Why does it seem that some days nothing will do but some good ole’ chocolate? We resist until the urge is so big we go for it. Good news is there is a reason and there are healthy ways to indulge in chocolate. The quality and how the cacao is processed is the key .
So, why do we have so much guilt around the chocolate we crave and love? The problem is not all chocolate is created equally. A majority of the chocolate on the market today actually contains very little of the healthy part of the cacao bean and mostly made of butter fat, milk and refined sugar. Unfortunately, you can’t always trust that the higher the percentage on the label means a higher percentage of health benefits to you. That percentage doesn’t actually tell you the percent of cacao vs. butter and most of the time, it’s going to be mostly butter.
Good news! There are plenty of very high quality chocolate bars out there that are full of the healthy raw cacao and does not contain all the fat from the butter, refined sugar or dairy. If you are in a health food store, just do what you do with all your foods, turn the bar over and read the ingredients. Here are some we recommend that you can order online.
The best way to get your chocolate is to buy raw cacao powder and is so easy to use in recipes. It is rich and a small amount is super satisfying. Here are some simple and yet satisfying recipes that will satisfy your craving, leave the guilt at the fridge and provide nutritional benefits. Here are some places to get the good stuff – Gnosis Chocolate, Sunfood, Navitas Naturals, Raw Guru
6 tbsp raw cocoa powder (found at Earthfare or other organic grocery store)
1/4 raw honey, local if possible (may need more to adjust flavor)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Puree avocado, cocoa powder, honey and vanilla in a food processor until smooth. Sprinkle pudding with salt before serving.
1 Tsp raw cacao powder
1 Tsp coconut oil
1 Tsp vanilla agave nectar
Zest of orange
Mix all ingredients together until blended and smooth. Make sure you have smoothed out any lumps in the coconut oil. Heat oil slightly if necessary. Dip in strawberries, apples or bananas.
Double or triple recipe to make multiple servings.
Superfood, Cacao Smoothie
1 cup ice
3 tablespoon Cacao powder
2 tablespoon almond butter (could use peanut butter)
Add cup or so unsweetened vanilla almond milk (enough to cover the base of your smoothie)
Add all ingredients to blender and blend till smooth. Add more liquid or ice to achieve desired consistency. Great post workout or afternoon pick me up.