and coconut work perfectly). If you are using raw home made almond milk, you are not only making vegan ice cream, but raw ice cream. For those of you who haven't ever tried something like this, you're lives are about to change. That sounds horribly dramatic, but actually, it might just do that for some.
If you find yourself poking your head in the freezer for your afternoon snack, or in the evening before bed - this is the perfect replacement for store bought ice cream of any kind, vegan or otherwise. It contains no fat and no refined sugar (just the natural sugars of the banana). One banana holds anywhere from 75-90 calories, so your ice cream will only contain as many calories as per bananas used in the recipe. A bowl of ice cream with only 75 calories? Yes please! You can create different flavors and textures by adding in nut butters, toasted coconut, cacao powder, and chopped nuts. But remember, that does increase calorie and fat content. Which for some, might not be any trouble - in that case, go to town!
It isn't just the low calories that make this raw, vegan, banana ice cream a hit. You also get to keep all of the good nutrients from your ingredients in tact. Banana's as most people already know, are a great source of potassium. Potassium is a necessary mechanism in nerve function, and potassium depletion results in various cardiac dysfunctions, like heart palpitations and irregular heart beat. In fact, I experience both of those occasionally, and eating a bit of banana remedies the situation almost immediately.
Raw Vegan Banana Ice Cream
2 bananas (peeled, chopped and then frozen)
Milk alternative (coconut, almond, hemp, etc.)
1 -2 tbsp. of nut butter (peanut, hazelnut, almond, cashew)
Add the already peeled, chopped and frozen bananas into the blender or food processor. If you wish, add the nut butter. The nut butter is not a necessary ingredient, it only provides extra flavor and a richer texture. This ice cream can be made without and it turns out just as nice. Remember: if you use nut butters, this recipe will only be fully raw if your nut butters are raw and not roasted. Begin blending the bananas and nut butters together. You will likely find that you need to add a splash of milk alternative. I use coconut milk when making ice cream because it has a bit more body than nut milks and helps to provide a creamier end product. Only add a tbsp. of milk alternative at a time, otherwise you run the risk of runny ice cream. Continue to blend until you reach a lovely, thick and creamy texture; just like regular ice cream. Once blended, serve immediately or pack it up and freeze for later. This recipe serves 1-3 people.
Photos by Danielle Matar