Easy Nutcracker Bark ~ crunchy, salty mixed nuts enrobed in lots of dark chocolate. Who wouldn’t want some of that? Nobody, that’s who. And I’ve even included downloadable recipe gift tags so you can share with your bestest friends.
My easy nutcracker bark is going to be your new best friend this season…grab some bags of dark chocolate chips and a few cans of mixed nuts when you’re next at the supermarket. You’ll be set up for lots of entertaining and/or gift giving. Done and done.
I love the mix of the slightly bitter but still creamy dark chocolate and the salty nuts. There are all kinds of readymade nut mixes on the market these days, so you can get creative with this. I’ve even used a spicy mix and loved it. Of course you don’t have to go the convenience route ~ if you’ve got the time, roast your own nuts and create your own combination using a more exotic or gourmet mix. Simple roasted pistachios would be amazing. But the ease of melting the chocolate in the microwave and then dumping in a can of nuts is pretty appealing. Spread it out on a lined baking sheet and let it harden up. Then whack it into squares.
Package it up in little bags with tissue paper to gift or set it out on a plate after dinner, either way it’s gonna be good.
Chocolate bark is one of my signature holiday food gifts because it’s so easy to throw together. I’ve found the best way to package it is to stack the bark in a clear cellophane goody bag with a twist tie to keep it fresh. Then I pop that into a small paper gift bag with some tissue. I’ll add a fun tag that lists either the ingredients (or the recipe, if I’m feeling generous!)
I always have a little army of these bags ready to be gifted at a moment’s notice.
Download this cute Nutcracker Bark tag to include with all your gifts so there’ll be no rooting around for a pen when people ask you for the recipe…just punch a hole in the corner and tie it onto your goodie bag with a pretty ribbon. Holiday gifting done simple!
You can print them on a home computer, or, even better, have them printed on glossy card stock by an office store like Kinkos, FedEx, or Staples. You can do everything easily online and pick them up at your local store, they’ll even cut them for you. If you’re giving this to everyone on your list, that’s a smart way to go. Each recipe will make 3-4 gifts and the tags make them really special.
Easy Nutcracker Bark
- 20 ounces dark chocolate, cut in small pieces (I used 2 10-ounce bags of dark chocolate chips)
- 10 ounces mixed salted nuts
- Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- Put the chocolate in a microwave safe mixing bowl and heat on high for 1 minute. Stir, and then heat for 30 seconds more and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Let the heat of the bowl melt any remaining lumps of chocolate. If necessary you can put the bowl back in the microwave for short bursts to fully melt.
- Add most of the nuts to the bowl, reserving a handful to press into the top of the bark. Stir well and spread the mixture out onto your prepared lined baking sheet. Spread it out with an offset spreading knife until it is a large rectangle and more or less even thickness all around. Aim for somewhere in the vicinity of 9x12. Top the wet bark with the extra nuts, be sure to press them into the chocolate so they adhere.
- Let the candy harden at room temperature, but I like to put it in the refrigerator to speed up the process. Cut it into squares or break into pieces.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature or the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Make this Nutcracker Bark your own ~
If you’re a milk chocolate type, go for it. White would work too.
I think some dried fruit like cranberries or raisins would be nice here. I don’t know if anybody remembers Chunky candies, but that’s the idea.