Calling all pistachio lovers! These perky pops are my new favorite summer treat. This simple recipe features none of the artificial flavors or colors that too often taint that old-school neon-green ice cream at the supermarket – just lightly sweetened whole-milk yogurt and plenty of roasted, salted pistachios.
Nuts and seeds are designed to fuel a baby plant through germination until they can develop enough roots and leaves to fend for themselves, which makes them very nutrient-dense foods. An ounce of roasted pistachios has about 6 grams of protein, 13 grams of fat, and 8 grams of carbohydrates (including 3 grams of fiber and 2 grams of natural sugars). Their biochemical profile supports antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity, and clinical studies have demonstrated favorable effects on blood lipids, glycemic control and vascular function associated with pistachio consumption.
- Health benefits of pistachios consumption.
- Effect of pistachio nut consumption on endothelial function and arterial stiffness.
- Effects of pistachio nut supplementation on blood glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes: a randomized crossover trial.
- The Anti-Inflammatory and Antioxidant Potential of Pistachios (Pistacia vera L.) In Vitro and In Vivo
Each one of these popsicles contains a half ounce of pistachios, along with 1/4 cup yogurt, 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar, and a hint of vanilla.
The biggest culinary trick behind this recipe is using a food processor to grind the pistachios into a chunky rubble together with the sugar. Granulated sugar crystals are abrasive, and they help muddle out the oils and volatile flavor compounds from the toasted nuts. It really maximizes the pistachio flavor!
The pistachio rubble packs nutty crumbles into every bite, and it also preserves more natural green color than you would see if you used a fully-pureed nut butter.
My fondness for frozen yogurt is well-documented (see previously: Joe-Joe Fro-Yo.Fresh Strawberry Fro-Yo. California Date Shake Fro-Yo.) But something new I’ve gotten into this year is a habit of freezing my fro-yo experiments into popsicle molds. They’re just fun and easy to serve, especially when some recipes yield products that are too firm to scoop when fully frozen.
My current popsicle molds are silicon squeeze-pop tubes like these ones (the same ones my mom gifted me to make green smoothie pops when I was recovering from oral surgery). They also work well if you insert a wooden popsicle stick to enjoy them un-molded. I prop them upright in a quart-sized wide mouth mason jar (3 pops per jar) in the freezer before they solidify.
These pops are such a blissfully simple, creamy, crunchy, salty-sweet treat – I’m in love!
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Pistachio Fro-Yo Pops
- 3 ounces (85 grams) un-shelled roasted, salted pistachios
- 3 tablespoons (36 grams) sugar (or other sweetener of your choice, to taste)
- 1 1/2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Add the pistachios and sugar to a food processor and pulse until it forms a chunky rubble (the largest pieces should be no larger than pea-sized). Mix the nuts and sugar with the yogurt and vanilla extract, then pour into popsicle molds (fills about 6 standard sized molds). Freeze several hours until solid.