The homemade variety always trumps processed food found on store shelves for me. There’s always a way to create the same flavors at home without so many harmful ingredients. I’ve made dozens of chocolate-hazelnut spreads, but none of them really wowed me – until I met this recipe. I adapted it to use either dairy-free or dairy ingredients – depending on your dietary needs. It’s sweetened with a bit of maple syrup and I chose Enjoy Life chocolate chips because they’re dairy, soy and gluten-free. The spread makes for a nice Christmas gift for neighbors, friends and family.
I like to pour spreads into cute little jars and attach a festive label. Last year I made almond toffee and slice-and-bake cookies for friends. They were a big hit! This year’s collection of homemade treats will surely include this chocolately spread. Come back in a few days when I’ll share a grain-free cookie featuring this versatile treat.
Here are some other homemade sweets for your friends and family:
Breakfast Cookies from Against All Grain
Marshmallow Pops from White on Rice Couple
(you can use this homemade marshmallow recipe if you’d like to make the homemade variety)
Date-Sweetened Gingerbread Men from Nourished Kitchen
Coconut Almond Fudge
Homemade Vanilla Extract
Coconut Macaroons from Elana’s Pantry
Here are a few of my favorite places for jars, bottles and festive wrapping:
Le Parfait Terrine Canning Jars from Sur La Table
Martha Stewart Cottage Christmas Packaging
Christmas Twine from Shop Sweet Lulu
Reindeer Gifttags from Shop Terrain
Velvet Ribbon from The Ribbon Jar
Copper Cookie Cutters from The Copper Cookie Cutter Store
(I like to buy small cookie cutters and tie them to the outside of the jar or package. This store no longer exists, but you can find some great options here!)
Bormioli Rocco Glass Bottles from Crate and Barrel
Serves: Makes about 4 cups
Hazelnuts contain a high amount of phytic acid so it’s best to soak (to neutralize the phytic acid) and then dehydrate them either in a dehydrator or oven. The low temperature dehydrating crisps the nuts without oxidizing the oils. As with all sweets, remember to consume in moderation.
Adapted from Bon Appetit
- 2 cups hazelnuts ( soaked and dehydrated )
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
- 1 pound bittersweet chocolate (I used Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips )
- 8 tablespoons butter or coconut oil
- 1 cup heavy cream or coconut milk , room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
- Place hazelnuts and honey in the bowl of a food processor. Process until a fairly smooth, buttery paste forms, about 2-3 minutes.
- Melt chocolate and butter in a double boiler and whisk until smooth. Slowly add the cream or coconut milk and whisk until smooth. Whisk in sea salt. Pour chocolate mixture into the food processor (the bowl of the processor will still have the ground nuts in it). Process until smooth (there will still be very small bits of hazelnuts throughout the mixture. Pour into glass jars and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
the urban baker
Danielle @ Against All Grain
Joshua @ SlimPalate
Joshua @ SlimPalate
Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen