Do you love chocolate as much as I do? I’ll be honest, I was never a huge chocolate lover, until I became pregnant with my son. Now, I crave dark chocolate regularly. I try to avoid unrefined sugars as much as possible though, and this can sometimes be tricky with chocolatey treats. I normally end up making my own desserts and sweets and I really enjoy being able to make my own healthy chocolate desserts, like this salted caramel chocolate pudding. Yep, you read that right. Healthy + Chocolate in the same sentence. Friends, it’s true. Chocolate can actually be good for you. I’m all about raw cacao as well as dark chocolate for their health benefits, including the abundance of antioxidants, ability to lower blood pressure, and even its link to increasing positive moods. Yay cacao! I love using it in desserts. I also try to pack in as much nutrition and health benefits as I can when I make sweets so I feel a little less guilty eating them. If you omit bad sugars and add in healthy ingredients, it makes all the difference. For real.
What other healthy ingredients are in this salted caramel chocolate pudding? You might be surprised, but the big healthy ingredient is: cottage cheese! And it’s SO delicious. Are you thinking about the lumpy plain cottage cheese? (Which, I’ll admit, I can easily eat by the spoonful.) Think again. For this recipe, I use an awesome all new smooth cottage cheese. Yes, smooth! This is great news for those of you with prior lumpy cottage cheese issues.
This Nordica Smooth cottage cheese by Gaylea in salted caramel flavour is unlike any I’ve had before. It’s creamy and sweet and not only goes perfectly in this dessert, it’s also a great protein kick. It has all the benefits of regular cottage cheese but without the lumpy texture. It also comes in some other pretty awesome flavours, like vanilla bean and lemon. It’s sold in stores all across Ontario (except No Frills and Walmart) and I had to go to 3 stores just to find it in stock, which I took as a good sign. The Nordica smooth cottage cheese also has 25% more protein than many Greek yogurts, so it would be a great addition to your daily smoothie – I’m already brainstorming smoothie recipes! I’ll be honest: I’ve never thought of using cottage cheese in a dessert recipe before and I don’t know why not. We all gobbled this salted caramel chocolate pudding right up in no time flat and I made more of it the very next day. This recipe is also super easy and can be whipped up very quickly. This pudding will definitely be added to our delicious Christmas menu – I can’t wait! Alright, enough chocolate talk already; here is the recipe!
Salted Caramel Chocolate Pudding
- 400 grams Gaylea Smooth Salted Caramel Cottage Cheese
- 1/3 cup Chocolate Chips
- 1/4 cup Milk of your choice (I used almond)
- 4 tbsp Raw Cacao
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 2 tbsp Coconut Sugar
- 4 tbsp Maple Syrup
- Start by making a double boiler on the stovetop to melt the chocolate chips. To do this, you will need a double boiler saucepan or one small pot and a heat-resistant bowl that fits snugly over it. Heat water in the bottom saucepan/pot over low heat until it begins to simmer. Make sure the top pan or bowl doesn’t touch the water. Place the chocolate chips into the top double boiler saucepan or bowl and set aside. Remove the pan from the burner and set the top pan with chocolate chips over top of the pot with simmering water. Using a spatula, stir the chocolate chips gently until they are melted. You can also melt the chocolate chips in the microwave, but make sure to constantly check them every 10-15 seconds.
- Place all of the ingredients, including the melted chocolate chips, into a high-powered blender or food processor. Blend or process until smooth. You’ll probably have to stop a few times to scrap down the sides of the blender.
- Refrigerate the mixture for at least 2-3 hours.
- Spoon into bowls and top with your optional choice of toppings (I used raspberries and shaved chocolate) and serve! Lick the sides of the bowl clean. Yep, it’s that good.
Disclosure: I am part of the Gay Lea Ambassador Campaign and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.