Almond Milk Custard with Roasted Blueberries from Cleo Coyle's Coffeehouse Mystery Once Upon a Grind #dairyfree #lowcalorie

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This easy, low-calorie stovetop custard can be served warm on a cold night, or chilled for a refreshing summer dessert. It's not only delicious, it’s guilt-free because it's made with wholesome, nutritional ingredients like almond milk, eggs, and the superfood blueberries. 
Click for Cleo's Free Recipe PDF.

We love how the lemon zest and vanilla work together with the nut milk to produce the light and lovely flavor of a homemade pound cake, and the roasted blueberries make an elegant topping. 

Why roast them? Because it brings out a "blueberry pie" sweetness without additional sugar. The roasting also creates a softer, cooked texture, which beautifully complements the finished custard. 

To download this recipe now as a free PDF, click here. 

To read my full blog post, scroll down or click here and...

Eat with joy!  
~ Cleo

New York Times bestselling author of...
The Coffeehouse Mysteries 
Haunted Bookshop Mysteries

A Note from Cleo
Cleo Coyle writes two
bestselling mystery
 series with her husband.
To learn more, click here.

Our readers may recognize this treat from our 14th Coffeehouse Mystery, Once Upon a Grind, which opens with an attempted murder during a Fairy Tale Festival in New York's legendary Central Park... 

"The proof really is in the pudding," NYPD Detective Mike Quinn tells Clare during the long night they spend together during the course of the story. Their evening is fraught with dangers and difficulties, even on the foodie front. Mike is disheartened to find Clare's kitchen cupboards as bare as Mother Hubbard’s. But Clare has a knack for making the most from the least. This recipe is a good example.

With a few meager ingredients, she guides Mike through the easy process of making this delicious homemade custard. Now I will happily guide you. One final note...

Why almond milk? Here are 4 good reasons:

(1) Lower calories: Almond Breeze brand shelf-stable almond milk (pictured) is only 30 calories per cup vs. 90 calories per cup for skim milk. And many almond milks deliver as much (or more) calcium and vitamin D as dairy milk.

(2) Storage and convenience: Almond milk can be purchased in shelf-stable form and kept in the pantry for many months. 

(3) Flavor: Nut milks bring a delicate nutty flavor to the custard. And finally...

4) Dairy-free: For those with lactose intolerance or dietary restrictions, this custard will be a welcome dairy-free dessert...

To download this recipe in a
free PDF 
that you can print
or share, click here.

Click for Cleo's Free Recipe PDF.

Cleo Coyle's
Almond Milk Custard with
Roasted Blueberries

Makes 4 servings
(about 160 calories per serving, including blueberries)


4 tablespoons white, granulated sugar

3 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

Pinch of table salt

2 cups unsweetened almond milk (I use Almond Breeze Original
   shelf-stable, 30 calories per cup)

4 large egg yolks (keep whites for my Little Chocolate Clouds, click here)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 cup blueberries fresh or frozen

(optional) Whipped cream (click here for non-dairy recipe)

Hardware: Medium-size saucepan, whisk, silicone spatula


Step 1—Mix the ingredients. First note that you are not cooking in this step. At the bottom of a medium sized saucepan (off the heat!), whisk together these dry ingredients: sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, and salt. Slowly add the almond milk, whisking to prevent any lumps from forming. Set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks very well. Now whisk the egg yolks into the almond milk mixture in your saucepan. (Do not add the vanilla yet.)

Step 2—Cook the custard. Set your timer for 10 minutes, place your saucepan over medium-high heat, and SLOWLY STIR, using your silicone spatula. You must stir constantly as the mixture cooks or the eggs may cook unevenly and you’ll get little scrambled egg bits instead of smooth, delicious custard. As you cook, be sure to scrape down the sides of your saucepan. After the first 5 minutes of slow stirring, you’ll see the mixture thickening. Turn the heat down to medium and stir more quickly to prevent a rolling boil. You may need to turn the heat even lower to prevent this. You want the mixture to thicken up but not to completely evaporate so try to prevent a hard boil. Continue cooking for the full, final 5 minutes. 

Step 3—Add vanilla and finish: Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla...

This recipe makes just under 2 cups of custard. Divide the mixture up into 4 serving containers. If serving chilled, cover the tops of the containers with plastic wrap to prevent skin from forming. Chill until set, 1 to 2 hours, and serve with roasted blueberries and whipped cream. For a diary-free version of whipped cream, use full fat coconut milk—click here for the recipe. 




Directions: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat with nonstick spray. Spread 1 cup of blueberries (fresh or frozen) and roast for 15 minutes. 

You’re watching for the blueberries to swell and for some to burst (that’s okay). Allow to cool completely before serving with the chilled custard. 


A special post for Mother's Day. Learn how to make Diary-Free Whipped Cream and beat breast cancer. Click here or on the image below for the recipe and story of inspiration...

Click here for the recipe. 


Below is a short video that will show you a great way to separate egg yolks from whites. This is also how I do it...

If you do not see the video above,
click here to view it on YouTube


This recipe calls for 4 egg yolks. You can store the egg whites in the fridge for a morning omelet. Or make my Little Chocolate Cotton Candy Cookies, which require exactly 4 large egg whites. Perfect! To get the recipe now, click here or on the image below...

Waste not! Use your leftover egg whites to make
my Light (as a cloud) Chocolate Cookies.
Click here for the recipe. 

Eat (and read) with joy!

New York Times bestselling author
of The Coffeehouse Mysteries and
Haunted Bookshop Mysteries

Cleo (Alice) with her husband Marc

Visit Cleo's online coffeehouse here.
And follow her at these links...

Our 20th 

Coffeehouse Mystery!

Bulletproof Barista

To Buy:


"Scads of red herrings, peeks behind the show-biz curtain, and bountiful appended recipes will leave fans smiling contentedly."


"This twentieth Coffeehouse mystery (after Honey Roasted) brings together the history of the shop, ripped-from-the-headlines plot elements, [and] the drama of on-site filming."

Paperback Edition!

Includes a mini guide
to honey varieties
and a wonderful menu
of delicious recipes...

Click here or on the image above
for Cleo Coyle's Free Illustrated
Recipe Guide to Honey Roasted

The Coffeehouse Mysteries are bestselling works
of amateur sleuth fiction set in a landmark 
Greenwich Village coffeehouse, and each of the 
20 titles includes the added bonus of recipes.  

Get a free Title Checklist of
Cleo Coyle's Books in Order
Click here 
or on the image below.

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