Drinking Chocolate

Hot cocoa = superfood? Yes — with a few smart additions.

More than just a cold-weather treat, hot cocoa can be a great source of nutrition. Cacao beans and nibs contain magnesium and potent antioxidants. Use this handy guide to stir up a mug of tasty goodness, and toast to your health!

Basic Cocoa

RecipeFile-December201510 servings

For maximum antioxidant benefits, choose raw cacao powder. Himalayan pink salt is also considered a “superfood” — or especially rich with beneficial nutrients.

1 cup unsweetened cacao or cocoa powder

¼ cup coconut sugar crystals

¼ tsp Himalayan pink salt (or other flaky sea salt.)

1. Mix ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight container.

2. Add two tablespoons of cocoa base to your favorite mug, and add one cup of warmed milk (cashew, coconut, hemp, almond, cow or goat’s milk will all work.) Whisk until smooth.

3. Next, choose your superfood! From a pinch to a spoonful, depending on the ingredient

  • A pinch of cayenne
  • A pinch of cinnamon
  • A teaspoon of coconut oil
  • A pinch of ginger
  • A teaspoon of pasture butter
  • A pinch of turmeric

4. Now, try adding a bit of flavor — just a drop or a dash will do. Try coconut, lavender, orange, peppermint or almond extracts, or a sprinkle of vanilla.

5. Finally, top it off! You can use whipped cream (dairy or dairy-free versions), toasted coconut or our recipe for homemade marshmallows.

Marshmallows

1 cup water, divided

3 tablespoon grass-fed beef gelatin, such as Vital Proteins

1 cup pure honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ teaspoon sea salt

1. Line a greased 8-inch by 8-inch pan with greased parchment paper (greasing the parchment too makes it stay in place). In a stand mixer bowl, combine ½ cup of water and the gelatin. Set aside.

2. In a sauce pan, combine the remaining ½ cup of water, honey, vanilla and salt. Over medium-high heat, bring the mixture to a boil. Place a candy thermometer in the sauce pan and continue to boil the mixture until it reaches 240° F, approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Immediately remove from heat.

3. With the stand mixer on the low setting and using the whisk attachment, slowly pour the hot honey mixture into the bowl, combining it with the water and gelatin mixture. Turn the mixer to high and continue beating until it for about 10 minutes, until it becomes thick like marshmallow crème.

4. Transfer the marshmallow crème to the prepared pan. Lightly grease your hands with oil and pat smooth. Allow it to set overnight, then remove the marshmallows by lifting the parchment paper. Slice marshmallows into size of your choice.

Christi Reed

Christi Reed

Nutritionist at New Seasons Market
Christi Reed is one of four nutritionists that teach free classes and lead tours at New Seasons Market — a local grocery chain with locations throughout the metro area. Join a New Seasons Market Nutritionist for a free appointment to explore the store and reshape your shopping cart: newseasonsmarket.com/talknshop.
Christi Reed

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