Top Menu

Ingredients Archives: Dark Chocolate Chips

3-Ingredient Trail Mix Clusters

A few weeks ago we had a “chocolate night” for a women’s organization I belong to. It was a crazy day and I didn’t have much time to make anything. I needed something I could throw together in five minutes.

I thought about calling it in and bringing store-bought cookies, but since I’d talked the the same group a month before about nutrition, I thought that would be a little hypocritical. So I made these little beauties.

You guys. These are so good! I’m embarrassed they’re so easy! Everyone loved them and I felt like I stayed true to who I am!

When I made these for the ladies, I used 69% Enjoy Life chocolate chips. I’ve also made them with 100% chocolate (my favorite way, but I get I’m crazy), and Lily’s chocolate chips (stevia-sweetened chocolate chips). All three are fabulous. It just depends on how much sugar you want in these.

I used almonds for the nut because we have a ton, but you can use any nut or a combination. My favorite is pecans.

For the dried fruit, I used dried cherries because, well, cherries and chocolate. Best. Combination. Ever. If you go to Trader Joe’s, you can get unsweetened, dried cherries. This makes me happier than it probably should. If I couldn’t find unsweetened dried fruit, I’d use raisins. Cranberries or strawberries would also be fabulous!

These stay good for a long time so I love to make a batch and have one after dinner each night. They’re also great if I’m fighting with my kids and want to lock myself in the pantry and eat a bag of Oreos. Then I remember I don’t buy Oreos but I’m locked in the pantry ready to eat my emotions and I need something. These are perfect for that.

I’m super lazy and don’t like to take the time to melt my chocolate over a double boiler. I know that’s the correct way to ensure your chocolate hardens shiny and beautiful, but if I’m the one eating them, I don’t so much care so I use the microwave. If I want to be fancy, I use a double-boiler. I rarely want to be fancy.

After the chocolate is melted, it’s just a matter of adding in the other ingredients, mixing them together and spooning the mixture out onto parchment paper. Then you have to wait about an hour for them to set. But at least you have a delicious bowl to lick out. Not that I would do that…

I also sprinkle these with a little sea salt which is totally optional but totally awesome.

So if you have these three ingredients and 5 minutes, you’ve got yourself the perfect treat!

Continue Reading 0

Salted Caramel Cookie Dough Brownies

Back in the day (the day of processed sugars), I used to have a reputation for baking. People asked me to make cookies and cupcakes for events and whenever people came for dinner, they were always most excited for dessert. So when I gave up sugar, I was scared to lose that reputation. I still love to make (and eat) yummy treats. I just have to do it with healthier ingredients and eat it in moderation (meaning i can’t have an entire pan of brownies myself. Sad day.)

Last Sunday we had friends over for dinner for the first time. I was confident I could make a healthy dinner anyone would like because who doesn’t like meat and potatoes? But the dessert had me a little scared. So I decided to combine three different recipes to make one amazing dessert. Everyone was impressed and I still get to experience the joy of watching people eat my treats.


I started out with the Coconut Flour Brownies From Empowered Sustenance.   I added 1/2 a cup of dark chocolate chips to these because…. well I don’t think I ever need to give an explanation for adding more chocolate. These brownies are amazing, if you make them right. The first few times I made them, I overcooked them. Check them halfway through baking time and frequently after. If they feel set in the middle, you’ve overcooked them. Watch the edges and make sure they don’t get too dark. These brownies are gooey and soft, unless you overcook them.


I’ve topped these brownies with peanut butter frosting and chocolate frosting and mint frosting, but I wanted to do something more fun. I decided to top them with Edible Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough from Wicked Spatula.  When you make this cookie dough, make sure you process it for a long time. If you don’t, it won’t be fluffy. If you keep it going, the dough turns out fluffy and soft just like regular cookie dough.


The brownie and the cookie dough would have been plenty, but I wanted something to really send this over the top. I went with Salted Coconut Caramel Sauce from An Edible Mosaic. This sauce was my favorite part of the dessert. This sauce is great over ice cream, brownies or just a spoon. A massive spoon. A ladle really. It’s that good. This thickened up really well after a bit in the fridge. And it stayed soft and pourable right out of the refrigerator. I just drizzled this over the top of the cookie dough layer. I have a lot left over. Hmmmm… Maybe this would be great with just a straw too.


If you’re looking for an awesome dessert to wow a crowd, this is definitely it!


Continue Reading 0

Granola Bars with Ingredients You Can Pronounce

Even though I really do feed my kids regular meals (Really! I swear!) My kids constantly proclaim to be starving. When i try to explain to them what it actually means to be “starving,” they look at me like I’m crazy and then once again profess that if they don’t get food soon they’ll surely die. This means, we need a lot of easy snacks in our house. The problem is, fast and easy often means processed, junk-filled food I don’t particularly want my kids eating. So while the solution is homemade snacks, as busy moms, we don’t always have a lot of time.

These homemade granola bars are extremely easy to make, very healthy and make me feel like Mother of the Year when I hand one to my kids. That warm feeling last all the way until they start fighting in the middle of the condiment isle of the grocery store and break a bottle of salsa. Small victories really do count.

2015-04-06 19.00.09

Let’s compare the ingredients in our homemade granola bars to the very popular Quaker Chewy Granola Bars. The Quaker peanut-butter chocolate chip bars contain artificial coloring, corn syrup, sorbital, artificial flavoring, and several other ingredients I can’t pronounce. In total, these bars contain 7 grams of sugar each and have over 30 ingredients. My granola bars have no added sugar (aside from the small amount in the dark chocolate bits) and contain 9 ingredients, all of which you’ve likely heard of.

Start by combining the oats, coconut, ground flax, almonds, dark chocolate and cinnamon in a bowl. If you can’t do almonds, just up the flax or coconut. No big deal. You can also replace them for another nut or seed you like better.

2015-04-06 10.46.09

Once you mix this together, stir in the coconut milk, peanut butter and vanilla. I finally gave up with the spoon and went in with my hands. It may be a git gooey, but it saves a lot of time. This just goes in a 9×13 pan and into the fridge to set.

2015-04-06 11.11.13

Even after I cut these into bars, I keep them in the fridge. They stay fresh and and stay set that way. But I will take one out, wrap it in plastic and put it in my purse for a trip to the grocery store. They will stay set for an hour or two without refrigeration.

2015-04-06 19.00.09

Try them out. I guarantee you’ll have that Mother-of-the-year feeling.


Continue Reading 1

Send this to a friend