Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls

Alrighty y’all.

It’s Secret Recipe Club time.

I have been up to sooooo much this past month and baking/cooking has taken a backseat in my life.

Really, my blog should be about how to discretely get your friend to fake an emergency via phone call during the worst blind date of your life, put on makeup without a mirror, and get that “i woke up like this” look without actually waking up like that.

I just started a new job that I am extremely excited about last week and I also passed my real estate license exam.

Busy really isn’t the word for it.

Good news is that I am finally learning to balance everything in my life. ūüôā Lucky you…more recipes and chit chat from yours truly.

This month’s recipe comes from Tara¬†the lovely mother and wife behind¬†the blog¬†Tara’s Multicultural Table.

I really enjoyed reading about Tara’s many cultural influences that have played a role in dishes she creates.

Tara was born in Japan, lived in Germany, and her husband is Filipino. Check out her amazing recipe index and you can rest assured you will find recipes from all over the country.

Tara and I are also the same age and both enjoy pastries! Win win!

If you didn’t know I have an extremely large sweet tooth and duh…I made something sweet.

But also a little something salty.

Balance people, balance.

Enter Tara’s Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls.


This is the easiest little treat to make plus it tastes like a mounds bar with a hint of a salty side.


Plus coconut soooooooo


duh coconut = total summer island breeze, take me to the beach, dip my toes in the water feeling.


I know you can understand my vibe on that one.


I need a vacation.


Who is coming with me?

5.0 from 1 reviews
Salted Dark Chocolate Coconut Balls
Cuisine: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 36
Little sweet balls of coconut dipped in dark chocolate and finished with a pinch of sea salt. Gluten-free.
  • 4 cups unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • 14 ounces of sweetened condensed milk
  • 12 oz. dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • flaky sea salt, for topping
  1. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut and condensed milk until the mixture comes together.
  3. Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls and arrange on the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Place the balls in the freezer for 20 minutes to set.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave, stirring occasionally between 30 second intervals.
  6. Dip each coconut ball into the melted chocolate and place back on the baking sheet.
  7. Freeze until the chocolate balls are set.
  8. Top each ball with a pinch of sea salt.


Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

Happy Secret Recipe Club Monday!

I have been super busy with school and life lately.

Yesterday I was finally able to relax with family and enjoy endless amounts of pasta over great conversation.

Even though life is busy right now, I still make time for baking and cooking.

It calms me down.

For realz.

So, I was super excited to find out that my secret recipe blogger this month was from Jenna, the creative voice behind the¬†The Painted Apron. I loved reading about Jenna’s love for all things family and design. With her amazing recipe list, it was difficult to not want to make everything!

But then…I saw it…Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake.

I put my own spin on things.


this cake.


I’m not sure I even want to share it with you.


It’s just that good.


I mean, it’s chocolate on chocolate…


enough said.




Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

Servings: 8

A rich, cocoa based gluten-free/paleo chocolate cake topped with a creamy chocolate cream cheese frosting for double the chocolate fun!


For the cake:

2 large eggs

1/2 c. coconut sugar

1/2 c. full-fat coconut milk

1/4 c. walnut butter (or any other nut/seed butter)

1/4 c. unsweetened, cocoa powder

1/4 c. coconut flour

1/2 t. baking soda

1/2 t. salt

For the chocolate frosting:

8 oz. package cream cheese, at room temperature

2 T. unsweetened cocoa, powder

1/4 c. pure maple syrup

1/2 t. pure vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a round cake pan with cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, coconut sugar, coconut milk, and walnut butter until smooth. Stir in the cocoa powder, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt until combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Let the cake cool completely.

For the frosting, beat all of the ingredients on high using a stand mixer until smooth.

Top the cake evenly with the frosting and slice.


Fatty Cakes.

Happy Tuesday y’all!
Let’s get fat together. Or is it phat? I’m pretty sure it’s fat. Being that it is fat/shrove Tuesday, we have earned the right to celebrate. Oh, and the fact that fat Tuesday always occurs the same week as Valentine’s Day allows us to extend fat Tuesday a little bit so that we can indulge in all of those v-day sweets. Mhhhhm.¬†
On another note, I have no idea what to give up for Lent. Wait, I just thought of something that I could do for Lent, not necessarily give up. Stay tuned. This is potential. On another note note, I have actually been sucked into watching The Bachelor this year (this never ever happens…probably haven’t watched it since Season 1), and let me just say…thank goodness that Tierra girl went buh-bye last night. Selfish, crazy, insane, much? Um yes.¬†
I’m pretty much sure that there is a conspiracy to play reality shows like this around Valentine’s Day. I have concluded that it is 100% fake. Yet I still watch. Because I admittedly a reality t.v. junkie. Well, almost. Anyhoo, one thing I will not be giving up for Lent is cake. Or cookies. Or cake and cookies together.
Oh, and chocolate. 

Deep, dark, rich, luscious chocolate.

So, yes cake, cookies, chocolate…I’m good.

We are going to grate this dark chocolate into a cake. Or cookie. Or cake-cookie skillet thingy. 

Oh, and we are going to throw some walnuts in there for some crunch. Oh, and because 
chocolate + walnuts= amazing combo. 

Then we skillet-ify this cookie/cake.
You see what I did there with the “we.”

That’s because you are going to make this today, tomorrow, or Valentine’s Day.¬†
You just didn’t see that coming now did you?

I mean seriously?

This is ahhhhhhh-freaking-mazing.

Chewy, chocolate, crispy, nutty, melt in your mouth goodness.

Paleo and gluten-free…whhuuuuuuuut?
Damn dang dizzle. 

Dark Chocolate, Olive Oil, and Walnut Skillet Cookie (GF/P):

1 c. coconut flour
1 c. almond flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. ground cinnamon
1/2 c. honey
1/2 c. + 1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
3 large eggs
4 oz. dark chocolate (I used Ghirardelli 60% cocoa), grated (feel free to chop the chocolate, or use chocolate chips…f.y.i. grated is the way to go but adjust to your liking)
1 c. chopped walnuts

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 10′ cast-iron skillet with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon.
3. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the honey, evoo, and eggs together until smooth.
4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms.
5. Fold in the grated chocolate and walnuts.
6. Press the dough into the prepared skillet and bake for 20-22 minutes, or until the cookie is slightly golden. The cookie will be puffed with a slightly cracked crust on top.
7. Let the cookie cool for at least 10-15 minutes before slicing into triangles and serving.
8. Serve warm with ice cream, fro-yo, or coconut whipped cream!

Makes 1 10′ skillet cookie (about 10-11 slices)



Happy Happy Tuesday y’all!
I hope you all enjoyed your three day weekend, because I know that I sure did! It was completely relaxing and just what I needed heading into this week at school and work. Let’s talk about my childhood, shall we? Okay, so you know those Girl Scouts/Brownies/troops? Well, whatever you like to call them…I was never one of them. I guess I just didn’t see the point in selling someone’s box of¬†cookies to perfect strangers. I would have rather created my own lemonade stand and baked some homemade cookies to sell to my neighbors. What can I say? I was an early entrepreneur at heart.
¬†Remember that time I may have mentioned that I don’t care for brownies? Well, I should have said I don’t care for crappy, dry brownies, that are as thin as a rail, with absolutely no flavor. I am once again, eating my words, for I have seriously created THE ULTIMATE brownie recipe.¬†
And I mean like the ULTIMATE…like totally worthy on being on Tyler Florence’s food network show ¬† “Tyler’s Ultimate” where T-Flo would say over and over again
“These are the ultimate brownies.”

I could only be so lucky for T-Flo to say something about my food like that…
one day.

These brownies are absolutely delicious, chock full of shredded coconut and dark chocolate chips. 
Oh, and they have olive oil in them, which gives the brownie a dense texture.
What can I say? I’m Italian…expect a lot of olive oil.¬†
Oh, and I added some sea salt because if you haven’t experienced dark chocolate and sea salt together…you have not lived. It’s like an explosion of rich, intense, dark chocolaty goodness paired with a little salty twang…if that makes any sense at all.

Just try me on this one, cap-eesh?

Dark Chocolate Chip, Olive Oil, and Sea Salt Coconut Brownies (GF):

1/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 c. coconut flour, sifted
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. baking powder
1/2 c. raw coconut sugar
1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil
3 large eggs
1 c. unsweetened, vanilla almond milk
1 c. bittersweet chocolate chips (I used 60% cocoa)
1 c. unsweetened, shredded coconut
coarse sea salt for sprinkling

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 in. square cake pan with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, coconut flour, salt, baking powder, and sugar.
3. Mix in the olive oil, eggs, and almond milk, combining until the batter is evenly distributed and a smooth consistency.
4. Fold in the chocolate chips and coconut.
5. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan.
6. Sprinkle generously with sea salt.
7. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out clean.
8. Let cool for about 10 minutes in the pan, remove the brownies by lifting the parchment out of the pan, slice into squares and serve.

Note: Please serve these brownies warm with some homemade vanilla ice cream…they are that type of ooey, gooey, chocolate dense, moist, brownie that deserves that cold scoop of ice cream. ūüôā

Makes 9-12 brownies.


Packing on the Pounds.

Let’s get fat together.

Not really. 

You know what I mean.

It’s Fat Tuesday, and you deserve it.¬†

You have worked really hard since Monday, and I bet you spent the entire weekend tossing multi-colored beads into the air while screaming “Laissez les bons temps rouler,” (Let the good times roll). You may have even eaten a Beignet…or two, to pre-game for Fat Tuesday. Or maybe you indulged in a big bowl of seafood gumbo.¬†

Whatever you do to celebrate, eat, mangia!¬†Eat a lot of good food, because, soon you may have to give it up, for Lent that is. I know that some of you are giving up your Friday night, and maybe Monday-Sunday night, desserts that involve everything from a thick slice of molten chocolate cake to a gallon of Blue Bell Homemade Ice Cream. Please, just do me this last favor, and…

eat these. 
 without really indulging at all.

You can thank me later.

Paleo Chocolate Cupcakes (recipe adapted from Health Bent):

For the Cupcakes:
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/3 c. coconut flour
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
1/2 c. melted coconut oil
1/2 c. coconut milk (I used Thai Kitchen)
1 t. vanilla extract
2 brown, spotty bananas
3 T. granulated sugar

For the Chocolate Ganache:
1/3 c. dark chocolate chips
2 T. coconut milk

For the White Writing Glaze (just for kicks, and Optional):
1/4 c. melted coconut oil
1/4 c. or more of powdered sugar (you want the glaze to be a thick paste)

For the Toasted Coconut:
1/2 c. large flaked coconut


For the Cupcakes:
1. Preheat oven to 350 F and place liners in a 12 c. muffin tin.
2. In a mixing bowl, mash the bananas with a fork. Add vanilla, coconut milk, coconut oil, eggs, and yolks. Whisk everything together to combine.
3. Sift the coconut flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking soda over the mixing bowl.
4. Portion out the batter into the muffin tins, about 2 tablespoons full for each cup.
5. Bake for approx. 20 minutes until the center of the cupcakes feel springy, not mushy.
6. Once the cupcakes are cool enough to handle, remove them from the muffin tin and let them chill in the refrigerator.

For the Ganache:
1. In a small bowl, combine the chocolate and coconut milk. Microwave for 30 seconds, until the chocolate starts to look melty. Whisk well to combine.
2. Dunk the heads of the cupcakes into the ganache, twirling them around to get them nicely coated. Eat a.s.a.p. or refrigerate until the ganache firms up.

For the White Writing Glaze:
1. Whisk together the ingredients and shove into a pastry bag or zip-top bag, snip the tip off the corner of the bag. This glaze gets pretty hard, so you need to work quickly, before it becomes impossible to squeeze off.

For the toasted Coconut:
1. Spread the coconut out evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
2. Bake at 350 F for 6 minutes or until slightly golden brown.

Note: You can choose to decorate the cupcakes withe the glaze or the toasted coconut. I did both!

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