When I was young, my grandmother used to take me out for special one on one time and that usually meant indulging in a fun snack at a favorite local restaurant. I don’t ever remember having a full meal, although I am sure we did. The things I remember were the constants. We always ordered hot black tea with our fresh egg rolls at the Chinese buffet. We always got a dessert at Holland House. And we always ordered flan to go with our chips and salsa. Memories like these make me so grateful to have such a wonderful Grandmother who instilled in me a love of culture, traveling, food and family.
To this day, I still cannot leave a Mexican restaurant without ordering flan. It is just the perfect little creamy dessert. Yes, I’ve had the other desserts too, but flan is always going to win no matter how hard I try to order the fried cheesecake. The unfortunate part that makes it so amazing is the sugar content. Most flan recipes are packed with dairy and refined sugar, then covered in a syrupy sauce that is just more – you guessed it – sugar. Bummer. So I set out on a mission to create a flan that can be equally healthy and still craved by all. I’m pretty sure I hit the jackpot because within the first 20 min of food photography, I had already downed 4 of these bad boys. They are completely dairy free and do not contain one ounce of refined sweetener. An added bonus is that they are packed with homemade pumpkin puree which is loaded with fiber, beta carotene and vitamin K. Check out how you can make your own pumpkin puree in less than 10 minutes with 5 Easy Eays to get Fresh Pumpkin Puree.
One of the best parts about this recipe is that they are made in individual disposable foil tins. Not to worry my planet warriors…foil can be recycled! Click HERE to for the same kind I used. They store perfectly together in the fridge and when you are ready, cut off as many as you’d like and flip them into a bowl or fancy cup. Anyone else obsessed with serving dessert in fancy drink glasses? Throw on a dollop of whipped coconut milk (cream), sprinkle with cinnamon and you’ll be in heaven! Seriously, I dare you not to eat the whole tray in one sitting. We are talking pumpkin dessert here people. There is no limit for my brain in this category. You should’ve seen me with this Vegan Pumpkin Ganache Cake with Maple Buttercream Frosting…
With much love from my table to yours,
Paleo Pumpkin Pie Flan with Coconut Whipped Cream
Maple Espresso Syrup
Heat oven to 350°. Place 2 cans of whipped cream in fridge to chill. Place all syrup ingredients in saucepan and bring to a boil. When mixture begins to boil, remove from heat. Make sure it doesn’t boil over as it gets foamy really quick! Divide the syrup 18 equal parts among the cupcake pan(s). Set pan aside.
Blend all flan ingredients in a blender or food processor for 2 minutes or until completely combined.
Swirl syrup gently to coat the sides of cupcake pans. Slowly, pour the flan batter into the cupcake cups over the syrup that was placed in the bottom. Fill to the top of the cups. Place the cupcake pan (or pans… mine came with 6 cups each) into a large roasting pan. Fill roasting pan with 2 inches of water, careful to not spill the water into the flan. You can also put thw water in first if it is easier, just allow room for the water to rise when you stick your cupcake pans in the roasting pan. Bake for 60-70 minutes. When the flan is done, you should be able to insert a toothpick and have it come out clean. Place flan in refrigerator to cool completely before eating. When flan is completely cool, cut the foil pans so that each flan is now separated from one another.
To make coconut whipped cream: Take cans that have chilled for at least an hour out of the refrigerator. Carefully open and scrape out the cream at the top. Whip the cream with a hand mixer or until fluffy and more like the consistency of whipped cream. Pipe on cooled flan with piping tip or thick plastic bag with corner cut off.
To serve: Loosen the edges of the flan from the pan with a knife. Invert flan onto a plate, gently tapping the top of the foil pan to help it release. Top with coconut whipped cream. Don’t forget to let the syrup drizzle out on top! Sprinkle with cinnamon.
Wrap up all other flans individually with foil so you can grab one out of the fridge anytime!
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