Chilled Vegan Chocolate-Espresso Torte with Toasted Hazelnut Crust

The Chilled Vegan Chocolate-Espresso Torte with Toasted Hazelnut Crust is a delightful dessert that combines rich, luxurious flavors with a health-conscious approach. This torte features a base layer of toasted hazelnut crust, which provides a wonderfully nutty and slightly salty foundation. The crust is a perfect blend of hazelnuts, coconut oil, maple syrup, sea salt, oat flour, and rolled oats, offering a crunchy texture that contrasts beautifully with the smooth filling.

The chocolate filling is the star of this torte, boasting a creamy and decadent mix of soaked cashews, agave nectar or maple syrup, coconut oil, cocoa powder, and melted dark chocolate chips. This combination results in a silky, rich texture that melts in your mouth. The addition of pure vanilla extract enhances the chocolate’s deep flavors, while a hint of fine-grain sea salt brings out the sweetness. For those who enjoy a touch of coffee flavor, the optional espresso powder adds a subtle yet distinctive twist, complementing the chocolate perfectly.

To top it off, optional garnishes such as shaved chocolate and coconut flakes can be added for an extra layer of texture and visual appeal. The torte’s chilled nature makes it especially refreshing, ideal for a summer treat or a sophisticated dessert at any gathering. Its vegan and gluten-free ingredients cater to a variety of dietary preferences, making it a versatile choice for health-conscious dessert lovers. In summary, this torte is a harmonious blend of textures and flavors that come together to create a truly indulgent yet guilt-free experience.


Chilled Vegan Chocolate-Espresso Torte with Toasted Hazelnut Crust

Chilled Vegan Chocolate-Espresso Torte with Toasted Hazelnut Crust


  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) hazelnuts
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) fine-grain sea salt
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) gluten-free oat flour
  • 1 cup (250 mL) gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) cashews, soaked (see page 11)
  • 2/3 cup (150 mL) agave nectar, or 3?4 cup (175 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup (75 mL) cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup (75 mL) dark chocolate chips, melted
  • 2 teaspoons (10 mL) pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) fine-grain sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) espresso powder (optional)
  • Shaved chocolate (optional)
  • Coconut flakes (optional)


    Make the Toasted Hazelnut Crust: Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly grease a 9-inch (23-cm) pie dish with coconut oil.

    In a food processor, process the hazelnuts into a fine crumb with the texture of sand. Add the coconut oil, maple syrup, salt, and oat flour and process again until the dough comes together. Finally, add the rolled oats and pulse until the oats are chopped but still have some texture to them. The dough should stick together slightly when pressed between your fingers, but it shouldn’t be super sticky either. If it’s too dry, try adding 1 teaspoon (5 mL) water or processing a bit longer.

    With your fingers, crumble the dough evenly over the base of the pie dish. Starting from the middle, press the mixture firmly and evenly into the dish, moving outward and upward along the side of the pie dish. The harder you press the crumbs into the dish, the better the crust will hold together. Poke a few fork holes into the bottom to let steam escape.

    Bake the crust, uncovered, for 10 to 13 minutes, until lightly golden. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool on a rack for 15 to 20 minutes.

    Make the Filling: Drain and rinse the cashews. In a high-speed blender, combine the soaked cashews, agave, oil, cocoa powder, melted chocolate, vanilla, salt, and espresso powder (if using) and blend on high until the filling is completely smooth. It can take a few minutes of blending to get it smooth, depending on your blender. If the blender needs more liquid to get it going, add a tablespoon (15 mL) of almond milk (or a bit more) to help it along.

    Pour the filling into the prepared crust, scooping every last bit out of the blender. Smooth out the top evenly. Garnish with shaved chocolate and/or coconut flakes, if desired.

    Place the pie dish on an even surface in the freezer, uncovered. Freeze for a couple of hours, and then cover the dish with foil and freeze overnight, or for a minimum of 4 to 6 hours, until the pie sets.

    Remove the pie from the freezer and let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes before slicing. This pie is meant to be served frozen. Serve with homemade Whipped Coconut Cream (see page 280) and finely chopped hazelnuts, if desired, but it’s fantastic all on its own, too. Wrap leftover slices individually in foil and store them in an airtight container in the freezer for 1 to 1 ½ weeks.

    Tip: Not in the mood to make a crust? Turn this dessert into freezer fudge by preparing only the chocolate filling. Pour the filling into an 8-inch (20-cm) square pan lined with plastic wrap; top with ½ cup (125 mL) toasted hazelnuts or walnuts, and freeze until solid (about 2 hours). Slice into squares and enjoy straight from the freezer.

Skip to Recipe