Move over sugar-laden box of chocolates this Valentine’s Day! I have a recipe that your sweetheart will swoon over! Dark Chocolate Whatever you Want Bark.
But first, let me tell you why you should fall in love with dark chocolate!
Did you know that chocolate actually comes from a plant? Crazy, right?! Chocolate is derived from that cacao plant. Cacao is rich in flavanols which can help lower your blood pressure and prevent blood clots. It’s also rich in antioxidants which helps the “bad” cholesterol from sticking to your artery walls.
To receive these benefits, it’s best to get cacao in its purest form. This includes cacao powder or cacao nibs. Cacao powder can be mixed in to milk or with your oatmeal to get a rich chocolate flavor. If that doesn’t quite curb that chocolate craving, the next best thing is dark chocolate. When you’re reaching for a chocolate bar, opt for ones that are at least 70% cacao. If you’re sticking to the dark chocolate, studies have shown that daily consumption can reduce the chance for nonfatal heart attacks and strokes for people with a higher risk for these problems.
Milk chocolates and other candies are usually processed much more than dark chocolate and much of the nutrients are lost in this process. In addition, there’ are a lot of added sugars and other additives mixed in. Sugar (processed sugar) is evil; remember my blog entry last week where i go into detail about how too much sugar in your diet leads to an elevated risk for heart disease.
Say goodbye to added sugar and enjoy this recipe that is super easy and quick to make!
Dark Chocolate Whatever You Want Bark
- 10 oz 70% dark chocolate
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- Whatever toppings you want…Suggestions:
- Goji berries
- Almond/ peanut butter
- Pomegranate seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Shredded coconut
- Chopped nuts
- Melt chocolate and coconut oil in microwave at 30 second intervals, stirring until completely melted
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
- Pour melted chocolate over sheet and spread to edges with a spatula
- Add your toppings
- Place in freezer for one hour
- Take out and break into pieces