As many of you know, I try to keep my sweets intake to a minimum and also generally don't post too many desserts here on Balanced Bites.
That said, heck, it’s Thanksgiving! And I think that calls for a sweet treat to share with you all. And what sounds better than a paleo pumpkin parfait? Maybe one with caramel? Maybe also with toffee?! Stop. No, wait… don't…
This recipe does require a decent amount of prep work, but I promise the end result is so worthwhile and there’s lots you can do ahead of time. Your friends and family will be raving, and I’ll leave it up to you whether or not you want to tell them that these are actually paleo parfaits!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Pumpkin Caramel Toffee Crunch Parfaits
grain-free • gluten-free • seed-free • nightshade-free
PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOKING TIME: 1 hour 45 minutes
SERVINGS: 4-6 parfaits, depending on the size of your glasses
For the pumpkin layer, I used my recipe for Pumpkin Custard from Practical Paleo (page 404, also linked to here on the blog), and cooked it in a large pie dish for approximately an hour, until the middle was set and a knife came out clean. I skipped boiling the water, as I wasn’t worried about whether or not the custard would crack. You can make this the day before, and leave covered in your fridge until you’re ready to go.
COCONUT WHIPPED CREAM
- 1 15 ounce can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
- Hand beaters or stand mixer
Place the can upside down in the refrigerator, and leave for at least 8 hours. I like to leave mine in overnight.
Open the can – you’ll see that the milk has separated into two layers. Reserve the liquid layer for smoothies or other recipes and take the hardened coconut cream and add to your mixing bowl. (if you have time beforehand, you can chill your bowl as well)
Whip the cream until it is light and fluffy, and forms small peaks.
Alternatively, if you can handle dairy, feel free to use regular whipped cream in place of the coconut whipped cream.
SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE
- 1 cup palm sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Melt the above ingredients in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally in one direction. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Let boil for one minute, then remove and stir again in one direction. Repeat this process four more times, until the caramel has thickened and coats the back of a spoon.
You can make the caramel ahead of time and leave covered in the fridge for up to a week beforehand.
CHOCOLATE COVERED TOFFEE
Now for the fun part. Grab 4 small glasses or mason jars and start layering: two to three spoonfuls of pumpkin, a spoonful or two of the coconut whipped cream, a drizzle of salted caramel, and then a sprinkling of the chocolate covered toffee. Continue until you’ve reached the top of your jar, then finish with extra whipped cream, caramel and toffee.
You can keep these refrigerated until you’re ready to serve.