For chocophiles only! This vegan chocolate pie has a luscious cocoa filling and a buttery homemade gluten-free graham cracker crust. The creamy chocolate pie filling has a peanut butter base (you can easily substitute other nut or seed butters) and uses no tofu or coconut milk.
This decadent plant-based dessert doesn’t taste gluten-free, vegan, or naturally sweetened, but it happily is!
Sometimes the internet drives me crazy with misinformation. The other day, I was trying to find out why chocolate is a no-go on the specific carbohydrate diet. This diet has been used as a treatment for SIBO, which I have. But I wasn't about to follow any protocol where chocolate is "illegal" without good reason to do so.*
When I typed my query into my search engine, the top hit claimed that chocolate comes from the same plant as cocaine – the coca plant.
To be clear, chocolate *does not* come from the coca plant, but rather from the theobromine cacao tree. And while chocolate may make you feel blissfully alert, or keep you up all night if you overindulge after dinner, I don't recommend snorting chocolate or cocoa up your nose.
Trust me, chocolate is much more palatable ingested via your mouth. Preferably in the form of this luscious vegan chocolate pie.
* I've since learned that it's because chocolate contains polysaccharides and only monosaccharides are consumed on the SCD in order to give the gut lining a break. SAD.
Relatively Healthy Chocolate Pie
This chocolate pie with a graham cracker crust is free of many common allergens including gluten, dairy, eggs, refined sugar, and optionally nuts, coconut, and grains. It's friendly to many dietary protocols including vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and optionally paleo. It can even be made low-FODMAP-ish if you use whipped coconut cream on top in lieu of the cashew-based topping.
I've shared many foolproof gluten-free dairy-free dessert recipes here on TBG including this favorite vegan key lime pie. But this gluten-free chocolate pie may be the easiest yet. Just blend the filling ingredients together, pour into a baked GF graham cracker crust, and set in the fridge until firm.
This vegan gluten-free pie is a ménage à troi of three favorite recipes:
- Gluten-free graham cracker crust: This gluten-free vegan pie crust (made from homemade GF graham crackers) makes a tender base loaded with the comforting flavors of whole-grain flours, cinnamon, honey, and vanilla.
- Paleo chocolate pudding, adapted slightly for a firmer slice, is thick with nut or seed butter, sweetened with maple syrup, and set with coconut oil.
- Pipe a pretty topping with extra chocolate filling and paleo cream cheese frosting, or use whipped coconut cream or rich coconut yogurt.
Ingredients and Substitution Suggestions
Gluten-Free Vegan Pie Crust
- A gluten-free graham cracker crust forms the base of this chocolate pie. I like to make my own graham crackers which takes a little extra time but can be done ahead. Store-bought grahams work just as well.
- Alternatively you could use any of the following crusts:
- gluten-free tart crust (vanilla, or try the cocoa variation)
- flaky gluten-free pie crust
- flaky paleo pie crust
- pecan oat crust (has a graham cracker vibe but made with whole food ingredients)
- paleo chocolate tart crust
- raw chocolate nut crust (paleo & vegan)
Vegan Chocolate Pie Filling
- Nut or seed butter forms the base of this luscious filling. I used peanut butter for its silky-smooth texture and because it's a classic with chocolate. But any creamy nut or seed butter will work. Cashew butter would make a neutral base, while almond or hazelnut butter would add delicious complimentary flavors. Or go with tahini or sunbutter for a nut-free version. If your nut butter is runnier than peanut butter, add another tablespoon or two of coconut oil to make sure it sets up firmly enough to slice.
- Cacao or cocoa powder add body and rich chocolate flavor. I like using raw cacao powder, but natural cocoa powder works too. I haven't tested this with dutch-process cocoa powder, which is treated with alkali to make it less acidic, so I'm not sure how it would work here.
- Water blends with the nut butter and cocoa powder to form a thick base.
- Maple syrup sweetens the pudding naturally. I used a dark amber syrup, but any grade will work, so use what you've got. Other liquid sweeteners will work here as well, just add them to your taste since they can vary in sweetness.
- Vanilla and salt add flavor.
- Coconut oil sets the pudding into a sliceable texture that melts in your mouth. Extra-virgin coconut oil is full of good things and I don't find it to have a coconut flavor here at all. But you can use refined coconut oil if you want an even more neutral flavor. If you need a coconut substitute, try palm oil, melted ghee (for non-vegan), or cacao butter, which are all solid when cold.
How to Make Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Chocolate Cream Pie
This vegan gluten-free pie is super easy and suitable to bakers of all levels, even beginners!
While traditional chocolate pies use a cooked stovetop custard thickened with cornstarch, this vegan dessert recipe is even easier. Nut or seed butter gives it creamy body while coconut oil thickens and sets the filling as it chills.
This recipe makes 1 (9-inch) pie, about 12 small but rich servings. It takes about 20 minutes of prep time, no cooking time (aside from a quick bake for the graham cracker crust) and at least 1 hour to chill the pie in the freezer. Or chill it overnight in the refrigerator.
This vegan pie recipe takes well to variations. Try any of the following!
Paleo Chocolate Pie
Skip the grahams and make this paleo cocoa crust.
No-Bake Vegan Chocolate Pie
Make the no-bake version of the graham cracker crust, or use this raw vegan nut crust instead.
Go Nuts: Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie or Chocolate Hazelnut Pie
Use your favorite nut butter for a different flavor profile. Try hazelnut butter for a Nutella vibe, cashew butter for a neutral flavor, or almond butter for chocolate-almond combo.
Nut-Free Chocolate Cream Pie
Swap the nut butter for tahini or sunflower seed butter (a.k.a. sunbutter) for a nut-free version.
Low-Fodmap Chocolate Pie
Make the original recipe with peanut butter and maple syrup (both are low-fodmap) and use whipped coconut cream on top instead of the cashew topping (linked in the recipe notes).
Top this pie with toasted marshmallow meringue for a GF s'mores pie.
How to Make Chocolate Pie Creamy
Many classic chocolate pie recipes use a cooked stovetop custard made with milk or plant milk for creaminess. (This is my favorite classic chocolate pudding recipe – optionally vegan!) And many plant-based chocolate pie recipes rely on tofu for thickness. I love tofu, but I dislike that beany flavor in chocolate pies. I can *always* taste it, no matter what the recipe claims.
For this no-bake pie recipe, peanut butter (or other nut or seed butter) blended with the other ingredients makes the filling silky smooth and creamy. No tofu or plant milk needed.
How to Thicken Chocolate Pie Filling
Most chocolate pudding pie recipes are thickened on the stovetop using cornstarch. But this recipe is starch-free. Instead, I blend melted coconut oil into the filling. The fats in the coconut oil firm up as the pie chills. This gives the chocolate filling a soft set that's firm enough to slice but has a melt-in-the-mouth texture.
Vegan Chocolate Cream Pie for Everyone
With a decadent chocolate pudding filling, spiced graham cracker crust, and creamy topping, this plant-based dessert recipe is a true crowd-pleaser. I hope you find it as habit-forming as we do.
Though it may taste too good to be legal, it most likely won't get you arrested.
*Bojon appétit! For more Bojon Gourmet in your life, follow along on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest, purchase my gluten-free cookbook Alternative Baker, or subscribe to receive new posts via email. And if you make this vegan gluten-free chocolate pie, I’d love to know. Leave a comment and rating below, and tag your Instagram snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet and #bojongourmet.*
Vegan Chocolate Pie with Gluten-Free Graham Cracker CrustPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 9- inch gluten-free graham cracker crust, baked and cooled*
- ½ batch paleo cream cheese frosting or whipped coconut cream**
- 1 ¾ cups (415 ml) filtered water
- 1 ½ cups (130 g) raw cacao powder or natural cocoa powder
- ¾ cup (180 g) well-stirred creamy peanut butter (or other creamy nut or seed butter, such as tahini or cashew butter)***
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons (195 g) maple syrup
- 1 ½ teaspoons GF vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon fine sea or kosher salt
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (80 g) melted extra-virgin coconut oil****
- chocolate shavings and/or graham cracker crumbles, for decorating
- Make the crust and let it cool. Make and chill the paleo frosting or whipped coconut cream, if using.
- In a blender, combine the water, cacao/cocoa powder, nut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt. Blend on medium until combined, scraping down the sides of the blender once or twice.
- Add the melted coconut oil and blend until combined. Increase the speed to medium high and blend for 20 seconds to incorporate a little air. You will have about 36 ounces of filling.
- Pour as much filling as will fit into the baked and cooled crust. Pour the remaining filling into a jar. Carefully transfer both to the fridge and chill until set, 3-4 hours or overnight. Or freeze for 1 hour to speed this up.
- When the pie is set, decorate the top with the paleo cream cheese frosting, whipped coconut cream, and/or extra chocolate filling if using. I used three piping bags fitted with different sized star tips. Dust with chocolate shavings and graham cracker crumbles, if using.
- Serve right away or chill again to firm up the toppings. To cut clean slices, use a sharp knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean between cuts. Keep the pie chilled until you’re ready to cut and serve; it will get soft and gooey at room temperature.
- The pie is best within a day or two of being made when the crust is crisp, but extras will keep well, refrigerated, for up to 4 days. This pie also freezes well.
- The graham cracker crust can be made ahead. Wrap it tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerate for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 1 month.
- The pie can be filled and chilled overnight (for best results) or up to 2 days (though the crust will soften a little).
- The pie can be frozen until solid, then wrapped tightly and stored in the freezer for up to 1 month. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight before serving.
I’m sorry you’re suffering from SIBO but so delighted you are determined to navigate it in good taste! We are definitely benefiting from your determination to do so and I can’t wait to try this recipe out. A friend just gave me some gf stem ginger graham crackers that she didn’t like, so I’m thinking this recipe would be a good time to try them. What do you think of adding cinnamon or 5 spice to either the filling or the crust? Maybe tweaking it for some fall flavor?
Best wishes for you to be feeling better, Alanna!
Aw thank you Trish, I really appreciate that. Love the thought of spicing up this pie. I say go for it. Let me know how the ginger grahams work in the crust too!
I have SIBO too! No wonder I've been on your blog for years. I was pretty strictly SCD for a year or too, trying to calm my gut down. I think chocolate is avoided because it is so often an irritant to the gut. On SCD cocoa butter is legal, so I did some desserts with cocoa butter and decaf coffee and spices. It was pretty good, but real chocolate is so much better.
Alanna Taylor-Tobin says
I'm sorry you're suffering with SIBO too! And I'm so impressed that you stuck with SCD for a year or more. That's no easy feat! I did the histamine bi-phasic diet earlier this year and it did really help with symptoms but it was so stressful to have to cook every single thing. So much planning!
I'd love to hear more about these cocoa butter desserts, they sound delicious. Please share details!
LOL I think I threw most of them out once my symptoms improved! I did have a favorite pseudo-truffle, though. Melted cocoa butter, softened dates, macadamias and other nuts you like, maple syrup or honey (I prefer maple bc lower fodmap though that's not SCD), pinch salt, spices to taste, can add coconut oil if it needs more fat; pulverize in food processor, taste and adjust sweetness/spices; roll into balls, and chill. Once firm, can roll in crushed nuts, toasted coconut, etc.
Alanna Taylor-Tobin says
That sounds so good, thank you very much for sharing! I hope my symptoms will improve someday too. :)
Rachel / Clean Eating Foodist says
Ugh, you have SIBO too?? I'm treating my SIBO with a two week Elemental Diet beginning on Monday. Some of the Elemental formulas contain cocoa, so I know it's not considered prohibited if you have SIBO. And I feel the same way -- SIBO be damned, I am not giving up chocolate!!!
Alanna Taylor-Tobin says
Wow, good for you! I'm curious to try the ED too, but sadly it's not recommended for fungal overgrowth / SIFO which I have too. Please come back and let me know how it goes! You know I would definitely go with the chocolate flavor if I did try it. Sending you lots of strength!
This is a phenomenal chocolate pie and so simple! I was skeptical because it was so easy to make, but it got rave reviews by family and friends! Thanks for a decadent, wonderful recipe!
Alanna Taylor-Tobin says
Haha, that makes me so happy to hear! Very glad it was a hit. :)