How to make homemade chocolate Easter bunnies from scratch

How to make chocolate Easter bunnies using a vintage mold

With Easter coming up I’ve been thinking about chocolate and marshmallow bunnies, jelly beans, peeps, and my favorite ~ cadbury eggs.  Should I buy the typical load or cut back and are there any alternatives that are healthy-ish that could be used instead? After giving this some thought I decided to make my own sweet treat using a vintage mold in the shape of a bunny.  I consider her extra special because she’s made with cacao, not chocolate!

I’ve never made my own candy like this so I had to try a few times to get the recipe and technique down.   To get the bunny to come out of the mold perfectly takes a little patience but as soon as you figure it out it’s easy.  This mold is not very big so it was a challenge to remove the cacao bunny without breaking off the ears.   The melted cacao needs to be just the right temperature and consistency for everything to work.  You’ll need the mixture to be thin enough to reach the ears and thick enough so it doesn’t run out the sides of the mold.  Ounce you fill up the mold give it a tap to make sure all the cacao has been evenly distributed.  If this seems too difficult, just pour the cacao onto a baking sheet or pan and make cacao bark!

Scroll down to see how to make chocolate (cacao!) Easter bunnies using a vintage mold or if you’d like to learn a little more about the health benefits of cacao continue reading.

What is Cacao?

Studies that boast the amazing health benefits of chocolate are not referring to your average Hershey’s Chocolate bar.  Instead, they’re referring to cacao.

  1. potent antioxidant

Cacao is a potent antioxidant which means it can help guard against toxins (free radicals damage) which in turn may help reduce risk of certain cancers.  Cacao contains more antioxidants per 3 ounce serving than other super foods such as acai, goji, and blueberries. There is also no sugar in Cacao so if you are if you are baking with it, you’ll need to add a little sweetener.  When we add sugar, salt, or fats to our foods it’s likely we are getting less than what we’d have in prepared foods.

2.  may boost your mood

Cacao may increase levels of certain neurotransmitters that might improve focus, mood, and energy.  Other studies show that phenylethylamine may our brain release chemicals that promote a sense of well-being, which is also the same chemical released when we experience the feeling of love.

3.  contains helpful trace minerals

Cacao is rich in trace minerals such as magnesium, iron, potassium, copper, and manganese.

Chocolate Easter Bunnies

Chocolate Easter Bunnies

This recipe is my take on a traditional Easter treat: chocolate bunnies made with cacao instead of chocolate. Cacao contains no sugar in its powder form and it’s packed full of antioxidants.  Unlike traditional store bought chocolate, cacao doesn’t have as much caffeine so if you have some in the evening its less likely to keep you up.  You can also make cacao bark instead of using the molds. 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cacao powder
  • 3/4 cup cacao butter chips
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon optional
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Instructions

    Place a bowl over a bowling pot of water and slowly melted the cacao butter chips.

  1. When the cacao butter is melted, remove from heat and whisk in the cacao powder.  

  2. Add the maple syrup, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla and stir until all ingredients are well incorporated.

  3. At this point you may choose to make cacao bark or pour the mixture into candy molds.  

  4. If you are making candy, spoon the cacao mixture into your mold making sure to tap the cacao down into the mold. When your mixture is in the mold carefully place on a paper towel in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.  Remove from the freezer and carefully remove your cacao.  

  5. If you are make bark, line a small rectangular pan with parchment paper and pour the cacao on the paper.  Add your favorite salt or rose petals on top of the cacao and freeze for at least 30 minutes.  Remove from the freezer and break up the cacao bark into bite size pieces.  

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