This chocolate bark recipe is an extremely quick-to-make no-bake recipe that’s so easy to adjust to any occasion. Use nuts, seeds, dried berries, and fruit to create a unique chocolate dessert that will look fantastic on your table.
Why you should try this recipe
It’s quick to make. The whole melting, cooling, and setting process will take under one hour, so this recipe is great if you’re short on time but still want to surprise your family and guests.
You can adapt this chocolate bark to any occasion. Apart from using nuts, dried fruits, and berries, you can top your dark chocolate bark with different sprinkles which represent any holiday you want. You can also use different edible glitters to make your dessert festive.
You can store this chocolate at room temperature. I temper chocolate to make this chocolate bark, so you don’t have to keep it in the fridge or worry about chocolate bloom. It will also have a crunchy texture that melts once it heats on your tongue.
It’s fun to make with kids. Of course, the melting process should be done by adults, but spreading the mixture in different shapes and decorating them is a great, creative activity for children.
What chocolate to choose
You want to use real semi-sweet chocolate (54-60% cocoa). That means that the ingredient list should include cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and sugar and can sometimes contain an emulsifier (such as sunflower lectin). If you see that cocoa butter was replaced with vegetable oil (coconut, palm, etc.), you're looking at compound chocolate – that’s not what you need for this recipe.
If you use chocolate bars (Lindt chocolate bars will work great here), don't forget to chop them up before using them. You can also use sweetened baking chocolate bars or chips. Just make sure that it's real chocolate, not a compound one.
Nuts and seeds - Fancy up your homemade chocolate bark with crushed macadamia nuts or pistachios. Alternatively, take a more classic route and add hazelnuts and walnuts. I also like to add roasted almond flakes to my chocolate brittle.
Dried fruits and berries - Anything from dried pineapples to dried cranberries and cherries will work. You can add them as a topping or mix them right into the melted chocolate.
More chocolate - The easiest way to add white or milk chocolate to your dark chocolate bark is to sprinkle some chocolate chips on top when the bark hasn't set yet.
Freeze-dried berries - To add sourness to your easy chocolate bark, add some freeze-dried raspberries or strawberries.
Sprinkles - If you're making Christmas bark, add some sprinkles as a topping.
Coconut - Create tropical vibes by using raw or toasted shredded coconut or coconut flakes.
Other things - Flaky sea salt, mini salty pretzels, peanut butter drops - anything that sticks and is edible can be added to create your unique chocolate dessert.
Don't let water get into your chocolate. Even one drop of water will ruin your dessert, so make sure that all your equipment is clean and dry before cooking. Also, when you melt chocolate using the double-boiler method, the steam will create water droplets on the bottom of your mixing bowl. That's why I recommend placing your bowl on a kitchen towel after you finish heating your chocolate. The towel will trap the water, meaning you have less chance of getting it into your chocolate mixture.
Use a digital kitchen scale. If you add too little unmelted chocolate to your melted chocolate, the new bonds won't form and your chocolate won't temper. That means it won't solidify at room temperature. To avoid this, weigh your chocolate properly.
Use an instant-read thermometer. It's very important that you don't overheat your chocolate and that you cool it down to a certain temperature to temper your chocolate.
Mix the chocolate until the temperature drops. Don't just leave your chocolate mixture to sit on your counter after you’ve seeded it with unmelted chocolate - stir it continuously, rearranging bonds between molecules and bringing it back to temper. The whole solidifying process will take about 5 minutes, depending on how warm it is in your kitchen.
Step by step directions
1. Line an 8" by 8" (20cm by 20cm) brownie pan (or you can use a baking sheet) with parchment paper.
2. To a heat-proof bowl, add 200g of the chocolate. Place it over a pot with slightly simmering water (double-boiler method). The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl.
3. Stir the chocolate with a rubber spatula while it’s melting. When the chocolate is at 113- 122F (45-50C), remove the bowl onto a kitchen towel.
4. Add the rest of the chocolate (100g) and stir until it’s melted and the mixture has cooled down to 88F (31C).
5. Add ⅔ of the hazelnuts as well as ⅔ of the cranberries and mix until fully coated with the chocolate.
6. Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and spread evenly using the spatula.
7. Sprinkle the rest of the nuts and cranberries on top. Additionally, sprinkle on roasted almond flakes.
8. Leave it to set at room temperature. Then, cut into squares and serve.
Yes, you can! However, make sure that you heat your milk chocolate to 113F (45C) only and then seed it with the rest of the chocolate.
Can you make white chocolate bark?
White chocolate is more difficult to work with because it has no cocoa solids and less cocoa butter than semi-sweet or milk chocolate. So, if you want to make white chocolate bark, you need to buy a very good-quality couverture white chocolate that always contains more cocoa butter. You will also need to be more careful to not overheat it. White chocolate shouldn’t be heated over 110F (43C).
How to store chocolate bark?
Store your chocolate bark at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
More chocolate recipes
- Digital kitchen scale
- Rubber spatula
- Instant read thermometer
- 8" by 8" (20cm by 20cm) brownie pan
- Parchment paper
- 300 g semi-sweet chocolate 54% cocoa
- 60 g roasted hazelnuts crushed
- 40 g dried cranberries
- 10 g roasted almond flakes
- Line an 8" by 8" (20cm by 20cm) brownie pan with parchment paper.
- To a heat-proof bowl, add 200g of the chocolate. Place it over a pot with slightly simmering water (double-boiler method). The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl.
- Stir the chocolate with a rubber spatula while it’s melting. When the chocolate is at 113- 122F (45-50C), remove the bowl onto a kitchen towel.
- Add the rest of the chocolate (100g) and stir until it’s melted and the mixture has cooled down to 88F (31C).
- Add ⅔ of the hazelnuts as well as ⅔ of the cranberries and mix until fully coated with the chocolate.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and spread evenly using the spatula.
- Sprinkle the rest of the nuts and cranberries on top. Additionally, sprinkle on roasted almond flakes.
- Leave it to set at room temperature. Then, break into pieces or cut into squares and serve.