[I made these cute little Coconut Butter and Chocolate Dipped Oranges for Earth Fare!]
Do you guys remember Magic Shell Chocolate?
As a kid, there was nothing more exciting. But then I discovered that I could use my beloved coconut oil to make HOMEMADE, HEALTHY chocolate that also had a Magic Shell effect. And, to be honest, that was pretty much life changing.
Coconut oil contains saturated fats, which are liquid and pourable at warmer temps, but harden as they cool. (That’s where the magic hardening effect comes in, but more about that in a sec)
If that word ‘saturated fat’ made you a little bit nervous right now, you may be new around here.
The reason it may have made you nervous, (and the reason it made me nervous up until about 4 years ago) is this: for the past 60 years we’ve been fed some pretty misleading info about saturated fat and it’s connection with heart disease, obesity, and cholesterol.
New research shows that naturally occurring saturated fats like coconut oil don’t contribute to heart disease and weight gain. Instead, they actually have some important health benefits. Like balancing hormones and helping us feel full, so we don’t overeat.
And there are one-million-and-one other reasons why coconut oil is a smart addition to your delicious and healthy life. But let’s get back to these chocolate dipped oranges, shall we?
To make the chocolate, simply melt some coconut oil and stir in a bit of good quality, unsweetened cacoa powder (also a superfood). Then sweeten it naturally with a touch of honey, and dip, dip dip.
For the white ones, I dipped the orange slices into some softened coconut butter (aka Cononut Mana). If you’ve never heard of coconut butter (but you love coconut) you are in for a T-R-E-A-T. It’s basically coconut meat blended into a smooth and creamy “butter.” Like straight up coconut oil, it is soft and pourable in warm conditions, and hard in the cold.
I like to finish my oranges with a sprinkle of sea salt and chopped pistachios for texture + the perfect decorative touch. Just be sure to do the sprinkling as you go before the chocolate and coconut butter harden. That way your edible decorations will stick.
PRO TIP: Don’t drop your bowl full of homemade Magic Shell chocolate onto the floor and splatter it over every surface in your kitchen. It will harden (magically) and you’ll have to scrape it off with a spatula. I just generally don’t recommend that step. 😋
Now grab some orange slices and get dippin’!
- 6-8 Mandarin oranges
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 2.5 tablespoons cacao powder (unsweetened)
- 1/2 tablespoon honey
- Coarse sea salt
- About 1/3 cup coconut butter (also known as Coconut Mana)
- Chopped pistachios
- Add the coconut oil, cacao powder, and honey to a small bowl and whisk to combine. Place the mixture in the refrigerator for about 5 minutes to thicken slightly. While the chocolate thickens, peel the oranges and separate into segments.
- Remove the chocolate from the refrigerator and whisk again until it’s smooth. Return it to the refrigerator for a few minutes if needed (you want the chocolate to be thin enough to dip, but thick enough to coat the oranges with a thick layer of chocolate.)
- Once you have the right consistency, dip the orange segments into the chocolate and lay them flat on a parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt after you dip each slice, before the chocolate begins to harden.
- In a separate bowl, heat about 1/3 cup of coconut butter until you have a similar consistency as the chocolate. Dip the remaining orange slices into the coconut butter, laying them flat and sprinkling with chopped pistachios after you dip each one.
- Place the dipped oranges into the refrigerator to harden for 5-10 minutes. Remove and serve!
When you bring home your jar of coconut butter from the store, it will likely have a layer of coconut oil that has risen to the top. I like to microwave the whole jar (without the lid) for 30-45 seconds, and stir to combine.
Don't let me do all the talking! Let me know what you think in the comments.