Chocolate-covered strawberries are a delicious and luxurious treat, but they're a surprisingly healthy and diet friendly one as well. The nutritional values of a chocolate-covered strawberry will vary depending upon the type of chocolate and the size of the berry; however, on the whole, these are a far better choice than most desserts.
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The type of chocolate used for chocolate covered strawberries will impact the total calorie count and nutrition of this dessert treat. Dark chocolate works well with very sweet berries, creating an intense contrast. Milk chocolate or white chocolate are ideal if you are working with out-of-season berries, as they provide additional sweetness. Choose real, good quality chocolate for the healthiest and tastiest result.
According to CacaoWeb, chocolate contains between 130 calories and 160 calories per ounce. Use between 12 oz. and 16 oz. of chocolate to coat approximately 18 large berries; however, this does account for a substantial amount of waste. The strawberries themselves are quite low-calorie, with only 9 calories for an extra large berry. Expect your chocolate covered berries to have between 115 and 135 calories for a large strawberry.
Four extra large strawberries -- about 4 oz. of berries -- will provide you with 3.81 grams of fiber, 44.82 IU of vitamin A and 94.12 mg of vitamin C. Strawberries have more vitamin C per ounce than citrus fruits, according to the University of Illinois Extension. While adding chocolate does add fat and calories, the delicious and nutritious berries still provide the basis for this romantic dessert.
While chocolate may be a treat, it can also be a smart part of a healthy diet. Opt for dark chocolate rather than milk to reduce the sugar and increase the antioxidant benefits. While chocolate is high in fat, it has not been shown to raise blood cholesterol levels. Chocolate contains flavonoids, similar to those in wine, including catechins, epicatechins, and procyandins. These antioxidant compounds may reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack, according to CacaoWeb. Chocolate is also rich in minerals, including calcium, iron, zinc and potassium and vitamin E, vitamin A and B vitamins.
If you need a dessert that won't leave you feeling overly full or sluggish, chocolate covered strawberries are a good choice. You can enjoy this treat without feeling guilty or ruining your diet. A generous 4-oz. serving will come in at a reasonable 500 calories. Choose a smaller portion to reduce calories further.