Product Review: Navitas Naturals Raw Cacao Nibs
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Feb 20 2010

Product Review: Navitas Naturals Raw Cacao Nibs

When I first heard of cacao, I had no idea what it was. I finally learned about cacao when I went on a tour of Anthony Thomas Candy Factory last summer. Cacao is the dried seeds of a South American evergreen tree (Theobroma cacao of the family Sterculiaceae), which are most commonly used in making cocoa, chocolate, and cocoa butter. Also called cacao bean, and cocoa bean. There are many health benefits of cacao.

From the Navitas Naturals website:

Cacao contains a naturally rich supply of antioxidants, and is also an excellent source of dietary fiber. In addition, cacao is known to be one of the highest dietary sources of magnesium, contains an impressively high iron content, and also possesses many other essential minerals in significant quantities.

Processing:

Navitas Naturals cacao beans are hand selected for quality, partially fermented to alleviate bitterness, and processed at low temperatures for maximum nutrient retention. Once extracted from the pod-like fruit, purified water is then used to cleanse the beans where they are peeled and partially ground to form small pieces or “nibs.” Navitas Naturals Cacao Nibs contain 100% pure cacao that is certified organic, kosher, gluten-free, vegan, and raw.

I was initially drawn to cacao out of my love for chocolate. When I happened upon Cacao Nibs made by Navitas Naturals, I knew I had to give them a try. Not only do they pack a nutritional punch, but they are naturally gluten-free. I was a little shocked upon first taste. I think I thought they would be much sweeter. However, since there is no added sugar, there is nothing to sweeten them up. Now i just adore the cacao nibs and keep finding new ways to eat them. They have a unique flavor & texture.

Some of the ways I have been using my Cacao Nibs are:

  • Topping for my Greek yogurt
  • Topping for my ice cream
  • Topping for my oatmeal
  • Topping for my almond butter & fruit spread
  • Flavoring in my coffee
  • Added into homemade gluten-free granola bars

They would also be great as a topping for cheesecake or creme brulee.

Here are the nutritional stats per serving of cacao nibs: serving size -1 oz, calories 130, fat, 12 grams, fiber 9 grams, protein 4 grams. One serving also provides 6% of your iron & 2% of your calcium.

Have you tried cacao nibs? What do you think?

Article Written by:

Kimberly Bouldin is a gluten-free wife, runner & blogger with two children in Columbus, Ohio. After her celiac diagnosis in 2006, she has made it her mission to embrace an entirely new approach to nutrition in a gluten-free world, exploring options that run the gamut from "made from scratch" homemade bread to sampling and reviewing the gluten-free prepared foods that are continuously being introduced to the market. While navigating the waters of becoming gluten-free, Kim shares her experiences and passes along valuable product reviews in addition to helping other moms of celiac kids develop healthy menus that are kid-friendly and palatable. Kimberly is a valuable resource for those who are newly diagnosed, as well as for the more seasoned gluten-free veterans. Follow Kim on Twitter!

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