Raw Cacao Butter Chocolate Bark

paleo-chocolate-bark-raw-recipe
My little confession is that I don’t particularly like chocolate. I appreciate it and I really enjoy a square or two of dark chocolate for both the flavour and the antioxidants, but we don’t really stock chocolate treats in our pantry. I do however like playing with chocolate in the kitchen and my friends like me more for it. My last game was to make a smooth, crunchy dark chocolate bark using raw cacao butter.

Before I begin the recipe, here are some facts you might find interesting:

  • Cacao butter and cocoa butter are ‘almost’ the same thing. Cacao butter is the raw version of edible, vegetable fat derived from cacao bean. It is extracted and treated using very low temperatures, and is therefore considered raw and more nutritious; cocoa butter is produced by applying more heat. The same difference applies to raw cacao powder versus cocoa powder with the latter being roasted, processed type. Again, the raw cacao is deemed more superior when it comes to health benefits.
  • In its solidified form, cacao butter looks like white chocolate. It has the same mouth feel and consistency when you taste it, minus the sweetness.
  • Cacao butter and cocoa butter are very stable fats with long shelf life and will solidify at room temperature.
    Both are used in beauty products and are commonly seen as ingredients in raw, dairy free treats including raw chocolate. You can cook with it and you can rub it on your skin or lips as it will melt at body temperature.
  • Based on the latest research findings, Mauro Serafini, PhD, of Italy’s National Institute for Food and Nutrition Research in Rome, and colleagues, claim that “milk may interfere the absorption of antioxidants from chocolate… and may therefore negate the potential health benefits that can be derived from eating moderate amounts of dark chocolate.” This makes raw, dairy free chocolate more superior.

Look for cacao or cocoa butter in your local health food store or online. Raw cacao powder can be replaced with regular cocoa powder or powdered chocolate (unsweetened).

Please note that the original recipe that used coconut sugar has been amended to use honey or other liquid sweetener as some people experienced issues with the sugar melting.

Want more chocolate recipes?

Paleo Jaffa Rum Balls
Paleo Chocolate Cashew Buttercups
Chocolate & Hazelnut Salted Caramel Tart
Paleo Chocolate Brownies
Paleo Chocolate Ice Cream

Let me know what you think of this recipe in the comments below. Do share with friends and family, or bookmark it for later on Pinterest from here. Snapping it for Instagram? Tag @eatdrinkpaleo so I can find it.

Irena x

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4.0 from 1 reviews
Raw Cacao Butter Chocolate Bark
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
 
Ingredients
  • About 1 cup cacao butter (about 220-250 grams of solid cacao butter, broken into chunks)
  • 6-7 tablespoons raw cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
  • 3-4 tablespoons honey or maple syrup, brown rice syrup is also fine
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract/essence
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoons silvered or shaved almonds
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flakes (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon dried blueberries or cranberries, raisin are also ok
  • You will also need a saucepan quarter filled with water, digital thermometer, a heat proof bowl that goes over the saucepan, a whisk, shallow baking tray and non-stick baking paper.
Instructions
  1. Bring a saucepan of water (about quarter full) to boil and then turn the heat down to simmering. Add the cacao butter to a heatproof bowl and place over the simmering water in the saucepan. Make sure no water gets in the cacao butter. Melt the butter, stirring with a whisk or a spatula, and when almost all of it is melted, stick the digital thermometer in to check the temperature. Make sure you don’t go over 48°C/118°F. If you get very close and the cacao butter is still melting, remove the bowl from the heat and let the butter melt further on the countertop. The temperature will start to drop and that's what we're after.
  2. Once the cacao butter is melted, add the cacao powder, vanilla and honey or your preferred sweetener and whisk together until all dissolved and well incorporated. The temperature will go down further once you add other ingredients. Keep it at about 32-35°C, warm it up if needed but NOT all the way up to 48°C. This will keep it smooth and silky, and decrease the chances of chocolate seize (when it turns into grainy paste).
  3. Finally, add the salt and whisk together until smooth. Line a tray with baking paper, making sure the sides are covered so no chocolate liquid is spilt over the edges. Pour the chocolate into the tray and let is spread into a thin bark layer.
  4. While still melted and hot, sprinkle evenly with pumpkin seeds, almonds, coconut flakes and dried blueberries or other nuts and dried fruit of your choice. You can even use fresh berries if you plan to eat the bark in the next couple of days.
  5. Place the tray in the fridge for at least 2 hours. The bark will solidify within 30 minutes but it’s a good idea to let it stand for a little longer. Keep in an airtight container in or out of the fridge, depending on how crunchy you like it. It will keep for quite a while.

paleo-chocolate-bark-recipe

Comments

  1. BeesVees says

    I made this with Yacon syrup and chopped almonds soaked in vanilla water overnight. Maybe my favorite thing ever. Melting the chocolate makes any scented candle seem very sad. I used Bulletproof Cacao Butter.

  2. Lucy says

    Have made this a few times (It’s yummy) and haven’t managed to make it without the honey sinking to the bottom in a sticky mess. I’ve tried runny and set honey but same story. Any ideas?

    • Irena says

      Try to warm up the honey slightly as it’s possibly too thick and doesn’t dissolve in time, so it sinks to the bottom.

  3. Sneha Bajaj says

    Hi, Will this kinda chocolate stay unmelted/solid at room temperature? Awaiting your revert pla.. have been trying hard to make my own speciality from cocoa butter

  4. Jo says

    Just made this and thank you for the recipe, I didn’t have some of the ingredients so substituted walnuts and Goji berries – super easy and super yummy. My husband is a huge chocolate fan so I will be in the good books until the next one. Thanks again.

  5. tamar says

    I followed the recipe and when it was still liquid it tasted good. But when i took it out of the fridge the chocolate wasn’t good. It had two colors: white from the cacao butter and underneath is was brown as chocolate should be but the bottom was liquid and sweet. I think the sweetness sank to the bottom. I melted the whole thing to try it again and made a thinner piece. Still no succes. What can i do?

  6. john says

    This recipe might be fine with any other sweetener besides coconut sugar but with coconut sugar it is horrible. The coconut sugar will not combine with the chocolate and it turns into sludge and once it dries it gets extremely hard. This recipe should either be changed or taken down before anyone else wastes expensive ingredients.

    • David says

      I know from making vegan cookies that sugar and fat need a dash of liquid to help them blend fully, and it takes a LOT of mixing. I’m new to chocolate-making, though, and don’t know how much liquid a batch can take before seizing up, so I’ve had a similar struggle with any kind of crystalized sugar. Liquid options like agave and honey have worked much better, and once again, you have to keep on mixing, mixing, mixing until the proper chemical reactions needed for sugar and fat to mix actually happen.

    • El Rey says

      Agreed. The coconut sugar just won’t dissolve. I’ve been stirring for 30 minutes with no noticeable progress.

  7. lynne says

    I also could not get the sugar to dissolve even the tiniest bit in the cacao butter mixture. I eventually had to strain the mixture to save the chocolate. I even tried putting the sugar-paste in a food processor and even that did not get it to dissolve. I then tried honey and that did not emulsify with the cacao butter either, even with gentle heat over the double boiler. Clearly, there is something in the chemistry of cacao butter that prevents sugars from dissolving or emulsifying. I also found the texture of the final product to be a bit greasy.

  8. Jabou says

    I made this today and it worked fantastically! I sweetened it with stevia and that worked out just fine. Filled it up with roasted nuts, cranberry’s and cacao nibs. Thank you so much for this recipe!

    Tip: I didn’t use a thermometer instead i put something metal ( blunt knife) in the butter and pressed it just under my bottom lip, just beneath 48C it should sting but not to much. At that point i removed it from the heat on to the counter. Risky but it worked for me.

    • says

      I use organic birch xylitol (not from corn, but from the birch tree). Like coconut sugar, it won’t dissolve in the mixture. You have to dissolve it ahead of time. I usually take 2-4 Tablespoons of water and heat in the microwave (or on the stove), and stir in the xylitol and the Celtic sea salt (as fluoride has been found in Himalayan, and Himalayan sea salt actually comes from Pakistan – not the Himalayas). I will re-heat, if necessary, and continue stirring until the xylitol and salt liquify. It becomes a syrup that I easily add to the mixture, and it blends a lot better that way. Otherwise, I’ve found that the salt and sugar can fall to the bottom of the pan instead of blending with the chocolate.

  9. Allan says

    Hey there,

    I have made this recipe twice now and I cannot seem to get the coconut sugar to fully (or even mostly) dissolve. It stays as a grainy paste on the bottom after watching temp and whisking the hell out of it. Any advice there?

  10. Lora-jane Reynolds says

    Hi, I made this recipe tonight just as you have instructed, but when looking at it after 2 hours I found it has separated. The cacao butter is all on the top with the cacao on the bottom. Do you have any idea what went wrong?
    Many thanks
    Lora-Jane

  11. Lora-jane Reynolds says

    Hi, I made this recipe tonight just as you have instructed, but when looking at it after 2 hours I found it has separated. The cacao butter is all on the top with the cacao on the bottom. Do you have any idea what went wrong?
    Many thanks/
    Lora-Jane

    • imacri says

      Hey Lora-Jane,

      That usually means that the chocolate didn’t temper properly. Basically, what it means that the chocolate overheated. Another possible cause could be that some water got in the mix. I had a look through instructions again and noticed that I didn’t explain the tempering process properly, I’ve now updated it.

      p.s. even though cacao butter separated, the bark is still fine to eat…it just doesn’t looks as pretty.

  12. Lana Noel says

    Hi, this looked like a great recipe to use the cacao butter I recently purchased. So i made it. I love the yummy bits to add in. I even chopped up some hazelnuts to throw in. The hardened chocolate seems a tad oily compared to most chocolate. Is yours that way, or maybe I did something wrong in the cooking process. It was my first time to make chocolate.

    Thanks for the recipe.

  13. Janice Kain says

    I am excited about making chocolate from the raw ingredients. I have already made my first batch before seeing your site. Am pleased I used my intuition and have done it right. Cant wait to taste. Thank you for your site. Looking forward to better health. :)

  14. Mint says

    Oh.. my.. god… THANK YOU SO MUCH!! I’ve been looking wildly for a chocolate recipe which uses cocoa butter, and I somehow found this after all too long. I will be trying this, replacing some of the cocoa powder with milk powder to make it more of a milk chocolate. I’ll tell you how it went :)!

      • imacri says

        No I haven’t. I’m sure you can experiment by adding some butter, milk or cream. I’m not a fan of milk chocolate personally, so I never try ;)

  15. says

    I on the other hand am absolutely obsessed with all things chocolate. When I saw this my mouth started to drool. This is a must try for me! Keep em coming!

  16. says

    Hey! I simply, and enthusiastically, LOVE your site and your recipes. I cannot wait to try them as soon as I can get to the store. I tried to buy your cookbook thru your little “early bird” offer but the link just took me to your video. I enjoyed the video and hope you can send me the info on how to buy it.

    thank you,
    christi

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