“Cultivating the art of a well lived life…naturally"

Good-For-You Hot Chocolate


By Nancy Smorch

Last week I pulled out a superfood I bought a while back from my newly organized pantry.  It’s called shilajit powder.  When I bought it, I had never heard of it before, but in the last week it seemed to be all over - in conversation, on Facebook, and in some of my readings.

So, I thought I would pull it out and remind myself as to why I bought it in the first place.

Shilajit, is used quite a bit in Ayurvedic medicine, and actually means “rock of life” when translated from Sanskrit.  It’s an organic mineral pitch formed from the Himalayan and other mountain ranges. It is believed to have detoxifying and cleansing properties, and contains over 85 minerals.

It sounded great, but I didn’t know how to incorporate it into anything.  I looked on the back of the package (from Sunfood) and saw this recipe:

Smoky Mocha

2 cups almond milk, warmed

2 tbsp. cacao powder

1 tsp. maca powder

1/2 tsp vanilla powder (I didn't have that, so I used pure vanilla)

1/8 tsp shilajit powder


Warm the almond milk, then put it in a blender with the remaining ingredients (so as not to heat the other superfoods too much).  Blend until smooth and creamy.

So, I thought I would give it a go.  It was amazing! I loved it and so did my family.  I was so excited because I had an alternative to tea and an easy homemade version of hot chocolate - perfect for a cold and rainy fall day!

What I especially love about it (aside from the flavor), is that it is loaded with superfoods.  Aside from the shilajit, it has raw cacao powder which is also chock-full of minerals and antioxidants.  It is a natural energy-enhancer and contains anandamide, a chemical in the brain known as the “bliss chemical." Combine that with the benefits of maca powder, which has been known to increase energy, endurance and strength, and you've got yourself a powerful drink!

I wanted to play around with the recipe, so I grabbed what I thought was pure vanilla, but it (strangely) came out of the bottle clear rather than brown. I glanced at the label and realized it was actually peppermint.

Hey, what the heck, right? It wasn't what I expected, but it still tasted pretty good! Next time I will only use about 1/4 tsp. of peppermint, or a drop of peppermint essential oil. One variation, tested and approved!

I plan on experimenting with the shilajit, maybe adding cinnamon one time or some cayenne pepper another.

In fact, enough writing - I’m going to make myself a drink right now! Bottoms up!