Desserts

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Bark with Freeze Dried Strawberries

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

  The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark bursting with strawberry flavor! Dairy free option.

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Strawberries and Chocolate

 

Chocolate and Strawberries. They have been paired together for quite some time now. As legend has it, a woman by the name of Lorraine Lorusso developed the chocolate covered strawberry for a local grocery store called Stop ‘N Shop in the 1960’s. As you can imagine, the idea was a wild success…and thus began the chocolate-covered-fruit revolution (major win for mankind).

Chocolate, in general, has been around for even longer. Many sources indicate that cacao (which is a term referring to the actual cocoa bean, and not the sweetened chocolate we usually consume today), has been consumed by humans for over 2,000 years. According to the Smithsonian, the Latin name for the cacao tree, Theobroma cacao, actually means “food of the gods“. Whoever it was that came up with the name is a distant relative of mine, I’m pretty sure. For some time, cacao beans were deemed so valuable that they were actually used as a type of currency. 

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

Valentine’s Day met chocolate in the 1800’s when Richard Cadbury began marketing more varieties of what was then called “eating chocolate” (believe it or not, drinking chocolate came first) with the excess of cocoa butter left over from the drinking chocolate he was producing. The “eating chocolate” was soon marketed in fancy decorated boxes he designed himself for this holiday of love that was ever increasing in popularity.

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

Thanks to Lorraine Lorusso and Richard Cadbury (and the crazy – but brilliant – person who decided cacao beans were edible), we now have the indulgent flavor combo of Strawberries and Chocolate. And thanks to the invention of freeze dried strawberries, you no longer have to wait for strawberries to be in season to enjoy this treat!

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

Have you tried chocolate dipped freeze dried strawberries yet? It’s one of many new food trends, one of the brilliant ones, and I’ve been eyeing the recipes on Pinterest for a while now. 

There are a few things that set this recipe apart from any others you’ll see on Pinterest or across the web. First, you’ll get just the right portion of chocolate and strawberry flavor in every single bite because the strawberries are chopped instead of whole. The real secret to this recipe is strawberry extract. It brings a subtle flavor that gives the bark a wow factor without anyone knowing just what that special something is. Last, but not least, a touch of sea salt brings all the flavors together in the most perfect way. Believe me, this is a treat you’ll want to indulge in again and again.

 The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

Also, I’m a sucker for easy recipes, and if I can find a way to eat chocolate dipped strawberries without spending an hour dipping strawberries then you better believe I’m all over that. You’ll love how easy this recipe is to make! I’ve included a few simple tips and step by step instructions below to help you get exactly the result you want, but don’t think it’s complicated just because of the advice. It’s really just melted chocolate with a few ingredients stirred in 😉

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

A few tips for success:

  1. Better ingredients = Better product. There are a lot of freeze dried fruit options out there. Some are great, others are bland or the texture is off. Please read labels to be sure the freeze dried strawberries you’re using are gluten free and use a brand you trust for quality. I use Thrive strawberries because they’re certified gluten free and the freshest I’ve found. You can order here through my link if you want or you can use your own favorite. If you order through my link, be aware that you can order in 2 different sizes. The family size cans are large #10 size, and the pantry cans are about 1/3 that size. Once opened, the strawberries remain fresh for an entire year, which is another reason I love them.
  2. The above applies to the chocolate you use as well. Below are my top picks. Feel free to use the style of chocolate you prefer, get creative! I always reach for dark, so I used half dark chocolate and half semi-sweet. Feel free to use any combination of your favs! 
    • Hershey’s (Click here for a list of which varieties are gluten free. I used the special dark and semi-sweet)
    • Lakanto (a high quality chocolate sweetened with monk fruit I haven’t tested this yet but think that it would work. (Vegan/Dairy free/Sugar free but you would never know it)
    • Guittard (their dark chocolate is my fav. You can check out the ingredient list on their website. (Peanut free/shared equipment with milk)
  3. Melt your chocolate on very low heat. It will take a little while but it’s worth it for the smooth and creamy chocolate bark you’ll achieve. I don’t recommend using a microwave, but you can if you’re comfortable with that. I placed a pyrex bowl over a small saucepan with an inch or so of water to make a double boiler. I’m cheap like that.
  4. The alcohol in the strawberry extract will begin to harden your chocolate when you add it. That’s why I recommend that you keep the chocolate on low heat while adding it as this will keep it melting. If it begins to harden or get lumpy, just stir it over low heat until it’s smooth again. 
  5. Feel free to half or double the recipe. Also, if you like white chocolate, drizzle a little over the finished product (it’s perfection).

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Bark with Freeze Dried Strawberries

Prep

Total

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark bursting with strawberry flavor! Dairy free option.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten free Chocolate Chips
  • 1 tsp butter or shortening if you want a softer bark
  • 1/2 tsp gluten free Strawberry Extract
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped gf freeze dried strawberries, divided (chop just before melting chocolate and reserve 2 T for garnish)
  • sea salt

Instructions

  1. Line a small baking sheet or 9x13" pan with wax paper. Set aside.
  2. Melt chocolate chips and butter/shortening (optional) in a double boiler over low heat until smooth. You'll want to stir the chocolate continuously.
  3. As soon as the chocolate is melted and smooth, and while the chocolate is still over low heat, stir in strawberry extract while stirring vigorously. The chocolate may harden back up a little, keep stirring until it's smooth again.
  4. Stir in strawberries (except 2 T you reserved for garnish) and spread the chocolate onto your prepared pan. Sprinkle with 2 T strawberries and sea salt, to taste.
  5. Place your pan of chocolate bark in the fridge for 30-60 minutes, until it's solid.
  6. Chop into squares or irregular sized pieces and serve!
  7. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge, with layers separated with wax or parchment paper, for up to a week.

Shared on Gluten Free Fridays

 

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark! Creamy melted chocolate is studded with crisp freeze dried strawberries and topped with Himalayan sea salt. It's a beautiful treat that is perfect for any occasion or holiday! Dairy free option.

 

The elegance of chocolate dipped strawberries in an easy-to-make chocolate bark bursting with strawberry flavor! 

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17 Comments

  • Reply
    Rachel @ Kitchen Cents
    February 12, 2017 at 1:16 am

    I love this idea and using freeze dried strawberries Genius! This bark looks so yummy. I’m definitely going to need to try this one.

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 13, 2017 at 9:15 am

      Thanks Rachel, it’s one of my all time favorite recipes! Hope you love it!!

  • Reply
    Caitlin Sherwood
    February 12, 2017 at 7:48 am

    This looks super delicious! I have a bag of chocolate chips in the cupboard that I *have* to use to I may have to try it out 🙂

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 13, 2017 at 9:16 am

      You gotta do what you gotta do Caitlin 😉 Enjoy!

  • Reply
    Emily @ Recipes to Nourish
    February 13, 2017 at 9:15 am

    Yum! My youngest would love this! She loves freeze dried strawberries. I wouldn’t mind a few pieces of this too 🙂

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 13, 2017 at 9:19 am

      I bet she will love it Emily! It would be a fun treat to make and eat together 🙂

  • Reply
    Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
    February 13, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    I just made my first batch of chocolate bark this past weekend for the family (as a V-Day present!)

  • Reply
    Chandice
    February 13, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    What a great recipe! Love the decadent photography as well!

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 13, 2017 at 5:35 pm

      Thanks so much Chandice!

  • Reply
    Aimee
    February 15, 2017 at 9:24 am

    Sounds delicious! I have seen some at Costco and wondered how they were, now for sure I need to try them. 🙂

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 15, 2017 at 9:29 am

      It’s such a yummy combo Aimee! This recipe makes it so easy to enjoy some at home 🙂

  • Reply
    Brianna Hobbs
    February 15, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    This looks absolutely divine! Strawberries and chocolate, with just a hint of salt. Simple, yet perfection.

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 15, 2017 at 11:25 pm

      Thanks Brianna! Hope you get to enjoy some 🙂

  • Reply
    Agness of Run Agness Run
    February 16, 2017 at 5:57 am

    This chocolate bark is mouth-watering, Celeste! I will give it a try, or maybe add some orange instead.

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 18, 2017 at 9:05 am

      Thank you Agness! It’s such a fun treat, and I would love to hear how it tastes with the orange, let me know!

  • Reply
    jules shepard
    February 16, 2017 at 7:43 am

    I love your tips, Celeste! And your pics are making me hungry for chocolate … before breakfast!

    • Reply
      thereislifeafterwheat@gmail.com
      February 18, 2017 at 9:05 am

      Thanks Jules! Dark chocolate and strawberries are OK for breakfast, right? 😉

    Leave a Reply

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