Sign up here to get our free newsletter

Sign up here to get our free newsletter

Healthier mud pie is the vegan alternative to your childhood favorite

final healthier mud pie

Remember the good old days of throwing a handful of mud on a plate and trying to convince your little siblings to take a bite? Anyone? No? Anyway … Then there were the mud pies at birthday parties: crumbled Oreos topped with chocolate pudding and whipped cream, with gummy worms sticking out of it. And then, as we matured, we were introduced to French silk pie: a buttery, flaky pie crust filled with chocolate pudding and topped with freshly whipped cream. This recipe is inspired by all of those tasty iterations of mud pie throughout the years, but healthier — so you can have your pie without regret.

The benefits of this pie lie in its nutrient-dense ingredients, which are good for you in moderation. The crust is made with blended oats, almonds, cacao powder and dates as a base, and tastes a lot like a brownie crust when all is said and baked. The filling is a simple mix of cashew milk, maple syrup and cacao powder. Arrowroot flour thickens the mixture to a pudding-like consistency. We top it all off with some whipped coconut cream and dark chocolate shavings for a vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, refined-sugar-free dessert.

healthier mud pie slice

Dessert doesn’t get much healthier than that unless it’s fruit — and we all remember how we felt about the neighbor who put a box of raisins in our Halloween candy bag assuming we would find that acceptable (permanent side-eye). But back to the fun stuff.

MORE: Healthier candy taste test, so you can have a guilt-free Halloween

Our editors & writers only recommend products that we think are awesome and you’ll love. We do occasionally use affiliate links, which means that we may make a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Mud pie ingredients

For the crust:

  • ½ cup gluten-free rolled oats (or regular oats, if you don’t care about being gluten-free)
  • ½ cup almonds
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ⅓ cup pitted dates, soaked overnight or in hot water for 15 minutes
  • 4 tablespoons cashew milk (or any non-dairy milk)
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For the pudding:

  • 2 cups cashew milk
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup cacao powder
  • 3 ½ tablespoons arrowroot flour (can sub 5 tablespoons cornstarch)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For the coconut whipped cream:

  • 1 can (14 ounces) coconut cream, refrigerated overnight and separated from liquid
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 dark (vegan) chocolate bar for topping

Begin by heating the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Using a food processor or blender, pulse together the almonds, chia seeds, and oats into a course meal. There shouldn’t be any large chunks of almond visible, but it shouldn’t be overblended into a flour either. Pour the meal into medium bowl and set aside. Using the same blender, blend together the remaining crust ingredients (dates, cashew milk, cacao powder, coconut oil, baking soda, and salt) until smooth. Add the blended mixture to the oat and almond meal and stir until fully incorporated. Add the dough to a greased pie dish. Use a cake spatula to line the pan with the batter so that it forms a full pie crust. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minute, and then set aside to cool.

To make the filling, whisk all pudding ingredients in a saucepan thoroughly. Ingredients such as cacao powder and arrowroot flour are quite water-resistant, so you have to use some elbow grease here.

chocolate oat crust in copper bowl

Then, place the saucepan over low heat for 5-10 minutes, whisking constantly until the mixture achieves a pudding-like consistency. When achieved, take the mixture off heat and allow to cool for five to 10 minutes. 

While the pudding cools, return to your pie crust. After baking, it will have puffed up a bit because of the baking soda, so use your hands to press the crust flat to the shape of the pie dish. Pour the pudding mixture over the crust, and even it out with a cake spatula. Place the pie in the fridge for 10 to 15 minutes to set.

pouring mud pie filling

While the pie sets, make the topping. You should have refrigerated the coconut cream overnight, or for at least six hours. When you open it, it should have separated to a layer of liquid and a layer of hard cream. Tip: Open the coconut cream upside down, because then the liquid is usually sitting on top. Remove and discard the liquid, or set it aside to use in smoothies.

MORE: We recreated PF Chang’s banana spring rolls recipe with a healthier twist

Add just the coconut cream to a large mixing bowl or the base of your stand mixer, along with vanilla extract and maple syrup. Mix it on high for about five minutes. It will look fully whipped after about two minutes, but the extra time will allow the cream to heat up a bit, making it easier to spread on the pie later.

mud pie whipped cream

Finally, remove the mud pie from the fridge and add the whipped coconut cream. Top it off with as many dark chocolate shavings as your heart desires. (Use a potato peeler or the flat end of a box grater to make the shavings). Serve chilled, or keep covered and refrigerated for up to five days.

pie chocolate shavings

Healthier mud pie

Yield 8 servings

Ingredients

Crust:

  • ½ cup gluten-free rolled oats (or regular oats, if you don’t care about being gluten-free)
  • ½ cup almonds
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ⅓ cup pitted dates, soaked overnight or in hot water for 15 minutes
  • 4 tablespoons cashew milk (or any non-dairy milk)
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Filling:

  • 2 cups cashew milk
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup cacao powder
  • 3 ½ tablespoons arrowroot flour (can sub 5 tablespoons cornstarch)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Coconut whipped cream:

  • 1 can (14 ounces) coconut cream, refrigerated overnight and separated from liquid
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 dark (vegan) chocolate bar for topping

Instructions

Crust:

  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Using food processor or blender, pulse together almonds, chia seeds and oats into course meal. Place in medium bowl and set aside. 
  3. Blend dates, cashew milk, cacao powder, coconut oil, baking soda, and salt until smooth. 
  4. Add blended mixture to oat and almond meal. Stir until fully incorporated. 
  5. Add batter to greased pie dish, using spatula to form batter into pie crust. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Filling:

  1. Place all pudding ingredients in saucepan and whisk thoroughly. 
  2. Place over low heat for 5-10 minutes, whisking constantly until pudding-like consistency is achieved. Take mixture off heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. 

Coconut whipped cream:

  1. Open coconut cream. Discard liquid layer.
  2. Add cream, vanilla extract and maple syrup to large mixing bowl or base of stand mixer and mix on high for 5 minutes. 

To assemble:

  1. Use hands to press crust flat to shape of pie dish. 
  2. our pudding mixture over crust and even out with cake spatula. 
  3. Place pie in fridge for 10-15 minutes to set.
  4. Remove pie from fridge and add coconut whipped cream.
  5. Garnish with dark chocolate shavings. 
  6. Serve chilled.

Looking for another healthier dessert option? Check out our low-carb Twinkies recipe below.

Join the party

Celebrate the everyday with vibrant and purposeful content – like new recipes, DIY ideas, wellness tips & beyond – for a happier, healthier and bolder life.

Subscribe now to get

our free newsletter