Natillas is a typical Spanish dessert (similar to creme brulee) made with milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. I loved natillas so much before being vegan, that’s why I’m happy to share this recipe with you. These vegan apple natillas are delicious, easy to make and are ready in 15 or 20 minutes.
Use any kind of apples you like or you can find in your area, but I prefer to use Russet apples because I love how they taste. I peeled the apples, but this step is optional, although if you’re not using organic apples I recommend you to peel them.
You don’t need to use oat milk (you can find the recipe in our FREE E-Cookbook), I use it because it’s low in fat and I like the flavor, but there are so many plant milk you can use instead. Take a look to our 9 easy plant milk recipes post, all the recipes are easy to make and homemade milks, taste better, are cheaper and also healthier than store-bought.
My favorite sweeteners to make natillas are agave (or maple) syrup and coconut sugar, but you can use any sweetener you want. If you use other kind of sweetener you can add a small amount of it, try the natillas and add more if you want.
When the natillas are ready, discard the cinnamon stick and the vanilla bean, blend and pour the mixture into 4 bowls. Let the natillas cool down at room temperature or in the fridge. If the consistency of the natillas is not smooth, you can blend again before serving.
Agar is a natural vegetable gelatin counterpart. It’s sold in packages as washed and dried strips or in powdered form and it can be used to make jams, custards or other desserts. I’ve used agar powder, but you can use dried strips too. If you can’t find agar, use other thickener like cornstarch or any other starch or even flour. Add a small amount of thickener, stir and wait at least 4 or 5 minutes and if the natillas are not thick enough add more thickener.
Use a piece of a vanilla bean, vanilla powder or pure vanilla extract, but avoid artificial vanilla extract, it’s an unhealthy product, full of chemicals, refined sugar and not always are vegan. Some vanilla extracts are made with a mixture of the anal secretions and urine of beavers (yeah, it’s really disgusting!). If vanilla is too expensive where you live, you don’t need to use it, the recipe will be delicious too, but don’t use artificial vanilla extract.
I love Spanish cuisine because I’m Spanish and also because Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest diets on the planet, but I prefer to eat the vegan dishes or veganize my favorite recipes, like these super simple and delicious vegan apple natillas.
- 2 apples
- The juice of half a lemon
- 4 tbsp agave syrup or coconut sugar
- 4 cups oat milk (1 liter)
- 1 piece of vanilla bean (about 2 cm or 1 inch)
- 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 or 2 tsp of agar powder
- Place in a saucepan the peeled and chopped apples, lemon juice and agave syrup or coconut sugar (or any other sweetener you like). Cook at medium heat over 5 minutes.
- Add the oat milk, vanilla bean and cinnamon stick. Cook over high heat until the mixture starts to boil, then cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the agar powder and cook for another 5 minutes.
- When the natillas are ready, discard the cinnamon stick and the vanilla bean, blend and pour the mixture into 4 bowls. Let the natillas cool down at room temperature or in the fridge. If the consistency of the natillas is not smooth, you can blend again before serving.
Recipe adapted from the book Mis Recetas de Cocina Anticáncer by Odile Fernández.