You’ve probably eaten chocolate at least once in your life. And you probably remember that blissful chocolatey sensation it gave you. Now imagine that sensation but in something better… healthier. Imagine cacao nibs.
Don’t know what that is? Well, let’s find out!
WHAT ARE CACAO NIBS?
Cacao nibs are gotten from the cacao beans of cacao trees – which are also called cocoa trees. These trees are predominantly cultivated in parts of Peru, West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, etc.), Brazil, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Ecuador.
Cacao nibs are gotten by drying fermented cacao beans and crushing them into tiny bits. These cacao nibs can be roasted and ground to make all things chocolate – most times with a truckload of sugar and milk.
That’s what makes them different. Cacao nibs aren’t roasted or processed while cocoa is roasted and usually mixed with dairy and sugar. This means that cacao nibs are much healthier than cocoa products because of their raw, organic nature, and the fact that they have little or no added sugar.
But that isn’t the only thing it got right. Cacao nibs also have other benefits too.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CACAO NIBS?
The nutritional benefits of cacao nibs are far-reaching,
- Raw cacao nibs are rich in flavanols – antioxidants that protect your heart.
- Cacao also contains tryptophan, an amino acid that is used by the body to produce serotonin – the chemical that gives that blissful feeling.
- They are packed with magnesium, selenium, manganese, and vitamins.
- They are rich in iron too. This is especially useful for vegans and vegetarians.
- They are also lower in calories than cocoa products.
What do Cacao nibs taste like?
Cacao nibs can be eaten raw, added to drinks and cereal, or used as toppings for cakes and muffins.
You should know that raw cacao nibs have a bitter taste like dark unsweetened chocolate, and might be a little overwhelming for your taste buds, even if you add it to a smoothie or yogurt.
Don’t let that put you off, though. We’ve got the right combo to make that taste bearable – drumroll, please.
It’s… YACON SYRUP!
WHAT IS YACON SYRUP?
Yacon syrup is gotten from the Yacon plant grown in South America. Actually, it’s obtained from the succulent and sweet roots of the plant.
The tuber itself is edible. But Yacon syrup is gotten from extracting its juice and organically evaporating the excess water, leaving a thick sweet-tasting syrup.
Yacon contains fructooligosaccharides, a low amount of pure, digestible sugars, and high fiber content – which all aid digestion. And because only a small portion of it is digested, yacon has a lower calorie count than regular sugar.
This makes it much healthier than sugar and better for weight loss. It also makes it the best sweetener combo for cacao nibs. In fact, most bags of cacao nibs now come pre-drizzled with pure yacon syrup.
And even if they didn’t, you can always substitute that cube of sugar with a nice teaspoon of yacon syrup with your delicious cacao nibs goodness. Life can be sweet and healthy at the same time!