Mr. Green Thumb’s family has a wide range of dietary needs: vegetarian, dairy free, diabetic, gluten free and grain free. Trying to accommodate all of these diets in one dessert can be challenging to say the least. We often end up with two or three dessert options so that everyone has something to enjoy.
I am happy to say that this dessert offers something for everyone*. This grain free almond pecan pie shell, paired with my dairy free dark chocolate ganache recipe, creates a decadent chocolate torte fit for any occasion.
I first made this almond pecan pie shell for Thanksgiving, and filled it with a dairy free pumpkin mousse. The crunchy texture and subtle pecan flavor of this pie shell makes it very versatile. I would also recommend using this crust as the base for a lemon curd, or even a frozen coconut ice cream pie.
Grain Free Almond Pecan Pie Shell
Prep. time: 25 minutes
1 recipe Dairy Free Dark Chocolate Ganache (or other filling of your choice)
1 cup almond flour or almond meal (left over pulp from making almond milk also works great)
1 cup toasted pecans
1/4 cup coconut oil
3 Tablespoons maple syrup or honey
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees (180C) and spread out the pecans on a baking sheet. Bake for roughly five minutes, or until the nuts are warm to the touch, and smell toasted. Alternately, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Place the nuts in the pan and stir frequently until the nuts are toasted.
2. Place nuts, almond flour, maple syrup or honey, coconut oil, and sea salt into a food processor. Blend for about 1 minute, until the nuts are chopped up quite fine, and the ingredients start to come together in a ball. Scrape ingredients down from the sides of the bowl as necessary.
3. Lightly grease a pie pan and press the mixture into the pan and up evenly along the sides. Using a second pie plate of the same size (also lightly greased) works well to evenly distribute the dough. Make sure it is pressed in very firmly.
4. Chill the pie shell for at least a half an hour before filling. The pie shell and the filling can both be kept separately in the fridge for a day or two before serving.
5. Fill the pie shell only one to two hours before serving, or else it will get soggy. Be sure to chill the pie before serving, and even freeze it for 30 minutes before serving to make slicing easier. Or, alternately, fill the shell, and then freeze the pie, overnight if necessary. Take it out about 15-30 minutes before serving to thaw it slightly before serving.
*Note that the sugar content of the chocolate torte, including the almond pecan pie shell as well as the dairy free dark chocolate ganache equals just under over 2 teaspoons, or 9 grams of sugar for 1/12 of the pie. Diabetics should consider for themselves whether this is a reasonable amount of sugar to consume.