Love Chocolate? 4 Healthy Recipes You Should Try
Calling all chocolate lovers - what's better than hearing both healthy and chocolate in the same sentence? Probably not much else. It's the ultimate comfort food, that many of us snack on, and it can change our moods from good to bad in times of need. Sadly chocolate consumed in high amounts isn't the healthiest of choices, however small amounts and of the good type can actually have health benefits!!
Can Chocolate Really Be 'Healthy'?
The answer is yes! - in moderation though of course and with the right kind of chocolate, not the sugary stuff! So this means high cocoa content, dark chocolate. Some even consider it a super-food!
Research is continuing all the time, and experts have already found that chocolate is good for the heart, circulation and brain, and it has been suggested that it may be beneficial in such major heath challenges as autism, obesity and diabetes. - Telegraph
Some of the proven health benefits of eating dark chocolate include:
- It's high in antioxidants
- It improves blood flow and pressure
- It may lower the risk of cardiovascular disease
- It improves blood flow to skin and protects it from the sun.
You can read more about the health side and studies of chocolate on the NHS Choices website.
So how can those that love chocolate enjoy it in a healthy manner? We're going to provide you with our favourite nutritious and tasty recipes that are low on the calories, yet still as scrummy as ever.
Chocolate Zucchini Brownies
Using shredded zucchini in this healthy dessert recipe creates a tender, moist brownie with about half the amount of butter and sugar found in a classic recipe—and it's virtually undetectable in the baked brownies. (Stacy Fraser)
- 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped.
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter.
- 1 cup granulated sugar.
- ¼ teaspoon salt.
- 1 cup shredded zucchini.
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
- 2 large eggs.
- 1 cup white whole-wheat flour.
- ¾ cup chopped semisweet chocolate or chocolate chips.
- ⅔ cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped, divided (optional).
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch-square baking pan with foil, letting it overhang on the sides; coat with cooking spray. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Remove from heat, add unsweetened chocolate and stir until melted. Add sugar and salt; stir until well combined. Stir in zucchini and vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, vigorously mixing after each addition.Fold in the flour until almost incorporated. Fold in chopped chocolate (or chips) and ½ cup pecans (if using) until just combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with the remaining pecans (if using).
Bake until the sides look dry and the middle is firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Let cool completely, then lift out of the pan using the foil. Cut into 16 squares.
Chocolate Bonbon Bombes
Freeze, then un-mold the bombes and drizzle with melted chocolate and peanuts, and serve on a chilled plate.
Chocolate Hazelnut Protein Waffles
These low carb high protein waffles not only look great but taste great too! Perfect for breakfast and with healthy ingredients and topped with fruit it's a perfect choccie recipe.
- 1 cup hazelnut meal.
- 1/2 cup chocolate protein powder.
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder.
- 2 tbsp coconut flour.
- 3 tbsp swerve sweetener or granulated erythritol.
- 4 large eggs.
- 1/3 cup full-fat Greek yogurt.
- 3 tbsp hazelnut oil.
- 1/2 tsp hazelnut extract.
- 1/4 tsp stevia extract.
Preheat waffle iron to medium high. Preheat oven to 200F and place a wire rack over a baking sheet.In a large bowl, whisk together hazelnut meal, protein powder, cocoa powder, coconut flour and sweetener.Whisk in eggs, yogurt, hazelnut oil, hazelnut extract and stevia until well combined. Grease waffle iron if necessary and pour 1/4 to 1/3 cup of batter into each section of the iron.
Close the lid and cook until browned and crisp. Gently remove and transfer to prepared baking sheet in oven to keep warn Repeat with remaining batter. Top with whipped cream, butter, berries, chopped hazelnuts, sugar-free syrup, whatever you desire.
Serves 6. Each serving has 11g of carbs and 4 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 7 g.
Other nutritional info: 257 Calories; 19g Fat (61.5% calories from fat); 16g Protein; 11g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 159mg Cholesterol; 73mg Sodium
Single-Serve Microwave Chocolate Cake Muffin
- 3 tablespoons 9-grain flour/whole wheat flour/gluten free flour.
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder.
- 1 teaspoon organic cane sugar.
- 15 drops of stevia.
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder.
- 1 egg white.
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk.
For the Peanut Butter Chocolate Sauce
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter.
- 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder.
Mix all cake muffin ingredients together in a small mason jar or coffee cup. Then, microwave on medium-high heat for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Tip: I changed my microwave setting to 80% heat.
In a small tupperware, melt peanut butter in microwave for about 20 seconds. Then, add in cocoa powder and mix.Pour on top of cake muffin and enjoy! I sprinkled a few mini dark chocolate chips on top.