Recipe: Dairy-free Hot Chocolate ☕

Ready for a treat that won’t take you off track from your new year’s goals? Enter a healthier hot chocolate made with less added sugar, plant-based milk, and with the warm spice of cinnamon.

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Ingredients

1 cup non-dairy milk (we used hazelnut but for extra creamy texture, try coconut milk)

1 tbsp cacao powder

1-2 squares of dark chocolate (85% or 90% cacao content for less added sugar)

1 cinnamon stick

1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

Heat 1 cup of non-dairy milk in a small saucepan. Whisk 1 tbsp of cacao powder in the hot milk and bring it to a boil. Then add vanilla extract and let it simmer for a few minutes on low heat. Pour into a cup and add 1-2 squares of dark chocolate. Stir and enjoy!

Recipe: Amaranth for Breakfast

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Move over, porridge! We have a higher-protein option that also provides minerals such as iron, manganese and phosphorus. This delicious seed, not a grain, is called amaranth and there’s a rather sordid history which explains why we haven’t heard much about it until recent times. Marry it with chocolate and your taste buds will have a party!

Ingredients

1 cup water
1/2 cup amaranth
1/2 cup chopped strawberries
1/4 cup almonds (or choice of nuts; macadamia pairs well here too)
2 squares dark chocolate (we like 85% and 90% cacao versions)
2 tbsp shredded coconut
2 tbsp cacao nibs
1 tbsp cacao powder (optional)

Instructions

Bring water and amaranth to boil, cover, and then simmer for about 15 minutes. Amaranth is done when liquid has been absorbed. Carefully transfer into your breakfast bowl and add nuts, dark chocolate, coconut, cacao nibs and cacao powder. We often add maca or ashwagandha powder and a drizzle of honey in the case of the latter (as it is aptly called in Sanskrit “the smell of a horse”). Enjoy this power-packed breakfast!

Death-by-Chocolate Zucchini Bread

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For a moment it seemed like we were putting TOO much chocolate into this recipe. Then we realized how ridiculous of a thought that was – there’s almost never too much chocolate :D. This amazing zucchini bread will tame any chocolate craving with its brownie-like texture. Bonus: it’s gluten-free!

Prep time: 15 minutes
Bake time: 45-50 minutes

Ingredients

1 cup gluten-free all purpose flour
1 cup almond meal
1/3 cup coconut or date sugar
1/2 cup cacao or cocoa powder
3.5oz dark chocolate bar, chopped
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 organic eggs
1.5 medium zucchini, chopped
3 small apples, chopped
2 tbsp melted coconut oil or organic butter
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease loaf pan. In a large bowl add almond meal, flour, sugar, cacoa/cocoa powder, dark chocolate chips, baking soda & baking powder, and salt. Combine & mix well. Melt coconut oil or butter. Boil apples in water, enough to cover bottom of the pot) and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.

Once cooled, put apples into high-speed blender with chopped zucchini and blend. Discard cooking water.

In a smaller bowl, add eggs and beat with whisk. Add apples and zucchini, coconut oil or butter, and vanilla extract. Combine ingredients by mixing and then fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients.

Pour batter into loaf pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until knife inserted in middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack for 20 minutes. Store bread in air-tight container in fridge for up to 3 days. Freeze bread if desired.

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Recipe: Ultimate Chocolate Black Bean Brownies

Kids (and adults) love these brownies; many times they are surprised to find that black beans could be used to make a dessert. Next time you have a bit of a sweet tooth, give these chocolate-y brownies a go!

Keeping with the theme of these recent blog posts, see how many of these ingredients you can make organic (and/or free-range, in the case of the eggs).

Ingredients:

1-15oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup honey
2 tbsp. melted coconut oil
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup cocoa/cacao powder
1/4 cup ground almonds
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips or 3 oz dark chocolate bar, in pieces

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F and use liners to fill in muffin tin or spray with cooking oil. Add all ingredients to a large food processor or mixing bowl (except the chocolate chips/ pieces of dark chocolate). Process for 2 minutes or until batter is smooth, then stir in chocolate chips/pieces. Pour batter into muffin cups and bake 18-20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before transferring brownies to wire rack.

Recipe: Apricot and Dark Chocolate Trail Mix

Ingredients

12 ounces high-quality dark chocolate, cut into chunks (about 3 cups)
2/3 cup dried cranberries
1 cup dried apricots, quartered
12 pieces candied ginger, coarsely chopped
1 cup lightly toasted pecans or walnuts

Instructions

Mix the ingredients together. Divide among 6 jars or footed cellophane bags. Seal with a ribbon and sticker or a gift tag.

Source: The Cooking Channel