Forget Nutella. It’s loaded with sugar and all sorts of processed nasties. Instead, say hello to ‘Cleantella’ and continue to enjoy the same delicious chocolate hazelnut taste.
This version of the nutty-chocolate spread is made using whole, unsalted hazelnuts which are naturally sweet and loaded with energy. They have plenty of essential fatty acids to help with cholesterol, vitamin E to keep our immune system, hair, skin and nails strong, dietary fibre and calcium, iron and magnesium for bone health to name but a few!
I have already spoke about the benefits of cacao in my previous ‘Chocolate Truffles’ post (which you can read about in the recipes tab), whilst raw coconut oil which we will also use in this is one of the best superfoods around. Yes it is high in saturated fat so it is important to use in moderation but the type of fat in coconut oil – known as medium chain triglycerides or MCTs, is actually very different to the saturated fat found in meats and cheese for example, these are known as long chain triglycerides or LCTs. MCTs in coconut oil, have been found to actually boost our metabolism and increase the energy our bodies burn. These fatty acids are also vital for absorbing fat-soluble vitamins and studies have proven it can reduce obesity, particularly, reducing stomach fat.
This is a recipe I like to make to give to friends in a jar as a sweet treat. It goes great on toast (Try it on my wheat-free bread recipe) or on sliced banana for a energy-boosting pre-workout snack.
You will need:
Roasted unsalted, un-shelled hazelnuts – if you can’t find them in the store like this don’t panic! I usually buy mine shelled and unroasted too. Simply pop them on a baking tray in the oven until lightly golden brown then remove and leave to cool. Once cool, you can easily rub the shell off them.
Cacao powder – begin with 1-2tbsp depending on how many nuts you have as this raw form of chocolate has a much stronger chocolate taste than processed cocoa powder
Mejool, or regular dates softened in water – a small handful is plenty; *If you don’t have dates you can just use honey in this recipe but add it in small amounts until you gradually build up to your desired sweetness.
Coconut oil – 1/2tbsp should be enough per tub serving as pictured
Place the unsalted hazelnuts, cacao powder, mejool, or regular dates softened in hot water and coconut oil in a food processor. Turn on high power and blitz until smooth and creamy consistency. If you have already added enough oil, no more than 2/3tbsp and you would like a smoother consistency I would suggest adding more hot water rather than more oil.
*To get a desired consistency may take 3-4minutes depending on the strength of your food processor as the nuts break down and change from whole nuts, to blitzed and then to butter like texture.
Taste the mixture before removing from the processor and adjust sweetness with dates or a squeeze of honey and ‘chocolatey-ness’ with more cacao if needed.
Surprise surprise I also like to add cinnamon to this recipe when making! Especially at Christmas time it gives a nice warming festive taste.