There is a vicious rumor about carob powder circulating by Granolaheads and I’m here to stop it in its tracks.
The lie: Carob powder is a fantastic substitute for cocoa.
Nutritionally, cocoa and carob are pretty even.
Carob doesn’t contain caffeine or theobromine (the stimulant which makes cocoa dangerous for cats and dogs). Carob powder is *supposedly* naturally sweeter and lower in fat than cocoa, although, this nutritional one-up is eliminated once both are processed into powders for baking.
Cocoa is rich in saturated fat (stearic acid) that is known to not raise cholesterol levels while carob *chocolate* is often prepared with palm or coconut oils which are known to raise cholesterol. Additionally, cocoa contains flavonoids which can be helpful with hypertension, insulin sensitivity, platelet function, and immune response.
So as you can see it’s a real big “meh” on which is *better* for you. I just wanted to try it. I read that although it could be used as a substitute for chocolate, the user should know that the tastes of the two are different.
This is the understatement of the century.
I needed brownies. Like, Oh My Gawd I haven’t had bread in a week except for those frightfully dry apple cinna-fails from 2 days ago. I have a fantasticly yummy Weight Watchers recipe into which I substituted carob powder for cocoa powder.
So in the greatest miscommunication of all time when they say “carob powder is a fantastic substitute for chocolate” what they mean is “Carob powder will change the color of anything you want and make it appear as though it has chocolate in it but only use it in items you are serving to people who you do not like and then laugh and laugh and laugh as you watch them confusedly try to figure out why your (insert baked item of choice) tastes like the bottom of your shoe.”
For all of Weight Watcher’s fantasticness, they were the moistest damn shoe-flavored brownies that I’ve ever left cooling in my trash can.
I guess I could use what I have left in stuff I make for the girls since it is the non-dangerous *chocolate* item for them…but I already know that they like the taste of my shoes.
BIG FAT BROWNIE ASS FAIL. The best news to come out of this is that it turns out that Carob is just another legume to which I am allergic.