Cooking, Baking & Cocktail Shaking

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

When you tell me you’re dishing up pie for dessert and then follow up with the word “individual”, you instantly have my attention. If you’re like me and not fond of having to share your dessert, these Individual Coconut Cream Pies are for you. They also happen to be vegan + gluten-free.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

This past Saturday, I spent the day running around with a group of kiddos…three, to be exact. My mom and I took our niece to an Easter egg hunt sponsored by a local VFW in Baltimore. Because I believe in the phrase the more the merrier, I invited my cousin and her two gorgeous little girls along.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

I don’t have children of my own, so any time there’s a large group of children involved, I get a bit overwhelmed by it all. So. Many. Kids. And they’re all talking at once. And when one of them has to use the bathroom, naturally, five more have to use the bathroom. And they all require attention at once, and it’s usually immediate.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

After 5 hours of catering to the needs off all the children, I was exhausted. I looked at my cousin as we were packing up the kiddos to head home and said, “I’m tired, and I’ve only been at it for 5 hours. How do you do this 24-7, 365?” No wonder parents drink. You kind of have to. Here, have some bourbon on me.

You know what I get after spending the day surrounded by children? The flu. I was rewarded with the flu. Seems kind of unfair, right? Kids are little germ factories, and I blame my mom and cousin for dragging me into the play center at Chick-Fil-A. The place smelled of dirty gym shoes, and I can only imagine the germs that place harbored. I shutter just thinking about it. Of all the days to forget my hand sanitizer…

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

I learned that kids take hunting for eggs very seriously. I was holding my cousin’s 1-year old daughter and dragging my 4-year old niece by the hand to help them hunt for eggs, which is quite a feat when all of the other children are pushing you out of your way and stealing eggs out from under your hand. Every time we would come upon an egg and my niece would go to grab it, some other kid would swoop in and steal it.

After having a good dozen eggs stolen from us, I was beginning to get upset. How dare these children steal eggs from a 1 and 4-year old. Honestly, it’s not like I could do anything about it; they’re only kids. So, I did the next best thing. I started hunting for their eggs. Go ahead kids, try and steal an egg from my hands–I dare ya!

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

In the end, they each had a decent amount of eggs. All was right in the world.

When I got home that afternoon, I cracked open a bottle of beer and paired it with one of these Individual Coconut Cream Pies. I deserved it, dammit.

You’ll happy to know that this recipe is vegan-friendly and gluten-free. It’s extremely easy to make coconut cream pie vegan when all that’s really required is coconut milk, coconut cream, and coconut flakes. The custard is super creamy, extra-thick, and bursting with coconut. If I’m being honest, I prefer this version over the classic, and I think that’s because my version is loaded with coconut flavor.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

I made an unconventional crust to pair with the creamy coconut custard. Not only is it healthy and naturally sweetened, but, unlike most pie crusts, it stays crisp and crunchy. Basically, it’s a simple granola mixture that I loaded with Diamond of California Sliced Almonds. The almonds get all toasty and give the crust its ultra crunchy texture.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

Each of the individual coconut cream pies is topped with homemade coconut whipped cream and garnished with more of the crunchy granola crust. It’s the perfect dessert to dish up this spring.

Individual Coconut Cream Pies

Yield: 8 pies

Prep Time: 4 hours

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours 25 minutes

Ingredients:

Custard

  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 (13.5-ounce) cans reduced fat coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut, toasted

Granola Crust

  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats (gluten-free)
  • 1 cup sliced Diamond of California Almonds
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Coconut Whipped Cream

  • 1 (14-ounce) can coconut cream, refrigerated
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. 
  2. In a large pot, add coconut sugar and cornstarch; whisk to combine. Add coconut milk, including the cream that forms at the top; whisk to combine. There will be some lumps floating around--that's okay. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil over medium heat, whisking often. Once the mixture begins to boil, start whisking constantly. Continue whisking until the mixture thickens, about 6-8 minutes. You'll know the custard is ready when the whisk strokes begin to hold their shape in the custard. 
  3. Remove the mixture from the heat and whisk in the vanilla extract, vanilla bean paste, and toasted coconut. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on top of the custard. Refrigerate until completely chilled, about 4 hours. 
  4. While the custard chills, prepare the granola crust by adding old-fashioned oats, coconut sugar, and coconut flakes to a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together melted coconut, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Drizzle the mixture over the oats and fold until the oats are equally coated. 
  5. Transfer the oat mixture to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the mixture is golden brown, stirring every 10 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool completely. Store in an airtight container until ready to use. The mixture will stay fresh for 7-10 days. 
  6. To make the coconut whipped cream, add the chilled coconut cream to the bowl of a stand mixer attached with the whisk attachment, or in a large bowl using a handheld mixture. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract to the bowl. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. 
  7. To assemble the pies, add 1/4 cup of the granola mixture to the bottom of 8 (8-ounce) mason jars. Top with 3/4 cup of the custard mixture. Spoon a layer of coconut whipped cream on the top and garnish with a sprinkle of the granola. 
  1. To make a no-bake version of this recipe, you can use store-bought granola. 
  2. I recommend assembling the jars on the day you're going to serve them to ensure the crust remains crunchy. I have made them 2 days in advance, and the crust was still reasonably crisp and crunchy. 
  3. You can make all three elements of the recipe in advance. If you're making the coconut whipped cream ahead of time, take it out of the refrigerator and re-whip before assembling the pies. 
Whipping up one of my recipes? I wanna know about it! Snap a photo and tag your post with #onesweetmess on Twitter or Instagram. Seeing your creations come to life makes my day!

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Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}

Disclosure: This recipe was developed for the lovely folks at Diamond of California. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting my recipes and site while I work with brands I adore.

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6 Responses to “Individual Coconut Cream Pies {Vegan + Gluten-Free}”

  1. #
    1
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness — March 29, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    I am loving that these are vegan and gluten free! Also these photos are stunning. I could eat these babies allllll day!

    Reply

  2. #
    2
    Joanne — March 29, 2017 at 11:22 pm

    Wow, these look so good and love the granola crust!

    Reply

  3. #
    3
    Carolyn — March 30, 2017 at 9:21 am

    These are adorable! I just love this idea.

    Reply

  4. #
    4
    Jennifer @ Show Me the Yummy — March 30, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    I LOVE that these are individual sized!!

    Reply

  5. #
    5
    Liz @ The Lemon Bowl — March 31, 2017 at 7:50 am

    I love that these are individually served!

    Reply

  6. #
    6
    Falcos — April 20, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Thanks for sharing! Coconut cream pies are a favorite of mine, and making individually sized ones is a great idea!

    Reply

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