This Paleo Fudge is a lightened-up chocolate-y treat that is good any time of day and takes less than 10 minutes to whip up! It’s made nut-free with healthy fats and antioxidant rich cocoa powder and is barely sweetened with only a touch of maple syrup. It’s vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and most important out-of-this-world-good! This will be your NEW favorite fudge recipe, promise.
February calls for chocolate, and this Paleo Fudge doesn’t disappoint! We have a few festive treats planned for you, and we kicked it off with the Strawberry and Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies from yesterday. Like that recipe, this one is also nut-free, which means it’s inclusive for those with nut allergies and you are able to send it to school with your kids. This Paleo Fudge is a treat you can feel good about eating, made with real food but most importantly insanely delicious.
But this isn’t your average fudge recipe. First off, we call for cocoa powder. We love that it is rich in antioxidants and doesn’t have any added sugar or dairy, but more importantly it’s SO FUDGEY. Second, this one is nut-free. A lot of alternative fudge recipes call for almond butter, including this previous fudge on LCK, but this one uses sunflower butter (or alternatively tahini). Third, we add a bit of coconut flour to help firm up the fudge and give it the perfect texture. We discovered, and fell in love with that trick while testing for our PB & J Fat Bombs. And finally we love the added healthy fats thanks to the coconut oil. Having a piece of this fudge as a snack will definitely give you some energy that will last for a while!
While this fudge cannot stay for hours at room temperature, it will last for quite a while outside of the refrigerator and they don’t need to be stored in the freezer, and we like that!
If you like this chocolate recipe, check out these others:
Line a 7.5” by 5” container, or a similar size, with a parchment paper sling (for easy removal) and pour the chocolate mixture inside.
Smooth the top and refrigerate until set at least 2 hours, but preferable 6 hours.
Using the sling, remove the fudge mixture and slice to 12-16 pieces. Store in the refrigerator and enjoy within 10 days.
This recipe also works, and was tested with tahini (sesame seed paste). It has a slightly different taste to it, but still delicious so feel free to swap that in for equal portions if desired.
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These Strawberry and Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies are the cutest sweet treat, made even nicer because they are optionally free of the 14 most common allergens. Gluten free strawberry cookies are sandwiched between a dairy-free chocolate ganache with hidden strawberry jam in the middle. Made in partnership with our friends at Enjoy Life Foods.
Strawberry and Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies
These Strawberry and Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies are magic! They almost taste like a nut-free macaron and they have an amazing strawberry flavor that is complimented so well with the chocolate ganache. They are coming just in time for Valentine’s Day too–the perfect sweet treat to share on this love-filled holiday. These sandwich cookies are made even sweeter though because they are free of the top 14 most common allergens, including nuts and dairy! That means these little cookies are also school safe–making them the perfect treat to pack away for your kids to share with friends! Or really, just a treat for yourself. You deserve it!
So let’s unpack what’s going on with these cookies: There are two strawberry cookies sandwiched with dairy-free chocolate ganache and a hidden center of strawberry jam that balances the whole thing out.
There are a few steps needed to complete this recipe, but there isn’t anything hard to do! We use an electric mixer to make the cookie batter, but this doesn’t take much time. You can use either coconut oil or butter, and we enjoyed both versions equally. You’ll want the coconut oil to be solid at room temperature, and the same with the butter. It only takes a few minutes for the batter to come together, but once it does you’ll need to let it rest for about 10 minutes while the coconut flour hydrates, until it is no longer sticky.
Once it has rested all you need to do to form the cookies is scoop out a tablespoon sized amount of dough, roll it into a ball and pat it out to a 2″ circle on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet. We tried a couple of different methods of making the circle completely round but found that patting it out was the easiest. The cookies won’t spread, so don’t worry about spacing them out very far apart and they should all fit on one standard size sheet pan.
How do you make chocolate ganache
While the cookies are baking you can make the ganache. Making a ganache is simply heating up a milk and pouring it over chocolate! In this case we are using coconut milk and our favorite dairy-feee chocolate Enjoy Life mini chips which melt really easily and create a decadent ganache.
Once the cookies are cooled you’ll pipe a small circle of ganache on half of them, with a little hole left in the center for the strawberry jam to go in. We used piping bags for this, but you can just as easily use a plastic bag with a small hole cut out of one of the corners, or even just place a tablespoons sized amount of ganache in the middle will work.
We wanted to make these Strawberry and Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies free of almost of the allergens out there so that they were able to be an inclusive Valentine treat for everyone, regardless of allergies or intolerances. This is especially relevant for school as there can be a lot of restrictions on what can be brought in. And this is why we love the chocolate from Enjoy Life! Enjoy Life baking chocolates are certified gluten-free, free-from 14 common allergens, verified Non-GMO, certified kosher, AND certified vegan and paleo-friendly, which makes them so inclusive for many different types of dietary restrictions.
This month they’ve also launched the NEW Valentine’s Day Chocolate Minis! They would be a great option to bring into school and are the perfect size to share. They come in Dark Chocolate, Ricemilk Chocolate, Ricemilk Crunch (our favorite), and a variety pack. You can buy them right online here! We’ve been lucky enough to have been snacking on them this week, and they’re delicious! And as you can see below, they are also kid approved!
Let rest for 10 minutes until the dough has stiffened up slightly (see note).
Scoop out a tablespoon of dough and roll into a ball. Place on the prepared sheet pan and flatten slightly with your fingers to form a 2" circle.
Bake for 12 minutes on middle rack.
Remove from oven and cool completely.
Place Enjoy Life Mini Chips in a small heat proof bowl.
Heat coconut milk until it is very hot (but not boiling) either in a microwave or in a very small pot over a low flame.
Pour over chocolate and shake the bowl to make sure the chips are covered by the hot milk. Let sit undisturbed for 5 minutes.
Whisk the chocolate and coconut milk together until a smooth ganache is formed (see note). Let it cool at room temperature until it has thickened up and no longer hot, about 20 minutes.
Place the chocolate ganache in either a piping bag or in a plastic storage bag with a hole cut out of the corner of it for piping.
Place half of the cookies with the bottom side up (the tan side). Pipe a circle of ganache on half of the cookies, living a space in the middle. Place a teaspoon strawberry jam in the middle. Place another cookie on top and gently press together.
Best served the day they are made. Store in the refrigerator in a airtight container for 2 days.
To make your own strawberry powder simply crush freeze-dried strawberries until they are a powder. We found this easiest to crush the strawberries in a big with a rolling pin. It’s ok if the strawberries are not a super fine powder.
The almond extract enhances the strawberry flavor of this cookie. To make this nut-free omit the almond extract, as it is not essential.
We like to weigh our coconut flour as a measurement that is over or under can make a big difference since coconut flour is so absorbent. So if you have a digital scale at home, use it here!
The cookie batter will seem like thick frosting at first, as the coconut flour needs time to thicken up.
If the ganache isn't coming together it's because the coconut milk hasn't been heated up enough. You can gently heat the whole mixture until the chocolate is melted enough, either over a double boiler or gently in 15 second intervals in the microwave.
If your chocolate ganache ever gets too cold for piping you can gently rewarm it it over a double-boiler or in the microwaves for 10 seconds at a time.
If the cookies are kept longer than a day they will soften up. They're still delicious, just a slightly different texture than when they are freshly made.
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This Gluten-Free Chocolate Layer Cake may just be the best chocolate cake we have ever eaten, gluten-free or not. It is super moist, with deep chocolate flavor, and truly easy to put together. The chocolate cake layers are dairy-free and paleo-friendly, and we can promise this gluten-free cake will be a hit for any occasion!
Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake
We heard you! After we published the BEST Gluten-Free Layer Birthday Cake recipe a while back you’ve been asking us to make a chocolate version. We got to it right away and we are CRAZY HAPPY with the results. This truly is the best chocolate cake we’ve ever tasted! You won’t know it’s gluten-free (not that that matters around here) and it is so rich and moist!
Making this recipe wasn’t as easy as adding in chocolate to our vanilla layer cake. A chocolate cake is a whole different beast. We started with a base of almond and coconut flour, which we love. It lends itself to have just the right crumb and moisture level. And then we added in cocoa powder and adjusted the level of sweetener to balance the bitterness. We added some coffee in to boast the chocolate flavor, but feel free to swap it out with additional milk instead. It took us a few tries to get the right amount of fat, which we use avocado oil here, but once we did this cake was SO GOOD.
The cake layers themselves are dairy-free. We choose to frost it with a chocolate buttercream, but if you don’t tolerate dairy you can certainly use a dairy-free chocolate ganache made with coconut milk and dairy-free chocolate to frost your cake.
As we said above, this cake does have nuts. If you’re looking for a nut-free and school-safe cake recipe, go for the two in my cookbook or this July 4th Classic Cake!
Tips Tools Needed to Frost a Cake Like a Pro
It’s not essential to frost the cake like we did. But if you want to give it a whirl, getting these tools make it easier to get an even and smooth cake!
Pre-heat oven to 350ºF and grease 3 6" layer pans (we used avocado spray) and line with parchment paper that fits directly inside. Skipping this step could result in a cake that sticks to the pan. Set aside.
Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and whisk to combine completely.
Divide batter evenly between 3 cake pans and bake in pre-heated oven for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted and removed is clean or any wet cake batter.
Let cake layers cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing by running a thin knife or offset spatula around the side of the pan to loosen the cake and turning over pan on wire rack. Remove the parchment paper liner if still on the cake. Cool completely before frosting.
For Buttercream Frosting:
For Buttercream Frosting:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment beat the butter until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes.
Add the sugar and cocoa powder and mix on low speed until well blended. Increase the speed to medium and beat until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.
Add the vanilla and 1/4 cup of almond milk (or more if needed) and beat on medium speed until lightened in color.
To Assemble the Cake:
Once cake is cooled place first layer on serving plate and frost with a buttercream layer to prevent the cake from moving once assembled.
Add next layer of cake and repeat with layer of buttercream, smoothing over, and place last cake layer on top.
Place cake in refrigerator for at least 15 minutes, to let set up and to make frosting cake easier.
Once cake has chilled, add about half of frosting to the top of the cake and using an offset spatula frost cake starting with the top and moving excess down the sides of the cake and smoothing as going.
Decorate as desired with additional frosting, chocolate cups and sprinkles on the side.
Cake will keep 3-5 days in refrigerator.
You can omit the coffee and substitute in 1/4 cup almond milk or water. Coffee helps bring out the chocolate flavor, but is not essential.
We have a heavy hand when we frost our cakes. If you think you'll want less frosting, swap the recipe with 3 sticks of butter, 1 cup cocoa powder, 4 cups powdered sugar and follow the recipe as stated. If you do end up with leftover frosting, you can freeze it for later use.
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Fourth of July weekend is coming! Whether you are headed to a BBQ with family or friends or hosting a get together of your own, you’ll need a classic festive cake for the all the parties! Let’s make the most perfect (AND nut-free) vanilla cake topped with an easy buttercream and garnished off with tons of fresh fruit (red and blue for good measure)!
Gluten-Free 4th of July Cake (Nut-Free)
This super easy cake is a great gluten-free and nut-free cake recipe for any occasion! Top it with your favorite fruit, clean sprinkles, and other naturally colored frosting flavors for a perfect grain-free cake recipe!
If you’ve seen my new gluten-free cake recipe, you know it’s pretty epic! BUT I get a lot of requests for a gluten-free cake that is nut-free and made with no almond flour! This cake is for you.
This cake is…
Fluffy and moist
Gluten, grain, dairy, and nut-free!
Topped with a perfectly sweet and fluffy buttercream
July 4th, Memorial Day, and Labor Day festive!
And loaded with fresh local, in-season berries!
Want other festive paleo desserts? Try these favorites: