Homemade Vegan Chocolate
I love chocolate, I have since I was a little girl! As a child I had my favourites such as Cherry Blossom, Coffee Crisp, Malted Milk and Jersey Milk. Of course eventually I realized they were not a healthy choice and loaded with sugar. When I worked at the bank, clients would often bring in a Christmas gift as a thank you. One of my clients brought me a box of Bernard Callebaut chocolates, I believe that was my first introduction to expensive chocolate, I was hooked. After that day I became more intrigued by dark chocolate and the percentage of cacao and where it was grown.
When I was diagnosed with a long list of food sensitivities, I had to monitor every ingredient, especially sugar. For a time I had to cut out chocolate because it was difficult to find a brand that was not made with cane sugar. I was thrilled when I eventually I found brands that are made with coconut sugar, maple syrup and honey.
The one thing I found is that many of the brands were sweeter than what I wanted. When one of my nutrition associates introduced me to this recipe I was so excited because I could control the sweetness. I usually cut the chocolate into 30 pieces, based on rough nutrition numbers, each piece would have about 1.5 grams of sugar which is about 1/3 of a teaspoon of sugar.
The only thing we don’t know is, where this recipe originated, I wish I could give them credit. This recipe is too good to keep a secret though, so I am sharing with you.
I love how simple this recipe is, I always have these ingredients in my cupboard. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
1 cup cacao powder
1 cup coconut oil
3 tablespoons coconut nectar (can use honey or maple syrup)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (or 2 inches of a vanilla seed pod)
Pinch of sea salt
Line an 8” x 8” pan with parchment paper
In a food processor, place cacao, coconut oil, coconut nectar, vanilla extract and sea salt
If using a vanilla seed pod, with a sharp paring knife, cut off two inches of the vanilla bean. Trim off end. Split bean in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds, running the back of your knife along the pod. Add into food processor and do the same for the second half of the pod.
Process the ingredients together until smooth, approximately 2 minutes. Scrape down sides and blend for another minute or two. Test for sweetness, you can add another tablespoon of coconut nectar if you like your chocolate sweeter.
Once combined, spread the chocolate into the lined pan and place it in the fridge for about an hour
Remove from the fridge, cut into bite-sized pieces and enjoy!
Needs to be stored in the fridge or freezer as it will melt at room temperature.
What I also love about this recipe is it is delicious naked or you can add seeds or nuts to change up the flavour of the chocolate. I generally add them in towards the end and blend for about a minute. Choose any combination of the following or create your own
2 tbsp of cacao nibs
3 drops peppermint oil
2 tbsp of pepitas
2 tbsp of sliced or chopped almonds
2 tbsp of shredded coconut