March 26, 2014 | Posted in:Eating Well, Kitchen Tips

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DIY Dark Chocolate Chips

Dark chocolate has numerous health benefits because it has less sugar and retains more of the nutritional value of pure cacao – it’s unfortunate, then, that it’s impossible to find chocolate chips darker than 70% cacao.   I’ve looked.  And looked.  And looked. Don’t compromise on quality.  Instead, buy your favorite dark chocolate bar from the store (this one is 88% cacao) and chop it into rough chunks using a butcher knife.  It’s DIY Dark Chocolate Chips.

DIY Dark Chocolate Chips - VERY dark chocolate! Create a Healthier Option With This Easy Tip

The most common “very dark” grocery store brands are Green & Black, Endangered Species and Lindt.  However, you can find a host of options on Amazon.  I prefer 85% Cacao, but you can even try 90% and 99% (if you’re very adventurous).  I use sweeter Cacao (as in, a lower percentage of cacao and higher percentage of sugar) when I have an unsweet dough.  85% is great for unsweetened waffle or pancake batter, for instance.  Sometimes I use 90% when the batter is sweet, such as when we make chocolate chip cookies.  Mix it up and see what you like!

A word of caution:  The darker the chocolate, the higher the theobromine (TBR) content.  TBR is a stimulant that acts similarly to caffeine.  I made the mistake of making my son very dark chocolate cake pops for his second birthday.  He ate two cake pops and was up until 11 PM.  A local chocolate shop, Cao Artisanal chocolates, makes chocolate straight from the bean to the bar.  I often have difficulty sleeping after I visit their chocolate bar.  Of course, we always end up there at the end of date night… around 9 PM!  We should try to go there earlier. My mistake.  Use with caution!!!

I hope you enjoy the freedom of your very own DIY Dark Chocolate Chips.

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