Chocolate Covered Pineapple With Strawberries

chocolate covered pineapple with strawberries

Back when I was a kid, I tried what was for me a very memorable treat. It wasfrozen chocolate covered pineapple on a stick. It was wonderful. I decided to recreate it, but with a twist. I added freeze dried strawberries to the chocolate covered pineapple pieces.

Better yet!

This is super easy to make. I used pineapple chunks and put them on a skewer. You could probably make it work with pineapple rings, although I think you would need to freeze them before coating in chocolate to keep them from falling apart due to the weight of the chocolate.

I bought the pineapple chunks in pineapple juice, not syrup. I started out by draining the pineapple chunks. Pour the juice into a cup and you have a nice drink for while you work. I love pineapple juice.

Arrange the chunks on paper towels so they can dry a while before you coat them in chocolate.

pineapple chunks

While the pineapple dries a little, get out the freeze dried strawberries. I get mine at the local dollar store, which is a much better price than the ones I see at Target or online. The dollar store also carries freeze dried apples, bananas and pears. You can play with the flavors if you want. I think this would be great with freeze dried raspberries too. Those aren’t from the dollar store, but you can get them at Target or online. They would be a little more tart than the freeze dried strawberries.

Pour the strawberries into a ziplock bag, squeeze all the air out and seal. Tap gently with a smooth kitchen mallet. You don’t want all of it to be dust – you just want smallish pieces of freeze dried strawberries for the coating. If you want a smooth look, go for the powder, but I like the chunks.Pour into a bowl when you’re done.

Pour into a bowl when you’re done.

freeze dried strawberries

Melt your chocolate. I usually use the microwave method. Chop the chocolate into small pieces, then melt in 30 second increments, stirring between rounds, until smoothly melted. Add some coconut oil during the last round so the chocolate goes on more smoothly.

Place the pineapple chunks on skewers. I find that about four chunks together makes a nice size. You can do individual chunks or make different sized groups, of course. As things turned out, I had exactly 40 pieces of pineapple to work with, which I spread across 5 skewers and two groups of four per skewer.

pineapple chunks on skewers

Use a spoon to pour chocolate all over the pineapple chunks. Rotate the skewer as you go so that you get all sides. When the pineapple is thoroughly coated, tap the end of the skewer to remove excess chocolate. Do this to each group of pineapple on the skewer.

pour chocolate on pineapple

Working quickly while the chocolate is still melty, spoon freeze dried strawberries all over the chocolate covered pineapples. Place on a baking sheet that has been covered by parchment paper.

sprinkle freeze dried strawberries

One all the skewers are done, place in refrigerator or freezer to solidify. If you are planning on removing the pineapple from the skewers from the pineapple chunks before serving, I would suggest using the refrigerator so that it’s not too difficult. On the other hand, having the chunks on skewers is an attractive serving option. About an hour in the fridge will be plenty to make things solid enough to remove the skewers if you want.

Keep the chocolate covered pineapple chunks in the fridge or freezer until ready to serve, especially if you’re serving them frozen. The pineapple will defrost fairly quickly, just like any other frozen food. On the other hand, these taste quite good from the refrigerator too, which may be better if they need to sit out for guests. The freezer option is best if you’re not going to eat them too quickly.

chocolate covered pineapple chunks

chocolate covered pineapple chunks on plate

chocolate covered pineapple chunks on plate
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Chocolate Covered Pineapple Chunks
Ingredients
  • 1 can pineapple chunks in juice
  • 10 oz chocolate dark chocolate recommended
  • 15 g freeze dried strawberries
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Drain juice from pineapple chunks and arrange chunks on paper towels to dry.

  2. Place freeze dried strawberries in ziplock bag, squeeze air out and seal. Use smooth kitchen mallet to break strawberries into smaller pieces, but not into dust.

  3. Chop and melt your chocolate. I use 30 second increments in the microwave, stirring between rounds. Add coconut oil before starting last round of melting. Stir well to mix in coconut oil.

  4. Place pineapple chunks in groups on skewers.

  5. Use a spoon to pour chocolate over pineapple chunks, rotating skewers to ensure all sides are well coated. Tap end of skewers to remove excess chocolate.

  6. While chocolate is still melty, use another spoon to sprinkle chocolate covered pineapple chunks with freeze dried strawberries.

  7. Place covered chunk on parchment paper covered baking sheet or plate. When all skewers are coated, place in refrigerator or freezer to firm up chocolate. Use refrigerator first if you want to remove the chocolate covered pineapple chunks from the skewers before serving.

  8. Serve frozen or from refrigerator. Both ways taste great.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Crunchy Raspberry Chocolate Chunks

Crunchy Raspberry Chocolate Chunks

Raspberry and chocolate are two flavors that go very well together. They’re one of my favorite combinations. These raspberry chocolate chunks are very easy to make, even on a moment’s notice.

The key ingredient is freeze dried raspberries. I find these at Target or on Amazon. Using freeze dried raspberries means you don’t have to worry about spoilage. Melting chocolate, perhaps, but not spoiled raspberries.

freeze dried raspberries

 

Freeze dried raspberries have a wonderful taste. The freeze drying process brings out the flavor perfectly.

The first thing to do is break up the raspberries. The whole ones are a bit too much raspberry in one spot, in my opinion.

Pour the freeze dried raspberries into a ziploc bag. Seal it. Then take a smooth kitchen mallet and start tapping on them.

smash raspberries

Don’t go too wild on this. You don’t want a powder. You want small pieces and no whole raspberries. There will be some powder, and that’s fine. Keep it to a minimum.

Melt your chocolate in 30 second increments in the microwave or use a double boiler. Stir regularly. I use a semi-sweet chocolate for these because not all of my kids like their chocolate dark. They go well with just about any kind of chocolate.

Once the chocolate is completely melted, stir in the broken up raspberries. Mix well.

chocolate raspberries

You can put these into molds if you want a nice shape, or spoon into chunks. You may want a little more chocolate in the mix if you’re using detailed molds, as the raspberries won’t flow well into small details of the molds.

Refrigerate until solid.

Crunchy Raspberry Chocolate Chunks

Crunchy Raspberry Chocolate Chunks
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Crunchy Raspberry Chocolate Chunks
Ingredients
  • 10 oz semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2/3 cup freeze dried raspberries
Instructions
  1. Pour freeze dried raspberries into ziplock bag. Seal.

  2. Tap lightly with smooth kitchen mallet until whole raspberries are broken up. Do not pound into a powder.

  3. Melt chocolate in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between segments, until smooth. Alternatively, melt chocolate in double boiler, stirring until smooth.

  4. Combine raspberries and chocolate. Mix thoroughly.

  5. Place parchment paper on baking sheet. Spoon small batches onto paper to make chunks.

  6. Alternatively, spoon mix into candy molds. Tap mold to fill details. You may need slightly more chocolate in the mix to fill the mold details well. If you want a smooth back, do not fill completely with raspberry chocolate mix. Use melted chocolate to top off the mold.

  7. Refrigerate until solid.

Easy Chocolate Fruit and Nut Clusters

easy chocolate fruit and nut clusters

I always like to joke about chocolate being a food group. It comes from the cacao bean, so it must be a vegetable, right? Ok, maybe not. Maybe it would be better to make some fruit and nut clusters to get a healthier treat.

These chocolate fruit and nut clusters are very easy to make, and as chocolate treats go, are on the healthy side. Nuts in moderation are pretty good for you. Unless you’re allergic, in which case, don’t try this one.

This gives you your sweet and salty fix in one go, along with a great crunch. If you’re trying to eat less chocolate, this will give you a bit of chocolate for that urge, but a larger portion of nuts.

These are super easy to make because you just choose a trail mix. I suggest that the trail mix not have really large nuts such as Brazil nuts to make them easier to eat. The trail mix also doesn’t need to have chocolate chips or M&Ms in it. Just nuts and dried fruit such as raisins or cranberries. I prefer dried cranberries for this recipe. The flavor goes better with chocolate.

add trail mix

You could also go with a single type of nut, such as peanuts or almonds. I prefer the variation you get with trail mix. You could also make your own mix by selecting your favorite nuts and dried fruits.

The mix I used includes dried cranberries, golden raisins, cashews, pepitas, sunflower seeds and almonds.

Adding in some coconut oil will make the chocolate a little thinner. This is good if you want a thin coat on the trail mix. Using coconut oil will mean that the finished chocolates should stay in the fridge. If it’s warm in your house, you’ll probably want to keep the chocolates in there anyhow.

I didn’t measure anything out for this recipe. It’s fairly easy to eyeball how much trail mix goes into the melted chocolate. If you put in too much trail mix, you just melt more chocolate and add it in.

mix chocolate and trail mixOnce it’s all mixed up, spoon up small clusters. How big depends on the look you’re going for. I go for small. They’re super quick snacks that way. You can use miniature cupcake wrappers to hold larger clusters, which is a great look for gifts or when you’re sharing with company. You don’t want people handling multiple pieces of chocolate when you’re sharing with a group.

 

easy chocolate fruit and nut clusters
Print
Easy Chocolate Fruit and Nut Clusters
Ingredients
  • 10 oz 60% cacao chocolate
  • 1-2 tsp coconut oil optional
  • 2 cups trail mix
Instructions
  1. Chop chocolate into small pieces. Melt in microwave in microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments until thoroughly melted, or melt in double boiler. If using coconut oil, melt with the chocolate. Total melt time should be about 2 minutes in the microwave, but may vary.

  2. Mix in trail mix. Stir until trail mix is thoroughly coated.

  3. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper. Spoon small portions of mix into piles on baking sheet. Refrigerate or freeze until solid.

Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

 

chocolate cherry smoothie

This year we’ve had some exceptionally affordable cherries at our local grocery store. As a result, I’ve been buying, pitting and freezing cherries. I needed to find a way to use them, and smoothies are a favorite of mine. With frozen cherries, one almost can’t help but think of chocolate, so I worked up a chocolate cherry smoothie.

Chocolate and cherry are not the only ingredients, of course, but they’re the focus of the flavor. Adding in other frozen berries really does something great for the flavor, however. Keep that in mind, and tweak this smoothie recipe for your own use. I eyeball the ingredients for the most part – it’s a smoothie, not a cake and precision is not required.

This comes out fairly sweet without any help, but you can add some honey to make it sweeter. If you want a bit of tartness, add a dash of lemon juice. It really brightens the flavor. Don’t use too much – you want the chocolate cherry flavor to shine through, not a sour flavor.

To make this healthier, add in a handful or two of spinach or kale, some celery, and a carrot. They don’t change the flavor much, but vegetables generally have far less sugar than fruits, and a lot of vitamins, making this much healthier. I very rarely make a smoothie without vegetables. Too much fruit means too much sugar in the finished product.

chocolate cherry smoothie with carrot

Cacao nibs add a stronger chocolate flavor, but require that you add a fat to control the bitterness. I like what they do. 4-6 ounces of plain Greek yogurt takes care of it.

My husband loves to add bee pollen granules to all smoothies. Just make sure no one has an allergy before serving.

I make this one with milk, although juice works as well. Pick something that won’t overwhelm the flavor of cherries and chocolate.

If we ever have leftovers of this, I’ll make popsicles for my kids from this too, but so far even with a double or so batch, it hasn’t been a problem. It almost tastes like a milkshake, even though there’s no ice cream.

I always make smoothies in my Vitamix blender. The container holds quite a bit, which is nice when you’re making smoothies for 4-5 people and they want fairly large servings. I start on low, then speed it up until it’s at full speed. If any pits were left in the cherries, it breaks them up pretty well.

My kids help with pitting the cherries when we get them fresh. Always wear dark colors when pitting cherries – you don’t want cherry juice stains showing up on light colored clothes. We have a very basic cherry pitter, but there are some available that will pit multiple cherries at once. I don’t think there’s a cherry pitter out there that gets every pit out perfectly every time, so keep an eye on whether the pits come out or not.

Freeze the cherries before making the smoothie, or you will need to use ice in your mix to cool it. That’s not a bad thing – water is a good thing to include, since it doesn’t add calories or sugar. Ice can be especially nice on a hot day when you want your drink to be more cooling.

Chocolate Cherry Smoothie

1-2 cups frozen cherries
1-1 ½ cups milk (nut milk, soy milk, whatever works for you)
1 4-6 oz container plain Greek yogurt
1 peeled banana
1 tbsp soaked chia seeds
1-2 tbsp cacao nibs
1-2 tbsp cocoa powder

Optional

1 carrot
1-2 pieces celery
handful kale or spinach
ice

Throw it all in a blender, blend until smooth. Add more liquid if you have trouble blending. Pour and enjoy!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Chocolate Popping Frogs

chocolate popping frogs

Fans of Harry Potter will remember the chocolate frogs, a popular treat that sometimes moved a little fast. They made a big impression on a lot of kids, so mine were delighted when I decided to have a go at making some at home. These chocolate popping frogs are a huge hit with my kids and their friends.

Obviously, there’s no way to really make them hop, unless you really are a wizard. But you can add Pop Rocks to chocolate, which gets the idea across and is a lot of fun.

We had to experiment a little to figure out which kind of chocolate worked best. In general, a darker chocolate seems to work better than milk chocolate. The Pop Rocks fizzed quite a bit more when being mixed into milk chocolate, which meant less popping when the kids ate the frogs.

You will also want to consider the age of the kids eating these treats. Some may not be up for a darker chocolate, and the milk chocolate will have to do.

And of course, you need frog molds. Amazon has a great selection of candy molds, and what it came down to for us was a combination of a frog shape we liked without it being too large. Yes, the movie ones are pretty big, but that’s not ideal for snacking.

These frogs are great if you want to have a Harry Potter themed party, a Halloween party, or anytime you think you can get away with putting chocolate popping frogs out on the table.

Pop Rocks can be a little hard to find at times, but I have a trick for this treat. When Halloween comes around, the dollar store by me gets bags of off brand popping candies. Pop Rocks by any other name do quite well in this recipe. They’re sold in a pouch with a bunch of tiny pouches to hand out to trick or treaters. Before Halloween, they’re a little cheaper than buying the same amount of Pop Rocks. After Halloween, they go on sale for $0.25 a pack, and that’s when I get my supply for the year.

It’s a bit of extra work opening all the packets, but I don’t worry about mixing the flavors. You don’t really notice the flavor of the Pop Rocks once they’re in the chocolate anyhow.

The first thing you do is melt your chocolate. I use a microwave safe bowl and melt the chocolate in 30 second increments in the microwave, stirring each time.

pop rocks in chocolateOnce the chocolate is melted, pour in the Pop Rocks. It takes quite a bit to get a good level of popping into the chocolate.

Stir them up and spoon into the frog molds. Tap the molds on the counter to get rid of as many bubbles as possible.

Refrigerate until firm, then pop out of the mold. You can keep them in the fridge if the weather is warm, just so they don’t melt too fast when guests grab them. If you want to get fancy you can print up a box for them, but I’ve never had anyone really care about the box. It’s chocolate! And Pop Rocks! In frog shapes! They usually don’t care beyond that.

Chocolate Popping Frogs

10 oz 60% cacao chocolate, chopped (or preferred chocolate)
1-2 oz popping candy

Melt chocolate in microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between rounds. When chocolate is smooth, add popping candy to taste, stirring until well mixed. Some popping of the candy is normal.

Spoon mix into frog molds. Tap on counter to remove bubbles and get a smooth finish on top.

Refrigerate until firm, about one hour, then remove from molds and prepare for the fun.

pop rocks frogs

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are 'affiliate links.' This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission.

Homemade Pomegranate Truffles Recipe

homemade pomegranate truffles

These chocolate pomegranate truffles are simply amazing. You really can taste the pomegranate juice. Dark chocolate adds to the flavor, and overall these pomegranate truffles have a very rich flavor that is hard to beat.

I make these for most family holidays, but especially Thanksgiving and Christmas. They’re very popular with older children, teens and adults, but younger children may find the flavor too strong. I’ve had people get distinctly cranky with me for forgetting to bring these to a family gathering. I wasn’t disappointed… more for me, although I was embarrassed to have left these at home.

They’re easy to make, but can require a bit of patience. Sometimes the truffle comes out a little too soft to work with easily, even after cooling in the refrigerator for hours. Even then, the taste is amazing. You can melt some extra chocolate if necessary and add it to the melted mix. Stir well, and you should have a thicker truffle to work with when it solidifies. Don’t overdo the chocolate, or you may hide the pomegranate flavor.

You start by gently simmering down the pomegranate juice. I use the lowest heat possible, and it takes about an hour to simmer a cup and a half to a bit below 3/4 cups.

pomegranate juice

Sometimes I’m lucky enough to find small bottles of Pom pomegranate juice at the dollar store, and then I simmer down several at once so it’s ready for next time. I portion it back into bottles and freeze until I need them. The frozen batches just need to be defrosted and then heated to a simmer so the chocolate will melt in it.

Remove pomegranate juice from heat. Add the chocolate chips and stir until it’s all melted and mixed.

pomegranate chocolate

Most times I use chocolate molds so that I don’t have to worry about the pomegranate chocolate filling being firm enough to roll. Molds are much easier to use. Fill a mold with melted chocolate (I use 60% cacao, just like in the filling), and tap the mold on the counter to fill in the nooks. You may not get all of them filled, but it helps.

Wait a short time, then pour the excess chocolate back into the bowl. Then add the pomegranate chocolate, and put into the refrigerator to cool for at least 30 minutes.

fill molds with chocolate and pomegranate

Once the filling is fairly solid, you can put more chocolate on top to finish filling the mold. Tap the mold on the counter again to smooth out the backs. The mold is cold at this point, and you have to work quickly, as the chocolate solidifies fast. Refrigerate 30-60 minutes to completely firm up the truffle, and pop each one out of the mold.

Pack them up into a container for your own use, or make them pretty to give away. This recipe makes a lot – I get about 70-75 chocolates out of it with the molds I use. Your results will vary, depending on the size of the mold you use, or if you decide to make rolled pomegranate truffles instead.

Don’t be surprised if the kids or anyone else in the house volunteers to clean the pan out after you’ve made all the pomegranate truffles. My kids get quite messy enjoying those last bits of truffle that don’t make it into a mold.

pomegranate truffles

pomegranate truffle
Print
Pomegranate Truffles
Ingredients
  • 1-1/2 cup pomegranate juice
  • 12 ounces dark chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate (I like 60% cacao, semisweet is acceptable)
Coatings (optional, choose one)
  • 12 ounces 60% cacao chocolate (chopped works better than chips for molding or dipping)
  • 1/4 cup freeze dried raspberries powdered
Instructions
  1. Heat the pomegranate juice in a small saucepan. Simmer until it has reduced by at least half. I like it a little less than half so that the truffle is easier to work with, as the chocolate is a bit firmer with less liquid. Use the lowest heat possible, so that you don’t burn the pomegranate juice. Remove from heat.

  2. Add the chocolate and to the pomegranate reduction in the saucepan, and stir until the chocolate is smooth.

  3. Now it’s decision time. Are you rolling the truffles or putting them into a molded chocolate shell? Dipping in chocolate or rolling in a coating such as cocoa? Powdered freeze dried raspberries make an excellent coating. Have fun here.

  4. If you’re rolling these into truffle balls, you will need to refrigerate the mix for at least three hours for it to be firm enough to hold shape. You may also need to keep them in the refrigerator or freezer when they aren’t out for people to eat. They can be a little soft and melty at room temperature.

  5. If dipping in chocolate, make the truffle balls, and then freeze them for an hour or so. This will minimize the melting caused by warm dipping chocolate.

  6. If using molds, see the instructions given above the recipe.

Disclosure: Gimme Chocolate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. I also review or mention products for which I may receive compensation from other sources. All opinions are my own.

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