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For those of you who are on the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol (AIP), you know just how hard it is to eliminate chocolate.
Well, that is if you're a chocolate lover like me.
If you're not, then you probably don't care. 😉
For me, chocolate was hard to give up. I love any and all things chocolate and enjoyed rich, super dark chocolate as a treat once in awhile. But, when I went on the AIP, I gave it up and it's been over 2 years now…
Sadly, I have not been able to re-introduce chocolate. I have discovered it's a migraine trigger for me and frankly, I'm not sure if I'll ever give it another try. Even when I am certain my gut is healed and my Hashimoto's disease is in remission. The fear of triggering a debilitating migraine is enough for me to steer clear.
But, thankfully, I AM able to eat carob and it has been a good replacement for chocolate when I get the hankering.
Recently, Sarah Ballantyne sent me a copy of her new cookbook to review — The Paleo Approach Cookbook. Sarah is the author of the wildly popular Paleo Mom site and the incredible Paleo Approach book. If you have an autoimmune disease then this is a MUST HAVE book. I did a review on it last year, which you can read here.
Any time I get a new cookbook, I always flip through it and jot down the recipes that jump out at me. I'll go back later and actually read through it in more detail, but I love that initial excitement of picking out brand new recipes.
I started drooling when I saw Sarah's recipe for these Carob Ganache Mini Tortes and knew right away I had to make them. Thankfully, she granted me permission to share the recipe here on my site, so you can enjoy them too!
These are SO easy to make and they taste amazing. They are rich and satisfying.
There is no added sugar, so the sweetness of the dessert comes from the natural sugars in the coconut milk and carob powder.
You could, of course, add a little additional sweetener of your choice, but if you pair it with a topping of some sort (I used a strawberry sauce), you likely won't need added sweetener. Or, if you've been on the AIP for a little while, you will find that you just don't need as much sweetener as you used to.
I'm definitely keeping this recipe on-hand for all special events. There's so many ways you could customize it too. The sky's the limit! You can easily double, triple, or even quadruple the recipe, depending on how many people you're feeding.
Delicious Obsessions Trusted Product Recommendations
I am always asked about my favorite brands, so I want to share with you the places I get my ingredients.
My affiliate partner, Vitacost, has really good prices on some of the ingredients in this recipe. If you sign up through this link, you’ll get a coupon for $10 off your first purchase from Vitacost, and when your order ships, I’ll get a $10 off coupon for referring you. The cool thing about this program is that you can then refer your family and friends through your own link and YOU can get the $10 coupons too! 🙂
Amazon, of course, has everything you need for this recipe. Their prices are often very good, though I love to shop around and sometimes find that Vitacost and Thrive Market have better deals. If you like saving money, it's good to shop around! 🙂
Thrive Market is another exceptional online grocery store. They are like Costco and Whole Foods combined in an online format. They have great pricing on all sorts of natural and organic foods. If you sign up through this link, you will get 15% OFF your first order and I will get a coupon for referring you.
In addition, my affiliate partner, Tropical Traditions, is where I get all of my coconut products from and if you make a purchase from them through any of my links, you will receive a free copy of their Virgin Coconut Oil book, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.
I get all of my vanilla beans and other vanilla goodies from Beanilla. I've tried a ton of brands of vanilla and vanilla beans and Beanilla is by far the best quality I've found! Make sure you check out their Bean Bucks Rewards program so you can save on future orders.
Mountain Rose Herbs is where I get all of my herbs and spices. Because of their exceptional products and customer service, I am happy to support them as one of my affiliate partners. I have tried many brands of herbs over the years and keep coming back to Mountain Rose.
- Bring the coconut milk, coconut oil, and vanilla to a low simmer in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. If using vanilla extract, let simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, to burn off the majority of the alcohol (if using vanilla powder, skip the simmering and simply heat to melt the coconut oil).
- Pour the coconut milk mixture into a blender or food processor. Add the carob and cinnamon and blend for 30 seconds to 1 minute to thoroughly combine.
- Pour into individual ramekins, silicone molds, or a large serving bowl. Chill until set, 3 to 4 hours.
- Enjoy plain or serve with berries.
- Mint “Chocolate” Ganache Torte. Instead of using cinnamon, add a few drops of peppermint oil.
- Rum-Ball Ganache Torte. Heat 4 tablespoons dark rum and simmer until 2 tablespoons are left. Use in place of the vanilla.
- “Chocolate” Mousse. Increase the amount of coconut milk to 1 cup. Pour into individual ramekins or a large serving bowl to chill (the mousse does not work in silicone molds).
If you've already read The Paleo Approach, then you simply must add the accompanying cookbook. I wish I had had this amazing book two years ago when I started on the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP). It would have made my life SO much easier!
This book is amazing.
I seriously cannot stress how much this book is going to help people struggling with autoimmune diseases and those following the AIP. Sarah has hit it out of the park (again) with this resource.
This book is more than just a cookbook. It's an everything-you-ever-need-to-know-about-following-the-AIP-and-being-successful book.
This also means that you don’t have to own The Paleo Approach in order to follow the diet and get the full use out of this cookbook. But, I highly recommend getting the Paleo Approach if you haven't already. They really do go hand-in-hand.
What Does The Paleo Approach Cookbook Include?
- Chapter 1: What is the Paleo Approach? In this section, Sarah give you the run-down of everything you can and can't eat. This section is incredibly detailed and is a great chapter to refer back to as you get going on the AIP.
- Chapter 2: Getting Back into the Kitchen — Sarah guides you through prepping and cooking when following the AIP. It can be very overwhelming, especially when you're just starting out, so she walks you through everything you need to know. This section, along with Chapter 3, really helps take the overwhelm out of the AIP.
- Chapter 3: Meal Plans & Shopping Guides — This is probably one of the most valuable sections of the book. One of the things I always struggled with when I was on the AIP was planning for meals and snacks. I SO wish I'd had this help when I was on it!
- Chapter 4: Kitchen Staples & Basic Techniques — Everything you need to know about stocking your pantry, fridge, and freezer, as well as the basics that will make the AIP a lot easier for you to follow.
- Chapter 5: Breakfast Recipes
- Chapter 6: Meat & Poultry Recipes
- Chapter 7: Seafood Recipes
- Chapter 8: Offal Recipes (it's not as awful as you think!)
- Chapter 9: Soup and Stew Recipes
- Chapter 10: Side Dish Recipes
- Chapter 11: Snacks, Appetizers, and Beverage Recipes
- Chapter 12: Treat Recipes
If I had to choose one single thing about this book, it would be that each recipe has complete nutritional panels. Every. Single. Recipe.
And it's WAY more than just fat, calories, and carbs. You get a full breakdown of every nutrient in that dish. Check this nutritional panel out from the tasty Carob Tortes:
I have never, ever seen a paleo cookbook with this kind of detail info.
Pair that with delicious recipes, lovely photos, great graphics, and uh-mazing content, and I have just one thing to say:
You HAVE to get this book.
You can connect with Sarah, the Paleo Mom, online here: