This post was created in partnership with Nuts.com.
Sorry we didn’t post these guys for you before Valentine’s Day! I know they would have been perfect for that. To be honest, I forget about that holiday every year and never succeed at thinking about it ahead of time in terms of recipes. Any day is a great day to make strawberry coconut candies though! These are the perfect, simple treat for all the coconut lovers out there (as well as chocolate and strawberry lovers).
I don’t think Bounty (the coconut candy bar from the same candy bar family as Twix and Snickers) was ever as popular in the U.S. as it was in Russia. Correct me if I’m wrong! People in Russia used to be obsessed with Bounty in the 90s, when Western foods first started being imported after the fall of the Iron Curtain. I was definitely one of those people. Coconut was generally a very exotic flavor to us back then, since the Soviet flavor lexicon most definitely did not involve anything coconuty (another fun fact about growing up in the Soviet Union: I tasted my first banana when I was 16 years old because they were so difficult to get a hold of). Tasting chocolate-covered coconut for the first time was a heavenly experience, and I’ve loved that combination ever since.
What makes this homemade, Bounty-inspired candy even more special is the addition of freeze-dried strawberries. Besides the stunning color, the strawberries bring an incredible, aromatic tartness to the table, which goes so well with the fluffy nuttiness of coconut and the richness of dark chocolate. The strawberries are a serious treat! They taste like super concentrated strawberry goodness, and the texture is really good, sort of like the most delicious fruit chips. I’ve been including the strawberries as a snack in Paloma’s lunch boxes, and she absolutely loves them. The strawberries, along with all the other high-quality ingredients in this candy, come from our partner and favorite online bulk foods shop, Nuts.com. If you haven’t already, check them out, because they are the best and have all the bulk ingredients you could ever ask for.
You can also make these candies without the freeze-dried strawberries, and they will still be very good, though a bit more classic in flavor. Hope you give them a try and enjoy :)
- 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
- ¼ cup coconut oil + 1 teaspoon coconut oil, divided
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- a pinch of sea salt
- ½ cup freeze-dried strawberries, plus more for decorating
- 8 oz dark chocolate chips
- handful of dried raspberries - for decorating (optional)
- Combine the coconut, ¼ cup coconut oil, maple syrup, sea salt, and strawberries in a food processor. Pulse a couple of times until everything is well-combined. Line a small, rimmed dish with parchment paper (I used a 4" x 7" loaf pan). Press the coconut mixture into the lined dish, smoothing it out with the back of a spoon to create an even layer. Place in the freezer for 1 hour.
- Remove the dish from the freezer. Lift the coconut layer out, using the sides of the parchment paper. Place on a cutting board and cut into - candies about ¾" x 2" in size.
- Melt the chocolate on a double boiler with the remaining 1 teaspoon of coconut oil, mixing often, then remove from the heat.
- Prepare a rack with parchment paper underneath (to catch the dripping chocolate). Place the coconut candies into the bowl/pot with the melted chocolate, one at a time. Using two forks, carefully rotate each candy in the chocolate, until the whole thing is coated. Place on the rack and sprinkle with more freeze-dried strawberries and dried raspberries, if using. Continue with the rest of the candies. Place the rack with the candies in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes, or until the chocolate hardens. Keep the candies refrigerated for best results. Enjoy!