Delicious Vegan Chocolate Recipe

Happy Spa Week, my Spa Sweethearts!

I hope you are enjoying your sweet, sweet week, full of sugar scrubs and chocolate facials, no doubt! In honor of this healthy, irresistible week of spa, I wanted to share with you an equally healthy and irresistible recipe I learned from Dashama. Remember in this video she promised to show us? Dashama has an easy-breezy cooking style: all her recipes are healthy, organic, full of superfoods, and take no longer than 20 minutes. Score! Also, forget exact amounts and precise ingredients; Dashama encourages you follow your taste buds and intuition! However, you’ve got to start somewhere. Use this framework to yield some absolutely delicious vegan, organic dark chocolate in mere minutes. (And don’t forget to enter to win 7 nights in Bali with her this summer, she’ll be sure to personally show you many healthy tricks up her sleeve!)


homemade dark chocolate recipe


  • Raw organic coconut oil – 1 cup
  • Raw cacao powder – 1/4 cup
  • Chocolate vegan protein powder (optional) – 1/4 cup
  • Stevia liquid (or to taste) – 1 tsp
  • A pinch of pink sea salt
  • Optional: almonds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds, coconut flakes or other goodies to add texture, taste and nutrients. 


Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.

Freeze for 10-20 minutes. You can make it in any container: a flat square plate for a chocolate bar effect, a bowl for a rounded aesthetic like you see here, or use a rubber ice cube tray to make various fun shapes.

After it hardens in the freezer, pop your chocolate treat out easily. Clean, smooth, no problemo.

And the best part: Enjoy! And don’t forget to save some for your friends… they will be very impressed.

Dashama and her homemade superhero vegan chocolate!

Care for your chocolate in the form of spa? While you’re noshing on your delicious bits of healthy dark homemade goodness, this Spa Week, a whole box of chocolate covered $50 treatments await. You can still book these and quench your craving, but hurry before the moment passes!

Canyon Falls Spa & Salon, Scottsdale, Arizona: 50 Min Custom Blend Facial with Custom Chocolate Mask

Evian Salon & Day Spa, La Jolla, California, 60 Min Plaisir D’Aromes Yonka Facial and Chocolate Mask

WELL Spa at the Platinum Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada: 50 Min Chocolate Ice Cream Pedicure and Manicure

Solace Day Spa & Salon, Old Bridge, New Jersey: 90 Min Chocolate Covered Strawberry Manicure and Pedicure

Terrace Retreat Salon & Day Spa, Southlake, Texas: 50 Min Chocolate Body Scrub

Dashama’s Delicious Flavored Fish Oils

Dashama new life magazine

The view from my morning meditation at Dashama’s place

I’ve had the honor and pleasure of spending the past few days in Dashama’s world. With a skilled and graceful way of hopping around town making people smile and cutting business deals all at the same time, this beautiful and bubbly healthy lifestyle guru (named Yogini of The Year by New Life Magazine!) is bursting with ideas in motion.

avalon organics lavenderSpa kidnapping in full effect! I’ve taken Dashama to some of the best spas in Miami, and in turn, she has let me in on her some of her secret gems – from favorite beaches (South Pointe) to the best juice bar in town (Juice and Java). When you’re staying with a guru of any sort, always pay attention to the details. Observe the things that make them happy, learn from the things they do to stay productive and creative, and take note of how they pamper their five senses. For example, I’m obsessed with Dashama’s lotion, the Avalon Organics in Lavender. It’s very spa-ish and soothing, and I will definitely be getting that when I get home.

You can bet that when you’re staying with a yogi, you’ll also learn about delicious super foods, endless exotic extracts and the trendiest organic substances on the market right now. You will make smoothies with chia and raw cacao, and you will take pictures of it all to remember what to buy when you get home. Or maybe, you’ll video it.

My first morning at Casa de Dashama I had a particularly blissful meditation on her wraparound balcony, and then when I came inside, and breakfast was served, along with the lowdown on all its amazing nutritional benefits:


Barlean’s Fish Oil, a wellness essential for your poshest and healthiest fridge yet. Stay tuned for more of my wellness adventures with Dashama, this is just the beginning!

barlean's fish oil

Healthy Thanksgiving Recipe Challenge

Thanksgiving is full of food, family, and happiness — what’s not to like about this holiday?! Well, if pressed, we might say all the extra fat, sugar, and calories we consume every year. And that’s exactly why we created our Healthy Thanksgiving Recipe Challenge!

This year, we’re challenging you to find healthier (but still tasty!) alternatives to your favorite Thanksgiving foods. It CAN be done, and to get you started, we’ve found five amazing options below. Oh, and there’s a PRIZE involved as added incentive for you to make your holiday a little healthier this year: A $200 Spa & Wellness Gift Card by Spa Week!

Here’s what to do:
1. Follow Spa Week on Pinterest (

2. Visit our Spa Week Healthy Thanksgiving Recipe Challenge board. We’ve pinned all five of the recipes below there, and we want you to create one of your own!

3. Create a new board called “Spa Week Healthy Thanksgiving Recipe Challenge” and pin some of your favorite Thanksgiving foods,  table decorations, outfit ideas, whatever you like to plan out your holiday dinner this year — just be sure to re-pin at least one of the healthy recipes from our board. That’s it!

4. E-mail a link to your board to and have a VERY HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

We’ll announce the winner after the holiday. In the meantime, let’s get cooking







View official contest rules.

Healthy Treats to Help You Beat the Bulge

It feels like we’ve been celebrating America all summer long…Memorial Day into the Fourth of July and now we’re gearing up for Labor Day…its been fun but trust me; all those red white and blue treats aren’t doing anything for your waistline. We totally get it – we prefer to lounge poolside and indulge at barbeque after barbeque all summer long too. Unfortunately, running after the ice-cream truck doesn’t count as exercise, and come mid-July (wait, that’s now…) those little indulgences start to add up, and noticeably. That’s why on July 1st, Spa Week launched our Healthy Summer Treat Recipe Giveaway to get you back on track and focused on your personal wellness. We challenged you to share your favorite healthy recipes on our Facebook page so that we can present five winners  with a $50 Spa & Wellness Gift Card by Spa Week and a Spa Water Recipe Book, to ensure you end the summer looking and feeling just as good (or better!) as you did when it started! So many of you have shared so far, check out some of our reader’s favorites healthy treats:

Tomato & Basil Finger Sandwiches


Kristen R. from Michigan

To make: Spread 2 teaspoons of reduced-fat mayonnaise on whole wheat bread. Layer with a thick slice of tomato and a teaspoon of sliced fresh basil, and add salt and pepper to taste. Simply slice in half and serve!

Greek Salad

Carolyn M. from South Carolina

To make: Start with organic baby spinach in a bowl, and add in fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and feta cheese. Add in any other seasonal fruits and vegetables you have on hand. Top with walnuts and Greek olives, and serve!

Summer Granola


Kellie O. from Georgia

To make: Chop strawberries and bananas. Mix with granola and drizzle honey on top. Yum!

Fruit Kabobs


Brandy A. from Tennessee

To make: Cut up watermelon, oranges, bananas, kiwi, peaches, pineapple and strawberries. Stack on as desired and devour!

Chicken Broccoli Pasta

Julie A. from Virginia

To make: Cook whole wheat pasta and set aside. Chop two cups broccoli, one red pepper, one green pepper and one onion. Then cook chicken (cut into one inch cubes). Mix chicken and vegetables with the pasta, add three-quarters of a cup light Italian dressing and top with one-third of a cup grated Parmesan cheese. Refrigerate for two hours and then serve!

Thanks for sharing these delectable treats! Don’t forget, the contest is open until July 31st, so there’s still time for you to share your favorite healthy summer recipe and win! Visit our Facebook page to get the details and send over your favorite recipe!

Spa Foodie: Gluten-Free Cranberry Coconut Avocado Smoothie

By Amie Valpone

There’s nothing like a chilled summertime smoothie. It is just simply fun to slurp n’ sip on when the summer heat is getting to you. Instead of the traditional smoothie, I decided to get a lil’ bit creative. You will LOVE this recipe. Refreshing is an understatement – it’s flavorful, smooth, sweet n’ fun to sip. I added a fresh and ripe avocado just because, then a few raw cashews, chia seeds and flax seeds to add a nice balance of protein and healthy fats. You can add in or substitute the cashews for another nut but I just love the creaminess in raw cashews.  This succulent smoothie is hands down one of my top 5 favorites. I may just have to make it again tomorrow. I simply can’t resist the coolness this brings to my mouth and I know it will do the same for yours…


Serves 1

  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 10 fresh cherries
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 ripe avocado
  • 1 large, ripe banana
  • 2 Tbsp. ground flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup Greek plain yogurt (or dairy-free yogurt)
  • 2 fresh Basil leaves
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut flakes
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 5 raw cashews
  • Dash of cinnamon


  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender; pulse until smooth
  2. Pour into serving glass; serve chilled
  3. Enjoy!

Amie Valpone is a Manhattan based Personal Chef, Culinary Nutritionist, Professional Recipe Developer and Food Writer specializing in simple Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free “Clean” recipes for the home cook. She is the Editor-in-Chief of The Healthy Apple and the Publisher and Marketing Director of the online gluten-free magazine, Easy Eats. See more of her posts on Spa Week Daily, here.