I’m a firm believer that in July and August you should have an ice cream treat weekly. Daily would be even better. Maybe that’s my new goal for the summer?! These Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream Bars are not going to last long in my freezer if I want to accomplish this new goal. I’ll have to make a few batches at once. No complaints over here though. These ice cream bars are creamy and naturally sweetened, with a thin chocolate coating on top. Talk about a dreamy bar.
how to make healthy ice cream
I don’t know if there is such thing as “healthy ice cream” but there are definitely ways to lower the sugar content without skimping on the taste. I am a firm believer that ice cream is meant to be enjoyed and not necessarily restricted. That being said, if my body takes in too much sugar, the result is bloating and feeling lethargic. So to lower the sugar intake of these homemade coconut milk ice cream bars, I used dates to sweeten them! They add a slight caramel flavour without overloading the base recipe with too much sweet stuff. It’s key to have the dates soft before blending them, and always remember to remove the pits!
You may be wondering how the picky husband felt about these coconut ice cream bars. He loved the texture of the ice cream and of the chocolate coating. But overall he isn’t a fan of dark chocolate. He is still on the milk chocolate train. So if you have picky eaters out there that don’t like dark chocolate either, simply sub the dark for milk in the recipe. Adam still enjoyed these ice cream popsicles but if they were dipped in milk chocolate, then they would be all the rage for him!
here are a few reasons why I love these Coconut Ice Cream Bars, so listen up!
- I love the fact that these homemade coconut milk ice cream bars are naturally sweetened. That’s the beauty of dates. They slip into this recipe undetected and you can almost call this recipe a health food now. Ok, maybe not quite. But I always love a dessert that isn’t overloaded with sugar and this one falls under that category.
- When you bite into these coconut ice cream bars, the texture reminds me of a dilly bar from good old Dairy Queen. They used to be my favourite thing to get, so when you bite into them and the chocolate cracks and then melts in your mouth. HUBBA HUBBA. That is what I’m talking about- next-level goodness. A key to making these bars all that you want them to be is to let them thaw for a few minutes before biting into them. The result is a soft and pillowy inside.
- Although there is a lot of passive waiting time in order to let these ice cream popsicles set, the recipe calls for less than 10 ingredients! You don’t need to have your counter covered with 30 different items for this recipe- you only need 6! But you will need a popsicle mold to create this recipe. If ice cream and a popsicle had a baby- these bars would be born. AKA ice cream popsicles. So get a popsicle mold because these ice cream popsicles will help you reach that summer ice cream quota.
Why pay for the $5-10 ice cream cones you get from your local ice cream store when you can have these homemade coconut milk ice cream bars in your freezer at ALL TIMES?! OK, maybe you should still support your local ice cream guys but it is always nice to have your own dreamy coconut ice cream bars within reach. The creamy velvety ice cream paired with a crackly and smooth chocolate exterior will have your mouth watering and perhaps reaching into the freezer for a second. These ice cream popsicles can be enjoyed all summer long!
Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream Bars
- 1 can full fat coconut milk (400mL)
- 3/4 cup raw cashews (soaked for at least one hour)
- 7 medjool dates (soft and gooey + pits removed)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 200 g dark chocolate
- Soak the cashews for at least one hour before blending then discard the water.
- Add the cashews, coconut milk, dates and vanilla to a high speed blender. Blend until smooth.
- Divide the ice cream mixture into 4 popsicle molds and place in the freezer overnight (or until the ice cream is frozen).
- Once the ice cream is frozen, prepare the chocolate coating. Melt the coconut oil and chocolate over low heat in a sauce pan until smooth.
- Prepare a baking sheet with four square cutouts of parchment paper. The parchment cutouts are where the dipped bars will be placed to go back into the freezer to set. Remove the ice cream bars from the freezer and run them under hot water to loosen them from the molds.
- Pour the chocolate from the pan into a separate bowl. Hold the ice cream bars over the empty pot( where you melted the chocolate) and then pour the chocolate from the bowl over the ice cream bar. Continue to transfer the chocolate in the pot back into a bowl and then pour it over an ice cream bar one at a time. Option to place crumbled nuts and a pinch of sea salt on each bar before the chocolate sets. Once coated, place the ice cream bar on a piece of parchment paper on the baking sheet. Once all four bars are coated, place the baking sheet in the freezer for 20-30 minutes, or until the chocolate has set.
- Take the bars out of the freezer and let thaw for a few minutes before enjoying.