We’re doing a happy dance here at the Happy Gluten-Free Vegan because Costco has their vegan-by-accident chocolate chips back in stock. (“Vegan by accident” is a term sometimes applied to food and products that are vegan, but not intentionally vegan.) So what do you do when life gives you a boatload of vegan chocolate chips? You make toasted nut and coconut vegan chocolate bark!
The Kirkland chocolate chips weigh in at a hefty 4 1/2 pounds (er, that’s the bag of chocolate chips, not a single chocolate chip!), and at a bit under $12 a bag, we picked up a few of them.
Costco Chocolate Chips
The thing about the Kirkland chocolate chips is that sometimes they are vegan, and sometimes … they aren’t. So you always have to pick up the bag and read the ingredients. Sometimes the Costco chocolate chips (Kirkland is their brand) contain milk fat. Sometimes they don’t.
Always Check Ingredients – This Batch Has No Milk Fat
Many of the Costcos had only had the chocolate chips containing milk fat for months, so you can see why we were excited when they got these ones in stock, and why we stocked up!
Now that we had nearly 15 pounds of chocolate chips, we started dreaming of things to do with them (other than, of course, eating them straight out of the bag). And that’s when we thought of bark. Actually, to be more accurate, we started having a hankering for something with chocolate and nuts, and chocolate bark just fit the bill! Of course, the fact that chocolate bark is so easy and fast to make was an added bonus. :~)
Homemade Vegan Chocolate Bark with Toasted Nuts and Coconut Recipe
2 cups vegan chocolate chips (we get our from Costco)
1 Tablespoon coconut oil
2 cups raw nuts (we used almonds from Costco, and cashews)
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raisins or other dried fruit (optional)
Preheat oven to 325°.
Line a large, rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper*, and spread your nuts and shredded coconut out in a single layer on the cookie sheet.
Roast nuts and coconut (not any raisins or other dried fruit) in the oven for 10 minutes, remove from oven, and let cool.
While the nuts are cooling, put the chocolate chips and the coconut oil in a microwave safe container (ideally BPA-free plastic, or some other material that won’t heat up – glass, for example, will get hot and may mess up your chocolate – I got this tip from Dorothy over at Crazy for Crust).
Microwave the chocolate chips for a half-minute, remove from the microwave and stir. Repeat this three times. Then cut it down to 15 seconds in the microwave, remove, stir, and another 15 seconds in the microwave. Continue doing this until the chips are fully melted and the chocolate is smooth.
Pour the nuts and coconut into a bowl, return the parchment paper to the baking sheet, and then spread the melted chocolate on the parchment paper-lined baking sheet in an even layer covering the bottom of the pan. If you are careful to not color outside the lines (i.e. don’t spread the chocolate past the edge of the paper) then cleanup is going to be a snap.
Sprinkle the nuts and coconut over the chocolate. If you are also using raisins or other dried fruit, sprinkle them over the chocolate as well.
Using a large shallow spoon, or other similar flat utensil, gently press the nuts/coconut/raisins/fruit into the chocolate.
Allow chocolate to fully set, either on the counter at room temperature (will take a few hours) or in the fridge (will take 45 minutes to an hour).
Break up your scrumptious chocolate bark into irregular pieces, and enjoy! This makes a great gift!
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