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healthy caramel nut chocolate bark with dates

'Caramel' Nut Chocolate Bark

dairy free gluten free recipes sweets

This easy-to-make chocolate bark is studded with Brazil nuts and caramel-like chopped dates and then sprinkled with flaky sea salt and crunchy chia seeds. Prep time is just 20 minutes, and while this is the perfect treat to stash in your pantry for your own enjoyment, it also makes a wonderful edible gift. 

As long as you choose your chocolate carefully, this recipe happens to be gluten-free and dairy-free and comes with several key thyroid-supportive nutrients. More on that below...

When you don’t eat gluten, dairy, or eggs, your options for sweet treats get pretty narrowed down. Chocolate bark can be a welcome solution. I’ve loaded this 'Caramel' Nut Chocolate Bark with all the crunchy, chewy, sweet, salty, dark-chocolaty goodness I could fit in, and the best part is, it’s choc-full (get it?) of thyroid-loving ingredients.


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Choosing Your Chocolate Wisely

To keep this as thyroid-healthy as possible, choose your chocolate wisely and read the ingredient list carefully. Many chocolates contain soy in the form of soy lecithin, an emulsifier.

Another common ingredient is milk solids, so if you’re avoiding dairy, look to dark varieties of chocolate, which are less likely to contain milk. Typically, the darker, the better with chocolate as far as health benefits go. 

Cocoa butter is another ingredient often found in chocolate. Good news: cocoa butter is not a dairy product but a natural fat derived from the cocoa bean, meant to improve chocolate’s flavor and mouthfeel.

For this recipe, go for high-quality bittersweet chocolate. I like this one from Guittard. It’s Fair Trade Certified, 70% cacao, and both soy and dairy-free. Most importantly, it’s luscious, melts like a dream, and is smooth as silk.



Thyroid-healthy Recipe Highlights:

  • Dark Chocolate: High-quality dark chocolate is loaded with health benefits, including antioxidants, minerals, polyphenols, and flavonoids. It has been shown to raise HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL (bad cholesterol) while also preventing it from damaging tissues. 1 ounce of dark chocolate contains 3 grams of dietary fiber.
  • Brazil Nuts: 1 ounce of Brazil nuts contains 774% DV for Selenium, a key thyroid nutrient.
  • Chia Seeds: 1 ounce of Chia seeds contains nearly 5000 mg of Omega-3 fatty acids, 4.4 grams of protein, and 11 grams of dietary fiber. It also contains 18% RDA of Calcium, which is especially helpful to those of us avoiding dairy.
  • Medjool dates are an excellent natural sweetener and, in this case, caramel substitute. Although they are high in sugar and should be consumed in moderation, they provide 2 grams of dietary fiber per fruit.


 Need to use up your dates? Try these next! Pecan Date Dreams


Happy cooking, happy thriving, and enjoy the recipe (below)!

P.S. Need more thyroid-friendly recipe inspiration? I’ve got you covered. My Thyroid-friendly Everyday eCookbook features over 50 quick and easy, thyroid-friendly recipes your whole family will love. To take a peek at what’s inside, CLICK HERE.



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