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I love desserts with vegetables because eating desserts with vegetables always feels less like a guilty indulgence. Okay, I know lentils aren’t technically vegetables, but they are part of the ‘vegetable family.’ And lentils are equivalently healthy and DO count towards your recommended daily portions of fruit and vegetables!!! That’s good enough for me. Plus, this lentil dessert lasagna recipe is a healthy no bake dessert that actually tastes like dessert. Whether you love or hate lentils is irrelevant because you will have no idea you are even eating them in this healthy lentil dessert lasagna.
If you also love eating vegetables in your dessert, then you may want to check out my Healthy Spinach and Applesauce Brownies and my Strawberry Chocolate Icebox Cake with Avocado Mousse. You’d never even guess these desserts have veggies in them!
Best Lentil Recipe
I tested this recipe on three different groups of people three years apart and they all loved it! Nor could anyone guess “the secret ingredient” was lentils. In fact, my colleague who had sampled it when I brought it into work the first time said it was the best lentil recipe she’d ever had. She asked me if I had posted it on Pinterest, as she had thought of making it when she was looking for a healthy dessert for a family gathering.
Lentils are actually called” Pulses.” A pulse is an edible seed that grows in a pod, which includes beans and peas. They are an inexpensive, low-fat source of protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals, and most importantly, I have to say it again…. they DO count towards your recommended daily portions of fruit and vegetables!
Red lentils vs Green lentils
This is a red lentil recipe and calls for red lentils, which actually look orange. Red lentils are great for baking because they get a bit mushy and blend nicely into your dish. Green lentils hold their shape so they are ideal for dishes like casseroles. I have used both in soup, depending on what texture I am aiming for.
Anise & Fennel Seeds
The anise and fennel in this dessert lasagna lend a hint of licorice that blends so perfectly with the raspberry and chocolate flavours. But you don’t have to love licorice either because the flavour is very smooth and subtle. In my opinion, anise and fennel seeds are spices that get far too little playtime in desserts.
Although fennel did see a rise in popularity over the last few years years, it was predominantly the plant being used in savory dishes, not the seed. With fennel, the entire plant is consumed, unlike anise, where it is generally just the seeds that are harvested. Anise seed, also known as aniseed, is not to be confused with star anise. Although similar in flavor, they are entirely different plants.
This No Bake Chocolate Raspberry Lentil Dessert Lasagna is a great healthy dessert recipe option for your next dinner gathering or potluck. Now you can have your dessert and healthy food too!
Chocolate Raspberry Lentil Dessert Lasagna
- 2 cup cooked red lentils canned lentils can be used as substitute
- 1 cup seedless raspberry jam
- 1 cup light cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 1 tsp ground fennel seed
- 1 tsp anise seed
- 2 cups whipping cream
- 2 tbsp white granulated sugar
- 2 cups prepared chocolate pudding * I use about 6 snack pack containers * I also use sugar free
- 1 -400 g (approx) box of graham crackers * you can use gluten-free
- 2 pints fresh raspberries * can substitute frozen, defrosted raspberries
- ½-1 oz semi sweet chocolate – shaved or grated chocolate
- 1/4 cup Optional: fresh raspberries
- * This dessert is best if it sits overnight before serving, but it can sit for only 1-2 hours.
- Spray a 9X13 pan with non stick spray.
- Cook red lentils as directed on package. ( you can also use canned to save time) Puree lentils in food processor (this step is important for the texture of the dessert). Beat pureed lentils, cream cheese, raspberry jam, ground fennel and anise together until smooth.
- In a separate bowl, beat whipping cream until it forms soft peaks, then add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the lentil mixture.
- Put a single layer of the graham crackers on the bottom of the pan, then ½ the raspberry lentil mixture, then another single layer of graham crackers.
- Gently mix in fresh (or defrosted) raspberries with chocolate pudding. * Reserve 1/4 cup of fresh raspberries for the garnish, if desired
- Put the chocolate/raspberries mixture on top of the graham crackers and add another single layer of graham cracker.
- Add the remaining raspberry lentil mixture over the final layer of graham crackers.
- Refrigerate for 1-2 hours or overnight. * I usually let it sit overnight - it tends to be the perfect texture
- garnish with fresh raspberries and shaved or grated semi-sweet chocolate.