The connection between chocolate and oranges is a classic one, having roots going back to ancient China. People would give Dark Chocolate Covered Orange Slices to romantic partners as a sign of their love.
From there, the sweet flavor profile traveled the world starting with trade routes to Sicily in about 1400. The United States picked up on it World War 1, and it’s been a staple ever since.
Easy dessert ideas for party or potluck
I love the combination of orange and chocolate all year around, but especially during the winter holidays. Oranges dipped in chocolate are a refreshing alternative to a heavy dessert after a extravagant holiday meal. When I make this whole foods dessert, I notice people will choose to eat the chocolate dipped mandarin oranges over the richer options.
Healthy Upgrade: fresh fruit dessert
In addition to being delicious, this fresh fruit dessert has some health benefits in addition to being delicious. The Vitamin A and Vitamin C provided in fresh mandarin oranges are great for your immune system. The fiber in the oranges helps manage blood pressure as well as make you feel full. Dark chocolate boosts energy levels, has heart protective antioxidants and is a mood enhancer.
One versatile aspect about this dessert is that it can be made to suit so many eating styles and fin- tuned to your taste. Most of the tweaking is with the chocolate itself. The choices for chocolate chip ingredients include vegan, dairy-free or sugar-free options. The percentage of actual cocoa solids can vary from semi sweet at 30-65% up to about 90%. I use 85% chocolate because I like the deep chocolate flavor next to the juicy sweetness of the orange.
Seedless mandarin oranges (also called cuties or clementines) have a thin loose skin with almost no white pith, making them fast to peel and work with for this recipe. However, feel free to experiment with other types of oranges, such as tangerines, cara caras, or blood oranges.
Recipe for easy dessert, microwave only
Dark Chocolate Covered Orange Slices are easy desserts to make at home, taking only 30 minutes from getting the idea to popping one in your mouth. I think you will quickly find it becoming a “go to” favorite.
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Dark Chocolate Covered Oranges
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- Small microwave-safe bowl (1 quart size)
- measuring spoon
- paper towels
- cookie sheet
- dinner plate 11-12"
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1 tsp coconut oil or avocado oil
- 4 mandarin oranges peeled and sectioned
- Peel the mandarin oranges and arrange them on a sheet of parchment lined cookie sheet. If any segments are wet, use a paper towel to pat them dry. Chocolate will not adhere to the wet parts of the orange.
- In a small bowl, add the chocolate chips and coconut oil or avocado oil and microwave on high for 30 to 45-second intervals until melted. Stir with a spoon to fully combine.
- Dip each segment of mandarin orange half way into the chocolate.
- Return to parchment to cool at room temperature for 5 minutes. Then transfer segments to a plate to refrigerate until hardened, about 20 minutes.
Hand Size Portions
Some handy advice: You can use your hands to practice calorie control without weighing and measuring.
Using hand position size is an alternative way to decide how much to eat visually. It gives you a way to quickly estimate what's on your plate, using the size of your hand as an alternative to counting macros (which generally has you weighing and reading nutrition labels to count protein, carbohydrates, and fat).
To learn more, read How to Get Started with Hand Portion Sizes.
Patsy Whatley believes that life is precious and that with knowledge and a holistic approach to chronic diseases through lifestyle changes. As Patsy watched her family’s lives improve, she knew that coaching people through nutrition and lifestyle changes would dramatically improve the quality of their life. And it will improve the quality of your life too.
Find other articles written by Patsy on her coach profile. Look to her for habits to create your best life.