Salted Caramel Van Hipster Pops

Recipes  |  August 23, 2020


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Van Leeuwen ice cream is a staple for vegans in NYC. About half the menu is vegan and is full of creative flavors, but their salted caramel remains a classic. Before there were locations all over the city the company was selling ice cream from food trucks and was a sought-after hipster favorite. When the Van Leeuwen cookbook came out, I bought an ice cream maker and started making my own…until a Van Leeuwen ice cream shop opened up a block away from my apartment, and the ice cream maker was relegated to a dusty cupboard. This summer we rented a house far away from our beloved ice cream shop and didn’t bring our ice cream maker, but we missed the ice cream. So I took the ice cream maker out of the equation, made some healthy, refined sugar-free substitutions to the original Van Leeuwen salted caramel ice cream recipe using inspiration from Rachel Filtz’s Caramel Sauce recipe in our book, and turned it into a popsicle. The whole family loves them.

You can make these without the cocoa (or cacao) butter and just add more coconut or almond milk, but the cocoa butter is what makes them taste really special and authentic.

One 3-ounce pop has about 10% of the protein, iron, and zinc a four-to-eight-year-old needs daily.


¼ cup chopped edible cocoa or cacao butter

½ cup almond milk (or other preferred non-dairy milk)

½ cup canned coconut milk

¼ cup maple syrup

2 tablespoons almond butter

1/8 tsp salt


In a small saucepan on medium heat, melt the cocoa butter, then pour it into a blender. Add the rest of the ingredients, blend on high for just a few seconds until well-combined, then pour into popsicle molds and allow to freeze for 5 hours or more, then serve!




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