Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato

Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe

I believe firmly that  no living thing thrives with deprivation. That is why it makes me so happy to create gluten free recipes for desserts that are rich and indulgent. If I can create a dessert that is not only gluten free but also sugar free and is STILL rich and indulgent then I am not just happy, I am ecstatic!

I just can not think of the words “chocolate” and “deprivation” in the same thought!  Seriously, who is going to punish you by making you eat chocolate? And I am willing to bet that one does not think “gelato” and then think “diet.” And yet one of my fairly guilt-free go-to desserts is Chocolate Gelato!

Did you know that gelato is lower in fat and calories than ice cream? Well, it is. Gelato is traditionally made with milk and typically has between 4 and 8 percent butter fat versus ice cream’s 14 to 16 percent butter fat content (at least in America).

So if gelato is lower in fat and calories than ice cream why does it seem so much richer? First of all the lower fat content of milk vs. cream makes it so that the flavors come through much more vibrantly. If you want a rich and sinful dairy free dessert make this with the dairy free milk of your choice – just make sure the fat content is similar to that of whole cow’s milk.

Secondly, I think the silken texture has something to do with it. In commercial gelato that silken texture is achieved by the use of corn syrup. It does something technical (that I could pretend to understand and explain but don’t and won’t) to the milk. But you can get the same result with agave nectar AND have the added benefit of a dessert that is free of refined sugar. Since agave is non-crystallizing it keeps the gelato smooth and silky without those little bits of rock hard frozen sugar that can ruin a good frozen treat.

So if we combine lower fat and calories with refined sugar free and the health benefits of chocolate which include everything from lowering blood pressure and possibly fighting cancer to preventing tooth decay, this Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato is actually down right virtuous! Isn’t it great to have a dessert that is rich, indulgent and virtuous? I think so.

Gluten Free Recipes | Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato

3.34 from 6 votes
Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato
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Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Chill time6 hrs
Total Time6 hrs 30 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 1 Quart
Calories: 1094kcal
Author: Gluten Free & More


  • 3 cups whole milk - (or dairy free milk)
  • 1 pinch kosher or fine sea salt
  • 2/3 cup organic raw blue agave
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • tablespoons cornstarch


  • Heat 2 cups of the milk with the salt and agave in a saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining cup of milk with the cocoa powder and cornstarch. Add the mixture to the heated milk and agave mixture. Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Continue to boil and stir for 1 minute. Strain the mixture into a clean bowl and let cool to room temperature. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, about 6 hours. (To hasten the chilling process put the mixture in the freezer for approximately 1 hour instead.)
  • Pour the mixture into an ice cream machine and process for 20 – 30 minutes or according to the manufacture’s directions. Place in a covered container and freeze until hard, about 6 hours. The gelato will keep for a week in the freezer, covered.


Nutrition Facts
Gluten Free Sugar Free Chocolate Gelato Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1094 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Fat 33g51%
Saturated Fat 19g95%
Cholesterol 73mg24%
Sodium 335mg14%
Potassium 1949mg56%
Carbohydrates 195g65%
Fiber 22g88%
Sugar 138g153%
Protein 36g72%
Vitamin A 1186IU24%
Calcium 910mg91%
Iron 9mg50%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

Disclaimer: All nutrition facts on Gluten Free & More are meant only as a guide and may differ depending on product brands used or ingredient substitutions. Some errors may occur, so you are encouraged to confirm the recipe’s ingredient and nutrition suitability for your own diet.
Have you tried this recipe? Give it a star rating and let us know your thoughts in the Ratings & Reviews section below.
Tags: Chocolate Gelato Optionally Dairy Free Optionally Vegan
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  1. September 20, 2011

    I toatally agree, this recipe is so virtuous it would almost sinful not to make it- again, and again, and again!

    1. September 20, 2011

      Haha – you and I think very much alike!!!!

  2. September 20, 2011

    This looks amazing Carol, and I love that you use a liquid sweetener!

    1. September 20, 2011

      Thanks Alisa!

  3. September 20, 2011

    I didn’t even write a long comment this time and it timed out. :-( Shorter version … Channeling Austin Powers: “Yeah, baby!” And totally agree on deprivation statement. Will report back with review soon!


    1. September 20, 2011

      hmmm, what timed out? Is it an issue with my site or your computer? Remember, I am technically challenged here!

  4. September 20, 2011

    We ate A LOT of gelato when we were in Switzerland. There was nothing dairy-free or sugar-free about it though :) Fortunately that was before our diagnoses! I can’t wait to try this! Thanks Carol.

  5. September 20, 2011

    Oh Carol, be still my heart. Look at that rich chocolate, YEAH!


  6. September 21, 2011

    Oh my, this looks way too amazing and rich! I love gelato. Unfortunately for my waste line, there is an amazing gelato store right by my boys school. Every now and then, when I am feeling like being an extra cool mom, we make a little stop there on the way home. Shhh…. This recipe looks super decadent! Will just have to try it out now!

  7. This looks incredible. Unfortunately I don’t have my ice cream machine with us when we are on the road, but whipping up a batch of this gelato will be a priority once we get back home. Thanks.

  8. Elsie Hodges
    September 22, 2011

    It looks yummy. What kind of ice cream maker do you use?

    1. September 22, 2011

      I have a cuisinart ice cream maker :)

      1. Elsie Hodges
        September 23, 2011

        Well of course! It would have to be Cuisinart, wouldn’t it? I should have known. I just got a Cuisinart ICE 21 with Airmiles. Have tried it once. I MUST try this recipe. Probably won’t last a week in the freezer at our house.

        1. September 26, 2011

          I like thier products, they seem to hold up well :) It never lasts a week in my house either!

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  10. September 29, 2011

    Oh Carol looks really good, I always love my dessert to have a choco flavor :) Care to share a scoop :)

    1. October 4, 2011

      Love to share Gelato :)

  11. November 6, 2011

    This looks decadent! I will try this out, but not with agave. I’ll try raw honey or date syrup. Will let you know how it works out :)

    1. November 6, 2011

      Thanks Angie – would love to know how it turns out!

  12. Nancy
    January 4, 2012

    Loving this and the recent Chocolate pie recipe.
    From Sept 2011, I have omitted the grain so these recipes will rule in my eating plan.
    Thanks for the supportive words!
    Ciao Bella

  13. michelle
    January 9, 2012

    If I use agave, do you know what the carb/sugar count is per serving? How many servings does this make? Thanks from a newly diagnosed diabetic.

    1. January 11, 2012

      Ok, I am not a nutritionist so please, you should get correct advice here but by doing some rough math there are about eight 1/2 cup servings in this recipe which means that there is about 1 1/3 tablespoons of agave in each serving. I looked at the lable on my agave and it lists the following for a 2 tablespoon serving: Fat – 0 , Sodium – 0, Total Carb. – 32g, Sugars – 32g. Does this help?

  14. Shannon
    March 9, 2012

    I’ve never made ice cream so I’m alittle confused. You cool the mixture for 1hr in the freezer then use the ice cream maker? Or is it either or?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      March 10, 2012

      Yes cool the mixture first, just to get the mixture cool enough so that it will freeze well in the ice cream maker otherwise the machine will spend all its time cooling the mixture and not freezing it.

  15. ashley
    April 11, 2012

    While this seems amazing, I am not a chocolate fan at all. Have you made any adaptations or other varieties? If so, which worked best?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      April 12, 2012

      I have only made this in chocolate but I am thinking fruit would work. I will tell you what, I am going to play with this but I am guessing that about 3/4 cup of pureed fruit would be lovely.

  16. Rachel
    June 12, 2012

    I know you said dairy free milk in parenthesis, but does this recipe work with soy milk? (just want to make sure)

    1. Gluten Free & More
      June 13, 2012

      Sure, should work just fine. I don’t use soy milk but I see no reason why it wouldn’t work. Enjoy!

  17. Judi
    November 19, 2012

    Hi Carol, what could I substitute the cornstarch for? I’m off corn completely

    1. Gluten Free & More
      November 19, 2012

      Hi Judi, You can use either arrowroot powder or tapioca starch. Enjoy!

      1. VaLin
        October 12, 2013

        Or rice flour!!

  18. VaLin
    October 12, 2013

    Agave Syrup is high in carbs — is it really sugar free?

  19. CarolKicinski
    October 23, 2013

    It is not refined sugar so it is considered sugar free.

    1. Sylwia
      February 2, 2016

      Agave syrup is quite bad for you! It is not refine sugar but it’s still fructose so it’s a sugar. Agave it’s quite processed too.

  20. CarolKicinski
    October 23, 2013

    Yes, rice flour is sugar free. But not carb free – if you are looking for low carb treats, try some of the recipes made with almond flour.

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  23. George
    January 24, 2019

    20 or 30 minutes? My machine sounds done in 10! Should I keep going?
    I thought that added ice crystals?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      January 25, 2019

      Hi George, I’d do it per the manufacturer’s instructions since some machines might be quicker than others.

  24. George
    January 26, 2019

    Thanks, Carol! It did take 20 and it is amazing.

  25. Josh
    June 28, 2020

    This is not sugar free. Just because you are substituting agave for sugar does not make it any better for you, or make it sugar free. Agave is actually considered worse for you than sugar according to the scientific community. And per serving this has 150% of your daily value of sugar!
    Please dont call something sugar free when its main ingredient is sugar!

    1. Gluten Free & More
      June 30, 2020

      Hi Josh,
      Yes, this is technically “refined sugar free” but I do understand that agave isn’t for everyone. You may be able to make this with another sugar alternative. Liquid allulose should be a good option!

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