If there’s one guilty pleasure all moms enjoy, it’s wine chocolate! Thankfully there’s a way to justify indulging a little because chocolate (like wine) has some fantastic health benefits. The key is to choose quality chocolate from the right sources … or make your own homemade chocolate. It’s easy and you have total control over the ingredients (and maybe even get to lick the spoon!).
This recipe takes just a few ingredients. Melt over the stove, pour into molds, and … there you have it! Pure, healthy chocolate.
Why Homemade Chocolate is the Best
It turns out there are even biological reasons that we as women crave chocolate. It may be for the magnesium boost (yes, chocolate contains magnesium) or for the feel-good serotonin and dopamine release that helps mood and sleep.
Certainly, not all chocolate is created equal and most store-bought chocolate brands contain a lot more than cocoa powder. High fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated oils, soy lecithin, artificial flavoring, and carrageenan make the list of objectionable ingredients in many commercial brands. Not to mention the sugar content, which is a problem … just 1/3 of a Cadbury chocolate bar contains 22 grams of sugar.
True, opting for a quality brand of organic chocolate with less dairy and sugar means we can get some of the benefits of chocolate without impacting our waistlines and our health, but these options are often pricey. Stock up on the few ingredients needed to make chocolate instead (as well as a few silicone candy molds to make fun shapes) and you can whip up a batch of healthy chocolate without overpaying and without shopping around.
How to Make Chocolate at Home
In search of a GAPS friendly (and paleo, primal, etc.) healthy chocolate, I realized I’d have to make my own. This homemade version is smooth and delicious, and you can completely avoid the artificial ingredients.
Making chocolate at home basically involves melting cocoa butter, cocoa powder, honey, and vanilla in a double boiler (or heat-safe bowl set over a pan containing a few inches of water), pouring into molds, and waiting for it to set. Cocoa butter is the only “unusual” ingredient that you may need to purchase to make this recipe (but Amazon sure makes it easy on us!).
I used these silicone heart molds to make fun bite-size chocolates (great gift idea!) and a mini loaf pan for the bar sizes. You can even find a mold specifically in a chocolate bar shape if you want to be really authentic!
I’m gifting little jars of homemade heart chocolates for Easter this year, as I have done for Christmas, St. Nicholas Day, and other holidays in the past. It’s easy to add variety by using a little orange extract to taste, or a teaspoon of brewed espresso, or even some chopped almonds to create a specialty taste.
Healthy Homemade Chocolate Recipe
- 1 cup cocoa butter
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- ½ cup honey or to taste using half this amount or less will make a bittersweet chocolate
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or other flavors to taste
- almonds chopped and toasted (optional)
- orange or mint extract optional
In a double boiler or a glass bowl on top of a small pan with an inch of water in the bottom, melt cocoa butter over medium heat. Make sure that the water isn’t touching the bowl.
When the cocoa butter is completely melted, remove from heat and add cocoa powder, vanilla, and other flavor extracts.
Allow it to cool slightly. When it has cooled enough to thicken to the same thickness of the honey you are using, stir in the honey. If using a solid raw honey, melt with the cocoa butter.
Make sure all ingredients are well incorporated and smooth. At this point, make sure that no water or liquid gets in to the chocolate as it can cause the texture to get mealy! Be careful even with wet hands or a drop of water in the mold!
Pour the chocolate into molds or glass pan to harden, or pour onto a baking sheet lined with natural parchment paper.
Let harden for several hours at room temperature until hardened and remove from molds. You can also stick in the refrigerator to harden more quickly. These chocolates will store for over a week at room temperature or can be kept refrigerated for longer. They can also be frozen.
Feel free to play with the mix-ins for this recipe to create YOUR favorite flavor of chocolate!
You can also use coconut oil in place of the cocoa butter which will produce a very healthy chocolate, but it will not be as thick or creamy (but still very good!). If you use coconut oil, I recommend hardening and storing in the fridge. This is one easy way to add coconut oil and magnesium to your daily diet!
Also, I’ve done the melting in a small pan on very low heat and not had a problem, but this isn’t as reliable as the double boiler method.
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Looking for More Homemade Chocolate Recipes? Try:
- Simple Homemade Chocolate Truffles Recipe
- How to Make Chocolate Peanut Butter Fat Bombs (Keto Friendly)
- Nutella Recipe: How to Make Homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
- Chocolate Coconut Energy Bars
- Healthy Hot Chocolate Recipe
Like these recipes? Check out my new cookbook, or get all my recipes (over 500!) in a personalized weekly meal planner here!
Have you ever made chocolate at home? Would you try? How would you flavor it? Share below!