Crunchy Bittersweet Chocolate Bites

by Valerie on November 20, 2011 · 21 comments

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As for many people, this tends to be a busy of time of year at my job, so, as a quick break from work,  I am just stopping by with a recipe for these wonderfully crunchy, sweet with a touch of savory chocolate bites. They are gift-giving-worthy, which is why I am submitting them to Gluten-Free Holiday, created by Amy of Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free and hosted this week by Alta of Tasty Eats at Home.  

A shopping note: For this recipe you will need slivered almonds and raw pumpkin seeds, as well as some unsweetened dried fruit or berries.  I don’t know about you but most packaged nuts and fruits at stores I go to always seem to carry a disclaimer such as “packaged on same equipment as gluten-containing ingredients” – so I was thrilled to discover nutsonline last year.  Their gluten-free policy put my mind at ease, and, with the exception of a few products (such as my beloved Navitas raw cacao) I order most nuts and seeds (and things like gluten-free flours and dried beans) from them, as well as any dried fruit for recipes or for my husband.  

Crunchy Bittersweet Chocolate Bites (Gluten-Free, Vegan, Soy-Free) – Makes 16 to 20 pieces

You can replace the nuts/seeds/fruit with other combinations, such as sunflower seeds and chopped walnuts. I used agave for this recipe as it is easier to find, but you could also use coconut nectar or another liquid sweetener. I recommend making these in silicone mini muffin cups and then transferring them to festive paper cups for gift-giving.

  • 1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao (note, you could use unsweetened cocoa powder as well, but the final bites might tend even more dark chocolate in flavor)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (I used this one)
  • 1 tablespoon agave or other liquid sweetener
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 6 tablespoons raw shelled pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup dried berries or dried fruit (if using something like dried apricots, chop into berry-sized pieces. I used goji berries, which had a nice sweet-tart profile)
  • Flaky sea salt (I used pink salt as it is so pretty)

Melt coconut oil over low heat.  While coconut oil is melting, place raw cacao in a large bowl.  Take coconut oil off heat source and whisk in vanilla extract and agave or other liquid sweetener.  Pour coconut oil mixture into bowl and whisk with cacao until well combined.  You should have something that looks like thick chocolate souce.  Stir in slivered almonds, pumpkin seeds and dried berries/fruit until everything is well coated in chocolate.  Divide mixture among 16-20 mini muffin cups.  Top each with a small pinch of salt. Chill in freezer for a crispier result, or in fridge for a fudgier result.  Store in either fridge or freezer until time to eat or give as a gift, as the bites melt fast.   

I am submitting this recipe to the following weekly events:

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Vicky November 20, 2011 at 9:58 pm

These look so tempting! Lovely photo! Amazing flavour combination!


2 Valerie November 20, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Thank you Vicki. I have played around with many combinations/ratios, and these are my favorites, but you can of course substitute other nuts etc. :)


3 Vicky November 20, 2011 at 10:07 pm

I think your choice is just perfect! I have some raw cacao, I will definitely be making these for Christmas treats!


4 Valerie November 20, 2011 at 10:16 pm

Great to hear :) SO glad you like the recipe :)


5 Shirley @ gfe November 20, 2011 at 10:12 pm

Those look so awesome, Valerie! Think I’ll use dried cranberries as my fruit since I just picked some up. What a beautiful and delicious treat! They’ll make a lovely gift or treat for home. :-)



6 Valerie November 20, 2011 at 10:14 pm

Cranberries would be great here as well. But you know my love for chocolate and cranberries (


7 Lexi November 20, 2011 at 11:41 pm

These look so delicious. I may try to make them minus the nuts. Thank you for sharing this lovely holiday inspired recipe.


8 Valerie November 21, 2011 at 12:21 am

You could use sunflower seeds instead of the nuts too :)


9 Lexi November 21, 2011 at 1:04 am

That is a wonderful suggestion. I keep trying to find new ways to avoid nuts and still have delicious treats like this. To be honest, I never thought of sunflower seeds. Thank you!


10 Victoria (District Chocoholic) November 21, 2011 at 12:11 am

Salt, dried fruit, and chocolate? Yes please.

Also, you look beautiful in the new picture on the sidebar.


11 Valerie November 21, 2011 at 12:22 am

Awww, thank you Victoria :)


12 Diane Eblin-thewholegang November 21, 2011 at 2:09 am

wow these sound great. I’m not sure there would be any left for me to share when I make them.


13 Valerie December 6, 2011 at 3:23 am

Yeah, I ate that first batch fast :)


14 Nada (One Arab Vegan) November 24, 2011 at 5:16 pm

These sound divine! I love that they’re so simple and no-bake. I have a load of goji berries that I don’t know what to do with so this is perfect, thanks for sharing :)


15 Valerie December 6, 2011 at 3:24 am

I usually am not one to push for goji’s in a recipe (honestly, I am meh on them and still working my way through the one bag of them I ever bought) but their flavor profile is pretty perfect for this.


16 Linda December 7, 2011 at 12:12 am

This looks great, Valerie. I love the crunch factor.


17 Valerie December 7, 2011 at 12:20 am

The crunch factor is wonderful :)


18 Heather @Gluten-Free Cat July 12, 2012 at 1:50 pm

These are beautiful and sound so delicious! Can’t believe I missed these last year!


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