Thursday, January 5, 2012

Vegan Truffles

Ahhh, the elusive truffle.  We had a recipe from Bon Appetit magazine that we made quite successfully a few years back before I was vegan.  The first year we made them they turned out so well.  First there was the smooth and creamy truffle base.  Next came the rich chocolate shell.  Last was the coating of hazelnuts, cocoa powder, and coconut.  The making of these truffles was a multi-day event that involved double boilers, multiple rounds of refrigeration, and the highest-percent cacao one could find.  They were expensive and time-consuming to make, the yield was few, but the end result was one that Juliette Binoche would feed Johnny Depp in a heartbeat. 

We made them again the following year and while they eventually turned out, it was a much more difficult process.  They took a lot longer and didn't look nearly as professional.  The third year was just an all-out disaster.  The truffle base never solidified, even after a week of being in the freezer.  Did it have anything to do with the fact that by that point I was a vegan and the truffles weren't?  Some sort of karmic effect, perhaps?  We may never know . . .

What we did know, however, was that we had gotten a reputation for our truffles and we couldn't disappoint our fans.  We had to find a new recipe and we had to find it fast.  This time, it was going to be vegan.  It had to be easier and less time-intensive than the last because we were down to the wire.  (It was almost Christmas Eve and we give tins of cookies as gifts to family and friends - truffles are an integral part!)  We also needed a recipe that had a coating.  A lot of recipes I found were just rolled balls without a coating.  I'm sorry, but that is NOT a truffle!

Finally I found this really simple truffle recipe.  It may not be the best one out there (I stopped looking when I found it) but it's quick and easy and delicious.  It also makes a lot of truffles so we can give away more as gifts and still have some to enjoy for ourselves.  We've made it the past few years and it's been successful so I've stuck with it.  I might try one with coconut milk next year instead of Tofutti, just to change it up a bit.  

You can roll the truffles in any coating you want.  Our favorite is chopped hazelnuts but you can substitute any nut.  We also like cocoa powder and coconut.  Next year I'll roll some in PB2 for a chocolate peanut butter truffle.  (I thought of that too late.)  Although they may not look quite as professional as those first ones we made from Bon Appetit, they still taste pretty damn good.  And that's what really matters anyway.

Coconut, cocoa powder, and hazelnut truffles

Vegan Truffles
(printable recipe)


1 12-oz. package non-dairy chocolate chips
8 oz. non-dairy cream cheese, such as Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla extract

3 dark chocolate bars (72% cacao), such as Endangered Species Supreme Dark Chocolate

optional toppings: chopped coconut, chopped nuts, cocoa powder


1. Melt chocolate chips in a double boiler or microwave.

2. Put the non-dairy cream cheese in a food processor or high-powered blender (I used my Vitamix) and slowly add the powdered sugar.  Blend until well mixed.  

3. Add the melted chocolate chips and blend until well mixed.  Add the vanilla and blend for 30 seconds.  Pour mixture in a bowl; cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.

4. Once chilled, roll the mixture into balls and place on a tray lined with wax paper.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

5. While the balls are chilling, prep your toppings and put them into individual bowls.  Melt chocolate bars (one at a time - melt more as needed) in a double boiler or microwave.

6. Dip the balls in melted chocolate to coat and then into topping of choice. (Try to keep one hand for chocolate, one hand for the toppings.)  Place on cookie sheet lined with wax paper.  If you prefer not to use any toppings, you can simply coat the balls in melted chocolate.

7. Place cookie sheet in refrigerator to harden and then transfer to a tightly covered container.  Store in fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Makes about 30 truffles, depending on size.

Have you ever made truffles?

1 comment:

  1. Why would I make truffles when I have you?? They were wonderful....