Better-Than-Fruitcake Bark

Better-Than-Fruitcake Bark ~ nobody loves fruitcake, but every everybody flips for this chocolate bark loaded with dried fruits and nuts!

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This holiday bark is over the top, just like its namesake, but there are no Brazil nuts, no creepy green maraschinos, no prunes or lemon peel.  Just the good stuff.  And I promise you, this one won’t get re-gifted.

Fruitcake Chocolate Bark

A whole host of gorgeous dried fruits and nuts is sunken in to a layer of pure white chocolate that sits on top of another layer of dark chocolate.  This would be a sumptuous food gift, and it takes no effort to make.  The biggest trouble will be choosing your fruit and nuts.

Fruitcake Bark Ingredients

Contrary to what you hear, the microwave works just fine for melting chocolate.  It’s my preferred method.  I like to use a glass measuring cup to do this because the glass holds the heat and helps melt the chocolate, and the spout makes it easy to pour the chocolate out. Also contrary to what you hear, you can use chocolate chips for melting.  They actually work well because they are already in small pieces, so they don’t require a lot of time to melt, and the less exposure to heat, the less problems you’ll have.  Of course you can use fine bar chocolate, too, but chips are less expensive, convenient and often on hand.  So for 1 batch of bark, you just need to pick up a couple of bags of chips and you’re good to go.

Dark and white chocolate

This is where the fun begins.  Assemble a mix of your favorite dried fruit and nuts.  No duds, just the good stuff as you define it.   I used apricots, golden raisins, cherries, pineapple, cranberries, pistachios, macadamias, pecans, almonds, red walnuts, hazelnuts, and cashews.  Load it up, after all that’s in the spirit of fruitcake.

Fruit and Nuts

Roasted nuts have much better flavor and crunch, so if your nuts are raw, roast them on a dry pan in a 350 degree oven for about 10 to 15 minutes, watching them carefully and shaking the pan every now and then.  You can even use salted nuts it you like the sweet and salty combination.

Layer of dark chocolate

Whatever your combination of fruit and nuts, you’ll want approximately a cup, or a little more, to sprinkle over the top layer of your bark.  You can go as heavy or a light as you want with these.  The more colorful and varied in texture, the better.  I left the pecans, pistachios, cherries and cranberries whole for variety.

Fruitcake Chocolate Bark before cutting

After the top layer of white chocolate has hardened, either at room temperature or in the refrigerator, you can leave the bark whole and package it that way, or cut or break it into pieces.  If you like making, eating or giving chocolate barks, check out these other recipes for Cherry and Hazelnut, Peppermint, and my all time favorite, White Chocolate Toasted Almond.

Better-Than-Fruitcake Bark

Ingredients

  • 1 12-oz bag dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 12-oz bag white chocolate chips
  • about 1 to 1 1/2 cups assorted colorful dried fruit and roasted nuts, rough chopped or left whole

Instructions

  1. Put the dark chocolate chips in a glass bowl or measuring cup and microwave for 1 minute. Take out, stir, and if the chips aren't completely melted put it back in the microwave in 15 second bursts, stirring in between, until the chocolate is glossy and lump free.
  2. Spread out the chocolate into approximately a 9x12 rectangle on a baking sheet that's been lined with parchment paper or a silpat liner. The lining is important because you will need the bark to come off easily once it has hardened. Spread out the chocolate as evenly as you can; an offset spatula works well for this.
  3. Let the layer of chocolate harden. You can set it aside, or put the tray in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  4. Melt the white chocolate in the same way, and spread it out evenly over the dark chocolate. Note: If you have had trouble melting white chocolate in the past, you can play it safe and use a double boiler. Bring a pan of water to a boil, and set a bowl over it, being sure no water gets into the bowl. Lower the heat and melt the chocolate over the simmering water, stirring constantly.
  5. While the white chocolate is still warm, scatter the fruit and nuts evenly over the entire surface. Press down gently to insure that they stick as the chocolate hardens.
  6. Set aside to harden at room temperature, or place in the refrigerator.
  7. Cut into pieces, or leave whole.
https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/better-than-fruitcake-bark/

notes:

  • Try using just cranberries and pistachios for a Christmas themed bark.
  • For a super easy 2-ingredient bark, try my Cocoa Crunch Bark.

 

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Whether you make this for dessert, as a gift, or just to have around the house for the holidays, you’re getting a lot of bang for the buck.  Chocolate is often on sale these days, so grab a few bags next time you see a good deal.  You probably already have a bunch of the fruit and nuts on hand.  If not, Trader Joe’s has a great selection, and great prices.

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Way, way better than fruitcake, don’t you think?

26 Comments

  • Reply
    Rebecca+{foodie+with+family}
    November 18, 2014 at 9:00 am

    Oh my gracious. I could probably eat far more of this than I should. Lovely, enticing, and totally holiday-ish! :D New word. :D

  • Reply
    Jawed Ali
    January 20, 2013 at 5:20 pm

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  • Reply
    Magnolia Verandah
    December 13, 2012 at 4:54 am

    Way way better!And how festive do those colours look.

  • Reply
    grace
    December 12, 2012 at 10:24 pm

    this is SO pretty! plus, macadamias! my favorite! :)

  • Reply
    Jawed Ali
    December 12, 2012 at 11:31 am

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  • Reply
    hostess of the humble bungalow
    December 12, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    ONG this makes my bark look like a wallflower!
    I am going to take action and kick it up a notch .
    Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Reply
    Mary Younkin
    December 12, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    Are you trying to out-do yourself this year? This bark is GORGEOUS! I’m not even a big white chocolate fan and I’m drooling over this recipe. Wow. What an awesome way to add so many fruits and nuts to a gift. I LOVE how beautiful it is!

  • Reply
    Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti
    December 11, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    WOW! What fabulous holiday treats to make and receive as gifts, Sue! They look absolutely fabulous!

  • Reply
    belleau kitchen
    December 11, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    oh by the way, did you see linked back to you in my recent post about christmas tree cookies… they were bloody nice too!

  • Reply
    belleau kitchen
    December 11, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    as usual these are just stunning… seen this a few times before but never thought to make them, they’re gorgeous!

  • Reply
    vanillasugarblog
    December 12, 2012 at 1:15 am

    Now this is the kind of fruitcake I can do, stomach rather! LOL

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      December 12, 2012 at 3:35 am

      Who in the world likes fruitcake, anyway?

      • Reply
        Chris Faber
        December 6, 2016 at 10:48 am

        I do! I make fruitcake every year, and keep it moist through the year with a bit of brandy. Your bark is, indeed very beautiful, and I will make some of that too! Still very enamored with your Detox Chocolates; they are actually requested by friends!

        • Reply
          Sue
          December 6, 2016 at 12:05 pm

          Haha, you got me there ~ I should know better than to dismiss any food! I may try my hand at an actual fruitcake one of these days!

  • Reply
    Nantucket Daffodil
    December 11, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    For real????? This looks so darned good!!!!!

  • Reply
    Choclette
    December 11, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    So pretty and what a fabulous idea. I was going to have a try at Peppermint Bark this year, but now I’m not so sure.

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      December 11, 2012 at 9:56 pm

      Oh do it, the peppermint bark is my favorite, the flavor combo is so surprisingly delicious. I have no use for candy canes, but all crushed up in the bark they’re killer!

  • Reply
    Sue/the view from great island
    December 11, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    Yeah, candy making is one of those things you need to do at least once a year. It’s a good thing it just happens in December, though, or I’d be a thousand pounds. I just have to wrap it and give it away as fast as possible!

  • Reply
    Cathy at Wives with Knives
    December 11, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Wow, I love that! It’s so pretty with all the beautiful fruits and nuts and I have no doubt that it is delicious. I haven’t made any candy this year and I don’t think I can resist this treat.

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    December 11, 2012 at 6:45 pm

    This is EXACTLY the type of recipe I need! And this looks wayyyy better than traditional fruitcake. I loved dried fruit and white chocolate and would go around picking out all the apricots and cranberries first :)

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