This homemade healthy butterscotch pudding is an absolute classic yet is completely vegan, dairy free, Paleo, and sweetened with dates! Undeniably creamy, decadent, and rich, you’ll be reaching for spoonful after spoonful!
If you’ve never had butterscotch pudding, I highly suggest you stop right now and go make this recipe. Trust me when I say that this recipe will turn you into a butterscotch over caramel lover in a matter of a spoonful.
This classic butterscotch pudding is decadent, rich, velvety, smooth, and sweet, not to mention incredibly easy and…healthy!
Yep, this is an undetectably healthy butterscotch pudding that will make your jaw drop to the floor…and then quickly pick it back up so you can have another spoonful!
So how is this butterscotch pudding healthy? Well it happens to be only sweetened with dates, so that makes it refined sugar free, and it’s also completely vegan, dairy free, and Paleo! Not to mention, cornstarch free!
Too good to be true? I think not! 😉
What the heck even is butterscotch?
Well, personally, I think it’s better than caramel. It’s very similar to caramel, don’t get me wrong!
But I find butterscotch to be richer and way more velvety than caramel sauce. Now, traditionally speaking, butterscotch usually includes brown sugar and butter, whereas caramel uses white sugar and milk.
Now, this is a vegan homemade butterscotch pudding, so we aren’t using any dairy products, and the sweetness actually doesn’t come from brown sugar, but dates!
We’ll be making a homemade date caramel sauce (which I honestly don’t know why it’s called a date caramel sauce…probably because it resembles the color? But I didn’t come up with the names here, because to me, it honestly tastes mores like butterscotch!) and then we’ll create our butterscotch pudding!
How is this a vegan butterscotch pudding?
Think you need eggs and dairy in order to yield the best homemade butterscotch pudding?
You, my friend, can think again 😉
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a more traditional pudding, but I love this vegan butterscotch pudding version just as much, and it tastes just as delicious and sweet and decadent!
So not only does this healthy butterscotch pudding contain no eggs, but it also doesn’t use dairy of any kind- no whole milk nor dairy butter!
So what do we use instead? Let’s dive in!
Healthy Butterscotch Pudding Ingredients
Coconut cream or milk: you can use either coconut milk or coconut cream here! I prefer coconut cream, as it yields a thicker pudding, but use whatever is best for you!
Vanilla extract: a key ingredient, don’t skip out on the vanilla! It helps to yield a deliciously sweet and rich flavor in your homemade butterscotch pudding!
Vegan butter: now to keep this recipe nut free, you can use a coconut oil based vegan butter or just omit it all together to keep it also Paleo! I’ve tried this recipe both ways, and both turn out amazing- my younger brother loves the butter free version! I’m partial to the butter flavor haha but that’s just me!
Arrowroot powder: but of course! Since this healthy butterscotch pudding is cornstarch (and egg) free, we need something else to bind the pudding together. I love using arrowroot powder from recipes like fruit pies to cream pies to even curries! If you’re wondering about arrowroot powder (trust me, I was skeptical about it too), you can read up on it more here!
Salted date caramel sauce: I’ll teach ya how to make this one down below, and of course I go over it in the recipe card, but it’s super simple! You’ll only need some pitted dates, a little coconut cream (lots of coconut in this recipe!), vanilla, and sea salt (but of course!). You’ll have some leftovers from this recipe too, so you can use it to top homemade Paleo vegan ice cream or some brownies! 😉
How to make classic butterscotch pudding
Pudding is actually quite easy to make, and it’s even easier being that this homemade butterscotch pudding is completely vegan- so that means no eggs accidentally scrambling in your pot!
First, you’ll start by making the salted date caramel sauce, then the pudding, and then the hardest part: waiting for the pudding to solidify in the fridge.
Trust me, that step alone knocks this recipe up to a level 10 in difficulty 😉 But up until that point, it’s all more like a level 1 or 2!
Making the salted date caramel sauce
I recommend going with pitted dates, as this will save you time in the long run! Simply place your dates into a medium saucepan with a little water and bring it to a boil.
Then quickly reduce to a simmer, cover, and let the dates cook for about 10 minutes. Once they’re softened, remove them from the heat and let them cool off for a few minutes.
Place them into a food processor, along with some coconut cream (or milk), a little vanilla, and sea salt, and blend until smooth.
Now heat a medium sauté pan with the vegan butter and spoon about 1/2 cup of the date caramel sauce into a sauce. Cook the date sauce with the vegan butter for 2-3 minutes on medium heat until it’s well combined.
Set this pan aside with the sauce (removing it from the heat!) and let’s get ready to make the pudding!
Making a homemade butterscotch pudding
So the vegan butterscotch pudding is just as simple as the date sauce: all you’ll need to start out is a medium saucepan!
Place the coconut cream (or milk), vanilla, and a little salted date caramel sauce mixed with the vegan butter into the saucepan and mix them all together. Bring the mixture to almost a boil (if it does boil, no problem, we just don’t want it boiling to the point where you’re losing water!), then sift in the arrowroot powder.
Continuously stir the arrowroot powder into the coconut milk mixture until it becomes sort of like a soupy yogurt (about 7 minutes). Remove your homemade butterscotch pudding from the heat and spoon it into a bowl that you can cover and place in the fridge.
Now here comes the hard part…you must let the pudding set in the fridge for 4-5 hours, and even preferably overnight! I know, I know, I’m the worst, but trust me, it’ll be worth the wait!
Then once it’s set, you’ll have a deliciously spoonable, decadently sweet homemade butterscotch pudding that stands up to the classic 😉 Top with some extra coconut cream or homemade whipped coconut cream, and some chocolate chips, and you have a classic butterscotch pudding!
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This homemade butterscotch pudding is an absolute classic yet is completely vegan, dairy free, Paleo, and sweetened with dates! Undeniably creamy, decadent, and rich, you’ll be reaching for spoonful after spoonful!
- 2 14 ounce cans coconut cream
- 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup salted caramel date sauce
Salted Caramel Date Sauce
- 1 cup pitted Medjool dates
- 1/4 cup coconut cream
- 4 tbsp vegan butter, if unavailable, omit all together
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- extra coconut cream
- chocolate chips
Prepare date sauce first:
- In a medium saucepan, heat dates plus 1/3 cup filtered water on the stove until it boils.
- Reduce heat and cook the dates for 10-12 minutes until soft.
- Remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes and save 1/4 cup of date water. Place the cooked dates, plus 1/4 cup of the reserved water in a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Add in coconut cream, vanilla, and sea salt and blend again until creamy. Set aside for a moment.
- Heat a medium saute pan with the vegan butter and spoon about 1/2 cup of the sauce into the pan to cook on medium-low heat.
- Brown the sauce for about 2-3 minutes then remove heat and set aside to begin making the pudding.
- In a medium sauce pan, add in coconut cream, vanilla extract, vegan butter, and salted date caramel sauce that’s been cooked with vegan butter, and heat it just before it boils.
- Reduce to a simmer, and sift in arrowroot powder.
- Using a whisk, stir the coconut milk mixture continuously until it begins to thicken. The consistency should be like soupy yogurt.
- Remove from heat and spoon into a large bowl.
- Refrigerate for 4-5 hours, or overnight (preferable).
- To serve, scoop into jars or bowls and top with remaining salted caramel sauce, coconut cream, and chocolate chips!
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Stovetop
Keywords: butterscotch, butterscotch pudding, healthy, no sugar added, Paleo, vegan, dairy free, gluten free, cornstarch free