Let’s be honest, even the most health conscious among us need a good chocolate fix every now and then. Unfortunately, not everyone has the luxury of indulging in the sweet stuff, especially the weight-watchers and the unfortunate few with chocolate allergies (yes, they do exist!)
However, with the Easter Bunny making his way into town and store shelves brimming with enticing treats, resisting the urge to indulge in a chocolate or two is near impossible.
Thankfully, Chrissy Beedle, Executive Manager of Research and Product Development at Slo-Jo, shares some of the latest chocolate trends, and how to feed your chocolate urges and addictions this Easter.
Put some chocolate in it!
From ‘Chocolate Decadence’ Freezos to Mochas and milkshakes laced with enough chocolate to impress good ol’ Willy Wonka himself, true chocoholics go all-out when it comes to their favourite treat. However, die-hard chocolate fans are also becoming more willing to experiment with new combinations. For example, global favourites like Ferro Rocher are being recreated locally by combining Chocolate Decadence powder and Hazelnut Syrup topped with crumbs of the delectable little chocolate balls.
While hot chocolate has always had its place in every chocoholic’s heart, the latest trends indicate that more people are experimenting with different flavours and ingredients to put a new spin on an old favourite. Choc mint is an increasingly popular flavour combination and will likely grow in popularity during the colder months of the year. Other creative flavours that are trending this winter include Choc Chilli, Choc Orange and the upcoming favourite, Green Matcha, which is often combined with chocolate to make a choco-licious Choc Matcha.
If you’re on the banting or paleo diets, or simply prefer to eat ‘clean’, there are plenty of chocolate-covered trends to try that won’t leave you feeling guilty at the end of the day. Cacao – not to be confused with ‘cocoa’ – is considered a super food and the purest form of chocolate. It is used increasingly in desserts, smoothies and even breakfast dishes as a guilt-free way to indulge in the good stuff at any time of day!
While we’re on the subject, adding other superfoods like flax and chia seeds to a breakfast bowl along with cacao or pieces of dark chocolate is also a great way to balance your sweet tooth with a healthy diet. Many restaurants will also be serving up healthier chocolate drink alternatives that don’t skimp on decadence, such as Mugg & Bean’s no-sugar-added skinny Muggacchinos.
With consumers making more environmentally and socially conscious purchasing decisions when it comes to what goes in their shopping carts, chocoholics have a lot more options available to them. There is a big market for organic and sustainably produced products, such as cacao nibs – which are simply cacao beans chopped up into edible pieces.
The next time you’re in the health aisle at the supermarket, look for brands that contain all-natural, organic ingredients that are free of chemicals and preservatives. Slo-Jo also offers non-GMO products* in support of health and wellness among its customers.
Yummy chocolate alternatives
People who struggle with certain food allergies may not be able to enjoy Easter (AKA, ‘The Festival of Chocolate’) as much as the next chocoholic, but that doesn’t mean they can’t indulge in chocolate alternatives that are just as delicious.
Carob chips are emerging as a popular and healthy substitute for chocolate, with a flavour and texture profile similar to chocolate. Made from the seedpods that grow on the Carob fruit tree, which are then roasted and crushed, carob chips can be used as a substitute for chocolate chips in any recipe and pack just as much sweetness and flavour. They’re also suitable for Vegan diets, and good for your health too!
Aside from the store-bought varieties that are more readily available, many foodies are opting for more premium chocolate brands and products for a more authentic and unique taste experience.
There are tons of ways to get your chocolate fix this Easter that satisfy the craving and leave you feeling guilt-free, whether it’s a special diet you’re worried about or a quirky preference you may have. Visit your local Mugg & Bean, VoVo Telo and a range of other restaurants and cafés to try out Slo-Jo’s decadent, guilt-free and delicious chocolate drinks.