Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

This recipe is one of the oldest on the blog, and I recently felt like it needed a face-lift. Time passes, you make the same recipes a thousand times a thousand different ways… things change around… and the result is a much more refined a better tasting final product. That’s exactly what happened with this nutella-style espresso chocolate hazelnut cake frosting / spread. It’s come a long way since them early blogging days and I’d say it’s pretty darn awesome at this stage :)

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

I originally made this recipe for a “Nutella” cake I was making — in the process I discovered that chocolate and hazelnuts can make an amazing frosting. But more importantly, I discovered that I could truly make a nutella-esque spread so, so easily at home — from scratch, with a few wholesome and delicious ingredients, and in a matter of minutes.

I know a lot of people discover that at some point or another, but it didn’t make my discovery any less amazing ;) . In fact, it made me pretty happy. I grew up eating Nutella for lunch every day {my mom was a busy lady and I never complained about her lunches… ;) }. So finding a good dairy-free and refined sugar-free alternative was total childhood memories re-lived. But why stop at childhood…?

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

… I grew up. And so should my Nutella. Enter a touch of espresso powder — PERFECTION! Chocolate + hazelnuts + a touch of espresso is the perfect combo. Rich, smooth, velvety, chocolatey, perky, nutty, sweet, and all-in-all delicious :P

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

Of course for the sake of your sanity, if making this recipe for kids leave the espresso out. They’ll enjoy the healthified “Nutella” and you’ll enjoy some quiet time while they’re busy devouring it ;)

I use this as a spread on toast {or usually just crackers} with the typical types of things that are amazing with Nutella — strawberries, banana slices… More commonly, I actually just put it straight on a sliced banana and top with a sprinkle of cacao nibs — best snack or quick dessert for breakfast ever.

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

This also makes a great dairy-free and refined sugar-free chocolate cake frosting. I don’t have a photo of a proper cake to show you — just this tiny slab of oldish cake I spread it on just to show you how it works as a frosting. I’ll try to take a better photo next time I make a cake with it, but for now here’s a quick pic I snapped. See how thick and spreadable that stuff is? Works a treat on a chocolate cake or cupcake.

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

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Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread {Dairy-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and can be made Raw}

Nutella-Style Espresso Chocolate Hazelnut Cake Frosting or Spread


  • Author: Audrey @ Unconventional Baker
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 10 mins
  • Yield: just over 3 cups

Description

A rich, dairy-free, chocolate hazelnut Nutella frosting, with a twist of espresso flavor for adults.


Ingredients

  • 1½ cups hazelnuts
  • 1 cup soft dates, pitted
  • ⅔ cups non-dairy milk, room temp
  • ½ cup agave {or maple syrup, brown rice syrup, etc.}
  • ⅓ cup cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp cacoa butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp espresso powder {optional — leave out for a kid-friendly version}
  • ½ tsp salt
  • *Optional: add 1-2 tbsp softened or melted coconut oil or more cacao butter for an even firmer frosting.

Instructions

  1. Place hazelnuts in a blender and process into a fine meal, until it begins to almost turn into a butter {if it turns into a butter, that’s a good thing too ;) }.
  2. Add in all remaining ingredients and blend until the mixture is completely smooth and uniform. {I used a power blender to make this {my Vitamix}, and had to use the tamper to help things along; If using a regular blender, you’ll likely need to stop every so often, scrape down the sides and give things a stir — be patient — it’ll pay off! :) }. Use straight away or allow frosting to chill in the fridge a little for a slightly firmer consistency. Enjoy!

Enjoy!

Audrey

~~

Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links to the espresso powder, cacao powder, cacao butter, and Vitamix used.

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