Chocolate Nut Clusters

Hello! It’s Molly; it’s been a while, but I’m still here! I’m currently sitting here looking at pumpkin decor, smelling fall-scented candles, and really wishing I had a warm slice of pumpkin bread. It’s starting to *kind of* cool down, fall decorations are coming out, and the holiday season is in sight. All of this can only mean one thing: aside from eating all the goodies, of course, it’s time to bake the goodies! However, if you’re like me, you still get a little sweaty turning the oven on; I’m also still slightly sleep deprived from having my second baby only five months ago, so any extra energy I have is usually devoted to tidying up. I would love to be able to bake more, but right now most dessert recipes are a little too time intensive for me. So what’s a sweaty, tired mama to do when Fall comes a-knocking asking for goodies? Make this recipe! It is super simple, delicious, sweet, crunchy, and salty; these two ingredient Chocolate Nut Clusters satisfied my third trimester cravings, and are the perfect go-to in this busy season if you’re craving a treat but short on time. Hope you enjoy!

Chocolate Nut Clusters

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces of dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup of nuts of your choice, chopped (I used pecans and almonds)
  • Flaky sea salt (optional)

Directions

  1. Toast nuts for about 2 minutes on a dry skillet on medium heat, just until aromatic. Set aside
  2. Melt chocolate in a microwave safe bowl, stirring well after 30 second increments.
  3. Stir nuts into melted chocolate
  4. Drop spoonfuls of chocolate covered nuts on a parchment lined (or my favorite silicone mats)
  5. Sprinkle with sea salt, if desired
  6. Refrigerate until firm
  7. Store covered in the fridge for a week, but they’ll be gone long before that hehe

For more fall goodness, check out my Pumpkin Pecan Muffins, Apple Pie Parfaits, or my No Bake Pumpkin Pie. I hope everyone has been healthy and well during this post-apocalyptic movie of a year we’ve had. You will find plenty of comfort food on this site, and feel free to reach out to chat if needed. Stay healthy, hug your family, eat fall goodies…and enjoy your Pinch of Crazy!

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Marbled Peppermint Bark

I have your new Christmas time addiction: peppermint bark. It’s dangerously simple, nothing is more Christmasy than cool peppermint, and nothing is more luxurious than dark chocolate and white chocolate swirled together in melty, delicious harmony. Now, these are not my usual refined sugar free treats because white chocolate has a lot of sugar, but making a few batches this holiday season won’t hurt! Eating “cheat” foods you enjoy without guilt, to me, makes living a healthy lifestyle honestly enjoyable! I love healthy food, and I love how I feel when I eat intuitively, and sometimes my intuition (especially when pregnant during the holidays) says to eat peppermint bark. No need to feel deprived this holiday season – enjoy your sugary treats if it feels good for your body! I hope this quick and delicious “recipe” (can’t even really call it that) hits the spot and brings holiday cheer!

Marbled Peppermint Bark


Ingredients

  • 8 oz of dark baking chocolate
  • 8 oz of white baking chocolate
  • 6-8 drops of peppermint essential oil
  • 4 candy canes, crushed or roughly chopped

Directions

  1. Melt dark chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; heating for 30 seconds and stirring after each interval.
  2. Once melted, add peppermint oil and stir to combine.
  3. Spread dark chocolate thinly on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
  4. Melt white chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl, stirring after each 30 second interval of heating.
  5. Spoon globs (technical term) of white chocolate on top of dark chocolate, then create the “marbling” by running your spoon vertically then horizontally through both layers.
  6. Top the bark with crushed candy canes.
  7. Chill until solid (5ish hours in the fridge and 2ish hours in the freezer), then break into pieces using a knife. Enjoy the scraps before sharing with your kids 😉
  8. Store in the refrigerator.

 

This Marbled Peppermint Bark, along with my Molasses Cookies, have been made every Christmas since my husband and I were married; it’s a sweet (literally and emotionally) holiday tradition. If you are looking for refined sugar free Christmas desserts, please try the cookies linked above, as well as Two Layer Paleo Fudge, and for Christmas sweet drinks, look no further than my Death by Hot ChocolateSlow Cooker Apple Cider, and Dairy Free Eggnog. Whatever you end up making, I hope it brings some holiday cheer to you and yours! Spend time with your loved ones, indulge this holiday season…and enjoy your Pinch of Crazy!

This post contains affiliate links; if you purchase using the links, it is of no extra cost to you, just a small commission for me. Thank you for supporting A Pinch of Crazy!

Dark Chocolate Paleo Brownies

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Chocoholics Unite!

I think it’s about time I come clean… I’m a chocoholic. I mean, really. Not just like, “why, yes, I do enjoy a cookie from time to time” more like frantically shouting, “babe, you need to hide all of our child’s Halloween candy somewhere or it will be gone by tomorrow and I’ll be miserable!” I have to keep treats out of the house or I’ll go chocoholic crazy and eat them all without even blinking, but sometimes you just need a chocolate fix.

So what do you do when those chocolate cravings just won’t quit? Binge on less than satisfactory, high sugar candy bars that you stole out of your child’s Halloween bucket? (that’s not just me, right?) No! You whip up a quick batch of Dark Chocolate Paleo Brownies! Gluten free and sweetened with coconut sugar, these cake-like brownies are every chocolate lover’s dream! 100% cacao powder leads to a rich chocolate flavor, made even chocolatey-er (yeah, it’s a word…) by the dark chocolate chips studded throughout. Follow a fresh brownie with a glass of cold almond milk, and you have a delicious treat that satisfies the chocolate craving…without all the guilt!

Dark Chocolate Paleo Brownies

Makes one 8×8 pan. 

Ingredients:

  • One cup of gluten free flour (this 3 lb bag is 20% off until 11/16!)
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • Grease 8×8 pan
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (flour through salt)
  • Add wet ingredients (eggs through vanilla), stir until well combined
  • Fold in chocolate chips
  • Spread batter into prepared pan
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes, until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean
  • Let cool 10-15 minutes before slicing
  • Store covered at room temperature for 5 days

If you like healthier baked goods, you may like my Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookie BarsWholesome Chocolate Chunk Cookies, and breads: Pumpkin Bread with Crumb Topping and Banana Bread with Granola Crumble; these wholesome treats are sure to satisfy a sweet tooth! If no-bake is more your style, I also have Chocolate Banana “Nice” Cream and No Bake Chocolate Date Cake; both are deliciously simple and sweet! No matter if you bake or blend up a batch of nice cream, I hope your sweet tooth is satisfied and your chocolate cravings silenced in a healthier way. Happy dessert-eating…and enjoy your pinch of crazy!