18 Cheap Recipes That Celebrate Chocolate

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CRAZY FOR CHOCOLATE

Americans consume 2.8 billion pounds of chocolate each year, in forms that go well beyond the bar. The cocoa bean has been enjoyed in savory applications such as sauces and spice rubs as well as cake and gooey brownies. These 18 recipes provide some inexpensive and delicious ways to enjoy chocolate, whether it's National Chocolate Day (Oct. 28) or just another Tuesday.

Related: 10 Chocolate Meccas Across America
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OAXACAN HOT CHOCOLATE

Follow easy instructions from the blog Dying for Chocolate to make this spicy drink. Traditional Mexican chocolate is infused with cinnamon and occasionally chili pepper, vanilla, or almonds.
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CHORIZO CON CHOCOLATE

The unlikely combination of bittersweet chocolate and Spanish chorizo is often on the menu at tapas bars in Spain. Be sure to use dark, bitter chocolate and Spanish chorizo when making a Chowhound recipe, as it won't work with milk chocolate or Mexican chorizo.
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SOUTHERN MUD PIE

A recipe for this chocolatey custard dessert on Epicurious includes chocolate in the crust, filling, and topping to satify even the most hardcore chocolate lover. Save time by purchasing a ready-made chocolate cookie crust.
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RED WINE CHOCOLATE CAKE

Red wine and chocolate, while more difficult to pair than most people realize, is a wonderful combination when it works. The red wine flavor in a version by Smitten Kitchen comes through to enhance the rich, fudgy character of the cake. This is a delicious use for leftover wine.
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CHOCOLATE POT DE CRÈME

A version of the classic French dish by Bon Appétit can be made ahead for an impressive dinner party dessert. The extra step of pouring the mixture through a fine sieve takes extra time but creates a luscious final product.
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CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT SPREAD

The vegan, DIY version of Nutella from the Minimalist Baker has only four ingredients and requires nothing more complex than a food processor or blender. Fans of the commercially available spread will likely find that spending the time is worth the savings.
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BLACK FOREST CAKE

This traditional German dessert combines dark chocolate, cherries, and kirsch, a cherry liquor. To make an alcohol-free version of a recipe posted on Food.com, substitute cherry juice and avoid overly sweet cherry pie filling. This layer cake needs to rest in the fridge for the flavors to meld, so plan accordingly.
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MOLE POBLANO

Mole poblano is a Mexican sauce often served with chicken that combines everything from raisins, almonds, and chocolate with chilis, garlic, and aromatic spices. Look in the ethnic aisles of grocery stores to find the varieties of dried chilis used in a recipe on the blog Mexico in My Kitchen.

Related: 16 Budget-Friendly Mexican Dishes
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CHOCOLATE-INFUSED CHILI

A Saveur recipe for triple-chocolate beef bean chili can be made in a slow cooker by pre-browning the meat and using pre-cooked beans. This dish uses semisweet chocolate and chocolate stout in addition to cocoa powder, but not enough to make the flavor sweet.
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CHURROS CON CHOCOLATE

This traditional Spanish treat is often enjoyed as breakfast or a mid-morning snack, although it works well as dessert, too. The churro dough in a recipe from the blog Cooking the Globe is easy to make, although it requires a piping bag with a star-shaped nozzle to get the traditional shape.
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CACAO-RUBBED STEAK

The main ingredient in a Domestic Man steak rub recipe is cacao powder (which is made from unroasted beans, whereas cocoa has been roasted). Because the cacao is complemented with chili powders and black pepper, it's savory instead of sweet.
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CHOCOLATE FUDGE

Fudge made its first appearance in Maryland in the late 1800s, and the mixture of cocoa, milk, sugar, and butter has become an American classic. The Kitchn's basic recipe can be adapted to include nuts, peppermint, or other additions.
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CHOCOLATE PEPPERMINT PATTIES

A homemade chocolate-and-mint candy recipe from the blog Chocolate, Chocolate and More uses only six ingredients, and the patties can be made by hand if a mixer isn't available. After mastering the peppermint patties, create other flavors to wrap in chocolate.
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CHOCOLATE BITTERS

Specialty bitters for flavoring cocktails can be pricey, but they are surprisingly simple and inexpensive to make. The blog How Sweet It Is suggests infusing ingredients such as cacao nibs into alcohol until the flavors create a powerful tincture.
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CHILI CHOCOLATE BROWNIES

It's a Latin American tradition to give chocolate confections a spicy kick to enhance their flavor. A recipe from blogger Tess Ward yields a brownie with a kick that also happens to be gluten-free.
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HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE BARK

Chocolate bark is a quick and easy confection that can be customized to include nuts, fruits, candies, and more. The blog Tasty Yummies suggests even more unusual additions, like popcorn and granola.
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BITTERSWEET FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE

Flourless chocolate cake is not as simple as regular chocolate cake. Fortunately for those who lack the stamina for whipping egg whites, a mechanical mixer can do the job when making The Kitchn's recipe.
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CHOCOLATE ICEBOX CAKE

A staple from a time before commercially available frozen cakes, the icebox cake is just as delicious and easy today. A version of chocolate icebox cake from Real Simple is a frozen cheesecake that takes a few minutes to whip together and 12 hours to chill. It stays fresh for a few days -- if it lasts that long.