When I think of a rich indulgent holiday dessert, I instantly think of dark chocolate pot de crème! Let’s be honest anything involving chocolate usually makes my treat list. These little lovelies are too die for delicious, HEALTHY and easy!
Did I mention they are practically guilt-free? I substituted pure maple syrup in place of refined white sugar and coconut milk instead of heavy cream. I used Enjoy Life dark chocolate morsels which are vegan, gluten free, dairy free, soy free and nut free (HOLLA!) instead of semi sweet chocolate. The result is a cleaned up version of the original your tastebuds, and best gal pals will thank you for!
Pot de crème cheats
Pot de crème can be tricky to perfect. The traditional recipe requires a lot of sweat and tears… boiling, baking and straining etc. I cheated here a little, shhh don’t tell. Nobody needs to know we only spent five minutes in the kitchen prepping such a decadent dessert. But there are a few tips to perfect the finished product.
- Room temperature eggs. You don’t want to add cold ingredients that could slow the melting of the chocolate chips. Allow eggs to set out for 30 min to one hour.
- Use a high powered blender. I love my Blendtec for this recipe, a Vitamix would also work great. Layer ingredients in order listed in instructions. Blend, blend, blend until warm and silky smoothe.
- Tap your pot de crème jars on the counter to release any air bubbles before refrigerating. It’s kind or therapeutic watching those bubbles pop.
- Don’t skip the salt. It takes the flavor to the next level.
OptUP friendly ingredients
I recently checked my OptUP score and it went up 9 points after my trip to Smiths for this recipe!! You can read all about my love for OptUP in my Clean Eats Grocery Staples post. In short it rates your recent purchases on a scale of 1-100 and calculates an overall score. The higher the score, the healthier your purchases. This cleaned up dark chocolate pot de crème recipe ranks higher than the traditional with these simple recipe swaps.
- Enjoy Life dark chocolate morsels are double the OptUP points than semi sweet chocolate chips.
- Pure maple syrup rates 50% higher than white granulated sugar.
- Coconut cream is 15 points higher than extra creamy whipped cream.
Dark chocolate is your friend
I know this might be hard to believe, but dark chocolate can actually benefit your health, in moderation of course. The actual recommended dose of dark chocolate is 2 grams per day. It’s loaded with nutrients and antioxidants that have proven to improve your health and lower the risk of heart disease. So by all means, eat up friends.
Does this mean this sinfully delicious pot de crème dessert can also be good for you? Yes, yes it does. So dig in and enjoy!!
Staying on track during the holidays can be tricky
But it doesn’t have to be. Holiday parties and events are opportunities to be social! To let loose and HAVE FUN! There was a time in my life where I thought these events were based on the food alone, that it was the food that brought us together. In reality it’s not about the food at all, I mean it is a little, because food. But even more so, we come together to share special moments and make memories with close friends, family and co-workers. Don’t let the food distract you from these rare opportunities. With a little preparation and planning you can make healthy food choices that won’t derail your healthy habits!
If you’re a guest at an upcoming party or event, I’ve gathered up my top six tips for holiday success below.
Six tips for healthy holiday success
- Don’t arrive hungry. Everything looks good when you’re starving, even Aunt Helens fruit cake. Yikes! Hanger can make it sometimes impossible to make good food choices. Set yourself up for success. Have some soup or broth, a handful of nuts, water or an apple before arriving to take the edge off. Try not to “save” all your calories for the party. We train our bodies to eat three meals and a couple snacks a day, don’t alter that during the holidays. Eat your meals leading up to an event with intent, make them smaller with extra veggies and more protein packed if you need to. You’re far more likely to make better food choices if your brain isn’t screaming “FEEEEED MEEEEE”!!!!
- Scope out the spread. Take a walk around the table or buffet to see what food is being offered. Before you even pick up a plate make note of the healthier options available. Treat meals are meant to enjoy foods you don’t eat on a day to day basis, so go ahead and indulge. You deserve it, just don’t over do it.
- Offer to bring a veggie tray or hearty salad to ensure a healthy option for yourself. If you’re unsure of the menu this guarantees you have something healthy to eat if the hostess prefers comfort food over green vegetables.
- Fill your plate 3/4 of the way full with fruits and veggies, then choose proteins and healthy fats to round out your meal. Limit yourself to one trip, if you’re still hungry grab some raw veggies or fruit to fill you up.
- Savor your meal. We tend to eat our treat meals quickly because they are so anticipated. Take smaller bites, use a teaspoon rather than a tablespoon. The first three bîtes are always the most satisfying, so take smaller portions of those foods which you choose to indulge in. Studies show that the chemicals in the brain signaling “pleasure” receive less pleasure the longer we eat a certain food. So rather than feeling like you need a full serving of every dessert at the dessert table, take a bite size portion of each and receive 90% of the pleasure with only 10% of the calories!
- If your friends and family are anything like mine, we love a good chat session. Remove yourself from the food table and have a seat where you’re less likely to reach over and grab a handful of nuts or candy. Three handfuls can quickly lead to 13 and the calories add up…. fast!
Lastly and most importantly enjoy yourself and the good company!!! Make these dark chocolate pot de crème for your next holiday get together and let me know how you like them in the comments!
Happy holidays friends!
Dark Chocolate Pot de Creme
Add first 5 ingredients to a high powered blender in order listed. Blend until smooth.
In a medium saucepan heat coconut milk over medium heat. Heat until almost boiling, do not boil. Remove from burner.
Turn blender to low and slowly add the hot coconut milk. Blend until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is smooth and thick in consistency. You don't want to see any flakes of chocolate.
Pour into individual mini ramekins or 5-7 oz glass jelly jars and refrigerate until firm and set, about two hours.
Sprinkle with salt before serving.
Top with coconut cream or dairy free whipped cream and enjoy!
To remove trapped air bubbles, tap jars or ramekins onto the counter several times to bring bubbles to the surface.
Allow pot to sit out on the counter for 5 minutes before serving.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kroger. The opinions and text are all mine