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Avocados are definitely NOT in season right now (middle of January :P) in most of America, but I still have lots of avocado ready for use. "How?" you ask? By freezing it! It was one of the first Pinterest pins I actually tried out. Basically, it involved pitting, peeling, and mashing the avocado up with lemon juice, and then freezing it. And what that really means is that now that avocados are expensive and out of season, I still get to use them! Woot woot!

I took a bag out of the freezer yesterday to thaw with the intentions of making healthier brownies, but I ended up making a few other things instead. If you're confused by me saying brownies, just know that avocados make a good replacement for butter in lots of baking recipes! It's just as creamy but a million times better for you.

The benefits of avocados are many. For example, it has over 25 essential nutrients, some of which include vitamins A and K, lutein (see my spinach post to learn a little about what they do), iron, potassium, and the list goes on. I mean, apparently, an avocado has more potassium than a couple of bananas combined! Crazy, don't you think?

Anywho, yes, an avocado has all that wonderful stuff in it, but what I like to focus on is the healthy fats! Avocados are one of the highest calorie fruits that you could be eating, and most of the calories come from the high fat content. When most people hear the word "fat" they start to freak out and avoid the food all together, but this is the GOOD FAT! Yes, there is such thing. The fats that most people avoid are saturated and trans fats because they're the ones that clog your arteries and don't get processed well. On the other hand, there are polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats that are GOOD FOR YOU! These are the kinds of fat that help to lower your LDL cholesterol (i.e the bad kind of cholesterol). For those of you that try to stay fit and active, these are also the kinds of fats that you need to ingest to help burn off body fat!

It's also pertinent to mention that avocados are a good source of fiber. It's one of the few kinds of foods that have both soluble and insoluble fiber in it. What's the difference you ask? Insoluble fiber is the kind of fiber that helps with your digestion, cleans your bowels and keeps you pooping regularly (i.e. no constipation!), and helps reduce your risks of getting colon/rectal cancers. The other kind of fiber, soluble fiber, is the kind that helps curb your appetite and makes you feel fuller longer (apparently because it turns into some kind of gel substance that sits in your stomach after reacting with water...weird).

All that good stuff in an avocado....one of the reasons why I keep it on hand in my freezer! So today's concoction was a dark chocolate avocado pudding that I found from PaleOMG and tweaked just a little. The original was paleo friendly, but that's not my thing, so I changed it for my own diet.

Dark Chocolate Avocado Pudding

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Makes 1 serving

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 avocado, mashed (approx. 75g)
  • 1-2 tbsp unsweetened dark chocolate cocoa powder (100% cacao)
  • 10-15 drops liquid stevia (or 2 tsp of liquid sweetener like honey, agave, etc.)
  • 1 tsp nut butter of choice
  • Pinch of salt
  • Optional: Cacao nibs (or dark chocolate chips)


Directions:
  1. Put all the ingredients together in a small bowl and mix well until smooth (beat it to death if you have to, haha).
  2. Stir in cacao nibs.
  3. Enjoy! Better if served chilled.


Original recipe can be found here.

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Not too many ingredients, and it kinda looks like it won't make it to a pudding consistency.
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But it totally works out, haha

Sources:
Photo: http://eatingrichly.com/04/how-to-preserve-avocados-in-the-freezer/
http://www.healthonlinezine.info/health-benefits-of-avocados.html
http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/avocado-health-benefits-3-reasons-you-should-be-eating-them.html#b



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