By Kirsten West ND, LAc

The long days of summer are here. With light and warmth that extends into evening, and the earlier rise of the sun, meal times are often a bit earlier and perhaps, a bit later. For many, memories of summer often include thoughts of ice cream- that cool, creamy summer treat. While there are many alternatives that have less impact on metabolism, such as frozen banana ice-cream (although still high in sugar), there is one that takes the “cake” or, should I say, “spoon.”  And trust me, there is nothing like an ice-cream high in good fats, moderate protein, Omega-3s, fiber, and vitamins such as A, B, E, and D. And, because this recipe uses cacao as a base over cocoa, the polyphenol and flavonoid content is high. (In fact, the latter are some of our best anti-oxidants.) And, most importantly, due to the high fat, high fiber content, this dessert has little impact on blood sugars. (Although, those on a ketogenic diet do need to assess ketones and blood glucose with its use.)

Here it is:

Cacao chia ice-cream

What you will need:

Ice-cream maker

1/4C chia seeds

1 2/3 cups full fat coconut milk

2 TBSP cacao powder

2-3 TBSP of Lakanto Monkfruit “Maple Syrup”  (begin with less to taste)

1 tsp vanilla extract (or almond)

1 tsp cinnamon

1 oz of unsweetened dark  (>70%) chocolate, melted

As always, please assure all ingredients are organic and well-sourced.

How to make:

Combine and stir all ingredients in a medium bowl until completely blended. Taste and gradually add Lakanto monkfruit syrup to taste. Best not to be too sweet, just sweet enough. Chill the mixture overnight for at least 5 hours.

Transfer the mixture to a high powdered blender and blend until completely smooth. It should be thick and creamy. Transfer the mixture to your ice cream jug and chill until you are ready to churn.

Churn the mixture in your ice-cream maker. Once complete, transfer the mixture to a lidded container (not plastic!! – glass is best) and freeze until firm enough to scoop.

Oh, and for those early summer mornings, this can be breakfast!

Put away the ice-cream maker. Leave out the melted dark chocolate, use less sweetener, do not blend, simply mix, and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour. You can top with chopped raw walnuts and extra cinnamon.

(For extra protein, try adding some Bullet Proof Collagen Protein to increase protein content.)

Again, for those on a ketogenic diet, do assure your individual metabolic parameters allow for the incorporation of this into your day or night. While some may remain in ketosis, others may not. This is the beauty of Optimal Terrain; it is a bit different for each of us.