Cocoa: The Basics + Skinny Chocolate Sauce Recipe

by Marla on August 14, 2009 · 4 comments

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I love, love love chocolate! Do you?

The reality is I cannot sit around eating it all the time if I want to maintain all of the hard work I put in at the gym.  Yes, they say that Dark Chocolate has flavonoids (antioxidants) and various health benefits, but as we all know a bit too much indulgence in this decadent treat will quickly add inches to the waistline and dare I say……the hips!  Yikes, who needs that.

Unsweetened Cocoa Powder with nothing added to it is low fat and loaded with chocolate flavor.  When used without the added sugars, flavorings and fat it can give us HUGE satisfaction with very limited extra calories.  Cocoa is made from the flavorful chocolate liquor and not the fattening cocoa butter.

As part of my clean, lean, gotta be delicious non depriving meal plan  I have found multiple ways to use cocoa powder so I can get my chocolate fix without crazy amounts of calories.  Sometimes there are added bonuses to my cocoa indulgences, for example extra calcium and protein in my Mousse Parfait and across the board a vibrant caffeine buzz!!

(How else are we supposed to keep up with little kids without an all natural energy enhancer??!! ) To read more on the benefits of Cocoa please click:

Marla Meridith with son and daughter in park in Telluride, Colorado

The caffeine and “feel good elements” in Cocoa helps me keep up with my waaaayyy active lifestyle. Adding cocoa powder to my pre-workout drink or snack is the perfect prelude to a high energy workout!

Cocoa powder and chocolate sprinkles.

A bit about Cocoa Powder ~ Choices……

I love a very deep, rich chocolate flavor.  You have 2 choices when buying cocoa, Dutch processed/Alkalized or natural unsweetened.  The Dutch processed has a darker color and a bit milder flavor as it’s acids have been neutralized.  The “natural”, non-Dutched has a stronger, more bitter/darker flavor, it is lighter and redder in color. I like them both, it just depends on your taste preference.

For more info and to learn which to choose for baked goods (the different acid contents causes them to react different when baking) click:

My favorite Cocoa Powders

(Always read ingredient list to make sure the only ingredient is cocoa, generally there is about 1 to 2 grams of fat per tablespoon and 25 calories, super low compared to your average chocolate bar!)

(You can purchase the top 4 items at Whole Foods, the Ghiradelli and Hershey’s can be found at most supermarkets)

Skinny Chocolate Sauce Recipe

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 1 minute

Total Time: 1 minute

Yield: single serving

Skinny Chocolate Sauce Recipe


  • 2 tablespoons high quality unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • Liquid: A splash of warm water or any kind of warm milk: dairy, soy, rice, coconut, almond etc..... (use just enough to make a fudgey paste, the warm temperature will help it blend better)
  • Vanilla Stevia Drops, sweeten to taste


  • Stir all ingredients together, that's it. Use in parfaits, cakes, oatmeal, shakes, ice cream, frozen yogurt and more.
  • Notes
  • The stevia drops I use rate 0 on the glycemic index, so this chocolate sauce has no calories and no sugar induced spikes and crashes. You can use honey, maple syrup, agave or brown sugar if you want. Remember that these will all add sugar calories. If you are watching sugar intake then be mindful as to how much sweetener you use.

Chocolate Sauce Recipe Links

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 emilie January 29, 2010 at 12:43 pm

OMG this is genius. never again will i use that horrifying, only semi-chocolatey powder that is diet swiss miss!

**giveaway entry**


2 Mae @ OhhMay January 29, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Yes, I have to choose this as my giveaway entry also. I want that cocoa bean paste on a peanut butter and chocolate sandwich! It sounds so delicious. 😛


3 Aya B. September 7, 2012 at 12:26 am

This is a very satisfying solution to make a chocolate sauce for almost anything Yummy that your sweet tooth desires
its amazing how you can always find clever alternatives that doesn’t make you sacrifice the taste or your health.
thanks a lot…


4 patelpuja April 13, 2015 at 1:33 am

Dutch-processed or alkalized is treated with an alkali to neutralize its acids and imparting a sweet taste. We specialize in alkalize cocoa powder.
Cocoa powder is made when chocolate liquor is pressed to remove three quarters of its cocoa butter. Our website, is dedicated to publishing the best cookie recipes.


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