Even though we’ve been experiencing fall-like weather in Baltimore over the past week it is still, in fact, summer. Which means my gut instinct is to NOT turn on the oven if I can avoid it.
I have one big cooking day a week where I make or “start” a bunch of things and then finish them off throughout the week (Dear Rachel: I had the idea first!)
Now dessert is mainly a notion for my family. Even at six years post-op, anything more than a bite of something sweet directly after a meal is not happening.
For me, like so many other post-ops, dessert is another meal entirely. That’s part of what makes it problematic for me. I love protein shakes and I’ve made all manner of desserts (especially cheesecakes!) weight loss surgery friendly, but here’s a true fact: Nik cannot stand too much sweet stuff! Nope, I can’t. A few bites and I’m good to go. This makes it imperative that I make things my children (and now, my boyfriend) also like. Because there’s no way in hell I’m finishing a dessert by myself, short of being able to freeze it.
ANYWHO. Protein Pudding is often a favorite dessert of mine but I decided I’d like a protein pudding pie. Since the children are still gone for the summer, I rightfully should have made these in ramekins but…I didn’t. What can I say? I don’t always have a good explanation for why I do the things that I do!
Nik’s S’mores Protein Pudding Pie
(This yields a family-sized or share-able pie. If you’d like smaller portions, this also makes about 8 ramekins worth of pie, which can be frozen for up to two months, if wrapped properly.)
- 2 (1 oz.) boxes sugar-free chocolate pudding mix
- 3 scoops (doesn’t matter the size of the scoop) unflavored protein powder (NOTE: I highly suggest an unflavored protein powder, like BiPro USA, but you can use either a vanilla or chocolate based protein powder. But your pie will be SWEEEEEEEET.)
- 1 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 -1/4 c. milk (NOTE: must be cow’s milk. Traditional pudding mix won’t set up with almond or soy milk)
- 1/4 c. Torani Sugar-free S’mores flavored syrup
- 1 tub (8 oz.) whipped topping (low-fat, fat-free, your choice)
- 1 crumb pie crust (you can either do a Fiber One/high protein or fiber cereal crust OR you can do what I did and splurge on a pre-made graham cracker crust…it truly was a lazy evening!)
In a bowl, whisk together pudding mix, protein powder and cocoa powder until thoroughly combined.
Add milk and syrup and blend whatever way you see fit (that particular evening I didn’t feel like breaking out the mixer so I just whisked by hand). The mixture will be thick and it may appear slightly gritty. If so, add a bit more milk (try adding 2 tbsp. at a time) until it gets better. In my experience, protein pudding is always at least slightly gritty. And did I mention the mixture would be THICK?
Spread the mixture in your pie crust evenly. It should only come about 3/4 of the way up the crust. Then top with whipped topping. Cover it (that’s where the premade crust comes in handy as it has a plastic dome top) and refrigerate an hour before serving.
As is quickly becoming my new custom, here are a few more shots I took of the pie, for your viewing pleasure!