Who doesn’t love chocolate? Who doesn’t love saving money AND impressing your friends with a little DIY gift? This super easy, no bake superfood homemade chocolate bar recipe not only boasts many nutrient-rich ingredients, but it’s also a fun and easy way to knock out the food gifting you want to do during the holidays. These cute little DELICIOUS chocolate bars are gluten, dairy, and refined sugar free, and they make the perfect gift for teachers, bosses, friends, neighbors and family members.
There is so much you can do with the presentation. I’ll either make bars or little truffle squares. You could even use a cute silicone mold with shapes, like these.
These bars are no-bake and don’t involve anything other than melting coconut oil, whisking, and chilling. They require three ingredients plus spices and contain antioxidant-rich cocoa powder; energy and metabolism-boosting virgin coconut oil; grade B unrefined maple syrup (making them refined-sugar free); and any spices you prefer.
Easy Homemade Chocolate Bars
(recipe can be halved or doubled, tripled, etc)
1 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, melted
4 tbsp grade B maple syrup (more or less, if you prefer), xylitol (this one is 100 % birch sugar, corn and GMO free) or coconut palm sugar. NOTE: I tested this recipe using maple syrup for a silkier result. If you use a granulated sweetener, I would suggest grinding it in a coffee or spice grinder to make a powder so you don’t get a gritty end product.)
1 tsp vanilla
sea salt, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, cardamom, dried berries
Press plastic wrap into a standard loaf pan or a square pyrex dish, letting enough hang over the edge so you can easily remove. Measure and put cocoa powder in a medium-sized bowl. Melt coconut oil, then whisk it in with the cocoa. Whisk in maple syrup and vanilla. If you’re a purist, you can stop here; otherwise, try adding spices. See below for suggestions. Once it’s all whisked together it will start to thicken and look like this.
Now, using your fingers, gently press the mixture into loaf pan or pyrex dish (size depending on the thickness you want and how many times you doubled the recipe). Top with sea salt. You can get creative here again and use flakes, Maldon sea salt, smoked salt, etc. Put it in the freezer to harden for at least 30 minutes.
Alternatively, you can make chocolate truffle squares by portioning the chocolate in a silicone ice cube tray (LOVE mine) or the shaped ones I mentioned earlier. Let them harden, then pop them out. They are cute! These are topped with Celtic sea salt.
Here are a few ideas for spices
- add cinnamon and cayenne pepper to taste
- add cracked black pepper, then top with sea salt
- cardamom and allspice
- pumpkin pie spice
- finely chopped dried cherries and black pepper
- finely chopped almonds and cherries and/or sea salt
- dried goji berries
- cacao nibs, then top with sea salt
Get creative as you like! Once the mixture has hardened (don’t skimp on this step–let them get very solid or they fall apart too easily during slicing), carefully remove from the pan and remove the plastic wrap, then slice into whatever size bars you like. If one breaks, don’t worry. I’ll often make little bite-sized pieces and put in a plastic baggie and tie up with a bow. You can slice them like this (or just eat em!):
Then you can tie them up with a little bow or wrap each one individually. Easy and fun! You could also roll them into truffles and coat them with carob, cocoa, or toasted coconut after they come to room temp and start to harden off the stove.
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Mary Vance is a Certified Nutrition Consultant and author specializing in digestive health. In addition to her coaching practice, she offers courses to help you heal your gut and kick nagging digestive issues for good. Mary lives in San Francisco and Lake Tahoe in Northern California. Read more about her coaching practice here and her background here.