Here’s a chocolate sweet potato pie that’s vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, and oil-free, too. It’s a pie that’s good for you! Does that sound deliciously impossible?
Would you believe me if I told you it was absolutely perfect and a huge hit at Thanksgiving? It was so good I had the little piece that was left for breakfast the next day. Amazingly, this decadent dessert is made mostly from super healthy sweet potatoes. You’d never know it, though.
I quit refined sugar a couple months ago. My sugar consumption was just getting out of hand. I’m an all or nothing sort of person, so “moderation” wasn’t a viable option. Surprisingly, giving up that sweet addiction hasn’t been difficult and I haven’t missed it at all, really. But when the holidays rolled around, I was mourning pie, to be honest. Being vegan has never, ever felt like a “deprivation.” Going without pie did, a little.
I would be disingenuous to say this is an unsweetened pie even though there isn’t a bit of refined sugar in it. They’re called sweet potatoes for a reason. I also added dates and a bit of stevia. The result was every bit as “sugary sweet” as any pie.
The crust turned out even better than I expected. It wasn’t too heavy, didn’t stick to the pie pan, and held together well. And it tasted fantastic.
Let me tell you more about what’s in this pie.
Sweet Potatoes are Genuine Superfoods
Sweet potatoes are awesome, even when they’re not in chocolate sweet potato pie. They’re inexpensive, easy to use, versatile, sweetly tasty and are also genuine superfoods. Sweet potatoes contain lots of beta-carotene, which converts to Vitamin A. They contain so much beta-carotene, they’re now being grown in parts of Africa to prevent Vitamin A deficiency related illnesses, including blindness.
Sweet potatoes come in white, yellow, orange, and even purple varieties. The orange variety contains the most beta-carotene. They’re not related to white potatoes, which are in the nightshade family. Sweet potatoes are in the morning glory family.
In addition to lots of beta-carotene, they also have generous amounts of vitamin C, B5, B6, and potassium.
Baked is Best for this Recipe
For this pie, I baked the sweet potatoes. That’s generally my preferred method for most recipes since it’s so so so easy and doesn’t leave them waterlogged, as boiling can.
To bake the perfect sweet potato, simply take whole sweet potatoes, wash them and then dry them, place them on a baking sheet and bake at 425 for about an hour. There’s no need to poke holes in them, or wrap in foil, or anything else, really. Set the timer and check on them in an hour. The skin will puff up away from the flesh some when they’re done. They’ll be sweet, almost caramelized, and can be used in just about any recipe calling for cooked sweet potatoes. They’re perfect for this recipe.
Chocolate is an Epic Superfood, Too
Chocolate, when it’s not loaded down with sugar and additional fat, is every bit as much of a “superfood” as sweet potatoes. Cocoa or cacao powder is what is called for in this recipe and is a great way to get some of its nutritional benefits. Those benefits include increased blood flow and nitric oxide production, better nutrient delivery, and decreased soreness after workouts. It’s even good for skin and nails.
Cocoa polyphenols can help reduce the effects of stress and lower cortisol levels, enhance sexual performance and sensitivity in both men and women, improve mood, and even prevent preeclampsia in women who are pregnant.
Dates are Sweet!
So this pie is deliciously sweet, but nearly all the sweetness comes from dates. They’re a whole food and not refined like regular white table sugar or even other sweeteners like agave, maple syrup, and so on. Dates are generally healthy and boast a decent nutritional profile.
They contain potassium, copper, magnesium, manganese, and fiber, unlike regular sugar which has basically zero nutrients. The benefits of dates are many and they can help with everything from bone health and lowering cholesterol to improving your skin.
Pie for Breakfast
Pie for breakfast is awesome when it’s this healthy and full of nutrients. It was just as good the next day and held over well in the fridge without getting soggy or weird.
So come on with the recipe, right? Here it is. Enjoy!
Chocolate Sweet Potato Pie
Chocolate sweet potato pie made without refined sugar. Delicious, easy, and good for you.
- 3/4 cup toasted pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
To make the crust, place the dates in a food processor fitted with an S blade and process until they're chopped into medium-fine pieces.
Add the oats, pecans, and salt and pulse a couple times to distribute.
Add 3 tablespoons of the water and process until it all begins to stick together a little, adding more water as necessary.
Press into the bottom and up the sides of an 8-inch pie plate.
Bake the empty crust at 350 degrees F for about 9 minutes. The set aside to cool.
Place all filling ingredients in a high powered blender and process until very smooth. It will also be quite thick. Continue to process for about a minute. The mixture may heat up, but that's OK.
Pour the filling into the baked and cooled crust and spread evenly.
Spread the toasted pecans on top.
If you love chocolate, as I do, you might enjoy these recipes:
And for more sweet potato goodness, you may enjoy these:
This chili has both sweet potato AND chocolate!