Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Sugar Free!)

This is hands down the best dessert we've ever made…or eaten…or hungrily dreamed about on a rainy September evening.  Summer, where did you go so fast? 

We first spied this recipe over on the fabulous Oh She Glows blog and have been dying to make it ever since. So after we were kindly donated a large box of Medjool dates (thanks Gabriella's Mum!), we adjusted the recipe and went forth into a Banoffee Pie love affair... 

Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

Although we're generally savoury food lovers, there's always a lot of temptation for Banoffee Pie if we see it on a menu. It's heavenly for those few sweet minutes, but it always leaves me feeling deflated, crap and, well, slightly deceived. 

But dramatic emotions aside, this Banoffee Pie Recipe is the perfect healthy alternative for any food lovers. And we promise it tastes a million times better than any of its sugar-laden rivals.  Everybody who tried a slice couldn't believe there was no sugar, gluten or anything but goodness on their plate!

So here's to desserts that leave you feeling satisfied rather than regretful, and that are so nourishing you can eat them for breakfast...

Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

Ingredients:
The Crust

2 cups oats
1/2 almonds (pecans or walnuts would also work)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
1/4 cup of coconut oil (softened) 
2 tablespoons of maple syrup or honey
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds (optional)

Raw Caramel Toffee
8/9 Pitted Medjool Dates (the softer, the better)
2 tablespoons of natural nut butter (we used Peanut, but Almond would be perfect!)
1 pinch of sea salt
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon of lemon juice 

Whipped Coconut Cream & Topping
2/3 large ripe bananas
1 400ml can of coconut milk (full fat), kept in the fridge overnight. 
Raw cacao powder to dust (optional) 

1. The day before you make the Banoffee Pie, place a can of coconut milk in the fridge and leave overnight. The milk needs to chill for as long as possible to make the delicious whipped cream. 
2.Preheat your oven to 190C. Cut out circular piece of baking paper to fit inside your pie base. Our dish measures 9 inches.
3.Time to make the crust! Transfer 2 cups of oats & 1/2 almonds into a food processor and blitz until fine. 
3.Add in your other crust ingredients and blend together. The mixture will be slightly crumbly, but it should stick together when pressed between your fingers. If the mixture seems too dry, add a small amount of water until it reaches the right consistency. 
4.Time to mould your base. Distribute your crust mixture evenly across your tart base. Starting in the centre of the dish, press down the mixture and work outwards and up the sides. Once your crust is formed, poke the base of the tart 20 times with a fork to allow air escape during the bake. 

Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)
Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

5. Place the tart in the oven for 14 minutes until lightly golden. Place the tart on a cooling rack while you prepare the Caramel Toffee. The crust should firm up as it cools down. 
6. Now the amazing Caramel Toffee. Place your pitted dates in boiling water for around 5-10 minutes until softened. Drain off the water and place in a food processor with your nut butter, salt, vanilla extract, lemon juice and cinnamon. Blend until a smooth paste. 
7. Once the crust has cooled, gently & evenly spread the caramel mixture onto your crust base. Slice your bananas and place half of the slices on top of the caramel layer. 

Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)
Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

8. Finally, the Whipped Coconut Cream. Open your coconut milk and carefully scoop out the thick white cream from the top of the can. Any leftover coconut water will not be needed. Transfer the cream into a bowl and whisk (hand whisk or electric) until light and fluffy. Like whipped cream, but so much tastier! 

Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

9. Evenly spread the coconut cream on top of your pie. Add the remaining banana slices on top of the coconut cream. Lightly dust cacao powder on top to garnish. 

Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)
Nourishing Banoffee Pie (Gluten & Sugar Free)

*If you refrain from devouring the pie all at once, store your banoffee pie in the fridge!*