Trail Mix Chocolate Bark

When I think of this month’s recipe redux theme {small bites} I think of dessert and how can I make it healthful and tasty!

One of my favorite nutrient dense options has something – anything to do with dark chocolate and fruit.

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For our May recipe redux theme I’m taking small bites to a decadent level with my portable, snack-able, and versatile Trail Mix Chocolate Bark. It’s perfect to bring for a picnic or for an outdoor themed grad party or to take along with you to the many NOLA festivals!

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Trail Mix Chocolate Bark

Makes: 8-10 servings

2 -3 ounces chocolate bars (70-85% cocoa or higher if desired)

2 tablespoons pistachios

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

2 tablespoons walnuts, chopped

2 tablespoons pecans, chopped

2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds

1 tablespoon dried apricots, diced

1 tablespoon prunes, diced

2 tablespoons dried blueberries

In a glass microwave safe bowl, break apart the dark chocolate bars and melt in the microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring in between, for a total of about 2 minutes.

On a large baking sheet or cutting board, sprayed with nonstick spray, pour the melted chocolate on the board and spread into a fairly thin layer.

Sprinkle evenly with all the nuts and dried fruit.

Pop the board with the chocolate trail mix into the fridge or freezer until the chocolate hardens. Break apart into pieces- it’s as simple as that!

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The key is really portion control here. One little bark or wedge is packed with nutrients from the antioxidant rich dark chocolate, nuts, and fruit. But all of these ingredients, while they can be healthful, are also high calorie and we just need to be mindful of how much we eat.

Dried fruit- the serving size of dried fruit for example is only two tablespoons (I don’t care what the package says as a serving, I’m recommending just 2 spoons). That’s because all the water has been removed and the serving shrivels (literally) to just concentrated sugar albeit fruit sugar. The best thing to look for with dried fruit is unsweetened varieties, you can verify this by looking at the ingredients. If you just see the fruit (blueberries, apricots, plums, etc.) without any added sugars (corn syrup, honey, sugar, etc.) then it’s just dehydrated fruit. This is not likely to happen with cranraisins because of the tart cranberries, but for all else you should get unsweetened fruit, or make your own in a dehydrator like I did with these blueberries when we bought them on sale for their approaching summery season.

Dark Chocolate- here, of course, we can get more fat and sugar calories with the less dark versions (I’d say less than 70% cocoa). The higher that percentage the less fat and sugar is added so of course the taste is a bit more bitter, but you are getting more impactful antioxidants with less calories.

Nuts- to me it doesn’t matter what type of nut you like, they are all good in their own ways as they provide heart-health unsaturated fats, a little protein, fiber, potassium, and phosphorus. So mix it up, but just keep the quantity in check as about 2 tablespoons here is 100 calories due to all those healthy fats.

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So you can see, with this dessert you are getting loads of healthy nutrients, but it’s all about moderation.

The good news is, these are just perfect for sharing!

xo,

Becca


Let’s stay connected on instagram @TwistedNutrition!

 

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