These Paleo caramel ice cream bonbons are the prefect treat! You only need 3 or 4 to satisfy a sweet craving, and per serving a few bonbons works out to be a fraction of the calories you’d find in a bowl of ice cream. It’s such a small amount of calories we don’t even count them 😉 Honestly, I don’t even count calories, but if I did, I’m sure I’d still be a fan of these simple bonbons as they satisfy both the ice cream craving AND the caramel chocolate filled craving all in one yummy bite!
You can use any chocolate / candy mold you have. The heart shape mold I use makes a perfect sized bonbon, if you ask me!
And if you aren’t in the mood for sweet, sticky, sea salt caramel, simply omit it! But why the heck woulda wanna do that!?
These bonbons can easily be made vegan by omitting the hot water and gelatin. The reason for adding the gelatin is it makes for a softer ice cream. So if you use gelatin, you can bite into these babies as soon as you grab ’em out of the freezer. If you don’t add the gelatin, you may want to let them sit out in a bowl for a few minutes to lightly soften before biting into them. Another trick is to blend in a splash of vodka to the ice cream mixture (or better yet, homemade vanilla extract made in vodka or another hard alcohol), as the vodka doesn’t freeze.
Paleo Caramel Ice Cream Bonbons
- Paleo Ice Cream
- 1 cup coconut milk full fat
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or see notes
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Tablespoons optional: 2 hot water
- teaspoon optional: 1 gelatin
- Paleo Caramel
- 1/2 cup coconut cream cream from top of chilled coconut milk
- 1/4 cup maple sugar or see notes
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 pinches of sea salt
- Chocolate Coating
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 3 Tablespoons cacao powder (or cocoa powder see notes if using carob)
- 1 Tablespoon to 2 maple syrup
- For AIP: see notes
Paleo Ice Cream:
Add coconut milk, maple syrup, vanilla to blender.
Heat up 2 Tablespoons of water and mix in gelatin, mix well, then pour into blender and blend with other ice cream ingredients, then pour ice cream mixture into a glass jar.
Set candy molds on a firm service, like a cutting board that can be transferred to the freezer under the molds to stabilize them.
Spoon a little ice cream mixture into each mold filling them about 1/3 of the way full.
Set molds in the freezer to chill while you make the caramel.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat up caramel ingredients. Stir frequently and watch closely. I simmer the caramel for 8 to 10 minutes until it thickens up, and then transfer it to a small jar, and place in the fridge to chill. Caramel will firm up more after chilling.
NOTE: When I doubled the caramel recipe and used a different brand of coconut cream, it took 30 minutes for the caramel to thicken, so cooking time will vary.
After a couple hours, when first layer of ice cream has firmed up, spoon a little caramel filling into each mold, then spoon in ice cream until each mold is full. If you used gelatin, the ice cream mixture will have thickened up in the fridge, but should still be easily spooned into the molds.
Freeze bonbons a few more hours.
When bonbons are firm, Prepare Chocolate Coating:
I use the double boiler method by placing a medium/small bowl over top of a small sauce pan with 1" of water in the saucepan. Place the coconut oil in the bowl and heat the water under the bowl over medium heat. When the coconut oil has melted, remove the bowl from heat and then stir in cacao powder and maple syrup. If your chocolate sauce firms up too much, you can return to double boiler to melt it. The goal is to have the sauce melt at the coolest temp possible so it firms up quickly when it hits the cold bonbons.
Remove 1 tray of bonbons from the freezer and pop them out onto a flat plate lined with parchment paper. Dip each bonbon in the chocolate sauce, then return to the plate. The chocolate sauce will firm up pretty quickly. For more professional looking bonbons you can use a toothpick to dip each one, then wait til chocolate firms up before returning to plate.
Repeat with the 2nd tray of bonbons.
Store bonbons in the freezer.
If you added gelatin to the bonbons (or vodka for vegan version), they will be lightly soft and easy to bite into direct from the freezer. If not using gelatin, you may want to let the bonbons set out in a bowl for a few minutes to lightly soften before eating.
AIP Notes: Omit Vanilla, Omit Cacao. I have seen other bloggers use toasted carob powder in place of cacao powder to make a chocolate-like coating, but I didn't have the best luck with it the last time I tried it, though I need to try it again! If you don't tolerate cacao you can simply roll the truffles in toasted carob powder for a simple coating. Or simply enjoy the bonbons without a coating, as they are still mighty fine with the ice cream & caramel.
Sweetener Notes: For folks who want to use a low carb sweetener like a sugar alcohol, I recommend using a powdered version, but even then it may seem a little gritty, especially in the caramel. I made the caramel using lakanto, and it worked, but it was gritty, though I didn't try powdering it first. You also have the option of reducing the maple syrup and maple sugar to a 2 or 3 Tablespoons in the ice cream & caramel, or using stevia for the ice cream portion.
For the ice cream portion you can also use honey or coconut nectar. For the caramel portion you can use a liquid sweetener like maple syrup, but the caramel is more runny and less firm if using a liquid sweetener, that is why I like using maple sugar (or coconut sugar).