From chef Domenica Lazo of Barry Callebaut, this vegan chocolate mousse uses an aquafaba meringue — simple syrup whipped together with the liquid from cooked, canned chickpeas (aquafaba) — to aerate the melted chocolate base. Whipped coconut cream, from the fatty part of canned full-fat coconut milk, adds the richness typically provided by avocado in vegan mousse recipes.
“Many vegan mousses are made with avocado as the main fat content, but I find the coconut flavor works really nicely with chocolate,” says Lazo. “The mousse is sweetened with a little bit of simple syrup. It’s very versatile and can be used to fill cakes or make layered desserts like the one in the photo, or simply eaten as is.”
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Vegan Chocolate Mousse
Yields: 4 servings (about 16 ounces)
- 1 can (about 15 oz) chickpeas
- 1 cup finely chopped dairy-free dark chocolate (55 to 70% cacao)
- 1 can (about 14 oz) full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated for 24 hours
- 1 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 Tbsp water
Open the can of chickpeas and pour 1/4 cup of the liquid (aquafaba) into a measuring cup. Set aside. Reserve chickpeas and any remaining aquafaba for another use.
Chill a medium-sized mixing bowl and beaters from an electric hand mixer or whisk attachment and bowl from a stand mixer in the freezer for about 10 minutes.
While bowl and beaters chill, melt the chocolate. Place chopped chocolate in a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl. Heat in microwave at 50% power for 45 seconds. Remove bowl and stir chocolate with a rubber spatula. Return bowl to microwave and continue to heat at 50% power in 30- to 45-second increments, stirring in between, until chocolate has melted and is completely smooth. Set aside.
Remove bowl and beaters (or whisk attachment) from freezer. Remove coconut milk from refrigerator without tipping or shaking it. Open can of coconut milk and scoop solid coconut fat into the chilled bowl. Reserve coconut water for another use. Using electric hand mixer or stand mixer, whip coconut cream to soft peaks. Measure one cup of the whipped cream and set aside. Refrigerate any remaining whipped cream for another use.
Pour aquafaba into the clean bowl of a stand mixer. Whip aquafaba on high speed until soft, light and fluffy (not stiff).
While the aquafaba is mixing, make the simple syrup. In a half-quart or 1-quart saucepan, combine sugar and water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir to make sure all sugar has dissolved. Turn off the heat and take saucepan to mixer. With the mixer running on medium speed, slowly pour the simple syrup into the bowl, increasing the speed to high as you pour. Continue to whip aquafaba meringue until it holds stiff peaks.
Using a rubber spatula, gently fold one-third of the aquafaba meringue into the melted chocolate to lighten it, then fold in one-half of the coconut whipped cream. Repeat, gently folding in one-third of the aquafaba, then the second half of the whipped cream. Finish by folding in the remaining aquafaba.
Refrigerate mousse for one hour before serving or using as a component in a cake or layered dessert.