36 Cacao Nib Recipes (Gluten-Free, Vegetarian) (2024)

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A collection of fun and healthy Cacao Nib Recipes ranging from ice cream and bars to cookies and pancakes to scones and granola. All recipes are gluten-free and vegetarian!

36 Cacao Nib Recipes (Gluten-Free, Vegetarian) (1)

What are Cacao Nibs?

Cacao nibs (also known as cocoa nibs) are are the raw and unprocessed form of chocolate as you know it. The nibs are shelled cacao beans that have been dried, fermented and minimally processed. They have a wonderful slightly bitter, yet strong chocolate flavor that is packed with nutrients. Cacao nibs are rich in magnesium, iron, zinc and a healthy dose of antioxidants and fiber. They offer a wonderful sugar-free crunch to a variety of dishes as you can see displayed in this round-up. It is my hope you find yourself inspired to incorporate this delight into your diet and find some recipes below that you will enjoy for some time to come!

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36 Recipes with Cacao Nibs (Vegetarian + Gluten-Free)

Peanut Butter Cacao Nib Coconut Flour Cookies (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free)

Are you looking for an alternative to chocolate chip cookies? These peanut butter coconut flour cookies are easy, healthy, delicious, require just one bowl and make a perfect recipe for trying out cacao (cocoa) nibs! Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Refined sugar-free cookies that are perfectly chewy and oh so TASTY!

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Easy Coconut Cacao Granola – Zardy Plants

Chocolate and Coconut for Breakfast?!? That’s better then candy! My Easy Coconut Cacao Granola is a great way to start your day.

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Paleo Chocolate Pancakes – Calm Eats

These Paleo Chocolate Pancakes are delicious, nutrient-dense, grain-free, and a perfect low cab breakfast.

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Rose Chocolate Ganache Tart – My Tiny Laguna Kitchen

Need to impress your loved one with a homemade dessert for Valentine’s Day? This is the dessert for you. This rose chocolate ganache tart is rich, creamy, and absolute luxury!

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Oatmeal Raisin Chunky Monkey Muffins (Gluten-Free) Recipe | VEEG

These quick and easy Oatmeal Raisin Chunky Monkey Muffins may cause you to rethink the ingredients in every muffin you’ve ever baked! They’re one-hundred percent vegan, plant-based, oil-free and gluten-free, and loaded with only the most wholesome, delicious, ingredients.

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Raw Cacao Hazelnut Energy Balls – Running on Real Food

These raw vegan cacao hazelnut energy balls are easy to make with just 4 simple ingredients. Enjoy these sweet bites for a healthy snack or dessert!

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Cocoa Banana Yogurt with Coconut – The Forked Spoon

Rich, creamy and chocolatey, this Cocoa Banana Yogurt is delicious for breakfast or dessert! Sweetened with honey and banana, this bowl of creamy yogurt has no processed sugars.

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Chai-Spiced Cacao Nib Brownies (Gluten-Free)

These easy and delicious Chai-Spiced Cacao Nib Brownie Bars are delightfully chocolate-y, subtly spiced, and packed with iron, fiber and potassium from the cacao nibs. Not to mention, they have an amazing texture, too. This gluten-free treat makes a great breakfast, snack or dessert as it is not over-the-top sweet (but big on flavor!).

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Vegan Coconut Slice | Shivani Loves Food

An easy and healthy vegan dessert recipe: Coconut Slice! A date and oat caramel base topped with a sweet and crunchy coconut layer and marbled dairy-free chocolate – What a treat!

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Peanut Butter & Cacao Nibs Rice Crispy Treats (Vegan, No-Bake + Healthy) – Simple Veganista

Only 4 ingredients needed to make the deliciously healthy vegan Peanut Butter & Cacao Rice Crispy Treats. No-bake, dairy and gluten free!

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Homemade chocolate from cocoa nibs – Oh The Things We’ll Make!

Avoid emulsifiers and other unwanted ingredients and control the process by making your own homemade chocolate bars from cocoa nibs.#chocolate #cacao #cocoa

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Matcha Power Bars Recipe (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free) – Go Dairy Free

This wholesome Matcha Power Bars recipe is from Vegan Power Meals. It’s a wholesome Vegan Treat Worthy of Breakfast or Dessert! Paleo optional.

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No Bake Oatmeal Cookie Energy Bites are coming your way kidlets (and parents)! These tasty little bites are healthy, loaded with nutritious superfoods, easy to make (get the kids to help out on this recipe), and are perfect for that mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack craving. The only trick is to try and not eat all of them in one sitting.

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Cobnut and Cacao Nib Ice Cream – Circus Gardener

Nearly 70% of the world’s supply of cocoa comes from two west African countries, Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. Despite being part of a lucrative market, cocoa farming in these countries often provides a…

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Mint Chocolate Smoothie – Plant Based Cooking

This refreshing smoothie can be made with fresh mint or an extract. The unsweetened cacao nibs create a bit of crunch.

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Toasted Quinoa-Stuffed Mangos – Vegan Yack Attack

TheseToasted Quinoa-Stuffed Mangos are filled with fresh fruit, lots of protein, and wonderful flavors from cacao nibs and creamy quinoa. Refined sugar free, too!

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Banana Almond Butter Cacao Smoothie – Watch Learn Eat

This Banana Almond Butter Cacao Smoothie is a nutritious and refreshing treat that hits the sweet spot without adding any sugar.

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Apple Butter Cacao Nib Rugelach – Running to the Kitchen®

These gluten free apple butter rugelach are studded with cacao nibs for a crunchy bite. They’re buttery, soft and a fun cookie option for the season!

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Vegan Baked Chocolate Chip Skillet Scones (Gluten-Free) Recipe | VEEG

Ever since devouring our very first batch of Vegan Baked Chocolate Chip Skillet Scones, we are skillet scone fans! Need to bring something to share at a potluck, picnic or get-together? Make these scones. Want to feel like the most fabulous baker in the whole-wide-world? Also, don’t really want to f…

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No Bake Peanut Butter Balls – Perfect protein packed breakfast or snack! – Natalie’s Health

These 6-ingredient No Bake Peanut Butter Balls are full of healthful ingredients. They are nutty and sweet, and super easy to make. Perfect snack!

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Coconut Chia Pudding with Ginger and Cacao – Leanne Ray

This coconut chia pudding with ginger and cacao is a nutritious and interesting make-ahead snack option! Prep a batch at the beginning of the week.

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How to Make Homemade DIY Chocolate Liqueur – Sidewalk Shoes

Homemade DIY Chocolate Liqueur – sinfully delicious and oh-so-easy!

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Fudgy Gluten-Free Brownies (Dairy-Free) – Dish by Dish

The perfect fudgy gluten-free brownies that you’ll be making over and over again. Moist, rich, decadent, these are everything a chocolate lover will need.

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Mint Mocha Cold Brew & Body Scrub – Vegan Yack Attack

A simple recipe with all natural ingredients for Mint Mocha Cold Brew, plus how to turn it into a body scrub!

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Breakfast Peanut Butter Cookies Easy Plant Based – Any reason vegans

these simple cookies are vegan, paleo, Keto, and gluten free! Perfect for breakfast or a late night snack!

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Eat Dirt Chocolate Vegan Protein Shakes Recipe – Go Dairy Free

Dairy-free and oh-so-nutritious, these chocolate vegan protein shakes have a fun garden-style presentation, complete with cacao and hemp dirt!

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Peanut Butter Protein Balls [Vegan, Grain-Free, Oil-Free], Video – Nutri Planet

These rich and healthy grain free vegan peanut butter protein balls that use no refined sugars or oils are so easy to throw together! With tutorial video!

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Protein-Packed Chia Pudding | My Darling Vegan

This 5-Minute Chia Pudding is packed with protein and filled with superfoods for a quick and satisfying breakfast that will keep you fueled.

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Peanut Butter No Bake Protein Balls w/ Superfoods – Veggie Inspired

Peanut Butter No Bake Protein Balls w/ superfoods like hemp seeds, flax seeds, and cacao nibs are the perfect little bites to keep hunger at bay. Great for a grab-n-go breakfast option as well.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie with Avocado [Vegan, Keto, Paleo] – Always Use Butter

This vegan, healthy breakfast smoothie is super easy to make without banana, dairy or gluten products. So tasty you can even make it for kids!

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Paleo 5 Minute Quick Blend Banana & Avocado Chocolate Mousse Pudding | Recipe This

Welcome to my Paleo 5 minute quick blend banana and avocado chocolate mousse pudding in the blender. Do you ever have that moment when you make something that…

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Healthy Apple Banana Smoothie – Simmer to Slimmer

This delicious glass of apple banana smoothie without any added sugar is the perfect way to start your day. Makes for a filling breakfast or anytime snack.

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Peanut Butter Fruit Dip – Baba Ganosh

Healthy, guilt-free peanut butter fruit dip to satisfy all your peanut butter and dessert cravings! Make this in under 5 minutes when you get a craving for sweets.

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Pomegranate Chia Pudding | Sprouts And Krauts

Pomegranate Chia Pudding is a perfect make-ahead breakfast. It takes minimal time and effort, but looks impressive, beautiful, and seasonal.

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Apple Almond Sweet Potato Granola Bars – Bad to the Bowl

Easy homemade granola bars contain veggies, fruit and nut butter.

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More Chocolate Goodness

Hot Tahini Cacao

Mint Cacao Adaptogenic Freezer Candy

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

Buckwheat Cacao Banana Bread

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Kristen Wood

Kristen is a writer, photographer, recipe developer, and certified functional nutrition expert. She is also the author of Fermented Hot Sauce Cookbook, Vegetarian Family Cookbook, and Hot Sauce Cookbook for Beginners. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications including Elle, Chicago Sun-Times, Martha Stewart, MSN, Healthline, and many more. Kristen is also a syndicated writer for The Associated Press.

36 Cacao Nib Recipes (Gluten-Free, Vegetarian) (2024)


Are cacao nibs vegan? ›

Cacao nibs have countless health benefits. They are high in fiber, protein, healthy fats, and low in sugar. They are also a brilliant plant-based source of iron, magnesium, and zinc; making them a great addition to the vegan diet.

Are navitas cacao nibs healthy? ›

They make a great addition to homemade chocolate treats, but unlike chocolate, they aren't sweetened or processed. They're also known for their health benefits, as they are high in antioxidants, magnesium and dietary fiber.

What to do with cacao nibs? ›

Perhaps the most common way to cook with Cocoa nibs is to add them to cakes, muffins, breads or any other recipe that calls for baking. They can be used as a topping or baked in the raw batter to add that deep chocolate flavor with none of the added sugar of refined chocolate.

Are cacao nibs gluten free? ›

Cacao is one of the most nutritionally diverse foods on the planet. Provides fiber, antioxidants, magnesium and healthy fats in every serving. USDA Organic, Fairtrade, non-GMO, Kosher, vegan, gluten-free.

What is the difference between cocoa nibs and cacao nibs? ›

Cacao nibs, also known as cocoa nibs, are crumbled bits of dried cacao beans, which grow on the cacao tree. Cacao nib producers dry and crack the beans into small pieces. Cacao nibs are part of the same bean used in chocolate candy production. Cacao beans are native to the upper Amazon region.

How many cacao nibs to eat per day? ›

While cacao nibs are packed with nutrients, they also contain caffeine and are calorie-dense due to their fat content. So, consuming them in moderation is crucial, integrating them as part of a balanced and varied diet. A small handful or one to two tablespoons daily is generally considered reasonable.

What is the side effect of cacao nibs? ›

Eating large amounts might cause caffeine-related side effects such as nervousness, increased urination, sleeplessness, and a fast heartbeat. Cocoa can cause allergic skin reactions and might also trigger migraine headaches. It can also cause nausea, stomach discomfort, constipation, and gas.

Do cacao nibs spike blood sugar? ›

Cacao nibs may be one of the best cocoa products to choose for blood sugar regulation, as they're high in blood-sugar stabilizing antioxidants and do not contain any added sugar.

Is it OK to eat raw cacao nibs? ›

Cacao beans that have been heated or roasted during processing are used to make chocolate due to its sweeter taste. As most superfoodies will know, you can eat raw cacao and cacao nibs are no different. They have a subtle crunch - that someone people liken to the that of cashew.

Do cacao nibs expire? ›

When does cacao nibs expire? Unopened, cacao nibs last for about 2 years if stored properly. Once opened, they are best used within 6-8 months for optimal flavor, though they can still be safe to consume after this timeframe, especially if you've stored them correctly.

Do you refrigerate cacao nibs? ›

It is not recommended that cacao nibs be refrigerated or frozen as it can cause moisture build-up, which can lead to potential mold or mildew. Store them in a cool, dry place to help maintain freshness and longer shelf life.

Can I put cacao nibs in my coffee? ›

Try adding nibs to your yogurt, smoothies, banana bread, salad and coffee. Adding cacao to your coffee: indi chocolate cacao nibs add the chocolaty flavor without adding the sugar. Cacao gives you a theobromine boost to your caffeine, preventing a midday caffeine and sugar crash.

Can celiacs eat cocoa? ›

Cocoa powder is naturally gluten free, however, we would recommend checking drinking chocolate, along with chocolate added to cappuccinos.

Are there heavy metals in cacao nibs? ›

On occasion, you'll find cacao nibs that contain heavy metals such as lead and cadmium, but that won't be the case with the Terrasoul brand.

Are cacao nibs high in histamine? ›

Cocoa nibs have low levels of histamine; however, they do contain other biogenic amines like tyramine and phenylethylamine which trigger symptoms in some. Cocoa nibs can also act as histamine liberators; in other words, they trigger the release of the body's existing histamine.

Can vegans eat cacao? ›

Cocoa powder is the cocoa solids in its raw form, and this will be vegan, however hot chocolate powder may contain dried milk which would make it unsuitable for those on a plant-based diet.

Is cacao vegan? ›

For all of you chocolate-loving vegans out there, the answer is yes! Chocolate can be vegan. Chocolate is made from cacao beans, which are grown on cacao trees. This means that chocolate is inherently a plant-based food.

Do cacao nibs have dairy? ›

Cocoa Nibs are dairy free. Cocoa Nibs do not contain milk and should be safe for those with a milk allergy.

Is 100% cacao vegan? ›

Pure cocoa powder, cocoa nibs, and 100% chocolate bars are safe options for vegans since none of the above are made with milk or sugar.


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