This may come as a surprise to you all, given the nature of this post, but I really do not have much of a sweet tooth. I never have. In fact, my family used to joke that the way to my heart was through cheese not chocolate, because I would take a pizza over a dessert any day of the week. That being said, I think we all have that one special treat that we just can’t get enough of, for me that is salted caramel anything! I suppose its because the salt softens the blow of the sugar and just makes me want more. So, when Starbucks came out with their salted caramel hot chocolate… I was a very happy girl. That was my absolute favorite indulgence and comfort treat. It was my go-to when I was having a fun girl date with friends and on the occasional bad day. I remember sending my husband out to get me a salted caramel hot chocolate after spending hours visiting with hundreds of people the weekend my grandfather passed away. It was soothing and delicious and my one favorite sweet treat.
Fast forward to today, and I obviously haven’t had anything remotely resembling a salted caramel hot chocolate in years. I no longer crave them and I have many many more deliciously nourishing comfort food favorites. However, after seeing a delicious looking picture for a Starbucks knock-off recipe on Pinterest I decided to give it a go using carob, coconut milk, and natural sweeteners. Honestly, I was doubtful. I have tried making carob hot “chocolate” one or two times in the past and I didn’t love the result. It was always too thin and lacking in flavor, but always up for a cooking challenge I did some research, developed a plan and gave it a try…. the result was delicious! So delicious, that I feel I must warn you not to indulge in this treat too often, because it is just that a definite treat! It is thick and creamy with a perfect balance of salty and sweet and it was surprisingly simple to make… also a potential hazard! I took one sip and I’m not sure I could have told you the difference between this and the “real” deal. So, if you are looking for a fun treat to enjoy on a cold day, during a party, or on a special occasion I definitely recommend giving this yummy recipe a try… you won’t regret it!
AIP Salted Caramel Hot “Chocolate”
(makes 2 Servings)
1 Cup of Coconut Milk
¾ Cup of Coconut Cream
3 TBS Carob Powder
¼ tsp Sea Salt
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional)
¼ Cup of Maple Syrup
3 TBS of Caramel Sauce (See Recipe Below)
Garnish with Coconut Whipped Cream and Drizzle with Caramel Sauce
Combine all of your ingredients into a medium saucepan and stir until hot and combined with no lumps. Serve warm and garnish with whipped coconut cream and drizzle with extra caramel sauce.
Caramel Sauce Recipe:
(Makes 1/2 Cup)
1/2 Cup of Coconut Milk
¼ Cup of Honey
½ Tsp Vanilla Extract (optionl)
¼ Tsp Sea Salt
In a medium saucepan, combine coconut milk and honey. Set over medium heat and bring to a low boil. Continue to boil, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thickened to caramel sauce consistency (about 10 minutes). Off heat, stir in the vanilla and salt. Store in fridge.