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Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta and Fudgesicles Recipe

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Kids eating healthy chocolate fudgesicles

Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta & Fudgesicles Recipe

The velvety richness of this Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta and Fudgesicles Recipe is one of the best parts of this cold and creamy, chocolaty popsicle. Whether you serve this as a quick and playful dessert or a protein-packed snack you’ll be glad to have them on hand in the summer heat This is a kid-friendly recipe to make and enjoy together.

Health Benefits

I like a good guilt-free pleasure. I concocted this popsicle recipe to partake in with or without my kids when I need a chocolate fix and want to feel good about what I am eating.

  • Greek yogurt provides a protein punch while nurturing gut health, making it an excellent choice for snack cravings.
  • Gelatin supports joint health, promotes healthy skin, and improves the texture of the fudgesicle.
  • Cocoa powder, rich in antioxidants, enhances both flavor and nutritional value.

The fudgescicles are a great way to provide a protein-packed low-sugar treat to your kiddos.

Fun Ways to Serve Chocolate Panna Cotta/Fudgescicles

While I originally added gelatin to the recipe to increase the velvety consistency in my fudgescicles, I discovered a happy alternative use case for this recipe. I had leftover custard base without a popsicle mold and didn’t want to waste it so I put it in a silicone muffin mold and stashed it in the fridge. The next day, to my delight I had the perfect mini-panna cotta treat waiting for me! I’m unsure which way I like more—as a chocolate panna cotta or a fudgesicle.

Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta/Fudgesicile Serving Suggestions

This recipe is a building block for exploration. If you want to upgrade your panna cotta or fudgesicle try serving them in one of the following ways.

  • After-dinner dessert topped with fresh fruit.
  • Breakfast parfait with granola and fruit.
  • Creative Cocktail: Add a shot of vanilla, chocolate, or coffee liquor into a large glass and rest your frozen fudgesicle inside the glass. As you enjoy your fudgesicle, you will get a fun cocktail-y flavor and any leftover alcohol should dilute with the melted fudgesicle.
  • Iced Coffee Blend-in: You could do the same using iced coffee to enjoy an afternoon pick-me-up. Either serve the fudgesicle in your iced coffee or blend them with ice for a creamy frappe.

Chocolate Panna Cotta/Fudgesicles Variations

Have fun with the creative variations.

  • Elegant dessert: Layer the chocolate panna cotta with fresh berries or chopped nuts before chilling. Sprinkle a hint of cinnamon on top to intensify the flavor profile.
  • Cocktail hour: Chill your panna cotta in small shot glasses and serve the chocolate panna cotta shots with a drizzle of berry coulis and a sprinkle of edible gold dust.
  • Fudgescicle Fun: Have your kids add sprinkles, oreo cookie crumbs, or mini chocolate chips to the fudgesicle base before freezing for a fun crunch to their treat.

How to Make A Creamy High-Protein Chocolate Base

Healthy Fudgesicle Prep: Child adding gelatin and milk to bowl

Gelatin Preparation (aka Bloom)

First, bloom the gelatin by combining it with a small amount of milk.

  1. Combine Gelatin and Milk
  2. Mix and Set Aside

Why Blooming Gelatin Matters: Blooming gelatin is a crucial step in creating the perfect texture and consistency for your desserts. This process involves allowing gelatin to absorb liquid and swell before adding it to your recipe. Blooming not only prevents lumps but also ensures that the gelatin disperses evenly, resulting in a smooth and velvety texture. By blooming gelatin, you set the foundation for a delectable and flawlessly crafted treat.

Fudgescicle prep: Vanilla being added to gelatin mix, ready to bloom

Chocolate Custard Base

Next, we warm the milk and add the chocolate cocoa to combine. We need to heat the milk with the cocoa because cocoa powder, even though it looks and feels dry, still contains fat from cocoa butter. So in order for it to dissolve, it needs to be heated.

Measuring sugar on a digital scale for panna cotta recipe
Turbinado added to pan on top of scale to measure
Measuring chocolate on top of digital scale for chocolate panna cotta recipe
Cocoa added to pan on top of scale to measure
Adding milk to the rest of the panna cotta ingredients in a saucepan on a digital scale
Milk added top of scale to measure; ready for heat
  1. Blend Dry Ingredients
  2. Warm Milk Mixture
  3. Incorporate Gelatin Mixture
  4. Temper and Add Yogurt (try using our DIY Homemade Yogurt in this recipe)
  5. Blend and Combine

Why Temper Yogurt: Tempering yogurt is a technique to ensure smooth integration into warm mixtures. Adding yogurt directly to a hot mixture can cause it to curdle or separate leading to an undesirable texture. Tempering involves gradually introducing a small amount of the warm mixture to the yogurt, gently raising its temperature, and allowing it to acclimate. This process prevents shock and curdling, resulting in a a smooth mixture.

Tempering small amount of hot cocoa mix to yogurt

Setting the Custard

Finally, it is time to set the gelatin and patiently await our creation’s transformation!

The Magic of Gelatin Setting: Gelatin, a natural protein derived from collagen, has a remarkable ability to transform liquid mixtures into gelled textures. When a gelatin-containing mixture cools, the protein molecules bond and form a three-dimensional network that traps liquid within, creating a solid structure. This unique property gives desserts like our Panna Cotta or Fudgesicles their distinct shape and texture. As the mixture sets, it goes through a captivating transition from liquid to a delightfully wobbly and satisfying treat.

Making Panna Cotta

  1. Fill Ramekins
  2. Prevent Film Formation (use plastic wrap to cover)
  3. Chill and Set

Making Fudgesicles

  1. Fill Popsicle Molds
  2. Freeze and Set
  3. Unmold

Treat Yourself Right

Enjoying a frozen healthy fudgesicke on a hot day

Do not miss out on making this super indulgent Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta and Fudgescicles Recipe! The combination of low-fat Greek yogurt, skin-nourishing gelatin, and antioxidant-rich cocoa powder creates a sweet and creamy treat. One you can feel good about eating. Both kids and adults love these!

Chocolate Yogurt Custard mix recipe, yogurt and chocolate gelatin mixture being whisked together, almost ready to make healthy chocolate panna cotta or fudgescicles

Healthy Decadent Chocolate Panna Cotta that Doubles as Creamy High-Protein Fudgesicles

Indulge in chocolatey creaminess without a hint of remorse with our Healthy Decadent Chocolate Panna Cotta, which doubles as Creamy High-Protein Fudgesicles.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Italian
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: chocolate, custard, healthy, high protein, popsicles, versatile
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Cooling Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 150kcal
Author: juiceofsevenlemons
Cost: $2.50


Gelatin Blooming

Custard Base


Bloom the Gelatin

  • Combine gelatin, milk, and vanilla extract in a small bowl.
  • Mix the gelatin mixture until smooth.
  • Set mixture aside until needed.

Chocolate Custard Base

  • Combine sugar, cocoa powder and salt in a 3-quart saucier, whisking to break apart any lumps.
  • Stir in the milk and warm over medium heat until milk mixture begins to steam (~5 min).
  • Remove from heat and stir in gelatin mixture until incorporated.
  • Add yogurt to a separate container and then add in 4 tablespoons (one at a time) of the chocolate gelatin mixture and combine to temper the yogurt (adding all at one time could cause the yogurt to curdle).
  • Add the tempered yogurt mixture to the saucepan and stir until blended.

To Make Panna Cotta

  • Pour the chocolate custard base into individual ramekins.
  • Cover the ramekins with cling wrap so a film will not develop when chilling the mixture.
  • Put the ramekins in the refrigerator and allow the mixture to cool and gelatin to set for at least 4 hours.

To Make Fudgescicles

  • Pour the chocolate custard base into individual popscicle molds.
  • Put the popscicle molds into the freezer and allow to freeze for at least 4 hours.
  • Unmold the frozen fudgescicles by running the mold under warm/hot water until you can slide the fudgescicle away from the mold with ease.


For a dairy-free option, you can use coconut yogurt or your favorite plant-based yogurt alternative.
Our homemade yogurt works well with this recipe
Customize the sweetness level by adjusting the amount of sweetener according to your preference.
Get creative with toppings! Try adding crushed nuts, fresh berries, or a drizzle of nut butter for an extra layer of flavor and texture.
If making fudgesicles, consider using fun-shaped molds for a playful twist on presentation.
Store leftover panna cotta in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
When enjoying as fudgesicles, run the molds under warm water for a few seconds to easily release the frozen treats.


Serving: 120g | Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 40mg | Potassium: 200mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1mg

1 thought on “Healthy Chocolate Panna Cotta and Fudgesicles Recipe”

  1. Pingback: DIY Homemade Yogurt - Juice of Seven Lemons

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