Category: Chocolate

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding Parfait

I LOVE chocolate, sugar, candy, sweets, and all sorts of amazing, yummy treats.  I have tried to give up sugar at times but was so miserable that I will no longer attempt to deprive myself.  However, I have promised to be a bit healthier while I embrace my love of sugary sweetness.  This is where my delectable Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding Parfait comes in.

Chia seeds are amazing for you and are such a versatile ingredient.  They are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, high in protein, fiber and anti-oxidant rich to boot!  These magical seeds naturally thicken in liquid making them the perfect way to create a healthy pudding.  My favorite way to enjoy this pudding is to add granola (for crunch) and fresh fruit (in this case raspberries) for a burst of freshness.

I enjoy this pudding for breakfast or it can be eaten as a snack or dessert.  This is such a tasty and healthy dish that you can enjoy it guilt-free any time of day.   Please let me know of any healthy dessert swaps that you might have!

Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding Parfait
1 cup milk (I use unsweetened almond milk)
1/4 cup chia seeds
2 T. cocoa powder
2 T. brown sugar
1 T. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/8 tsp. salt

Whisk milk, chia seeds, cocoa powder, brown sugar, white sugar, coffee granules, vanilla extract, and salt together in a bowl until pudding is smooth. Let sit for 5 minutes; stir. Repeat sitting and stirring process at least 2 times.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate, 8 hours to overnight. Pour mixture into blender and blend until smooth. Spoon into bowls and top with granola and berries.

All Mixed Up…
Chia Seed Pudding Post Blending






Chia Seed Pudding

Double Chocolate Banana Bread

Chilly fall mornings – I hate them. I really should move to Arizona where the heat is too much so I could appreciate the Seattle mornings I have lived with my entire life. Alas, that will have to wait another ten years until my little tykes have left home and I am free to do whatever I please.

In the meantime, this Double Chocolate Banana Bread will act as a “hug” for your tummy. Moist and delicious, this is the perfect treat to enjoy with your morning or afternoon cup of coffee.

Double Chocolate Banana Bread

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (Dutch processed or regular)
1 cup granulated white sugar
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dark or milk chocolate chips
2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
3 ripe bananas
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour (or spray with a non stick vegetable/flour spray) the bottom and sides of a 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan.

 In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a large food processor, combine the bananas, eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla.  Process until smooth.   With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, lightly fold the wet ingredients (banana mixture) into the dry ingredients until just combined and batter is thick and chunky. Fold in the chocolate chips. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until bread has risen and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 65 minutes.

Place on a wire rack to cool and then remove the bread from the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature. Can be covered and stored for a few days, or frozen for longer storage.

Makes 1 – 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf.

Easiest Brownies Ever

I love the pitter patter of little feet.  As my boys have gotten older (they are now nine and eight), the tiny pitter patter has become louder stomps, but I still love hearing it.  We live in a neighborhood with lots of kids.  There are times when I will have 6-10 little boys running around and I just love it.  Given that there are so many of them, they are not always at my home, but it makes me appreciate them so much when they are here.  They are sweet, endearing, thoughtful, smart and say the funniest things I have ever heard.

Sometimes I have nothing yummy to feed them and these brownies have become my fool-proof recipe for simple, delicious, decadent and fudgy brownies.  My favorite thing about these brownies is that I don’t have to whip out my mixer and I always have all the ingredients on hand.

Easiest Brownies Ever
adapted from Ghiradelli

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 stick butter, cut into pieces
1 c. firmly packed lighted brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 large eggs
3/4 c. + 2 T all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square baking pan. In the top of a double boiler or in a heatproof bowl over barely simmering water, melt the chocolate chips and butter, stirring occasionally until smooth. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Stir the brown sugar and vanilla into the chocolate mixture. Add the eggs and mix well. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Slowly fold the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture, mixing well until blended. Stir in the chocolate chips and pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until a tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into 2-inch squares. Makes approximately 16 squares – depending on how much batter you eat. 🙂

Samocolate Chip Cookies

No, this is not a typo. These are really called Samocolate Chip Cookies. You see, I love Samoas and I love chocolate chip cookies – so why not combine the two? These are some ridiculously good cookies…

Samocolate Chip Cookies
Yields approximately 4 dozen cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup (160 grams) bread flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups (9 ounces) chopped semisweet chocolate
½ cup (2.5 ounces) finely chopped milk chocolate
2 cups toasted coconut (to toast coconut, place in the preheated 350 degree oven for 6 minutes until lightly browned)
1/2 pound CC Confectionary Madagascar Vanilla Bean Caramels or another variety of fine caramels

Heat the oven to 350 degrees and position a rack in the center of the oven.

Cut your caramels into pieces that are approximately 1/2″ x 1/2″. You should get approximately 48 pieces. Roll each caramel ball in the toasted coconut. The will look like this:

Once completed, set aside the remaining toasted coconut, which will be added to the cookie batter later.

Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until mixture is light and fluffy, about five minutes. Stop the mixer and use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and the paddle itself a couple of times. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract on medium speed until thoroughly combined, two to three minutes.

In a separate bowl, mix together the all-purpose flour, bread flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add both chocolates and remaining toasted coconut to the flour mix and toss to combine. Turn the mixer to low speed (or continue to use a wooden spoon if mixing by hand) and slowly blend the flour-chocolate-coconut mixture into the butter-sugar mixture. Mix until the flour mixture is totally incorporated and the dough is completely mixed.

Using a 1 T. ice cream scoop, drop cookie dough onto a greased cookie sheet or a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper about 3 inches apart. Place one caramel square in the center and top with another tablespoon of dough.

Bake until cookies are lightly golden brown on the edges and soft in the center, approximately 9 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days. The unbaked dough can be stored for up to a week in an airtight container in the fridge.

Chocolate Rosemary Shortbread

I love a delicious cookie that I can whip up in a snap. Even more important with recipes like this is knowing that I will always have the ingredients on hand. Such is the case with my favorite shortbread recipe. Not only is it easy, but the recipe is incredibly versatile. In this version I combined chocolate and rosemary, however you could also switch it up by omitting the rosemary all together or using white chocolate. Some orange zest would be amazing as well. Ooooh, I may try that one nex time.

Chocolate Rosemary Shortbread
adapted from Melissa D’Arrabian

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), softened to room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, very finely minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Cream the butter with sugar using a handheld mixer. Mix in the rosemary, salt, and flour, 1/4 cup at a time. Sprinkle in the chocolate chips, and stir by hand until well-distributed. Gather the dough into a ball. Cook’s Note: If the dough begins to soften or feel greasy, chill the dough for 15 minutes.

Roll the dough out into a rectangle of 1/2-inch thickness and cut into rectangles about 1/2-inch by 2-inch. Place the dough on a cold ungreased baking sheet. Prick the top with a fork. Bake the shortbread for 25 minutes, or until the dough starts to turn a golden color. Remove the shortbread from the baking sheet and let cool completely on a rack.