The folks at Visalus Sciences asked me to create a recipe using a few of their products. I know how hard it is to try to lose and maintain a healthy weight, especially when you feel you’re being deprived of foods you enjoy like desserts. So I decided to take their their Vi-Shape Nutritional Shake Mix (Sweet Cream Flavor) and create a delicious dessert that was also healthy and gluten free. After tasting the product, which reminded me of cookie batter, I decided to make a cookie pizza with fruit.
Unlike other recipes out there, I didn’t want to make a gigantic dessert that you’d be tempted to knock off in a couple of meals. Instead, I wanted to make personal mini pizzas that you could dole out over time, keeping in mind portion control and over indulging due to temptations. My thinking would be to bake up a whole batch of gluten free cookies, freeze some and add toppings to just one or two you’d have with dinner. The “cream” and glaze layers can be refrigerated for a couple of weeks. And I don’t know anyone, especially during the summer, who doesn’t have a fridge full of healthy berries and fruit on hand!
I also wanted to make this recipe as easy as possible by using a premade gluten free cookie mix. (I used King Arthur Flour’s Gluten Free Cookie Mix, which comes out perfect every time. Go ahead and use your favorite brand.) Since, gluten free baking requires so many special flours and ingredients, I wanted to take away the stress of using unfamiliar products and the cost involved as well.
Feel free to make substitutions. For example, I used a vegan, tofu based “cream cheese” in the frosting to bump up the soy content. Feel free to use regular cream cheese if you like. I also used powdered stevia instead of sugar. (I like Stevia Extract in the Raw.) You can substitute the stevia with a half-and-half mixture of sugar and stevia, or use another type of low calorie sweetener if you find stevia to be a little bitter.
Finally, I had my family and a dinner guest taste test the mini pizza cookies. My husband said while he could taste the shake mix and the Shape-Up Health Flavor Mix-In, he didn’t find it unpleasant. My daughter has asked me to make some for her birthday. Our guest was very impressed with the look and taste of the mini cookie pizzas. And my son asked for seconds.
With the success of this recipe with my family, I bet guests at your next dinner party will love it, too!
Gluten Free Mini Cookie Pizzas
Ingredients for cookies:
- Your favorite gluten free sugar cookie mix
- Other ingredients to make sugar cookies per box instructions
- 1/3 cup Vi-Shape Nutritional Shake Mix (Sweet Cream Flavor)
Directions for cookies:
- Substitute 1/3 cup of gluten free sugar cookie mix with Vi-Shape Nutritional Shake Mix.
- Follow instructions on gluten free cookie mix box.
- Take batter and double the size of a regular cookie – approximately 2 tablespoons depending on box instructions.
- Place cookies 2-3 inches apart and bake per box directions until golden brown.
- Cool cookies on a rack and place aside.
Ingredients for frosting layer:
- 8 ounces tofu/soy based cream cheese
- 1/4 cup powdered stevia
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 packets of Orange Everyday Defense Shape-Up Health Flavor Mix-In
Directions for frosting layer:
- Place all ingredients in a blender.
- Pulse blender until ingredients are combined and frosting is creamy.
- Place frosting in a small bowl and set aside.
- Your favorite fruit – strawberries, blueberries, grapes, kiwi, oranges, raspberries, etc.
Directions for fruit:
- Cut washed fruit into small pieces. Set aside.
Ingredients for cookie pizza glaze:
- 1/2 cup powdered stevia
- 1 pinch salt
- 2 tablespoons rice or corn starch
- 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 cup water
Directions for cookie pizza glaze:
- In a saucepan, combine stevia, salt, rice/corn starch, ginger, orange juice, lemon juice, and water.
- Cook over medium heat, occasionally stirring.
- Bring to a slow bowl, constantly stirring until thickened – about 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool.
- If the glaze sets up, place saucepan over low heat and add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water. Stir until the glaze thins out.
- Using an offset spatula or knife, spread a layer of frosting on cookie.
- Place pieces of fruit on to frosted cookie. Decorate cookie as you see fit – randomly, in a pattern, lots of fruit or just a bit. Have fun with it! (This is something you can get your kids to help with, too.)
- Dip a spoon or pastry brush into the glaze. Gently dab or spoon glaze on to fruit so the excess spreads on the frosting layer.
- Chill in the refrigerator for an hour.
- Serve by using a thin cookie spatula to lift cookie pizza from platter to plates.
Note: Leftover frosting and glaze can be combined and used as a sweet spread on toast, as a dip for wedges of fruit, or as a dressing for fruit salads.
What type of fruit would you use on your mini cookie pizzas?