Dark chocolate has many benefits that you can actually enjoy without feeling guilty of the indulgence at all! This may come shocking to most but it is actually considered superfood! It is one of the best sources of antioxidants in the world which is protection from disease-causing free radicals. It also improves heart health as flavanols found in dark chocolate have a very positive effect on heart health by helping lower blood pressure and improving blood flow to the heart as well as the brain. Flavanols can also protect our skin against sun-induced damage. Plus, dark chocolate is also studied to improve the function of the brain; it significantly improves cognitive function by how it helps the blood flow to the brain.
Here are 10 delicious recipes that call for the use of dark chocolate. Enjoy!
Author Notes: This charming loaf may look like a pound cake, and act like a pound cake—and travel well and make sweet gifts like a pound cake. But it’s quite a different little number, and thanks to a slew of hidden perks—it’s better.
Author Notes: These cookies bake up gorgeously, with a crackled top and chewy interior. They are delicious as is or with a handful of dried cherries stirred in with the chocolate and coconut.
Author Notes: These sweet treats are a mix between a no-bake cookie and a truffle. They are wicked. They are also incredibly simple and you probably already have the ingredients on hand. I kind of just threw some stuff in a pot & it ended up being a new favorite. —we eat. happy.
Food52 Review: The olive oil, salt, and chocolate combo really are a good one. And these super easy, fluffy pancakes are a great backdrop for it. The recipe is a good buttermilk pancake batter on its own before you add chocolate and salt. With the resting and the starch they are quite tender. The orange zest and drizzle of olive oil work nicely, but I have to admit that syrup was good too. To avoid burning the chocolate when you flip, add a spoonful of batter on top of the chocolate bits.
Author Notes: There are certain, unnamed nut bars out there that used to be my favorite go-to snack until one day i realized a) I was spending way too much money on them, and b) they weren’t really that great for me health-wise — they of had a boat-load of sugar, a bunch of filler additives and some things I would have to Google in order to understand why they’re an ingredient in my “health” bar. A little under a year ago I tried my hand at making them and discovered that a homemade nut bar is not only better for the wallet, but — bonus! — I can totally control what I put into them. Which means less sugar, less sodium, and a lot more of the good, nutritious stuff!
Fiveandspice’s take on yogurt cake makes a great addition to any baked goods repertoire. The cake, which browns beautifully, has a moist, tender crumb, that contrasts nicely with the studs of slightly firm pear and dark chocolate. Depending on your oven, it may take a bit longer to cook than the time noted, so testing doneness with a toothpick is a must. And yes, it is awfully dangerous to have this cake around – it was gone before the end of the day.
Author Notes: I started by adapting a Dorie Greenspan recipe for thumbprint cookies which features hazelnuts and raspberry jam. I swapped out hazelnuts with almonds, added lemon zest for brightness (I think almost any butter cookie benefits from lemon zest), upped the vanilla, and omitted the confectioners’ sugar for dusting, finding it to detract from the shortbread. Instead of using jam, I decided to fill the thumbprints with dark chocolate sprinkled with a little sea salt. It definitely works well — the rich, salty chocolate center is absolutely delicious with the fragrant vanilla-almond shortbread. And like most shortbread cookies, they keep remarkably well, making them perfect for gifting or preparing in advance for guests. Tightly covered, they should hold well for about a week, if they last that long!
Author Notes: A solid recipe for a gluten- and white sugar-free deep dark chocolate-y brownie with a chewy texture—just sweet enough to satisfy a craving! Though not as decadent as a traditional brownie, I would make these again when I need something gluten-free.
Author Notes: These truffles are dangerous because the 3 ingredients they contain are ones you probably have on hand. You will be able to make them often — and you should — because they are rich, buttery, and delicious thanks to the dark chocolate and avocado. You could mash the avocado by hand, but in this case, the hand mixer is your friend. These are perfect in their simplest form, but I am already thinking of ways to take them over the edge — toasted hazelnuts, shredded coconut, and orange zest immediately come to mind. The variations are endless!
Author Notes: The zucchini, though, is the main star. The pieces give a hearty texture, moistness, and depth to the bread. Added walnuts yield a delicious buttery taste and toasty aromatic flavor that pairs perfectly with the dark chocolate and zucchini.
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