Black-Bottomed Almond Mousse Pie with Chocolate Ganache Drizzle

I actually first made this pie quite a while ago (some of you may remember that I posted about it on Facebook), but I’ve been holding on to the recipe, clinging to it like Scrooge gripping his last penny so that I could save it for this very post. Seriously, this is one is a show-stopper, a perfect finale to a holiday meal or any special occasion. And it’s worth every second of the effort involved.

I recently served this to a friend of the HH’s who came for dinner (he’s a typical Standard American Diet kinda guy–McMuffin for breakfast, cheeseburger for lunch, Pringles on the go and pizza for dinner) and he scraped the plate clean, eagerly accepting a second serving.  The HH, who is fond of any dessert that’s light, cool and creamy, declared this to be one of my best recipes to date.  I think so, too.

The funny thing is, I don’t consider myself to be a “pie person.”  There are folks who adore pies; those who dive right in to the filling, virtually ignoring the crust; and, alternately, those who pick away at the pastry indifferent to the oozing cherries or blueberries or glistening apple slices within.  I would normally consider myself one of the latter, if I ever ate pie at all. I thought of the filling as merely a “crust delivery vehicle.”

In this case, though, the entire package must be savored, the layers of crust, ganache, mousse and drizzle melding together in one tantalizing confection. The base is a chocolate shortbread crust, adapted from the recipe in Sweet Freedom  (revamped to be gluten-free and ACD-friendly).  Next is a layer of intense dark chocolate ganache, a perfect marriage of smooth and condensed.  The top layer, a serendipitous combination of coconut whipped cream, smooth almond butter and dark chocolate, is so pillowy, rich and creamy that you may need a moment to compose yourself after you take your first sinful bite.

I also experimented with the pie as a torte in a springform pan, with an equally enticing outcome.  So no matter what your own preference, you can still enjoy this exquisite dessert.

Depending on which format you choose, you may end up with a tad extra ganache at the end of the process.  In fact, I found myself with about 1/2 cup (120 ml) left over after the pie was assembled.

So, what did I do with it?

[Pumpkin Oatmeal Bowl with Chocolate Ganache Swirl.]

Oh, yes.  Yes, I did. 😉 Maybe I am a pie person, after all.

Last Year at this Time: My Way of Eating (my food philosophy, sort of)

Two Years Ago: Flash in the Pan: Brazil Nut-Cilantro Pesto (gluten free;  All Stages)

Three Years Ago: Flash in the Pan: “My Life in Balance” Buttery Spread (gluten-free; ACD maintenance only)

Four Years Ago: Pumpkinseed Shortbread Buttons (Gluten free; ACD maintenance only)

© Ricki Heller, Ricki Heller

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  1. It looks fantastic – I am not a pie sort of person but I would dive into this – and given that Sylvia has a peanut allergy it is nice to see a chocolate pie with another sort of nut – I could just see us having this one instead of all those choc peanutbutter pies out there. You really need another version of Sweet Freedom that is ACD and GF

    • Ha, ha!! Yes, a new book is in the works, and it will contain only GF and ACD friendly recipes. I’m glad that this is something Sylvia could eat! 🙂

  2. Gaw. I’m swooning at this pie. I AM a pie person, and this would be so perfect. And Schaffen Berger IS delicious. One of my favs. I need this pie. Now. For breakfast.

  3. drooooool

  4. Ricki~

    Well done with this dessert. Very creative…and I must say, just tantalizing!! 🙂

    Be Well,

  5. Because I AM a total pie person, I am literally drooling right now! You really did save the most decadent dessert for last! Just amazing! This looks so light and creamy! I will be adding this to the list! The photos are just gorgeous and such a tease! 😉

  6. You people are killing me. Used to be I felt sorry for myself at Christmas and ate an piece of crap that came out of my oven. There are so many great recipes out there now, like this one, that I want delivered to my door Right Now! I just want to eat until I go into a coma and still there’d be tons left. I second the motion for the ACD/GF version of “Sweet Freedom.” One caveat though, my Doctor claims that the stevia out there is NOT natural and is made from the wrong part of the plant and so I shouldn’t consume it. So maybe some other not man made options? Pretty please?

    • Laurel, I’ve never heard that about stevia–I would guess it depends on the brand of stevia, wouldn’t it? My understanding is that it’s a natural sweetener, not “man made.” Apparently, you can make your own at home if you’re really ambitious and want to grow the stevia plant. . . but if you are reluctant, you can always use more coconut sugar or a splash of agave or even maple syrup if you eat it. 🙂

  7. Oh my! Is there any chance this will work without the xanthan gum?

    • Hi Shannon,
      Unfortunately, that “mousse-like” texture doesn’t happen without the xanthan. It will be more like a custard. Still good, but not light and fluffy. 🙂

  8. This looks so amazing Ricki! I’m going to have to make this!

  9. Whoa. Decadent and delicious. Must stay strong. Must resist! 😉

  10. Ricki, do you know what kind of a reaction you get when you’re licking the touchscreen on your iPad? Yep, I do feel silly but I was just looking at your pie and I couldn’t help myself :p
    I guess it goes without saying that I can hardly wait to try your recipe!!!

  11. Hi Ricki!

    You and I would make a good pie eating duo – you can have “most” of the crust (I do require a bite or two) and I will eat “most” of the filling – preferably sour cherry or apple with cinnamon, but I will share!

    Thanks again for your help with my straw giveaway and the suggestions for actually getting the comments to appear! Hopefully I will get a few more comments if anyone else is online these days 🙂

  12. Ricki.. ahhh this pie..words won’t do it justice.. we are big pie people in this household.. and chocolate is my middle name.. 🙂 The cover of your book “Blackbird Bakery Gluten Free” captures my heart. Memories of picking blackberries with my dad since I was a tot. We picked together and all our children picked with pappa. Blackberry pie nonetheless was eaten well. Now we scour tree lines each summer back behind our barns in hopes of capturing more memories. Thank you.

  13. Sharon Baridon says

    Oh my!!! This looks and sounds AMAZING!!

  14. can I say this looks heavenly? on my word! I so want to try this!

  15. This looks AMAZING and I bet it tastes out of this world!

  16. Ricki! This is incredible! What a show-stopper 🙂 I can’t wait to try this, it’s stunning to look at, and the ingredients tell me it would be stunning to taste (and the testimony of HH’s friend!). Thanks for sharing! xoxo PS I always saw the crust as a vehicle for the filling 😉

  17. This is one of those recipes of yours that I had to comment on. You have indeed a special gift for deserts! 🙂
    Soon to be prepared, and eaten, of course! It looks absolutely delicious and I bet it IS absolutely delicious! 😉

  18. Chocolate; in a pie? This will be a winner in my household for sure. I’m not much of a pie person but Don will bake an apple pie every now and then. I used to eat just the filling thinking I was safe from gluten that way but I now know that to be wrong. Chocolate – we can both have dessert now. Thank you Ricki!

  19. I love cold creamy pies like this! And it looks gorgeous.

  20. Looks delish!

  21. Stunning, and woman, how can you NOT be a pie lover? Looks like you’re coming over to “our side” now though. Bring the pie with you when you come, won’t you? 😉 Would go crazy over a piece of this goodness right now! Woohoo on a new cookbook coming out that is gf, too!


  22. Hazel Murphy says

    “3/4 tsp (7.5 ml) xanthan gum”
    ¾ tsp is 3.75ml whereas 7.5ml is 1½ tsp. So which of the 2 different quantities is correct, please?

    • Hi Hazel, Thanks so much for pointing out the error! It’s been corrected now. 🙂 (Note that here we convert 3/4 tsp to 3.5 ml rather than 3.75 ml–but both should work just fine).


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