Best Sugar Free Chocolate Recipes From Scratch
For Those Who Want to Reduce or Avoid Sugar
Individuals who need or want to cut their sugar intake have some better options now than in the 1970s. Back then, artificial sweeteners did not have consistently good flavors and consumers did not trust them after hearing media reports of links with cancer. Today, we have better choices.
Natural sugars may be easier to digest for some consumers and some of today's artificial sweeteners are a good choice for weight loss, blood sugar control, and avoidance of dental cavities.
There is no solid scientific evidence that any FDA-approved artificial sweeteners cause cancer or other serious health problems.— National Cancer Institute of the USA and the Mayo Clinic
One teaspoon granulated sugar = 4 grams = 16 calories
What Are Some Sugar Free Sweeteners That I Will Like?
Honey - Raw honey is touted as healthier than sugar. If you use it in the recipe below, it may result in chocolate that does not become completely set at room temperature. It may be runny. Reducing the amount of honey used will result in a firmer set, but less sweetness. Try about 1/4 cup raw honey in the recipe.
Stevia or Rebiana - This natural product is FDA approved in a refined formed in the US and widely available. it is my go-to sugar substitute and has several brand names.
Sugar Twin® - I loved the flavor and texture this product gave to baked goods and puddings, but has become difficult to purchases except online. With the same ingredients as Sweet 'N' Low ("Pink"), Sugar Twin still tastes better.
Xylitol - This substitute works well, but has a few side effects on the digestive systems of some consumers. It can be purchased for home kitchens.
Stevia is Popular and Safe for Health
Sweetleaf stevia is a natural, zero-calorie, zero-carbohydrate, and non-glycemic response sweetener. This makes it ideal for diabetics and other who want to avoid sugar.
Coca Cola is bringing back its original sugar sweetened beverage in some business markets around the USA and produce another version using both cane sugar and stevia.
The sugar sweetened of Coke variety has been available in Mexico for many years and is found in Big Lots stores in America for about $1.00 for a 12-oz. bottle. the public in Central Ohio is purchasing more of stevia sweetened cola than the Mexican cola.
Advantages of the Best Sugar Substitutes
What you should know.
Natural: Bees and Nectars
Similar to sugar and ends up as glucose and fructose in the body, just as does sugar. Honey contains small amounts of bacteria; do not feed to a child younger than one year.
Stevia, highly-refined type
Natural: Extract from Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni plant
Natural and declared safe by the FDA.
Difficult to find in many market areas. May cause some photosensitivy, headache, and nausea to those sensitive to it..
Sugar alcohols actually contain no aocohol, but can cause diarrhea in some consumers who ingest 10 - 50 grams at one sitting.
Grow Your Own Stevia at Home
Stevia Extract Product Approved by the FDA: This safe and good tasting stevia product has won 26 awards for quality of flavor and cooking innovation, including ChefsBest Excellence for multiple years and the Women's Choice awards. Of the alternative sweeteners I have found available in the USA, this stevia product is my favorite. It can be used anywhere table sugar is used.
How to Make Basic Chocolate
Purchase the main ingredient (raw cacao beans) from your grocer, local specialty markets, a candy supply stores, or online. Use stevia instead of sugar for a good tasting result.
1 single-serving packet of Stevia = 2 teaspoons of sugar
- 1 Pound Raw Cacao Beans
- 6 to 9 Individual Packets of Sweetleaf Stevia, depending on sweetness desired.
- 1 Cookie Sheet, for roasting
- 1 Food Mill, for grinding
- 1 or more Candy Molds
Nine Steps to Sugar Free Chocolate
- Roast the raw cacao beans as a single layer placed onto a cookie sheet for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F (204 C, Gas Mark 6 in UK).
- Remove the roasted beans from your oven and set the cookie sheet on top of a dry towel on the counter top to cool completely, about 20 minutes. They should smell good!
- Using your fingers, peel off all of the husks (covering the actual shells) from the roasted beans.
- Using your fingers again, roll the husked beans on the counter top to begin to crack then shells, and then remove the shells.
- Break up the shelled beans by putting a small amount of them into a heavy, deep bowl and crushing them with a heavy instrument such as a pestle or the bottom of a very heavy drinking glass or a rolling pin that does not have handles. A clean hammer will also do, but you can wrap it in a clean cloth to make sure it is clean.
- Pour the crushed beans into a food mill and grind them to a medium sized grain. Any smaller, and they will become a slushy, dark sludge. This is why a food processor or a blender will not do. Put the grainy material into a larger bowl and place the bowl into a sink or an even larger bowl of hot water that is not deep enough to spill into the bowl of beans. Water will cause chocolate to separate. Keep mashing the bean substance with with something heavy and clean until the beans are smooth and rich looking. They should still be smelling good.
- Lastly, add your sweetener. Begin with 6 packets of Sweetleaf Stevia, stir, and taste. Add additional packets until you are satisieid with the sweetness level.
- Pour the final bean mixture into candy molds and let it set into solid chocolate, approximately 30 minutes or more. This may take longer in hot or humid weather and you may even need to refrigerate it for a bit.
- Remove the hardened candies from their molds and decorate them as you like, with any of a variety of artistic toppings: icings, sprinkles, drizzled fruit sauces, and more.
Sugar Free Chocolate From Scratch
|Serving size: 1 ounce|
|Calories from Fat||27|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 3 g||5%|
|Saturated fat 2 g||10%|
|Unsaturated fat 1 g|
|Carbohydrates 16 g||5%|
|Sugar 1 g|
|Fiber 10 g||40%|
|Protein 5 g||10%|
|Cholesterol 0 mg|
|Sodium 5 mg|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
How Do You Like This Recipe?
Adding Additional Flavors
When you add the sweetener, you can also add additional flavors including raspberry extract (my favorite), or a few drops of mint, orange, or lemon extract. Use bottled flavoring or fresh citrus zest, for instance, and mix well.
In Mexico and Central America, commercial chocolate mills often add cinnamon and/or dried chili peppers. They like hot chocolate to be spicy in those countries and I agree!
What Is Cacao?
1 pound of chocolate = about 400 dried cocoa beans
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Fun and Spicy Hot Chocolate
Yield: 2 or 3 servings.
- 2.5 Cups whole or 2% milk
- 1/3 Cup homemade base chocolate (please see recipe above)
- 1 additional individual serving packet of stevia, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon Mexican cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon each of chili powder, chipotle powder, black pepper
- A pinch of cayenne pepper
Note: I have seen this drink made with as many as seven varieties of "hot peppers."
- Place all ingredients into a medium sized sauce pan in the stove top over medium heat.
- Stir and simmer until well mixed and smooth.
- Pour into mugs and serve with any toppings that you like: whipped cream, shaved chocolate, or your favorites.
© 2016 Patty Inglish MS