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I'm Crystal Vaughn

a classically trained chef taking holistic plant-based nutrition on a grand adventure through North America. When I’m not creating in our traveling kitchen, you can usually find me on my yoga mat or a hiking trail.

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I always thought chocolate making was super complex and you had to have just the right finesse and patience (which I don't have much of) to get beautiful chocolate.  In culinary school we practiced the art of tempering chocolate and it was way to tedious too interest me. 

I always read ingredients on the chocolate bars I purchase and the more I read the more I realized that you could make your own with a few simple ingredients without all the temperature checking.  So I dove in to figuring it out.  It didn't take long and this simple three ingredient bark was born.  It has the perfect amount of sweetness mixed with the delicate bitterness of good cacao.


You can top the bark however you would like but for a pretty Valentine's Day inspired version I like to add freeze dried raspberries, goji berries, rose petals and almond slivers.  Feel free to choose whatever your heart desires!  You can add any variety of seeds, nuts, dried fruit and edible flowers for something a little extra fancy. 


Set up a double broiler.  Put a small amount of water in the bottom of a small sauce pan and place a heat safe bowl inside it but make sure it is not touching the water.  Place over medium-low heat and add cacao butter to bowl.


Stir occasionally until melted.  Add cacao powder and maple syrup.


Stir until combined and smooth.  Remove from heat.


Place parchment paper in an 11"x7" container (or similar) pour the chocolate mixture in.


Sprinkle your toppings evenly over the chocolate and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.


Remove from fridge and break into pieces. 


Sending love and chocolate,


Valentine's Day Chocolate Bark


1 cup cacao butter
1/2 cup cacao powder*
3 tbsp maple syrup
1 to 2 tbsp each: rose petals, freeze dried raspberries, goji berries and slivered almonds


1. Set up double broiler: place a small amount of water in a small saucepan.  Put a heat safe bowl on top of the pan.  Make sure it does not touch the water. 

2. Add cacao butter to bowl and put the double broiler over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.

3. Once melted add cacao powder and maple syrup to bowl.  Stir until well combined and remove from heat.

4. Place parchment paper in an 11"x7" container.  Pour chocolate mixture over parchment paper. 

5. Sprinkle toppings over the chocolate.**

6. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

7.  Break apart into desired sized pieces. 

Notes: *Cacao powder is a less processed version of cocoa powder.  You could probably make this recipe with cocoa powder if that is what you have on hand but I have not tried it.  **You can put the chocolate in the refrigerator for about 8 to 10 minutes before you add the toppings if you want them to be sitting more on top instead of sinking into the chocolate.  

Equipment needed: small saucepan, heat safe small bowl, heat safe spoon or whisk, measuring spoons and cups, 11"x7" container (I used a pyrex) or similar, parchment paper and a refrigerator. 

 *This post contains affiliate links.  They are in bold.  I only share products I love and use on a regular basis.  If you are interested in seeing what products I use and recommend simply click the word(s) in bold.  If you are moved to buy it, I will receive a small commission that helps support this blog and other projects I am working on.  Thank you for your support!

Products used for this recipe:

Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Cacao Powder, 1 Pound
Terrasoul Superfoods Organic Cacao Butter, 1 Pound (Raw, Keto, Vegan Friendly)
NOW Foods Organic Maple Syrup,Grade A Dark Color (formerly Grade B), 32-Ounce
If You Care Parchment Baking Paper, 2 Pack
Pyrex Basics 2 Quart Glass Oblong Baking Dish with Red Lid - 7 inch x 11 Inch
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The information on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any health condition or disease. It does not replace medical advice from a licensed professional.