It’s Canada Day Long Weekend (woo hoo!) and I’m pretty excited. Not only do we get an extra full day to hang out and relax with our friends and families, it’s also a great weekend to enjoy a dessert just like this one!
I have to say right up front, this isn’t your 100% totally, completely, whole-food, clean eats recipe. It is dessert after all, hence why I’ve named it the “Better Banana Split”… because compared to your usual run-of-the-mill split, it’s definitely healthier and has a whole lot of fun, bright, tasty, and nourishing additions.
Summer is definitely the season for ice cream. I’ve done round up posts in the past of my favourite Cool Summer Treats and I’m actually planning to do another round up later this Summer. When it’s hot and humid and you are casually baking in the sun, what’s better than a cold, sweet, refreshing treat? Well, maybe a cold, refreshing drink, but that’s for another post!
Enter the Better Banana Split.
What did I do to make this version better (in the nutrition sense) than the traditional? A lot. First of all, instead of regular ice cream, I used dairy-free coconut based ice cream (homemade is an option) which is naturally sweetened and free of refined sugars. The whipped cream is also dairy free, made from coconut and naturally sweetened as well, and the cherries are real, whole cherries (not those artificially red, syrupy maraschinos).
I caramelized the banana with some pure maple syrup to bring out it’s natural sweetness and add a little sophistication to the dish. Then, I used pure 85% extreme dark chocolate, rich in antioxidants, as the “chocolate sauce”. For the sprinkles… move on over candy sprinkles and come on in “superfood sprinkles”. I used a combination of crushed pistachios, bee pollen, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, and fresh berries.
This Better Banana Split is definitely sweet, satisfying, and indulgent, but along with the natural sugars from the ice cream and the fats from the coconut, it has a ton of vitamins, minerals, fibre, and antioxidants. I don’t think you’d find that kind of goodness in your regular Banana Split.
To me Summer is all about “soaking it up”. Soaking up the heat, the sunshine, the relaxing patio days, strolling in the park, nature, and every so often digging into a Better Banana Split. Wouldn’t you agree?
If you are in Canada I hope you are enjoying a wonderful long weekend too and if you are in the USA, your weekend is coming up right away so you can totally make a Better Banana Split to celebrate too. And, for anyone else around the globe…who says you even need an occasion? You can make a Better Banana Split any day of the week!
- 3 small scoops of coconut vanilla ice cream*
- 1 dollop whipped cream*
- 1 medium banana, cut lengthwise
- 1 tsp pure maple syrup
- ½ ounce 85% dark chocolate
- Superfood Sprinkles:
- 3-4 cherries (fresh or frozen thawed)
- 1 heaping tablespoon each fresh blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries
- 1 tablespoon crushed pistachios
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
- 1 teaspoon hemp seeds
- ½ teaspoon bee pollen
- Other sprinkle ideas: cocoa nibs, goji berries, chia seeds, slivered almonds, lemon zest
- Heat a small non-stick pan over medium heat and add in the banana and maple syrup.
- Saute for 1-2 minutes to slightly caramelize and soften the banana and then add the sliced banana to a plate.
- Top the banana with the ice cream and then top with a dollop of the whip cream.
- In the same pan, over low heat, add in the chocolate and melt, stirring continuously to prevent burning (you can also melt over a double boiler, but this takes more time).
- Drizzle the melted chocolate over the ice cream and banana.
- Top with the "superfood sprinkles" and enjoy immediately!
Have an amazing Sunday!