Raw cacao is all the rage—and for good reason! Unlike cocoa, cacao (pronounced kuh-COW) is chocolate in its purest form, not processed or heat treated, meaning more of the cocoa bean’s natural nutrients remain intact. Ground into a fine powder, it can be used just like cocoa to make a rich, hot drink or chocolaty dessert, like this melt-in-your-mouth fudge. It’s vegan. It’s sugar free. And it’s customizable. Sprinkle with toasted coconut, chopped nuts or chopped dried fruit for an irresistible dessert you don’t have to feel guilty about splurging on.
Vegan Cacao-Coconut Freezer Fudge
Recipe courtesy of Jessica Altman, creator of ToothFood.com
Makes approx. 1 lb.
1. Line baking pan (8×8 or 9×9) with parchment paper. Add shredded coconut to pan. (Note: Chopped nuts or chopped dried fruit can be used instead of or in addition to shredded coconut.)
2. Melt coconut oil. Add agave (or honey or maple syrup) and raw cacao and stir well. Pour into pan over coconut (and/or nuts or dried fruit).
3. Freeze for 2 hours until firm. Cut into squares.
Tip: Because this fudge contains no animal fats (or cholesterol), it melts quickly. Store in a sealed container in your freezer.
Nutrition info (per 1 oz. serving, without toppings): 131 calories, 7.6 grams fat, 1.3 grams protein, 11 grams fiber, 14.7 grams sugar)
Jessica Meyers Altman is the writer and creator of Tooth Food, a blog she designed to help patients of her husband’s dental practice, Altman Dental, to learn more about the connection between diet and heart health, blood sugar health and periodontal health. ToothFood.com features recipes that are low in fat, gluten free, high in antioxidants, ant-inflammatory and either low in sugar or free of of refined sugar. Meyers has a background in environmental studies and a master’s degree in science education. She’s passionate about gardening and sharing her knowledge about healthy ways to use in-season foods.