How many of us are trying to reduce our grain? It’s a tough effort for sure, particularly for those afternoon carb cravings that we get on a daily basis! It has taken me several years to come up with this recipe (with multiple ‘not so great’ versions through its history!). This sweet bread is gluten free, grain free, dairy free, nut free, soy free, and free of refined sugar. You can also make it egg free and it actually still comes out delicious but with a denser texture. Ideally, have this bread sit on the counter on a cooling rack for a while until it fully cools. If you are making it with eggs, it’s helpful then to place it in the fridge overnight to ‘set’. During the holidays, we are surrounded by sweet treats and often, they are really hard to avoid! Baking healthier options to have on hand is one way to support yourself during this season. I find that I make this bread with variations in flavor profile (instead of chocolate, I make banana walnut) on a weekly basis for me and my family—it helps a lot to keep me from snacking on other lesser healthy substitutes!
Paleo Chocolate Bread
- 1/3 cup tapioca starch
- 1/3 cup potato starch (can substitute by adding more of the other starches listed in this recipe if you’re avoiding potato)
- 1/3 cup arrowroot powder
- ½ cup flax meal
- ¼ cup hemp seeds
- ½ tsp. sea salt
- 1/3 cup raw cocoa powder (sifted through strainer)
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 6 eggs, beaten (egg substitute: mix 2 tbsp chia seeds with 6 tbsp. warm water and let sit on counter for 10-15 minutes until gelatinous)
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup hemp or coconut milk or other milk substitute
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ cup raw honey
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed or ½ cup of canned pureed pumpkin (or combo of both)
- Optional: 1/3 cup chocolate chips (a great option for lower sugar dairy free chips is Lilly’s—you can find it at Whole Foods Market or online)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grease bread pan or muffin tin.
- Combine all dry ingredients into mixing bowl and mix well.
- Combine all liquid ingredients into separate bowl and mix well.
- Pour liquid ingredient mixture into dry mixture and mix well to combine.
- Pour combined mixture into bread pan or muffin tin.
- Bake bread for 1 – 1 ½ hours and muffins for approximately 30 minutes. Check for doneness using toothpick test (toothpick should come out clean after being inserted into center through to bottom of baked good)
- Let sit in pan until cooled and then remove from pan and move to cooling rack to continue cooling.
Ayelet Connell-Giammatteo, PhD, PT, IMT,C is the President and Owner of Integrative Wellness & Physical Therapy in Bloomfield, CT, a wellness center specializing in holistic Physical Therapy, nutritional wellness and Functional Medicine, and Integrative Manual Therapy (IMT). Dr. Connell-Giammatteo is a Physical Therapist and Certified Integrative Manual Therapist. She has been practicing in the field of IMT for over 15 years. In addition to her IMT expertise, Dr. Connell-Giammatteo is a graduate of the Institute of Functional Medicine’s program “Applying Functional Medicine into Clinical Practice” focusing on nutritional wellness. She has written many articles on the subjects of IMT, healthy living, natural parenting, and nutritional wellness. Dr. Connell is also a local of this community and has been living in the Greater Hartford area for many years, where she integrates a healthy lifestyle at home with her wonderful family.