Oh ganache, you beautiful, versatile, chocolatey wonder!  A few years ago, this word would have sounded like just any French word, but nowadays there are so many foodies out there that it’s pretty well known, as it should be.  Ganache is, in its basic form, an emulsion of heavy cream and chocolate.  Depending on the use it will be firm (like for this tart or truffles), soft (like for a fudgy cake filling) or liquid (for pouring over a crumb coated cake).  When you need it to be dairy free, how do you make it without heavy cream and dairy free chocolate?  That’s why I’m here! 😏

To make this successfully, it had to set without separating or be grainy.  The fat is absolutely necessary, so plain safe milk or “beverages” wouldn’t work.  I turned to full fat canned coconut milk and after balancing the proportions, it came out perfect.  As always, I use Pascha dairy free semisweet chocolate.  I love their products and their customer service is top-notch.  I know a lot of allergy families have Enjoy Life as their go to chocolate, and that should work perfectly fine, but their products are not safe for Casey. 

I decided we all need a bit of a shortcut and for this incarnation of the tart used a pre-made gluten free graham cracker crust from Mi-Del.  I saw it in the store and the thinking bubble popped up.  Having something safe like this on hand for any of us is wonderful because you can whip up an amazing dessert like this in literally 5 minutes.  If you can wait a couple of hours for it to set, you’re ready to go!  I have never used this brand and called them to vet it’s safety for Casey.  They were incredibly helpful and being a Canadian brand, they label for sesame-yay!!!   He’s been enjoying it ever since.

Give this one a try, I added some strawberry jam to the bottom of the tart before the ganache and the sweet-tart contrast is a fantastic pair.  A caramel base is definitely happening shortly, I’ll be sure to update!  Enjoy this rich fudge bomb!!!💙

**As always, please check which brands are safe for your needs**

 Ingredients and Substitutions

  • Coconut cream – It is a necessity that canned, full fat coconut be used in this ganache recipe.  It will behave the most like heavy cream, and if dairy is a safe option for you, then use it.  Half and half cannot be used as it has milk in it.  I like Native Forest brand coconut milk.  Make sure the can is mixed very well so the fat gets emulsified.  I usually soak the unopened can in hot water for a few minutes to let the fat melt and then shake the can vigorously.

  • Chocolate – As I stated earlier, I only use Pascha dairy free chocolate.  It tastes great and gives the right amount of richness.  If you can use regular chocolate, do not use chips that would be used for cookies and such.  There is shortening added and it will not yield the texture you need.  Chop real chocolate for this.

  • Crust – So many options here, I loved using the pre-made Mi-Del graham crust but feel free to use any blind baked pie or shortbread crust you prefer.  My 3-2-1 Pie Dough would be great here too.

  • Jam layer – I like having an unexpected contract in flavor and texture so that’s why I added some strawberry jam on the base of the crust.  Raspberry and cherry are fantastic options too.  I like Crofter’s spreads as they are not too sweet and have a true fruit flavor.  One of the reasons I added a strawberry as garnish in the picture is a form of product identification, so it can help alert the diner there is strawberry (or whatever you choose) in the tart.

  • Vegan butter/butter – A small amount of “butter”, vegan or regular, is whisked into the finished ganache to give a silky texture.  Shortening and coconut oil are not good options here.  Make sure it is room temperature as cold will leave chunks and not emulsify well.

Gluten Free Vegan Chocolate Ganache Tart

Dairy Free, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Seed Free, Top 8 Allergy Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

Author: Katie Martino Lopez

Prep Time: 10 minutes

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Chill Time: 2-3 hours

Total Time: 2-3 hours/10 minutes

Yield: 1- 9″ tart

Ingredients

  • One 9” premade graham cracker pie shell (I like Mi-Del) or safe prebaked crust of your choice
  • 12 oz. safe semisweet chocolate (chop if a bar) 
  • 6 oz. full fat canned coconut milk, shaken vigorously
  • 3 Tbls. vegan or regular butter, room temperature 
  • 1 tsp. vanilla 
  • ¼ c. strawberry, raspberry or cherry jam

Method

  1. Measure coconut milk, soaking can, if necessary, to melt solid cream.
  2. Spread jam on the bottom of prebaked shell and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, place chocolate (chopped fine if from a bar).
  4. Cut safe butter and keep aside.
  5. In a small, heavy bottom pot, bring coconut cream just to a boil and pour over chocolate. Let sit 2 minutes without stirring to start melting the chocolate.
  6. Add in butter and vanilla and from the middle of the bowl out, gently whisk to bring all ingredients together. The mixture is done when smooth and shiny.  If using real heavy cream, do not overmix or the cream will incorporate air and become grainy.
  7. Pour into shell and shake lightly to remove air bubbles.
  8. Immediately refrigerate to set ganache firm, at least 2-3 hours.
  9. For serving, run a thin knife under hot water and wipe off after each slice. It is very fudgy and the hot blade will make a clean cut. 

Recipe Notes

  • The tart will keep in the refrigerator, covered, for 4-5 days.  The jam will start to soften the bottom crust after a few days.
  • The ganache will soften as it sits at room temperature.  If you prefer it softer, that’s fine to let it sit, but definitely cut straight from the refrigerator while cold. 
  • Do not substitute milk or white chocolate for the semisweet, the proportions will not set up the same.

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Disclaimer

As we all know, reading labels and preparing food when managing allergies is a job within itself with much responsibility. All the brands I use are ones that I have contacted, and Casey has eaten safely. That being said, I must remind…

Please do your own research when deciding which products and foods are safe for the allergies you manage. These are the ones that are safe for our needs but may not be for you. Everyone has different comfort levels with manufacturing and production procedures.

And, as a friendly reminder, always have 2 epinephrine auto injectors on hand!

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