Though I’m not super into Valentine’s Day, I still use it as an excuse to indulge in some tasty treats. This parfait hits all the right notes – soft, frosty sorbet with a warm, rich chocolate sauce and a crunchy cashew topping to add texture and a hint of salt. It’s the perfect way to spoil your hunny with something sweet while staying on the healthy side. And look how pretty it is!
The sorbet in this beautiful parfait is made from a mix of frozen bananas, raspberries and strawberries with some coconut cream/milk – that’s it! Super simple and super delicious. These fruits are overflowing with nutrition. Potassium from all three supports nerve, muscle, and heart health; Vitamin C from the strawberries and raspberries encourages supple skin, good vision, and balanced immune function. The berries also provide lots of fiber for healthy digestion as well as a tangy sweetness, without spiking blood sugar.
That’s right people, you’re actually getting nutrients from your dessert, it IS possible. Don’t even get me started on dark chocolate…. well actually, definitely let me get started because I love it.
In addition to berries, dark chocolate is a great source of flavonoids, a certain type of antioxidant that has anti-inflammatory effects, which among other things helps to reduce blood pressure. On top of that, dark chocolate can increase good HDL cholesterol, lower LDL cholesterol, and reduce the risk of blood clots.
I love using coconut nectar (also called coconut syrup) as a sweetener, not only because of its subtle flavor but because it also contains minerals (iron, zinc, calcium, and potassium) and is low-glycemic. Refined sugar is considered “non-nutritive” because it provides nothing but empty calories, so while coconut nectar and other natural sweeteners like maple syrup should still be used in moderation, they are much better options than processed sugars. For those of you who haven’t used it, coconut nectar does not taste coconutty, you can use it in place of honey or agave without a major change in flavor.
A few preparation notes. Start out by preheating your oven and mixing together your cashews, sesame seeds and coconut nectar. Bake them on a piece of parchment paper until golden brown, 12-15 minutes should do it, just keep an eye on them. No need to stir until you take them out to cool.
For the chocolate sauce, I found it helpful to start with the chocolate and coconut nectar in the pan with 1/4 cup water on medium-low heat, whisk until well combined, and then stir in the additional water 1/4 cup at a time. Then keep it at a very low heat, occasionally stirring, until you’re ready to drizzle it on your parfait.
A high-speed blender will work best for the sorbet, since there is not a whole lot of liquid involved. I used a tamper to push the fruit into the blades while slowly increasing the speed. Once the blender really starts to move, blend until just after it becomes smooth. Be careful not to overdo it because the heat from the blender will make your sorbet thinner and you need that rich, creamy, frostiness to stand up to the hot cocoa sauce you’re about to pour all over it. Layer the sorbet and chocolate as you wish and top with the crunchy cashew and sesame mix.
I mean…serioussllyyyy. Look at that! This dessert tastes so indulgent, even though it’s made from healthy, nourishing ingredients. Enjoy!
Berry Sorbet with Dark Chocolate and Cashew Topping
This dessert recipe has it all - tangy berries, rich dark chocolate, and crunchy roasted cashews to top it all off. It makes a simple yet beautiful (and healthy!) treat for the perfect finish to any meal.
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 2 Tbsp raw white sesame seeds
- 4 squares Dagoba Unsweetened 100% Chocolate for Baking, chopped
- 4 Tbsp coconut nectar, divided
- 1/2 cup coconut cream (solid portion from refrigerated, full fat coconut milk)
- 1/3 cup leftover coconut milk/water from can of coconut milk
- 1 cup frozen banana
- 1 cup frozen strawberries
- 1 cup frozen raspberries
- 3/4 cup water, divided
- dash of sea salt
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a small baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, combine cashews, sesame seeds, and 1 Tbsp of the coconut nectar, mix with a spoon until fully covered.
- Sprinkle nut mixture with a dash sea salt and spread on to prepared baking sheet.
- Bake 12-15 minutes until golden brown.
- Allow nut mix to cool on pan about 5 minutes before using.
- Heat chocolate, 1/4 cup water, and 3 Tbsp coconut nectar over medium-low heat, stirring often.
- Once chocolate is melted, add 1/4 cup water and stir well again.
- Add remaining 1/4 cup water, stir well, turn heat to low, and continue to stir occasionally.
- Put bananas, raspberries, strawberries, coconut cream, and coconut water in blender.
- Turn blender on low and use a tamper to push fruit into blade. You'll need to take off the lid and scrape the sides several times.
- Increase speed of blender until fruit is fully blended and smooth. Be careful not to blend too high to avoid melting the sorbet.
- Layer your sorbet with chocolate sauce and top with cashew crunch mix, serve immediately.