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Look around any grocery store snack aisle or coffee shop menu board and you’ll see that we’re deep in pumpkin spice everything season. The latest item to get the seasonal treatment: Pumpkin Spice Dole Whip. The new Dole Whip recipe is a vegan, gluten-free, low-fat fall alternative that offers the flavors we love in a frozen treat. And pineapples and coconut milk which might seem more summer than fall, but stay with us here. It also contains sweet potatoes which, it turns out, make it kind of healthy, too.
Dole Whip is a soft-serve dairy-free frozen dessert. You might recognize it from the Disney Parks where it’s become something of a cult classic since debuting in 1984. Now there are entire social media accounts dedicated to documenting, test-tasting and tracking down every variation. In addition to the original, Dole Whip has dropped flavors like pineapple upside down cake, the Snow White Cone, (lemon, chocolate bird, and a sugar bow), sour apple, and orange-vanilla swirl. So pumpkin spice Dole Whip isn’t really that unprecedented.
What’s great about this version is you don’t have to trek all the way to Disney to enjoy it. This new Pumpkin Spice Sweet Potato Dole Whip recipe can be made right at home with a few simple ingredients.
And, not only is this frozen snack delicious and seasonal, sweet potatoes are a great source of fiber and vitamins. One cup of sweet potato contains 6.6 grams of fiber, 65 percent of your daily vitamin D and 50 percent of your daily manganese. And for 22 million Americans who suffer from chronic digestive issues, the most important nutritional fact about sweet potatoes is their relationship to better gut health.
Sweet potatoes contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. The body can’t absorb either type, so it stays in the digestive system and provides minerals to the tract. Some fiber ferments by the bacteria in your colon, creating short-chain fatty acids that protect the lining in your stomach. Additionally, research shows high levels of phytosterols in sweet potatoes may protect the digestive system and prevent gastric ulcers.
“I’m a big sweet potato girl,” says nutritionist and former D1 volleyball player Alex Treffers. “It’s one of my favorite post-workout sources of carbs and also an excellent source of prebiotic-resistant starch, which is great for your gut.”
In the Dole Whip recipe, you’ll be using frozen, chopped sweet potatoes, a super-healthy freezer staple. A study conducted by the University of Illinois found that frozen vegetables and starches – like sweet potatoes – can have equal or higher nutritional value compared to fresh. Similar research reports that freezing sweet potatoes before cooking them retains more beta-carotene compared to freshly-cooked sweet potatoes. A bonus to frozen sweet potatoes is, pound by pound, they are less expensive and reduce food waste, as they’re less likely to sit rotting on your counter if you don’t get around to cooking them that week.