Ok class… who can tell me what this is???
Yes, that’s right – it’s an EMPTY box of Dark Chocolate Covered Coffee beans. I’m going to blame this one on a friend I’ll call Heidi R.T. (and you know who you are…) One day, she had a post mentioning that she was choosing from a selection of chocolate/coffee delicacies, with a picture of the chocolate covered coffee beans being one.
Honestly, my first thought was – Oh, how unhealthy! Until… she reminded me of my own philosophy that small bits ARE ok. And, indeed they are! Every day, you have a small amount of “discretionary” calories to have as you choose! There is need to be “a perfect eater” to lose weight, or to simply be healthy!
I coincidentally saw these at the store and purchased them. One serving has 180 calories with 12 grams of fat, however, if you only eat a few chocolate covered coffee beans at a time… the contribution to your total day can be small.
So, I chose to have 6-8 of the chocolate covered beans occasionally before my morning run. That’s around 50-60 calories and is a nice little caffeinated pick-me up equivalent to about a half cup of coffee. And, they are not totally unhealthy. Caffeine has been shown to increase athletic, exercise and running performance, the rate of carbohydrate uptake into the muscles, with some studies showing enhanced fat burn as well. Dark chocolate as well is a powerful source of antioxidants.
However… a couple days ago to my dismay, I had just an empty box!
I’ve missed it so I decided to play around with some recipes…. so here’s one you may want to try!! Making it at home also ensures your own natural ingredients 😉 And, I’m not personally into the Paleo diet, but if you are.. this qualifies!
The original recipe is from memienge.com. I like it because you can make just small bits at a time. This is handy if you are the type of person who’d rather not keep temptation in the house. If you don’t want caffeine, you can substitute use raisins, almonds or other nuts for the coffee beans as well.
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened 100% dark cocoa powder
- ⅛ tsp cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- ¼ cup coffee beans
Melt coconut oil and stir in maple syrup. Stir in cocoa powder, cinnamon, and salt until completely combined.
Place coffee beans on a piece of parchment or wax paper on a plate. Drop small portions of the chocolate mixture on the coffee beans. Now… next time, I would use small candy molds, if you have them and you’re a stickler on having the rounded shape, otherwise they come out more like “drops”… but the flavor is the same 🙂
Put in the fridge or freezer about 15-30 minutes until hardened. Eat. Yum!
You can make variations by substituting raw honey or molasses for the maple syrup; as well you can add mix-ins such as dried coconut or a bit of cayenne pepper. As the coconut oil tends to melt at room temperature, I’d keep these in the fridge.
If the flavor is too “dark chocolate” for you (I love that, but it wasn’t ‘sweet’ enough for my taste-testing Mom), you can use regular cocoa powder instead of dark, and sweeten to taste. I will experiment using natural stevia powder from my garden, and update when I do!
Have a great day, and let me know what you think!!
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