Organic Dark Chocolate for Valentine’s Day
Chocolate. I cannot think of a better gift or treat than chocolate for Valentine’s Day (or any day for that matter!). Especially organic dark chocolate. That is my personal favorite and not only because it tastes delicious, but because organic dark chocolate is loaded with tons of health benefits too!
5 Benefits of Eating Organic Dark Chocolate
- If it say’s cacao (70% or higher is the best) in the ingredients then you know you are getting the purest form of chocolate. Cacao is a superfood which contains the highest amount in beneficial antioxidants. Those antioxidants help our body fight free radicals, free radicals cause oxidative stress in our body and speeds up the aging process.
- Cacao encourages production of the feel-good neurotransmitter serotonin which soothes depression, anxiety and irritability… (no wonder!)
- Dark chocolate helps to lower blood pressure which lowers the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
- Don’t be alarmed of the high fat content of organic dark chocolate. Organic dark chocolate contains the good fats (oleic acid, which also promotes healthy heart and a good heart disease preventative).
- The last one I will list is why organic dark chocolate is popular for Valentine’s Day: organic dark chocolate contains many chemical compounds that have positive effects on your mood. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), the same chemical your brain creates when you feel like you’re falling in love. PEA encourages your brain to release endorphins, so eating organic dark chocolate will make you feel happier!
There are many more benefits of organic dark chocolate and cacao, but maybe I will save that for a later post. I want to get to the fun stuff now. Organic dark chocolate recipes! Here are my two favorite recipes that I make on almost a weekly basis at home.
Basic 3 Ingredient Organic Dark Chocolate:
- In a double boiler melt coconut oil over medium heat.
- When fully melted take pan off burner and add in the cacao powder and sweetener and stir until smooth.
- Poor into pan lined with parchment paper, chocolate molds or even a glass plate and stick them in the fridge to harden. Once hardened remove from plate or mold and store in fridge or freezer.
Basic Organic Dark Chocolate Recipe #2
Directions: same as the above recipe
Optional Add In’s
Add the following in during the 2nd step:
- 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite extract (Vanilla, peppermint, almond etc.)
- Chopped organic nuts (my favorite is almonds and pecans)
- Dried fruits like; raisins or Goji berries
- Coconut flakes
- Fresh fruit (I’ve made ones with pomegranate seeds which turned out delicious)
- Sprinkle a little sea salt on top before you put them in refrigerator
Some Final Notes:
- I have made both these recipes by just using liquid stevia and also powdered stevia. I would start small and add to your liking.
- These recipes can be made in the microwave, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
- Basic recipe #2 can be stored at room temperature for about a week. I still store mine in the refrigerator and in the freezer for longer storage. I like my chocolate cold.
- To make chocolate chips drop little rounds on to parchment paper
Here is an excellent list of organic dark chocolates that will be perfect for your loved ones on Valentine’s Day!
- Chocolove 73% Cacao
- Alter Eco Dark Blackout 85% Cacao
- Equal Exchange – Organic Fair Trade Panama Extra Dark Chocolate 80%Cacao
- Nibmor-Organic Orginal Dark Chocolate 72% Cacao
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