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How to Make Homemade Chocolate Bars + 2 Herb-Inspired Variations

Chocolate bars with hemp seeds, bee pollen and maca powder

I’ve never had much of a sweet tooth. I’ll take an entrée over a dessert any day of the week. Thus, I’ve never understood people’s obsession with chocolate. I mean, sure, I enjoy a bite every now and then if an organic, small batch, artisan-made piece of a chocolate bar is offered to me, but I don’t seek it out. Recently, however, as tends to happen for me, an idea and inspiration struck. I could make my own chocolate! Better yet, I could make a chocolate bar sans refined white sugar, which is my main repulsion to most sweets. I declared to my household that I would make a chocolate bar with maple syrup as the sweetener. My daughter found this to be a less than revolutionary statement. “Dad, that’s what you always use.” Hey, sometimes I use honey…

Mountain Rose Herbs sells both roasted cacao powder and roasted cocoa butter wafers, the two main ingredients in chocolate. I thought, “This is going to be easy!”.

And it was. Sorry, you probably thought I was going to say it was super complicated, frustrating, and not worth the time. On the contrary, I found it to be incredibly easy, super delicious, and much cheaper than buying chocolate at the store.

You may be thinking, “But Mason, you have one of the most accepting palates of all time. I mean, you enjoy gentian root, schisandra berry, and mushrooms!” I see your point. I’m excited to inform you that my family, who have much more discerning palates, also loved the chocolate I made. And boy howdy, do they love their chocolate! Trust me, they’d let me know if mine was subpar.

Stack of chocolate bars

Keep in mind, I am not a chocolatier. I am an adventurous home cook that loves experimentation. So, I am in no way claiming that this is the way to make chocolate. But my recipe is simple, delicious, homemade, healthy, cheaper than store-bought, and gets you 99% of the way there flavor-wise. I’m also providing some fun herb-inspired variations to sneak in new flavor profiles, botanical goodness, and nutrition.

Please comment below if you try this recipe out. And especially let us know of any fun flavor combinations you experiment with. I truly hope you enjoy!

Note: Although the “basic” recipe is listed first, my family and I highly prefer the versions with peanut butter. We find the flavor and texture to be superior. If there’s a peanut allergy in your home, try almond butter, or a different nut butter of your choice.

Chocolate with cacao beans and bee pollen


Basic Chocolate Bar Recipe

Ingredients

Directions

  1. In a pot set over medium heat, melt the roasted cocoa butter wafers.
  2. Whisk in the roasted cacao powder until fully combined. It should be dark brown, unctuous, and smell delicious.
  3. Turn off the heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes.
  4. Pour in the maple syrup and whisk until fully combined.
  5. Pour into chocolate molds or onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to cool completely.
  6. Place chocolate in freezer to speed up the process.

Chocolate Crunch Bar with Cordyceps

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Follow steps 1-4 in basic recipe.
  2. Whisk in the peanut butter until fully combined.
  3. Whisk in the cacao nibs, hemp seeds, and cordyceps powder.
  4. Turn off the heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes.
  5. Pour into chocolate molds or onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to cool completely.
  6. Place chocolate in freezer to speed up the process.

Maca powder, bee pollen and chocolate


Maca and Bee Pollen Chocolate Bar

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Follow steps 1-4 in basic recipe.
  2. Whisk in the peanut butter until fully combined.
  3. Whisk in the maca powder and bee pollen.
  4. Turn off the heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes.
  5. Pour into chocolate molds or onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to cool completely.
  6. Place chocolate in freezer to speed up the process.


Want to learn more about?

CHECK OUT OUR GUIDE TO CACAO!

You may also be interested in:

Herbal chocolate bars for Pinterest

 


Topics: Culinary, Herbal Gift Ideas, Recipes

Mason

Written by Mason on February 12, 2021

Mason Hutchison is the founder of HerbRally, a podcast and website that promotes herbalism education and events. He has completed herbalism apprenticeships at the Columbines School of Botanical Studies and the Arctos School of Herbal and Botanical Studies. Mason is the Events & Outreach Strategist for Mountain Rose Herbs. His day-to-day work involves organizing community events such as the Free Herbalism Project, as well as attending herbal conferences throughout the country. He is the co-organizer of one of the longest running herbal events in the US, the Breitenbush Herbal Conference. He is also on the board of directors for the Eugene Tea Festival. He has previously volunteered for the Occupy Medical herb team and the Native Plant Society of Oregon – Emerald Chapter. Mason is a proud father, avid basketball and ping pong player, spring water gatherer, and an enthusiast in the art of frugal nutrition.


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