Dark Chocolate Gelato (dairy-free, nut-free, coconut-free)

July 26, 2014 in Categories: by

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Something about the summer heat just makes cold treats that more amazing. I’ve been wanting to work on a completely dairy-free, nut-free (and coconut-free), low-sugar ice “cream” treat for a while.  And here it is!

What I love about this gelato is that dark chocolate is really the star.  It’s rich, creamy (yes, even without coconut milk or almond milk or heavy cream), and there are no competing flavors (from coconut milk or almond milk).  It’s also very low sugar, which you control by using whatever percent cocoa chocolate you want.  I personally think that 80%85% makes the perfect level of sweetness, but depending on where you are in your Paleo journey, you may prefer to make this with bittersweet or with ultra dark chocolate instead.

This is definitely a recipe that you want to break out your favorite high quality chocolate.  It needs to be chocolate that you absolutely relish straight, because chocolate is almost the only ingredient in this gelato.

Variations:  The variations here are endless.  Make it a mocha by using 1 cup hot strong coffee (or even espresso!) to melt the chocolate instead of water.  Make it double chocolate by adding chocolate magic shell.  Make it a grown-up gelato by replacing an ounce or two of water with rum.  Replace the vanilla with peppermint oil for a chocolate-mint version.  Or, add chopped cherries and/or walnuts right at the end of the churning.

Dark Chocolate Gelato


  1. Melt the chocolate and 1 cup water (you can either do this in a double boiler on the stovetop or medium power in the microwave).  Stir to completely combine.
  2. Mix the egg yolks together.  Temper the yolks:  while stirring, add a small ladleful of the hot chocolate mixture to the yolks.  Keep stirring and add a second ladleful.  Now, add the yolk mixture to the rest of the chocolate and mix thoroughly.
  3. Place the chocolate mixture in a blender.  Add the vanilla and salt. Blend on low and either add the 1 1/2 cups ice water bit by bit, blending for a few seconds in between each addition, or drizzle the ice water through lid by removing the lid insert.
  4. Place the chocolate mixture in an ice cream maker.  Churn, following the manufacturer’s instructions.  Once it’s soft-serve consistency, you can put the gelato into a freezer-safe container and freezer for about 2 hours to get that perfect consistency.
  5. Store in the soft zone of your freezer or remove from the freezer and place in the fridge for about an hour before you serve, or 20 minutes on the kitchen counter.



Looks so good but I’m doing paleo aip and can’t have the eggs. I can’t figure out what to substitute any eggs with. Any ideas that fit the aip diet?

You can’t have chocolate while on AIP either, so you might have to wait. At least yolks are one of the first things you get to reintroduce!

Thank you SO much for the coconut free recipe! My daughter is allergic to coconut (her only food allergy) and it is making the transition to pale quite difficult!

Is this savory? I don’t see any type of sweetener included….unless it’s right in front of me and I just don’t see it. Anyone make this and can offer their opinion on how it tasted? It sure looks yummy!

do you know what the calories is on this using the 85 percent chocolate bars
I am on a 1200 calorie diet and am going to add this into my calories for the day

i was reading another site and a guy used corn starch in place of eggs and he said it worked beautifully. He used two table spoons of cornstarch and zero eggs. I saw many people on here not able to eat eggs so thought I would share what i saw someone else doing

cindy November 10, 2014 at 10:22 pm
i was reading another site and a guy used corn starch in place of eggs and he said it worked beautifully. He used two table spoons of cornstarch and zero eggs. I saw many people on here not able to eat eggs so thought I would share what i saw someone else doing

I had no idea that ice cream contained so few ingredients. I just found your website and can not wait to continue my exploration. My family is allergic to nuts so I appreciate your nutfree recipes.

Thank you for posting this recipe. I’m pretty excited to try it out. I can not have dairy, coconuts, wheat, etc. I hope that you will continue to post new recipes that are dairy, coconut, and wheat free 🙂

Is there such a thing such as soy-free, dairy-free, coconut-free chocolate? (other than home-made with cocoa butter?)

So this calls for a lot of egg yolks (my favorite part), but then I’ll have all those egg whites left over. The eggs I buy are expensive and I don’t want to discard any part of them. Any recipe suggestions that call for the whites only? Maybe a merengue, or something very light?

Ew. Did not turn out at all. Basically icy chocolate water. Had to throw out the whole batch and I don’t want to think of how much money just went down the drain. Disappointing. Will try a different recipe next time.

Thank you for this recipe. The only thing I did differently was to chill the chocolate mass for 2hours before churning (I have a very cheap I’ve cream maker, so wanted to make sure the mass was cold enough to work) and added some rum. Not sure how Anessa ended up with chocolate water, as even just chilling the mass made it very thick, like a thin mouse. After churning about 15 minutes, it was still pretty liquid, so I put the bowl with the mass in the freezer and took it out after a half hour and churned again. It was pretty thick and starting to freeze, so put it back in for an hour. The center of the bowl was still “saucy”, I transferred to a lock and lock and put it in the soft freeze area of my freezer. We had it two hours later, it was delicious. I will keep the rest in the main freezer as it melted very fast – could be due to the rum I put in it though. Try this recipe, it is so delicious. My guests were practically licking their plates clean. I made tiny meringues with the egg whites and served a plate drizzled with homemade chocolate sauce, a scoop of ice cream flanked by the little meringues, each topped with a fresh raspberry, as well as a string of currants and a mint leaf on the ice cream. Simple but very high class dessert, thanks again!

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