Maple Pecan Freezer Fudge

My favorite dessert of autumn simply has to be pecan pie. It was never something I enjoyed as a kid, but as an adult, those pecans and their rich flavor, complemented by a sweet, sugary filling, was enough to send me to heaven. Of course, as I’ve changed my diet over for the healthier these past few years, super-sweet fillings seems less and less appealing. But that doesn’t mean the craving for pecan pie altogether has disappeared – in fact, I start to wish for anything pecan-related long before Thanksgiving. (These pumpkin donuts with pecans were only just the beginning.) That’s where this freezer fudge comes in handy.

This fudge is relatively simple to throw together. While you’re making pecan butter (making nut butters is easy – I make them all the time!), you can combine the rest of the ingredients. After a few hours in the freezer, this rich, decadent treat is ready for you! It doesn’t hurt that it’s healthier too – no cups of tooth-aching sugar; there is only a quarter-cup of sweetener in the entire batch. It’s naturally vegan and gluten-free as well. The best part, in my opinion, is that it does need to reside in the freezer, making it a touch more out-of-sight and easier to have just one piece. In addition, the pecans add a good richness, making that one piece truly satisfying.

Maple Pecan Freezer Fudge

Makes 18 squares

Ingredients

  • 2 ½ cups pecan halves
  • ¼ cup creamed coconut/coconut butter/coconut cream concentrate
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla stevia extract (optional, but good if you want it sweeter)
  • ½ cup chopped pecans

Instructions

1.  Place pecan halves in the bowl of a food processor. Process into nut butter, stopping to scrape down the sides every now and then. (This will take several minutes – be patient.)
2.  Meanwhile, place the creamed coconut, maple syrup, salt and stevia in a small saucepan over low heat and stir until everything is melted and well-combined.
3.  Add pecan butter from the food processor (this should equal about a cup of pecan butter) and stir in. Remove from heat.
4.  Add chopped pecans and stir in as well.
5.  Line a loaf pan (I used an 8” X 4” pan) with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and scrape mixture into pan and spread out evenly.
6.  Place in freezer for at least 2 hours or until firm. Remove from pan and cut into squares. Store in freezer.

NOTE about creamed coconut/coconut butter/coconut cream concentrate: It’s all the same thing; it just depends who makes it. Let’s Do Organic calls it creamed coconut , Artisana calls it coconut butter, Nutiva calls it coconut manna , and Tropical Traditions calls it coconut cream concentrate. Lexie of Lexie’s Kitchen made some from scratch. I have used several of these brands with success, and have even made my own. Any of those will work just fine in this recipe.

Alta is the founder of the gluten-free, dairy-free blog, Tasty Eats At Home. Even without gluten and dairy, Alta can show you that meals can be simple and healthy, and treats such as cake, bread, and cookies can be mouth-watering! Her goal is to share with you delicious, gluten-free, dairy-free food that can bring your heart joy and nourish your body, one recipe at a time.

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