Healthy Valentine's treats, ft. cacao

In my last post I left you all jazzed about eating chocolate (cacao, specifically) for, ahem, health purposes, so I figured I should provide a few recipes you can make for your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day.

Each is from a reputable, healthy online source, and each is a *delicious* treat that doesn’t taste healthy at all… I promise.

Enjoy your v-day with these sweet, healthy treats!

 Image: Minimalist Baker

Image: Minimalist Baker

Coconut Cacao Tahini Snack Bites

From The Minimalist Baker

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded unsweetened coconut

  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour or meal

  • 2 Tbsp flaxseed meal

  • 3 Tbsp hemp seeds

  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup tahini

  • 4-5 Tbsp coconut butter

  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs

  • Healthy pinch sea salt

  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 2-3 pitted dates

Directions

  1. To a food processor, add all ingredients and blend until a thick paste/ball forms (see photo) ~5 minutes. Scrape down sides as needed.

  2. If mixture is too thick, add more coconut butter or tahini. If mixture is too thin, add more almond flour or shredded coconut. It should be thick and scoop-able.

  3. Scoop out 2-Tbsp amounts and arrange on a parchment-lined baking sheet. You should have about 20 bites.

  4. Set in freezer or refrigerator to firm up. Once firm to the touch, they're ready to enjoy. For best results, store in the freezer up to 1 month or refrigerator up to 1 week. If storing in the freezer, let thaw 5-10 minutes before enjoying for best texture.

 Image: Cookie & Kate

Image: Cookie & Kate

Easy No-Bake Fudge

From Cookie & Kate

  • ½ cup coconut butter (coconut pieces pulsed in a food processor until smooth)

  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter

  • 2 small ripe bananas, cut into one-inch chunks

  • ¼ cup raw cacao powder

  • 3 tablespoons agave nectar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

  • pinch sea salt

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor until smooth, roughly five minutes or so.

  2. Use a spatula to pour the mixture into a flat, sealable container.

  3. Place the container in the freezer. The fudge needs to be super cold in order to retain its shape, so I find that it’s best to store the fudge in the freezer. If you store it in the fridge, it will have a semi-solid mousse-like texture.

 Image: Oh She Glows

Image: Oh She Glows

Chocolate Covered Strawberries (the classic!)

From Oh She Glows

  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder, sifted

  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup (or agave)

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

  • 1 tbsp all-natural nut butter

  • 1/4 scant tsp fine grain sea salt, or to taste

  • Unsweetened shredded coconut, to garnish

  • Optional pink glaze: 1/2 cup icing (confectioner’s) sugar, 1 large strawberry, 1/2-1 tbsp strawberry jam, processed in a mini blender (makes enough to glaze about 8-10)

Directions

  1. Wash and pat the strawberries dry. Set aside.

  2. In a small pot, whisk together the maple syrup, coconut oil, nut butter, and cocoa powder over low to medium heat. Whisk for a couple minutes until all the coconut oil is melted and remove from heat.

  3. Dip strawberries into the chocolate mixture, coating most of the strawberry. Place onto a plate lined with parchment paper or on a wire rack. Repeat for the rest and sprinkle with coconut. Chill in the fridge to set.

  4. If making the pink frosting: with a mini food processor, combine the icing sugar, strawberry, and jam until smooth. You may need to add a bit more icing sugar depending on the consistency of your jam. If you don’t have a mini processor I suggest not using the whole strawberry and just mixing in a bit more jam into the icing sugar until the right consistency is achieved.

  5. Spoon the frosting into a baggie and snip off the end. Pipe frosting onto the strawberries and place back in the fridge until firm.

 Image: Joyous Health

Image: Joyous Health

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Quinoa Cookies

From Joyous Health

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa flakes (or quinoa flour)

  • 1 cup unsweetened unsulfured shredded coconut

  • 4 large bananas, mashed

  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup coconut sugar

  • 1/2 cup dark organic unsweetened chocolate chips

  • 1.5 tbsp organic raw cacao

  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, mash bananas with a fork and add vanilla and coconut sugar.

  3. Add cooked quinoa, quinoa flakes, shredded coconut and raw cacao. Mix well until combined.

  4. Stir in chocolate chips.

  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and drop batter onto cookie sheet.

  6. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

 

Steph Bowen