Wow Guests with Vegan Chocolate Cherry Lace and Pistachio Lucuma Pudding

Best vegan desserts

Created out of vegan pioneer Matthew Kenney’s latest endeavor, PLANTLAB, a plant-based culinary academy, this recipe combines delicate flavors with bursts of contrasting color that will make your friends think you have mad presentation skills.

If you’ve never heard of lucuma before, you’re in for a delicious treat. A native fruit of South America, it’s a low sugar sweetener with an elegant subtle flavor. If lucuma isn’t available, simply use cacao instead. Accented with Chocolate Cherry Lace (delicious on its own!) and edible flowers, this plant-based dessert is so pretty it’ll cause quite a buzz at the table.

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Chocolate Cherry Lace and Pistachio Lucuma Pudding

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Category: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan


60 minutes
2-4 servings
    Pistachio Milk
  • 1⁄2 cup soaked pistachios
  • 1 1⁄2 cups water
    Pistachio Lucuma Pudding
  • 1⁄2 avocado
  • 1⁄2 cup pistachio milk
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 1⁄2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons lucuma powder
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil, melted
  • Pinch of spirulina powder
  • Pinch of salt
    Cacao Cherry Lace
  • 2 tablespoons cacao powder
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons cacao butter, melted* (or 1 tbsp. coconut oil, as coconut oil does not provide as much structure)
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Drop of almond extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1⁄2 cup dried cherries, chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup cacao nibs


30 minutes
30 minutes
Ready in
60 minutes
  1. First, make the pistachio milk. Blend soaked pistachios and water until smooth.
  2. Strain through nut milk bag.
  3. Discard pulp, or dehydrate for use in other recipes.
  4. Store milk in a refrigerator, until ready to use.
  5. Next, make your pistachio pudding. Blend ingredients, except for coconut oil, until well combined.
  6. Stream in melted coconut oil, to emulsify. Be sure to not over blend.
  7. Chill in refrigerator.
  8. Then, make cacao cherry lace. Over a double boiler, melt coconut oil or cacao butter.
  9. Whisk in maple syrup, cacao powder, vanilla and almond extracts, and salt, until well combined.
  10. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and drizzle chocolate mixture in patterns on the surface.
  11. Sprinkle with dried cherries and cacao nibs, and place in the freezer, to harden. Store in freezer until use.
  12. Assembly: once all three parts are finished and just before serving, put the Pistachio Lucuma Pudding in a beautiful bowl.
  13. Then break off pieces of your Cacao Cherry Lace to decorate.
  14. Next, sprinkle with edible flowers for the full effect.

Nutrition information

Recipe Notes

If you are wondering whether to use coconut oil or cacao butter, here are a few guidelines.

Either coconut oil or cacao butter can be used in this recipe, the main difference is the rate at which the Cacao Bark will melt at room temperature. Coconut oil has a lower melting point than cacao butter so will melt more quickly, and the lace will be more delicate. Cacao butter can be melted the same way as coconut oil. First, chop into small pieces with a chef’s knife, and then warm in a dehydrator or in a bowl over warm water (double boiler).

Make sure to measure coconut oil or cacao butter after it is melted. Bark made with cacao butter will melt less quickly than coconut oil at room temperature.

Recipe courtesy of PLANTLAB 

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Donna Sozio
Donna Sozio

Author, journalist and publishing consultant, Donna Sozio has been featured in 200+ media outlets including the Tyra Banks Show, Early Show, Fox News, Good Day LA, Seventeen Magazine, Yahoo! Personals,,,, and many more. Her books The Man Whisperer (Adams Media) and Never Trust a Man in Alligator Loafers (Kensington) were bestsellers, had TV/Film options and were translated into German, Portuguese and Czech.