This totally brings back memories of Sunday afternoons when I was younger, after a yummy lunch the family would always have a little dessert, and that wonderful combination made an appearance more than once!
These days, apple pie and ice cream definitely aren’t a common occurrence in my household but I do still crave the taste! So, in one of my recent recipe planning sessions, I thought … “there HAS got to be a way I can make this flavor combo a healthy one, and fit it into my 12-week challenge diet parameters!“… and in comes the Apple Pie Protein Ice Cream! (I mean really, what’s better than making a hybrid of the two amazing flavors and keeping it healthy?! Not a whole lot!)
It’s truly amazing how frozen bananas can morph into an ice cream like treat! Perfect for those who can’t or don’t eat dairy, and those trying to watch their waistline!
I combined the frozen bananas with unsweetened applesauce and delicious red gala apples to get the base for the ice cream. Then using the right spices to make that traditional apple pie flavor (cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice) and a dose of natural almond butter for creaminess, the ice cream was almost complete.
But wait! The vanilla… so, in comes my favorite North Coast Naturals Vanilla Protein Powder ! You can use any type of vanilla protein powder you like – if you want to stick with vegan you can go with a rice, soy, or hemp protein powder. Also, look for a brand that does not contain artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners, and no-refined sugars as well!
The vanilla protein powder adds that vanilla flavor and a healthy dose of protein along with the healthy fats and protein in the natural almond butter!
Blend everything up, and pop into the freezer, then a couple hours later you have this…
Dreamy, creamy, oh so delicious apple pie (& vanilla) protein ‘ice cream’. Yum.
I seriously enjoyed every little bite.
I categorized this recipe as more of a “dessert”, but seriously, it’s so healthy, clean, and good for you, that I would eat it for breakfast, or it would also make a fantastic post-workout snack!
I hope everyone has a wonderful Sunday, and for those Canadians out there – have a great Family Day long weekend!
Apple Pie Protein “Ice Cream” (GF, and can be vegan!) … no ice cream maker required!
Because this is not true “ice cream”, it will freeze solid if left in the freezer for longer than a few hours. It will need to be thawed before consuming, so it is best when enjoyed within a couple hours after preparation!
1 banana, frozen
1 medium apple, diced and divided into 2 portions
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice (or mix together equal amounts of cinnamon, all spice, and ground nutmeg)
1 tablespoon natural almond butter
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I use North Coast Natural’s Whey Isolate, if you prefer this to be vegan you can use a hemp, soy, or rice protein powder!)
¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
3-4 ice cubes
Blend all ingredients (except for half the diced apple) in a blender until it is a very thick, smooth, milkshake consistency.
Pour into a large bowl or tupperware, stir in the remaining diced apple.
Place in the freezer for an hour and a half, stirring every 30 minutes. The final consistency should be like a thick frozen yogurt.
Scoop into 2 bowls, sprinkle with cinnamon.
To keep this recipe gluten free, be sure to use a certified gluten free protein powder.
To keep this recipe vegan, use a vegan protein powder.
If you do not want to use protein powder at all, I recommend substituting with another ½ frozen banana, 1 tablespoon of almond butter, and 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.