Who doesn’t like chocolate? Not many, probably. However, some may not love the [lack of] health benefits that processed, sugar- and fat- laden chocolate delivers. I’ve got a solution that won’t you won’t feel guilty about (and neither will your pants!). Itz marvelous, indeed, which is perfect for today’s Marvelous Monday with Diva Katie!
- South American cultures have been enjoying cacao for its healthful and invigorating properties for thousands of years.
- 100% pure cacao powder – certified organic, kosher, vegan, & raw.
- The bean of the cacao plant is the nutritional and flavorful source for all chocolate and cocoa products.
- Cacao contains a naturally rich supply of antioxidants and is a good source of dietary fiber.
- It is known to be one of the highest dietary sources of magnesium, flavanols, and polyphenols.
- The unsweetened cacao powder is cold-pressed and milled at low temperatures to protect the nutrients.
- Can be used in baking, desserts, sauces, spreads, smoothies, & beverages. (source)
Pretty impressive, eh? What I love most is that it contains NO sugar, but it does have quite a few grams of fiber and even a few grams of protein. Awesomesauce. Now let me show you just some of the marvelous ways I have been enjoying the cacao.
Mixed in with many different Chobani cups of greek yogurt.
Strawberry being my favorite because I love strawberries (any berries) + chocolate! I made a chocolate pancake and topped it with strawberries and Artisana coconut butter. (Again, strawberries + chocolate = killer combo!)
I made a Cherry Cacao smoothie as a post-workout snack. Did you know that consuming cherries after a workout can speed up your recovery? Yessir.
Since pancakes are a staple for my breakfast routine, I wanted to use the cacao as a topping. I made a blueberry pancake and then topped it with Maple Cacao Almond Butter sauce and more blueberries - AMAZING!
Maple Cacao Almond Butter Sauce
- 1 tbsp cacao
- 1 – 2 tbsp almond butter
- 2 – 3 tbsp vanilla almond milk
- 1 tsp chia seeds (for thickening)
- few drops of pure maple syrup
- Heat almond butter in microwave for 1 minute.
- Combine all ingredients.
- Let sit for a few minutes to thicken.
This was an awesome topper to my pancake, but I imagine it would be equally amazing in oatmeal, or even spread on a sandwich.
Goji is a superfood, too, and the snack bites were very tasty. I’d like to try to recreate something like that at home. A girl can never have too many lip balms, and the cacao one smelled good, tasted good, and felt good – Win, win!
Another recipe I made using the cacao was one I had been wanting to try for a long time: Avocado Mousse. Avocados are getting a lot of rave recently – as they should be – for their healthy fats and there are recipes being created out of the wazoo. I love avocados and I knew the avocado – cacao combo would be stellar.
And I was right. :) Combine 1 avocado, 3 tablespoons cacao, 3 tablespoons agave, 1 tablespoon chia seeds, and 1/2 vanilla almond milk in food processor and pulse until smooth. Place in refrigerator until chilled and serve with your favorite berry!
With all these marvelous cacao combinations, you’ve probably got a hankerin’ sweet tooth, eh? Well, drool no longer because the kind folks at Navitas Naturals are giving one lucky Itz Linz reader a bag of their Organic Raw Cacao Powder!
Here’s how to enter:
- Tell me how you would use the cacao.
- Follow Itz Linz on Twitter and tweet, “What’s better & healthier than chocolate? CACAO! Win a bag of @NavitasNaturals Organic Raw Cacao Powder from @ItzLinz! http://wp.me/p264zq-HH” and leave a comment telling me you did.
- Subscribe to Itz Linz (enter your e-mail address in the top right corner of site).
- Follow Itz Linz on Pinterest.
Don’t forget to become a fan of Itz Linz on Facebook, too! This giveaway will be open until Friday, July 27th at 9:00 pm CST and a winner will be randomly selected on Saturday, July 28th, 2012. The winner will have 48 hours to contact me or another winner will be chosen. Best of luck!
*Disclaimer: Beyond the
chocolatey cacao treats that Navistas Naturals sent me, I was not compensated for this post.