CroppedAvocadoMousse1 1024x1024 - Try this Secret-Ingredient Valentine's Day Dessert!

Whether you’re into it for the mood-boost, the antioxidants, or the supposed aphrodisiac properties, chocolate on Valentine’s Day is a no-brainer. I like mine dark and bitter, but a little (very little) bit sweet. That probably says way too much about me, but hey, the truth will set you free. Or something like that.

This recipe is a heart-healthy twist on traditional chocolate mousse. However, instead of heaps of cream and sugar, it features avocado, which lends a smooth, rich texture along with a healthy dose of fiber, monounsaturated fat, and potassium to help manage your cholesterol and blood pressure — important stuff if you’re planning to grow old with the person to whom you are serving said mousse.

And though you may not want to make the avocado’s nutritional information part of your romantic dinner conversation, you’ll be happy to know that the dietary fiber in this dessert will help prevent and relieve constipation, maintain a healthy weight, and lower your risk of diabetes, heart disease and some types of cancer; the monounsaturated fat can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood which can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke; and the potassium will aid in regulating your heartbeat and in ensuring proper function of your muscles and nerves.

You can enjoy this plain, but I love it garnished with berries and a dollop of whipped cream. It would also be divine with whipped coconut cream on top!

Dark Chocolate Avocado Mousse

Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 large ripe avocados, flesh scooped out

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon brewed coffee or espresso

2 tablespoons sweetener of choice, such as maple syrup, honey, etc

1 2-oz bar of high-quality dark chocolate, melted 

Fresh berries for garnish

Whipped cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Process avocado, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, coffee, and sweetener in a food processor.
  2. Add melted chocolate and process until the mixture resembles mousse. Divide between 4 small cups. 
  3. Refrigerate, covered, for an hour or longer.
  4. When you’re ready to serve, garnish each with fresh berries and whipped cream, if desired.

What’s your favorite kind of chocolate?