As August has approached, Boris and I have celebrated some big milestones. We moved to Philadelphia in June of last year. Boris began the first of a three year residency program. He has now completed his first year! I am constantly in awe of how hard this man works. I too have been working for a year at the hospital, as a clinical dietitian. I continue to learn so much every day. Last week we celebrated our one year anniversary as a married couple. I feel so fortunate to be with such an incredibly supportive man, who hasn’t gotten sick of my kitchen creations. And last, but not least, Making Foods Fit has officially been up and running for a whole year! I so look forward to creating and sharing healthy creations with all of you! With so many big milestones to celebrate, I wanted to share a sweet creation to celebrate such a sweet year. What better way to celebrate than with chocolate?
Chocolate is one of those foods that is frequently misrepresented. It is touted as a health food that is rich in antioxidants, specifically polyphenols. Polyphenols have been shown to have preventative effects against cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer1. This is, of course, in addition to a healthy diet… so I wouldn’t go raiding the leftover Halloween candy just yet. While it is true that some chocolate is high in antioxidants/ polyphenols, it is important to keep in mind that not all chocolate is created equal. Chocolate comes from the cacao bean, which is the purest form of chocolate. The cacao bean is ground into chocolate liquor which can be combined with varying ratios of cacao butter (the fat extracted from the cacao bean) and sugar to make different types of chocolate – milk, unsweetened, bittersweet, etc2. As you might suspect, as the percentage of cacao increases in your chocolate the more antioxidants there are. You’re better off purchasing a chocolate that is at least 65% cacao (as you can see in the ingredient photo below).
You may have guessed (as if my spiel didn’t give it away), this next recipe features dark chocolate! Following a healthy dietary pattern doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy some sweets, but while you’re at it… why not get some antioxidants out of the deal? These Mocha-Chia Pudding Cups will satisfy the sweet tooth while also boosting your daily intake of antioxidants and fiber. I have combined a rich dark chocolate with a Mexican style mocha-chia pudding to create a perfectly decadent dessert. The chocolate cups take some time to make but they give the dessert such an elegant feel. If you don’t have the time to make the cups, then the mocha-chia pudding stands perfectly well on its own. We have been eating it for breakfast.
I hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as I have enjoyed blogging for the last year. Happy, healthy eating!
- 1 cup vanilla almond milk
- 1/4th cup chia seeds
- 1 TBS honey
- 1 TSP instant coffee powder
- 1 TSP cocoa powder, unsweetened
- 1/8th TSP cinnamon
- 12 oz dark chocolate (at least 65% cacao)
- To make the chia-seed pudding, whisk the first six ingredients in a medium bowl until well combined. Set in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to allow the pudding to thicken.
- To make the chocolate cups, place ½ cup of chocolate chunks in a small bowl and heat in the microwave on medium heat for 30 seconds. Remove from the microwave and stir. If the chocolate has not melted, place back in the microwave for increments of 10 seconds until completely melted. Place approximately ½ tbs of chocolate in a foil cupcake wrapper. Using a basting brush, spread the chocolate evenly to coat the bottom and sides of the cup. Place the cup in the refrigerator to solidify. Using this technique, make 8 chocolate cups. (Note: likely will not use the whole bag of chocolate chunks)
- When the chocolate cups have solidified, remove from the refrigerator. Follow the technique in step 2 to place a second coat of chocolate in each cup. Return them to the refrigerator to solidify.
- When the chocolate cups have hardened. Remove them from the refrigerator and gently peel the foil from each cup.
- Fill each cup with the mocha-chia pudding, fruit and chocolate chunks.
Serving Size: 1 Pudding Filled Cup
- Calories: 117 cal
- Protein: 2.1 grams
- Fat: 7.1 grams
- Carbs: 15 grams
- Fiber: 4.1 grams
1. Scalbert, A., Johnson, I., Saltmarsh, M. Polyphenols: Antioxidants and Beyond. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vol. 81 no. 1 215S-217S (2005).
2. Sharp, M. Chocolate Info Archives – Facts About Chocolate. (2015)