This fudgy chocolate avocado pudding has just 3 ingredients, can be made in 5 minutes or less, and is a healthy dessert alternative that feels truly indulgent. No more dessert guilt!
I spend a lot of time thinking about dessert. It's one of my favorite things in life, and I am forever trying to find ways to make dessert healthier so I can eat it more frequently. This chocolate avocado pudding cracks the code.
I mean, I make a lot of dessert recipes: Almond Butter Swirl Brownies, Pumpkin Cupcakes, Chocolate No-Bake Vegan Energy Balls (fancy name, really just disguising dessert), Mixed Fruit Tart, Flourless Chocolate Cake. You get the idea.
And they're all great - but crafting paleo desserts can be tough, time consuming, and sometimes require ingredients that we don't have on hand. That doesn't help when you need a quick fix.
Now, with this chocolate avocado pudding, you only need three things, that most of us probably have on hand already:
- an avocado
- carob powder or cocoa powder
- maple syrup
Health benefits of avocado
When building a balanced plate, avocado definitely falls in the healthy fats category. Avocados contain both polyunsaturated fats as well as monounsaturated fats.
Polyunsaturated fats are necessary for your body to function - but you can't make them on your own. Your body uses these fats to build cell membranes as well as the covering of nerves. They’re also used for blood clotting and muscle movement.
Monounsaturated fats are similar to the fats found in olive oil. Some studies have linked them to reduced inflammation, lower the risk of heart disease, and anti-cancer effects.
Plus, an avocado contains about 10 grams of fiber! Want to know more? Here are 15 Ways Avocados Can Support Your Health.
How to know if an avocado is ripe
Avocados can be fickle. In the morning, they can be hard and underripe, and by that evening, they're brown on the inside. There's nothing more frustrating than cutting into an avocado to find you've missed your 10 minute window to eat it!
An avocado is ripe when you squeeze gently and the skin gives a little under the pressure. If it's hard, it's not ready yet. If it feels super soft, it might be too late - but the only way to know is to cut into it. If it feels empty or caves in, its definitely too late!
If your avocado is under ripe, put it in a paper bag at room temperature and close the bag. It will ripen within a day or so.
If your avocado feels ripe but you're not quite ready to eat it, stick it in the fridge. It will slow down the ripening process and preserve it for a day or two until you're ready to eat it. This trick also works for under ripe ones that you aren't ready to eat yet!
What is a carob?
If you're following an AIP diet (Autoimmune Protocol), you're probably no stranger to carob powder, as it's as close to chocolate as you're going to get.
For those of you who are not familiar with AIP, here is a bit of background on a carob:
The carob tree is native to the Mediterranean region and the Middle East. It is a flowering evergreen tree or shrub in the legume family.
But wait! Legumes are beans, and beans aren't paleo or AIP friendly, right? Here's the catch - we aren't eating the beans- we're eating the pod.
The ripe, dried, and sometimes toasted pod is often ground into carob powder, which is sometimes used to replace cocoa powder. Carob pods are naturally sweet, not bitter, and contain no caffeine, thus making them AIP friendly.
Carob Powder vs. Cocoa Powder
The main difference between the two is their chemical profile. Cocoa powder contains theobromine as well as caffeine, and carob powder contains neither.
There's also a distinct flavor difference - if you're a true chocolate lover, it's likely that you won't find carob powder as satisfying as others might when trying to fill that gap. That being said, it has a nutty flavor when roasted, and is much less bitter than the cocoa powder alternative.
Here is a great article on the differences between carob and cocoa powder.
If you're looking for purchasing recommendations, this is the carob powder I am using in this recipe, and this is the cocoa powder I use regularly in my kitchen.
(Please note that these are affiliate links and I earn a small commission off qualifying purchases, at no cost to you. Thank you for your support!)
Can you use cocoa powder for this recipe?
When I created this recipe, we were trying AIP in order to see if it helped with my husband's sarcoidosis, so we were not eating cocoa powder.
Since then, we have tried the recipe with cocoa powder, and my opinion is this: it will work in a pinch, if it's all you have, but it's not anywhere near as good as carob powder.
You also need a bit more maple syrup to counter the bitterness of the cocoa powder that is not present in the carob powder. For this, I just recommend adding to taste until you get to a place you are happy with it!
3 Ingredient Fudgy Chocolate Avocado Pudding
This delicious chocolate avocado pudding is easy to make and contains just 3 ingredients. Its fudgy consistency makes it the perfect healthy option to fufill any chocolate craving!
- 1 medium ripe avocado (approx. ½-3/4 cup)
- ¼ cup carob powder
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary.
- Serve immediately or store in refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- For an extra bit of awesomeness, sprinkle some coarse sea salt on top before serving!
If you are making this with cocoa powder, you will need a bit more maple syrup to balance out the bitterness of the cocoa. I recommend adding in small amounts until the flavor is to your liking!
You will want a fully ripe avocado for this recipe. Underripe avocados will get smooth when blended up; however, they have a more distinct flavor than their ripe counterparts. To avoid an "avocado taste", make sure your avocado is fully ripe.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 347Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 28mgCarbohydrates: 44gNet Carbohydrates: 0gFiber: 7gSugar: 30gSugar Alcohols: 0gProtein: 3g
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Probably a ridiculous question but I hate maple syrup. Any thoughts on a replacement?
Hi Karen! Not a ridiculous question. You might want to try it with the maple syrup, as it doesn't really taste like maple. That said, you could use honey as a 1:1. Any other liquid sweetener you'll need to go by taste and just add a bit at a time until you get to the flavor you like. I wouldn't recommend a non liquid sweetener in this case, as it would come out grainy.
Mary Ellen Harte
Avocados come in all sizes -- how much avocado pulp (in cups) are you using here?
Hi Mary Ellen - thanks for reaching out about this! It's a medium avocado, about the size of a baseball. I re-made the recipe tonight and measured it out, and it was just in between 1/2 and 3/4 cup packed down gently in my measuring cup. Hope that helps!
This nice thing about this recipe is it doesn't have to be exact - you can always use more or less carob powder and maple syrup if you have avocados of various sizes!