Looking for a super quick, super nutritious dessert to celebrate Valentine’s Day? This chocolate mousse made with avocado & greek yogurt is packed with healthy fats, fiber, and protein!
Know what we love? Dessert. Know what we also love? Nutrient dense, whole foods. So, when both of these things come together in a rich, cloud-like chocolate mousse, we are obviously excited.
If making your own dessert for Valentine’s Day (whether you’re flying solo or coupled up) seems like a chore, hear us out. This is a one bowl, simple ingredient, 10 minute recipe that will leave your taste buds really happy.
In addition to being irresistible, this chocolate mousse has a great balance of protein, fat, and carbohydrate to keep you feeling energized and satisfied. No post dessert sugar crash happening here. The two main ingredients are 2% greek yogurt and avocado.
Greek yogurt is fermented food, so it’s packed with probiotics which promote a healthy gut microbiome. Beyond that, it’s protein rich. Protein is the macronutrient that delivers the strongest signal of fullness, which is beneficial for weight management.
While we don’t believe in superfoods, avocados are really a powerhouse when it comes to nutrient density. They are high in insoluble fiber, which aids in regularity, soluble fiber which contributes to feelings of fullness and is beneficial in lowering cholesterol levels, and monounsaturated fat which can decrease risk of cardiovascular disease. Keep reading to learn more about the nutrition benefits of this decadent dessert.
What actually is greek yogurt? Good question. Greek yogurt differs from regular yogurt in several ways. Yogurt makers process Greek yogurt slightly differently than regular yogurt. The result is that Greek yogurt contains less water and lactose (the type of carbohydrate found in all dairy).
With less lactose, Greek yogurt may be easier for those who have lactose intolerance to digest. Less lactose also makes it a lower carbohydrate food. This can be beneficial for those who need to be conservative with their carbohydrate intake like women with PCOS and people with type II diabetes.
We can’t talk about Greek yogurt without mentioning probiotics. Probiotics are live bacteria naturally found in foods that boost the health of your gut microbiome. Our gut microbiome is incredibly important to our overall health in many ways. Digestive function, immune system, weight management, blood sugar control, and markers of heart health are all impacted by the composition of our gut microbiome (1, 2, 3, 4, 5).
Greek yogurt delivers a lot of protein. We bet you’ve heard about protein in connection to weight management. That’s because protein is the most impactful macronutrient in terms of feelings of fullness (6). Additionally, adequate protein intake is necessary to maintain lean muscle mass while trying to lose weight. This is a big deal because the more lean muscle mass we have, the higher our metabolic rate is – meaning we burn more calories at rest (7).
Avocado is a fruit that is uniquely high in fat. Because of its high fat content, it adds a creamy texture to any meal or recipe. Are you still thinking all fat = unhealthy? Think again. Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, which is incredibly beneficial to our heart health. The kind of monounsaturated fat predominantly found in avocados is oleic acid. This powerful fatty acid may have anti-inflammatory effects within the body and can lead to improved blood lipid profiles (think total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides), which serve as markers of cardiovascular health (8) .
Additionally, avocados are rich in the mineral potassium. In equivalent sized servings, they actually contain more potassium than bananas (9, 10). Consuming enough potassium is vitally important for a wide range of functions in the body. Research tells us that potassium intake can aid in decreasing blood pressure (11), a risk factor for heart and kidney disease.
Beyond those benefits, avocados also contain a lot of fiber. Fiber is somewhat of a nutrition superhero – the list of health benefits resulting from adequate fiber intake is long. One of our favorite benefits is its ability to balance blood sugar (12). When eaten in combination with carbohydrate (like in this chocolate mousse), it slows down the absorption of sugars into the bloodstream, allowing your blood sugar to slowly rise in response to food. Blood sugar balance is important in maintaining a healthy body weight and in preventing many kinds of chronic disease.
Are you surprised to see a component of chocolate making this list of nutritious ingredients? Believe it not, cacao powder has a lot of health-promoting properties.
Firstly, cacao powder is packed with a specific kind of antioxidant, called polyphenol. Antioxidants work to reverse inflammation in the body by neutralizing free radicals that arise as a product of things like unhealthy diet, smoking, and environmental factors. Polyphenols have been associated with lessened inflammation, decreased blood pressure, and better blood sugar control (13).
Interestingly, the polyphenols in cacao may also contribute positively to weight management. Some research has shown that cacao can help with weight loss by lessening the digestion and absorption of fats and carbohydrates, increasing satiety (or the feeling of satisfaction we get from food), and reducing the expression of genes that participate in fat synthesis within the body (14).
Want to learn about the health benefits of maple syrup? Check out the nutrition facts of this ingredient here.
Greek Yogurt & Avocado Chocolate Mousse
- Standing mixer, handheld mixer, food processor, or blender
- 1 medium/large avocado remove pit and skin
- 1 cup 2% greek yogurt non-flavored, no sugar added
- 1/4 cup organic cacao powder
- 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 tsp coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- In a small microwaveable dish, combine chocolate chips and coconut oil.
- Microwave at 50% power for approximately 1 minute 30 seconds (will vary depending on microwave), until chips are fully melted. The consistency should be liquid.
- In a standing mixer bowl, blender, or food processor, combine all ingredients (including melted chocoolate). Mix/blend on medium high speed until uniform throughout. No visible chunks of avocado should remain.
- Top with berries, chocolate chips, or whip cream. Serve immediately or refridgerate for up to 24 hours before serving.
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