Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark

Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark 2 - offbeat + inspired

I’m not sure why Christmas has declared itself the chocolate bark holiday. Yet for some reason around this time of year, you can find these decadent chunks of chocolate in nearly every grocery store or at almost any holiday party. While I personally vote for it being around all year long, I’ve officially jumped on the Christmastime chocolate bark bandwagon.

Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark 3 - offbeat + inspired

I don’t normally have a huge sweet tooth, so I try to find any excuse I can to add a bit of bitterness or salt to desserts. This recipe for Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark hit all those notes. I prefer dark chocolate that’s between 70% and 85% cacao, but you can use whatever type you like. (I also made a batch with semi-sweet chocolate chips and that turned out great!)

Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark 4 - offbeat + inspired

In my opinion, chocolate and coffee go hand in hand, so I mixed in grounds and whole beans from FreshGround Roasting for extra coffee flavor and a bit of crunch (I recommend this┬áSumatra). If you don’t like the texture of eating whole coffee beans, feel free to leave that part out or substitute nuts or dried fruit. A pinch of sea salt at the very end balanced this sweet treat perfectly for a savory addict like me.

Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark 5 - offbeat + inspired

What are your favorite mix-ins for chocolate bark? I’d love to hear your ideas and recipes!

Coffee + Dark Chocolate Bark

16 oz. dark chocolate
2 tbsp plus 1 tsp finely ground coffee grounds, such as FreshGround Roasting’s Sumatra
┬╝ cup whole coffee beans
Pinch of sea salt (optional)

1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Melt the dark chocolate over a double boiler, stirring until the chocolate melts completely.

3. When the chocolate has melted, remove from heat and thoroughly stir in 2 tablespoons of coffee grounds.

4. Pour the chocolate onto the parchment paper lined baking sheet. Use a spatula to spread the chocolate out evenly in a thin layer.

5. Press the whole coffee beans into the chocolate. Sprinkle the top with 1 teaspoon of the reserved coffee grounds and a pinch of sea salt (optional).

6. Refrigerate for about 45 minutes, or until chocolate has set. Break apart into pieces and serve.

Quick Tip: To press the coffee beans into the chocolate, sprinkle the beans on the chocolate and then lay another piece of parchment paper on top. Smooth the parchment paper over the chocolate and gently press down with your hands. This way, the coffee beans get thoroughly pressed into the chocolate, you don’t have to mess with a spatula and your hands don’t get dirty.

Coffee + Vanilla Sugar Scrub

Coffee + Vanilla Sugar Scrub - offbeat + inspired 1

Can you believe it’s already November? Before you know it, Christmas will be here – which means if you’re anything like me, you have the best intentions of getting those gifts done early but will instead find yourself frantically shopping on Christmas Eve. Sound familiar?

Keep reading!

Coffee Granola with Chocolate, Honey + Sea Salt

Coffee Granola with Chocolate, Honey + Sea Salt 1 offbeat + inspired

I’m not a morning person. Anyone who knows me knows that breakfast starts after 10am and conversations are most successful when I’ve consumed at least one cup of coffee. I’ve had spurts throughout the last few years when I’ve attempted to be a morning person, but let’s be honest – it’s just not going to happen.

Keep reading!

Meet Milk + Crown! Handmade Jewelry + A Giveaway

Meet Milk + Crown! Handmade Jewelry + A Giveaway - offbeat + inspired

Today we have a very special treat for you — an introduction to the lovely Kristyn Pankiw of Milk + Crown Jewelry and a giveaway! I’ve really enjoyed getting to know this talented gal over the last few months and I’m sure you’ll fall in love with her gorgeous creations. Check out the interview below! [The beautiful Soledad Bracelet is pictured throughout this post.]

Keep reading!

Vanilla Bean Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee Ice Cream

Vanilla Bean Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee Ice Cream - offbeat + inspired

Every kitchen has a rhythm — where the drawers are, which way the cabinets open, how you move between the refrigerator and the counter, transporting ingredients gathered swiftly and with intention. It’s steady. Calming.

Every new recipe is a challenge to that rhythm. In the learning phase there are fumbles, missteps, extra trips to the pantry, hip bruises from drawers left open and motivation to conquer the unfamiliar and make it part of your flow.

Keep reading!

Mocha Granita

Mocha Granita - offbeat + inspired

Summer has officially arrived. Songs from ice cream trucks can be heard around my neighborhood, kids are cooling off in the mist of lawn sprinklers, the smoky aroma of charcoal grills fills the air and I find myself craving ice-cold afternoon treats.

Keep reading!

Caramel Iced Latte

Caramel Iced Latte 6

It’s no secret that I’m a coffee addict. I’m also a “refreshing summer beverage” addict. So what do you get when you combine “coffee” with “refreshing summer beverage”? This perfect Caramel Iced Latte.

Keep reading!

Cappuccino Biscotti

It’s no secret that I love coffee. From my morning brew to nearly every other coffee-related recipe or project, I’m obsessed. Coffee soaps, coffee cupcakes, coffee decor – there’s something about this delicious beverage (probably caffeine) that I just can’t get enough of.

Cappuccino Biscotti 6

Keep reading!

Irish Coffee

Irish Coffee 1

On a cold, damp day there’s nothing like an Irish coffee to warm you up from the inside out. Legend tells us that’s what Joseph Sheridan thought in 1942 when a group of American travelers ended up at his restaurant in Ireland. Joe wanted to give them something that would warm up and awaken his cold and weary guests. Hot coffee with a bit of sugar, a jigger of whiskey and topped with rich cream proved to be the perfect pick-me-up. One of the travelers, curious to know more about the beverage, asked Joe if it was Brazilian coffee. Joe responded, “No, it’s Irish coffee.” And so the tradition began.

Keep reading!

Gifting Your Homemade Soap!

Gifting Your Homemade Soap! - offbeat + inspired

I LOVE soap making. The process is so relaxing, lathering up with a homemade bar is so satisfying, and the entire concept is so healthy! There are so many benefits to making your own soap from scratch. Using it yourself is wonderful, but equally wonderful is gifting it.

Keep reading!