this post is sponsored by the california avocado commission. thank you for supporting the partnerships that allow brewing happiness to grow and exist. xoxo.
As we mentioned in the Best Ways to Use Your Oats , we’re using lots of dry ingredients these days and getting creative about how to mix ’em up. We’re happy to say this Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate Spread was born out of the wild experiments we’ve been running because you’re going to LOVE it. This Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate spread is made from our favorite California-Grown Avocados and toasted hazelnuts, among other deliciousness we’ll get to soon. We’re also going to teach you Why You’re Not Toasting your Nuts Correctly and the Best Way to Store Nuts and Seeds to make sure you’re getting the most out of your toasted hazelnuts (and any other nuts you’re working with these days!).
Our Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate Spread stays good in the fridge for a week (but good luck taking that much time to finish it). It’s got ZERO refined sugar because it’s sweetened with dates and maple syrup. The best part about this Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate Spread though? We NAILED the texture. It’s thick and luscious, not lumpy or whipped. Plus, the flavor is everything you want in a hazelnut chocolate spread—while California-Grown Avocados are delicious, you won’t taste them in this spread. The avocado is there for its lovely creaminess (and health benefits) this time around and lets the hazelnut and chocolate flavors shine.
But y’all, this perfect texture does not come by magic. You’ve GOT to do it right so listen up as you go through the process. Make sure you’re not putting your avocado in the food processor. It adds too much air and ends up feeling more like whipped frosting than thick chocolate spread. The other key to getting this right is adding ingredients in stages and in order…plus all of the blending and scraping in the food processor we’re going to tell you about. To get the perfect Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate spread of your dreams, lock in your new mantra: Blend, scrape, repeat. Blend, scrape, repeat. Let’s go.
- Hazelnuts, Toasted! (Learn the Best Way to Store Nuts and Seeds first AND Why You’re Not Toasting your Nuts Correctly to nail this.)
- Maple Syrup
- Vanilla Extract
- Medjool Dates
- Cacao Powder (Cocoa works too!)
- California-Grown Avocado : It’s best to use a REALLY ripe avocado for this. It makes it easier to mash and helps avoid chunks in your spread.
- Coconut Cream
Food Processor Rubber Spatula Whisk Electric Kettle
First, pit 8 Medjool Dates. Place them in a small bowl and cover them with hot water. Set them aside to let them soak.
Now it’s time to bust out that food processor and make your hazelnut paste. Pour in 1/2 cup of Hazelnuts, PROPERLY toasted. Be sure to learn the Best Ways to Store Nuts and Seeds and Why You’re Not Toasting your Nuts Correctly before you get this going so you’re getting the most out of your hazelnuts.
Next add into the food processor 1 tablespoon Maple Syrup, 1/4 teaspoon Vanilla Extract, and 1/4 teaspoon Salt. Now blend! Remember your mantra? What comes next? Scrape!
After your first blend, remove the lid and scrape the ingredients from the sides of the food processor. Repeat this twice: blend, scrape, blend, scrape, for a total of three times in this step.
Grab those 8 Medjool Dates that were soaking and drain the water out of them. Now add them into the food processor with your hazelnut paste and—you guessed it!—blend that up and scrape the sides, then blend it one more time and scrape the sides again.
Mmm, time for chocolate! Add 5 tablespoons of Cacao Powder (or Cocoa) to your food processor mix. Now say it with us: Blend! Scrape! Blend! Scrape! Two times this time. You can set that mixture aside now.
Time to get out your (preferably really ripe) California-Grown Avocado . Check out our Avocado Basics: How to Cut, Peel, and Prep an Avocado so you can crack that baby open and peel it the right way.
Once you’ve got it bare and peeled, finely dice your avocado and add it to a large bowl.
Add 1 tablespoon Coconut Cream to the bowl with your avocado in it. Now mash and whisk those two together! You don’t need to get it fully lump-less just yet, but do the best you can to make it as smooth as possible.
Time to combine. Throw that delicious chocolate hazelnut paste into the bowl with your avocado and coconut cream. Time to get creative with the mash and whisk process. You might start by folding your ingredients together, then mashing them up, then whisking away.
This is the time to focus on getting it all the way smooth and removing all the lumps. If you’re REAL obsessive about texture, you can run the mixture through a fine mesh sieve, but it’s not necessary.
Transfer your Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate Spread into a storage container and SERVE! We love it on toast with banana slices or (admittedly) by the spoonful.
Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate Spread
This Healthy Hazelnut Chocolate spread is made with a secret ingredient... AVOCADO! It's the perfect thick and luscious texture you want without the junk.
- ½ cup Hazelnuts Dry Toasted
- 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
- ¼ tsp Vanilla Extract
- ¼ tsp Salt
- 8 Medjool Dates Pitted, Soaked in warm water
- 5 tbsp Cacao Powder or Cocoa
- 1 California Avocado Diced Fine
- 1 tbsp Coconut Cream
Pour hot water over your Dates and let soak for 5 minutes. Drain after soaking.
Combine toasted Hazelnuts, Maple, Vanilla, and salt in a food processor. Blend together for a few minutes, scraping sides down occasionally, until a fine paste has formed.
Add Dates to the mix, and continue blending and mixing until a smooth paste has formed again.
Add Cacao and pulse together, again making a uniform paste, by scraping sides down in between blends.
In a mixing bowl, combine diced Avocado and Coconut Cream, mix together with a whisk until avocado is mashed fully and cream has completely incorporated.
Combine the hazelnut-chocolate paste into the mixing bowl with mashed avocado and mix thoroughly with the whisk.
Enjoy some now and store the rest in an airtight container, making sure to pack it down to avoid air pockets as much as possible.
*This spread stays good in your refrigerator for up to a week!