Ladyfingers, sabayon, and booze: those are just a few of the non-keto components of a traditional tiramisu, an Italian dessert that layers pillowy cookies; custard made extra creamy with mascarpone and spiked strong coffee into a spoonable, bittersweet confection.
The biggest issue to tackle to remove the carbs from this dessert is replacing the ladyfingers. While most recipes will have you replace the cookies with a keto sponge or pound cake, we found the results of that far too gooey. Instead, we opted for a shortbread cookie, cut into ladyfinger-sized pieces, which looks and acts closer to the "real" thing.
Another needed transformation was the cream filling: sabayon has a tendency to get runnier when stored, and the marsala wine that usually flavors it has enough sugar to be a problem for a keto dessert. Instead of that, we whipped heavy cream to stiff peaks and added the mascarpone to that; because mascarpone doesn't hold up well to whipping, it's added at the end. This cream filling proved to be firmer and the tiramisu is bigger accordingly. Conveniently, the recipe is also quicker to make. It may not be your nonna's tiramisu, but it makes for a delightful end to any meal.
- For the Keto Shortbread Cookies:
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sweetener (such as Swerve or monk fruit)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons butter (chilled)
- 1 tablespoon allulose syrup
- For the Filling:
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1/2 cup coffee (strongly brewed)
- 1 teaspoon rum extract
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid stevia
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder (divided, for sprinkling on layers and top)
Note: While there are multiple steps to this recipe, this dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and baking.
Make the Cookies
Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 325 F.
In a mixing bowl, add flours, sweetener, salt, and cinnamon; stir with a fork or whisk to remove any lumps.
Add butter and allulose syrup, and break up with a pastry cutter or two forks until pebble-sized bits of dough form.
Press mixture together and turn onto a lined cookie sheet, pressing further to 1/2-inch thickness.
Cut dough into 20 cookies; they don't need to be separated once cut.
Baked until golden at the edges, 11 to 12 minutes. Let cool completely before removing them from the baking tray.
Make the Filling
Gather the ingredients.
Whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form, then gently add mascarpone with a whisk; beat just until combined. Set aside.
Add rum extract and stevia to coffee. Set aside.
Assemble the Tiramisu
In a standard 9x5-inch loaf pan, place 6 cookies on the bottom.
Using a pastry brush, brush cookies with coffee until lightly soaked.
Pour 1/3 of the mascarpone-whipped cream mixture over the top and spread out with a spatula.
Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder, using a mesh strainer or pastry sifter so that there are no clumps of powder.
Repeat steps 4 to 7 two more times, breaking up any extra cookies and tucking them into empty spaces, and ending with a dusting of cocoa powder on top. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.
- The shortbread cookies can be made one day ahead if desired.
- If you don't have rum extract, you can substitute vanilla, almond, or anise extract.
- If you don't have allulose syrup, substitute 1 tablespoon additional dry sweetener, plus 1/2 tablespoon water in the cookie dough.
- Keto tiramisu will keep for a few days in the fridge, but is best eaten with the first day or two as the cookies can get soggy.