This gluten-free, egg-free, low-sugar cardamom pudding is amazing. Monk fruit is a zero-calorie sweetener. Agar-agar is a vegan thickener made from sea vegetables.
Paleo & Keto: What’s the Difference?
Both the paleo diet and the keto diet recommend avoiding all grains, beans, sugar, most dairy and processed foods. They differ in carbohydrate limits and the amount of fat. A person may follow either diet on a doctor’s recommendation to address specific health challenges, to reduce inflammation or to lose weight.
The paleo diet allows all vegetables (except corn, which is a grain), meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, seeds, fruits, most oil/fat including butter and/or ghee and some sweeteners in moderation, including raw honey, 100% pure maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia and some natural zero-calorie sweeteners, such as monk fruit (a sweet Chinese herb) and erythritol.
The keto diet is more restrictive; it limits vegetables to non-starchy items that are lower in carbohydrates. A general rule: If it grows above the ground, it’s probably allowed on the keto diet. This includes asparagus, avocado, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, lettuces, leafy greens, tomatoes, some bell peppers and zucchini. Keto advocates suggest avoiding fruit, except a limited intake of berries, and limiting vegetables that grow underground. Beets, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes and some above-ground starchy vegetables, such as winter squash and acorn squash, are allowed in moderation.
For more information, consult a registered dietitian who specializes in these diets.
Contributing chef Sueson Vess is a food coach, cooking instructor and author of Special Eats, a gluten-free, dairy-free cookbook.Yields 8 servings
- 2 (13.5-ounce) cans full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar (for paleo-friendly) or 2 tablespoons monk fruit (for keto-friendly)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cardamom powder, more to sprinkle on top
- Pinch of sea salt
- 4 teaspoons agar-agar or unflavored gelatin
1Place coconut milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat and bring it almost to a boil, whisking occasionally.
2Stir coconut sugar, vanilla extract, cardamom, salt and agar-agar into hot coconut milk and continue to heat until sugar and agar-agar are dissolved, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat to cool slightly, stirring occasionally.
3Pour into 4-ounce ramekins and refrigerate at least 4 hours to set. Garnish with a sprinkle of cardamom and serve.