There is nothing that says Merry Christmas like a little box of homemade chocolate truffles. Bonus points if they are low carb, gluten-free and they don’t taste like it for even a second. And that, my friends, describes this chocolate coffee truffle recipe perfectly. Which is somewhat astonishing, since this one was one of those hope and pray experiments. Hope that my unsweetened chocolate didn’t seize. Pray that the mixture firmed up enough to be shaped into truffles and rolled in delicious coatings. A fingers-crossed endeavor all around. Honestly, I’ve managed to trick many of you into thinking that I know what I am doing when it comes to low carb cooking. But if you saw me in the kitchen, when I am taking a big gamble on something, you might reconsider that image. Sometimes I am working with a base recipe that I know will pan out regardless. But at other times, it feels like sheer dumb luck that I get good results. And in this case, better than good results. Insanely, decadently delicious results. Phew, dodged a bullet!
I’ve made low carb hazelnut truffles before, and they were very good but they didn’t have that dense, soft, slightly gooey sweetness I was looking for. Because I was attempting to make them with my low carb nutella recipe, they inevitably had a slight grittiness from the nut butter, and I don’t think I sweetened them quite enough. In short, they were good but didn’t quite live up to my expectations of what a chocolate truffle should be. But hey, no one ever said going low carb was easy.
Still, when I managed to nail my low carb sweetened condensed milk recipe, I suddenly had hope again. Because in the non low-carb world, the easiest truffles to make are those where you simply melt chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk together. Melt, stir, cool, scoop and voila! Chocolate truffles. I thought maybe, just maybe, the same process would work for low carb truffles. But I wasn’t perfectly certain, since unsweetened chocolate and commercial chocolate chips are very different creatures. Unsweetened chocolate is a tricky little devil and likes to seize at the slightest provocation…a little too much heat, a little too much liquid, and you end up with a gloppy mess that takes a lot of coaxing to smooth out again. And sometimes it downright refuses to do so.
However, I thought it was worth a try. I hate nothing more than wasting ingredients, but it’s the holiday season and my readers deserve truffles. Heck, I deserve truffles too! So I went at this very carefully. I wanted a little coffee flavouring, and I knew that some additional sweetener would need to be added. I chopped the chocolate very finely to help it melt, and I held back on some of it, thinking that too much would surely cause a seizure (no, not in me…in the chocolate!). But then I worried that I didn’t add enough and that it wouldn’t firm up properly when cool. And then I did the hope and pray thing.
And it worked. Far better than I even imagined, actually. They came out exactly like traditional truffles, both in consistency and taste. I can honestly say that you could give these to anyone and they wouldn’t have a clue that they were low carb and gluten free. And I had a little fun with the coatings. For some, I rolled them in a combination of cocoa powder and instant coffee granules, to amp up that coffee flavour. And for others, I rolled them in cacao nibs, to get some crunch. Other possibilities are chopped nuts or powdered sweetener. Whatever you want to make them pretty and festive. You deserve it!
- 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tsp instant coffee granules crushed a bit to make them less clumpy
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- 1/4 cup finely ground nuts of choice
For the truffles, combine coffee and water in a small bowl or ramekin and whisk to dissolve.
In a medium saucepan over low heat, combine coffee mixture, sweetened condensed milk, chopped chocolate, powdered erythritol and butter. Whisk constantly until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat immediately (don't let it overcook, your chocolate will seize).
Cover with plastic wrap flush to the surface and refrigerate 2 hours.
Once mixture is firm, roll into scant 1-inch (or even less) balls and roll in your favourite coating(s).
Makes 36. Each truffle has 2.3 g of carbs and .9 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 1.4 g (these counts are based on coatings of cacao nibs or cocoa powder)
A serving is 2 truffles...if you can stop at just 2!!!