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I really couldn’t create a Dino-Namic (get it) Diorama without a volcano spouting lava.  It just didn’t feel right to my inner 10-year old.  Enter the chocolate Chip volcano cake! Ok, perhaps it didn’t happen that easily.  In all honesty, I’ve been trying to come up with a flourless chocolate muffin recipe for a while, and it’s been a challenge to keep the texture right, the chocolate flavor intact and sugar reasonable.  (And yes, I completely destroyed half of this beautiful cake to make a volcano, but it was totally good not-clean fun!)

My chocolate-banana attempt tasted like banana, and was rejected immediately by my refreshingly honest chocolate-loving banana-loathing 12 year old brother.  (I agree, this seems like a paradox to me too)  Around Christmas, in my pumpkin-induced euphoric haze, I decided to fashion a pumpkin chocolate spice muffin.  While delicious, these came out tasting a lot like a pumpkin spice muffin with some chocolate thrown in.  More reading and soul searching was in order.  I had heard of successful black bean brownies, so it didn’t seem like I was taking that much of a leap in trying this out in a muffin recipe.

Friends, I think we finally have a winner!  I am happy to say that the calorie count is right around 100 for 1/12 of this decadent but fiber-tastic cake.  I liked this so much that I froze some and brought it out for the Valentine’s day dinner Brian and I made together.   We crafted a volcano-cake-berrytastical-lava-sauce sundae of a yogurt parfait for dessert.  The health raptor was proud!

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Chocolate Chip Volcano Cake with Lava Sauce

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 min or until a knife comes out cleanly
Makes 12 Servings

Ingredients:

1 cup Quick Oats (280)
1 cup Old-Fashioned (slow) Oats (300)
1 TBSP Organic Coconut Oil (120)
3/4  tsp All-Natural Unsalted Peanut Butter (23.75)
1 XL Egg (80)
3 TBSP Raw Sugar (135)
¼ Cup Nonfat Plain Greek Yogurt (I favor Chobani) (35)
½ Cup Eden Organic Unsalted canned black beans, rinsed (110)
1 tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Baking Soda
1 TBSP Espresso powder

2 TBSP Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa Powder (20)

2 TBSP Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate chips (140)

1/2 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp allspice

1/4 tsp ginger

1 tsp cinnamon
2 teaspoon good Vanilla
1 Cup Water

 

Directions:

1. Pre-Heat Oven to 375 Degrees

2. Combine Oats, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Cocoa Powder, and Espresso Powder in a large mixing bowl.

3. Using a blender, combine Coconut Oil and Peanut Butter, Black Beans, Egg, Sugar, Yogurt, and Water until smooth..
I think using a blender is the easiest way to do this, but mixing the ingredients well with a fork or hand mixer works too.  The goal is to make sure that the fat is well distributed throughout the batter.

4. Pour the contents of the blender to the bowl containing the chocolatey oat mixture, and stir with a spatula until well combined

5. Stir in chocolate chips

6. I baked this as a cake in a Bundt pan.  Alternatively, you could scoop the batter into a 12 muffin tin or ramekins.

7. Top with Lava Sauce (recipe below) and fresh berries and prepare to enjoy some chocolate indulgence in a less-guilty forum

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Cran-Blackberry Lava Sauce

1 Cup Cranberries (Fresh or Frozen)

1 Cup Fresh or Frozen Blackberries

1 Cup Apple Cider or Juice

2 TBSP Sugar

Directions:

1. In a small sauce pan, combine all ingredients over medium high heat.

2.  Allow sauce to come to a soft boil, and stir until it thickens and the cranberries burst (about 2 to 3 minutes)

3. Remove from heat and allow sauce to cool slightly

4. Using a spatula, transfer sauce to a blender, and pulse on medium speed until smooth

5. Strain sauce through a mess strainer, using spatula to move seeds aside when necessary

6. Enjoy sauce over cake, yogurt, oatmeal or combine it with 1 cup(ish) balsamic vinegar and use as a grilling sauce/salad dressing….the possibilities are endless!