Alright, so there's really no graceful way to present this recipe. Super airy, crunchy meringue and soft chocolatey nice cream in sandwich form is incredibly difficult to capture in a photo... or so I've discovered. Isn't it always the way, that the most delicious things can be the hardest to "present".
In fact, it's been so messy trying to take photos that I thought this recipe was just not shareable after all... but then I kept on trying to make more and more of these to try out new pictures, and the more I made them the more I loved them. And so I've decided -- graceful or not, I think you might like to give these eggless meringue cookies a try sometime. And no, I won't ask you for photos -- promise :)
Many years ago I went to a shop where they sold these wonderfully ginormous "meringue cloud" cookies. Actually, I spotted them just moments before accidentally stumbling upon my wedding-dress-to-be (hence the stronger memory of the afternoon... digressing here, but isn't it funny though how memory works sometimes -- anyone else recall a meringue cookie spotting from over a decade ago?! ?). They had different flavors and such, but the one I remembered so clearly was filled with chocolate chunks and pecans. So of course the moment I was able to do anything that resembles meringue, I wanted to make those clouds, and throw some chocolate and nuts in there for good measure...
Alas my coconut sugar aquafaba meringue cookie experiments never yielded the ginormous fluffy clouds of meringue from my memory, but they did yield some delicious giant cookies that made for a wonderful sandwich.
And from speaking to many of you on Instagram a little while back, it seemed like many people never got into regular meringue in the first place because it's just too sweet. Well, I have the solution for that -- couple meringue with ice cream (well, nice cream in this case) -- problem solved! It seems to provide just the right level of moist, creamy mellowness to meringue. Actually my mother-in-law makes an ice cream meringue cake every year for a get-together -- seems like she's been onto this trick all along.
And now to the messy part. I really wanted to show you what happens inside the cookie. It's one thing to see a sandwich, it's a completely different thing to experience the airy, crunchy, fluffy meringue crumble softly into delicious ice cream. I tried breaking my sandwich in half to show you what it looks like, but it appears I just ended up with what looks like a delicious hot mess to present you with instead. Oh well, que sera...
Oh, one last thing... if you're not an ice cream sandwich kind of a person, or if you just happen to have leftover meringue "kisses" hanging around, break them up into a bowl of nice cream instead -- so so good, and the presentation is just a tad neater too, wouldn't you say ❤️
OK, and now to a final serious part. Making meringue is finicky. Making eggless meringue is very finicky. Making eggless and refined sugar-free meringue is... well, it needs a bit of a need-to-know of the basics first, so be sure to read this post on how to work with coconut sugar in your aquafaba meringue.Print
Super airy, crunchy vegan meringue cookies with soft chocolatey nice cream sandwiched in between. Eggless, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free.
- ⅔ cup aquafaba from chickpeas (unsalted)*
- ½ tsp guar gum
- 1 ¼ cups coconut palm sugar (or 1 ¼ cups coconut sugar, ground down into a finer consistency)
- ¼ cup mix of finely chopped chocolate of your choice and pecans (optional)
Nice Cream Filling:
- 3 ½ frozen ripe bananas**
- 2 tbsp cacao powder
- dash of salt
- Place aquafaba and guar gum into the bowl of a stand-up mixer, and set to whip on high for approx 15 minutes, or until stiff peaks form.
- Meanwhile pre-heat oven to 200F. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper (or two smaller trays). Set aside.
- Once the aquafaba mixture reaches the stiff peaks consistency (it should look glossy and "full", not "foamy"), fold in the coconut sugar just until it mixes in (try to mix as briefly as possible, just until the sugar blends in, or your meringue will settle and collapse; note: that said, it's normal for it to settle back a little bit at this stage). Stop the mixer. Add in the chocolate chips and pecans and very briefly and carefully fold in with a spoon.
- Immediately dollop roughly 3 tablespoon spoonfuls of this mixture onto a the prepared baking sheet(s) (or transfer mixture into a piping bag first and then pipe the meringues out), spacing them 2-3 inches apart (you should have roughly 6-8 cookies, depending on the size you are scooping out.
- Bake in a pre-heated oven for 2½ hours. Remove from oven, cool on a rack (they'll firm up a bit more as they cool).
- Once the cookies are cooled off completely, make the nice cream filling by blending all ingredients together in a power blender into ice cream consistency. Scoop out roughly 2 tablespoon of the filling into the center of a flipped-over cookie (I used a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop to make things easier here), cover with another cookie and press down into a sandwich. Repeat with remaining cookies. Enjoy straight away.
*To make aquafaba, simply drain the liquid from the can of chickpeas into a glass jar and reserve for baking purposes. You can also use other bean liquid, though for this recipe I recommend chickpea aquafaba.
**If your blender generally struggles with nice cream (i.e. processing frozen bananas), you can make this recipe in a food processor or put in ½ a fresh ripe banana in place of ½ a frozen one to the bottom of the blender to help with the blending.