I could eat bowl after bowl of this. It is soooo good!
Like many of my recipes, this tapioca pudding isn’t “real” tapioca pudding. It doesn’t have eggs, heavy cream, or milk in it, and it isn’t very sweet like the real deal. And tapioca pudding purists beware: this pudding uses minute tapioca rather than pearled, which according to the great chefs, “will not produce the same results”.
But I really like, like, like these results.
I also like that minute tapioca doesn’t have to be soaked first.
And I like that this tapioca pudding is low in sugar, refined fat-free, and cholesterol-free – making it a fairly healthy dessert. So I can eat bowl after bowl of it.
How to Pit Cherries
I’m lovin’ summertime with all the yummy summertime fruit. This dessert uses fresh cherries. You can cut the cherries in half with a knife and pry the pit out, or you can click here for a quicker way to pit a bunch of cherries.
Cherries contain flavonoid compounds called anthocyanin glycosides, which help fight inflammation. This can be a benefit for those with fibromyalgia, arthritis, insulin resistance, and other conditions associated with inflammation. Cherries have also been shown to reduce risk factors for heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk – I use Almond Breeze Original because it’s one of the few varieties that doesn’t contain natural flavors (an ingredient we try to avoid)
- 3 tablespoons minute (instant) tapioca
- 1/4 cup raw sugar or evaporated cane juice crystals
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup full-fat, unsweetened coconut milk (do not use the low-fat variety)
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups pitted cherries
- Place tapioca, almond milk, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan and begin heating over medium-high heat.
- Stir in coconut milk. Bring to boil stirring constantly. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, for 1 minute or until mixture thickens. (I use my heat-proof spatula for this.) Remove from heat.
- Stir in vanilla.
Mixture will thicken more as it cools.
Serve with fresh, pitted cherries.
Edit (July 28, 2014)
I’ve received several emails with questions about this photo and recipe, so I thought I would answer them here in case others were wondering as well.
1. What are the little little brown flecks/specks/thingies sprinkled on top of the tapioca pudding?
I shaved a piece of homemade carob bar and sprinkled it over the pudding. What’s carob? Carob is made from the carob bean and it’s a healthier alternative to chocolate. I’ll talk more about it in an upcoming post
2. What is the coconut cream you mentioned at the end of the recipe?
Coconut cream is sort of like coconut milk, except it’s thicker and richer. You can buy coconut cream. OR you can place a can of coconut milk in the refrigerator for a few hours (or overnight), which causes the milk to separate. When you open the can you’ll discover a layer of thick “coconut cream” and a layer of watery “coconut water” in the can. Use the thick part for coconut cream.
The only problem with the latter method is some brands of coconut milk work for this and some don’t. I’m in the process of testing as many different brands as I can get my hands on and will write a post on my results soon, so that you can know which brands of coconut milk are the best for making coconut cream (and coconut whipped cream) and which ones are duds.
3. Will this work with pearled tapioca?
Maybe sorta kind of. You’ll have to soak the pearled tapioca first. And you may need to adjust liquid amounts. In other words, I developed and tested this with quick tapioca, so I would stick with that unless you enjoy experimenting.
4. Why do you add the coconut milk after you begin heating the other ingredients?
I’ve tried this recipe putting the coconut milk in with the other ingredients and it works ok, but 1.) it didn’t come to a boil as fast, 2.) the tapioca didn’t cook/soften as well, and 3.) (although this one may be attributed to my overactive imagination) it didn’t taste quite the same.
5. What a beautiful photo! Do you do all your own photography?
Nope. I’m not that talented. Or patient. Sarah (my daughter) does all my photography. You can read a bit about her here.
Thanks for the great questions! Hope this helps!