Carob is a great alternative to chocolate. You can buy it raw or roasted (also can be described as toasted). Roasted adds a nice finish that is a little more reminiscent to chocolate. A lot of people consider raw carob to be bitter and prefer the roasted.
Chopped or grated, these top allergen free Carob Bars (vegan optional) a wonderful replacement for chocolate in baking or cooking.
It's a great treat for children as it contains no caffeine which little ones can be sensitive too. I've made these for Big Blue Eyes and have them in the fridge whenever I get a hankering for chocolate. This way she can enjoy hers too which I also seem to end up enjoying.
When breastfeeding, chocolate eaten by the mother can upset an infant's tummy and even cause unrest since it contains caffeine. To avoid this, I turned to carob coated raisins as a delicious alternative to chocolate candies.
Carob has been used for opera singers to help soothe those good ol' pipes. It recently is making a comeback for any singer whose worn out. Combined with honey, it's great for sore throats either from overuse or a virus. I first started using carob medicinally for just this purpose over three years ago when I had a different job (No, I didn't sing and I still can't today - I just talked a lot).
Carob is used in weight loss formulas as it lowers the glycemic index of food, releasing sugar into the blood stream slower. It can also used to help prevent diarrhea as it helps prevent fluid loss and dehydration.
Both roasted and raw carob powder can be found at Mountain Rose Herbs. I buy my Extra Virgin Coconut Oil from Vitacost (here's a $10 gift card when you sign up) where they also sell carob powder. For honey though, I like to buy local and I encourage everyone else to do that as well.
If you're vegan and avoiding honey, you can use an alternative sweetener listed below.
3 Ingredient Carob Bars
1/2 c carob powder (preferably roasted)
4 T coconut oil
3 T honey (or other sweetener such as maple syrup or agave or stevia with a little non-dairy milk added)
1. Warm the coconut oil in a little hot water bath (if not already liquid)
2. Whisk in honey.
3. Whisk in carob powder.
3. Lay out a large square piece of wax paper. Spoon the mixture along the center line. Fold in half and flatten with hands. Stick on plate or tray in fridge until set. (I store these in the fridge during the hot summer months).
You can also roll them into balls and create throat losenges of which I will be posting a recipe this fall.
Big Blue Eyes loves this carob treat!
I am thinking I will remake these Sesame Seed Chocolate Melts with carob from now on until she gets a little older.
I hope you and your little people enjoy!