Joan’s Dairy-Free and Naturally-Sweetened Tapioca Pudding

December 9, 2009

This is yummy, healthy comfort food, served warm on a cold winter night. Traditionally it is made with milk and sugar,  however, it is very easy to make with non-dairy and non-sugar ingredients and just as yummy. My friend Teresa liked my tapioca dessert so much last night she had more with her breakfast this morning.

Tapioca is made from the starch from the cassava tuber. It is made into flour as well as pellets and pearls. It’s light and fluffy made with eggs, but I am working on my recipe without eggs – stay posted. The flavor of tapioca is fairly neutral, making it an excellent choice of thickener for both sweet and savory style foods. Tapioca also has little nutritional value- so the nourishment is from coconut milk and eggs in this recipe.

1/3 cup Small Tapioca Pearls (I used Bob’s Red Mill for this recipe)

1 cup water

2 cups coconut milk (lite or regular)

pinch seasalt

2 organic eggs separated

½ cup water (keep handy in case it gets too thick)

1/3  cup maple syrup or agave syrup

½ t Vanilla Extract (I use Frontier, organic made with glycerine, no alcohol)

Soak the pearls in water for 15-20 minutes in a saucepan.

Beat yolks into coconut milk with pinch of salt, stir into saucepan with soaked pearls. Cook on medium heat until it comes to a boil and lower heat (use a flame tamer if you have one) and simmer, stirring often. You wouldn’t want to burn this yummy dessert.

Meanwhile, beat egg whites with agave or maple syrup. If you can get the whites to peak, great, other wise, gently fold into tapioca and stir for 3 minutes.

Let cool for 10-15 minutes and add vanilla.

Optional: add fresh fruit on top or mix in, serve warm or cold

8 Responses to “Joan’s Dairy-Free and Naturally-Sweetened Tapioca Pudding”

  1. Camille Becker Says:

    Hi Joan, I made tapioca last night using stevia and rice milk. It never set up, even though I used 2 eggs just in case. I then reheated it using 2Tblsp of Tapicoa flour. Can you give me some insight as to why it didn’t set up. I used the crushed tapioca, not the pears.

  2. Barbro Schreiber Says:


    I made your tapioca recipe, followed it to a tee, but it did not set up. You did not mention how long to simmer after coming to a boil. Could this have been the
    problem? The taste was delicious, however.

    • Joan Spear Says:

      Hi Barbro- You are now the second person who didn’t get this to set- I make this often but I am going to do it paying attention to every detail- will keep you posted. It is very yummy- soupy or set,that’s for sure.

  3. Camille Becker Says:

    Hi Joan, let me know what you find as to why it didn’t set up for myself & Ms Schreiber.
    Thank you,

  4. Joan Spear Says:

    Barbro and Camille-

    I made Tapioca Pudding tonight looking for anything I might do that is not in the recipe that I posted. It set up fine for me.

    So let’s think here: I am using small tapioca pearls. Check the website above for directions for using tapioca flour, I don’t use it.)

    When I bring the pearls to boil (after soaking in 1 cup water and adding 2 cups coconut milk) and turn down to simmer, it thickens up within a few minutes, then I add in the eggwhites and sweetener and cook for a few more minutes. (Sometimes it is too thick so I add a bit of the extra water because as it cools it even gets thicker).

    Good luck!

    Next time I make it I’ll see if I can video it!


  5. Ranee Mory Says:

    When I read this recipe, I was wondering if the water that was used to soak the tapioca pearls was to be drained before adding the coconut milk, etc. or if it was to be included with the rest of the ingredients. I’m anxious to make the recipe, too.

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