DIY Vegan White Chocolate + Vegan Raspberry White Chocolate Bunnies!
DIY VEGAN WHITE CHOCOLATE! It’s REAL! I’ve been holding this concept in my mind for about a month now. I ran through a handful of less-than-stellar versions in my testing phase. Ultimately, the simplest concept turned out to be the best. This recipe is only 4 ingredients: coconut butter, cocoa butter, maple syrup and vanilla bean. Also, it’s crazy easy.
It’s a freezer treat. Meaning: it’s not shelf stable, like white chocolate candy. It’s real food, made with a liquid sweetener. So at room temp it becomes a pliable sort of white chocolate ganache. But when it’s very cold, it has that snappy-soft texture I associate with white chocolate. It tastes amazing. Sweet, creamy, mildly coconut-y, with the soft luxurious aroma of white chocolate.
(And how cute are those bunnies?!)
I absolutely love white chocolate. But ever since I realized that my dairy allergy was to blame for my constant strep-throat, allergies, postnasal drip, chronic sinus infections and voice-cracking, I’ve kicked it to the curb. Yep, it’s true. I was one sad mama jamma. But NO MORE! I’m fit as a fiddle, thankyouverymuch. Funnily enough, I have zero desire to eat cheese. Or even cheesy things (my best friends think that is truly nuts). But I do crave white chocolate (also: caramel).
I’ve tried my fair share of vegan white chocolate (and, you know, regs white chocolate). And the only vegan white chocolate I’ve found that passed bar was made with whole desiccated coconut. I’ve tried the shittiest of shitty vegan white chocolate, made with god-knows-what flavorings and stabilizers. I’ve tried the best of the best, made with hand-pressed bean-to-bar cocoa butter, coconut sugar and organic coconut flakes. And, you know, making that sort of white chocolate is on my list-of-things-to-do-before-I-die. But that “best of the best” white chocolate requires a process only accessible to those of us who happen to have chocolate factories. And, I mean, yes I DO have a chocolate factory. But I know you don’t. So I created this DIY kitchen-friendly vegan white chocolate for you guys. So we can all enjoy the loveliness that is delicious vegan white chocolate at home.
One of the great things about this recipe is how fun and versatile it is. Once frozen and thawed briefly you can cut out fun shapes! Here I’ve cut out some little bunnies to celebrate Spring and Easter! (Did you know that bunnies are a leftover from the Pagan festival of Eostre, who was a northern goddess represented by a rabbit or hare?).
Oh, and you know this all reminds me that I need to watch Chocolat again. Because it’s set in that period right before Easter and at the end there’s that enticing Easter chocolate festival.
You can top your white chocolate with just about anything. I’m a big fan of freeze dried fruit + white chocolate. Particularly, freeze dried raspberries. I like the contrast of the tanginess of the berries with the sweet creaminess of the vegan white chocolate. But use your imagination! I think pistachio + edible rose petals would be crazy good. Or what about macadamia + toasted coconut + candied ginger? The possibilities are endless.
- 2 cups shredded coconut
- 1/4 cup food grade cocoa butter, chopped finely
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
- *optional: freeze dried raspberries, to top
- Preheat the oven to 325F. Spread your coconut out on a baking sheet. Toast for 3-5 minutes, until the coconut is just barely turning golden (check frequently between 3-5 mins).
- Remove from the oven and immediately put the warm coconut into the bowl of a high powered blender. Blend for 3-5 minutes, scraping down the sides occasionally, until your coconut flakes turn into a fluid coconut butter. Trust me, it takes a couple of minutes. Just keep blending until the oils release and the coconut butter is soft like runny almond butter.
- Melt the chopped cocoa butter. Add the cocoa butter to the bowl of your blender along with the coconut butter. Add the maple syrup and vanilla bean to the bowl of the blender and pulse everything together until creamy.
- Line a pan with parchment paper. Spread the liquid vegan white chocolate out evenly on the parchment paper to about 1/2" thickness, smoothing out the top. Optional: top with freeze dried raspberries or other toppings as you like.
- Freeze for at least 1 hour, up to overnight. If hard-frozen, let thaw at room temp for 5 minutes before slicing (this prevents the white chocolate from cracking if you're trying to cut out shapes). Cut shapes as you like and enjoy! *Store your white chocolate in the freezer (ideally) or fridge (for a softer white chocolate).
- Tip: if you're cutting out fun shapes (like bunnies!), let the vegan white chocolate thaw out for 20-30 minutes (especially if hard-frozen). This prevents details of your shape from cracking or breaking off.