I hardly go a day with out chocolate. If you peeped your head into my freezer on any given day, you’d likely see a bar of 72% Dark Chocolate in the door shelf, maybe even two bars.
There is something just so magical about the taste and texture of chocolate, and there aren’t many things that can’t be made better with a little chocolate. Chocolate doesn’t just taste amazing; it also packs so powerful health benefits. Dark chocolate possesses a significant level of antioxidants and is shown to fight free radicals, boost heart health, balance and maintain cholesterol levels, and improve cognitive function.
Unfortunately, not all chocolate is created equal: its important to read the labels and ensure your getting a good quality, fair-trade dark chocolate if you’re looking to consume it daily and reap the benefits. Like all foods, there are so many brands with bad ingredients and less than savory business practices, so just be aware!
One way to add some wholesome variety to your chocolate consumption is to experiment with homemade chocolate desserts. Personally, I find clusters to be one of the easiest chocolate desserts. Many times I’ve made standard chocolate & almond clusters for gifts are to bring to a dessert swap. I hadn’t ever really experimented with other ingredients, until this recipe.
My first try at these clusters was an accident: a result of surplus ingredients used for chocolate covered strawberries on Valentines’ Day. They were hands down one of my best kitchen experiments. I was so sad that there were only 3 of them. So I decided to remake the clusters with intention this time, measuring out the ingredients and adding slivered almonds for added texture. Also in these clusters are hemp seeds, coconut shreds, and Purely Elizabeth granola; all the crunchy goods.
These are the most addictively delicious treats. They are also incredibly easy to make and, if you’re like me, you already have the goods to make these laying around your pantry. The recipe includes the “toppings” I used, but clusters are a very flexible dessert; you truly could add anything you’d like to them. This recipe is perfect for jazzing up your daily dark chocolate consumption, but these clusters are also perfect for a party or to give as a gift.
- 1 bar of 72% Dark Chocolate
- 2 tbsp coconut shreds
- 2 tbsp hemp seeds
- 2 tbsp granola (I used purely elizabeth)
- 2 tbsp sliced almonds
- coarse sea salt
- In a double boiler (or a glass bowl on top of a small pot of boiling water) melt the bar of chocolate.
- Remove from heat and stir in coconut, hemp seeds, granola, and almonds.
- Scoop out spoonfuls of mixture onto parchment paper, lightly pressing the balls together.
- Add 2 or 3 coarse sea salt crystals to the top (optional).
- Let set until dry to touch, about 45-60 minutes.
- Store in fridge or freezer.
If you give these a try, please do let me know what you think in the comments below or in a message. And don’t forget to snap a pic and tag me on Instagram, @mindingmysoul and/or #mindingmysouleats.
Until next time! -Meg