9 Secrets to Perfect Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

Yum! 23

chocolate-covered strawberriesNothing says Valentine's Day like chocolate-covered strawberries! Those red, heart-shaped fruits, that melted chocolate, together in one sweet, scrumptious bite. They're undeniable. But if you've ever tried making them, you may have discovered there are a few tricks to getting them right without ending up with a weird, lumpy, melted chocolate mess.

But don't worry. You can do this! Here are 9 tips to making your chocolate-covered strawberry dreams come true.

Have everything out and ready to go. In addition to your strawberries and melted chocolate, have a cookie sheet lined with waxed or parchment paper ready before you get started. Make sure you've already cleared a space in your refrigerator -- says the cook who has made that mistake too many times.

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Pick your berries well. Look over your batch of strawberries before you get started. Make sure they're ripe enough to be flavorful (biting into a greenish strawberry, sad face!) but not so ripe that they're mushy. Check for soft spots.

Room-temp berries. Don't keep the berries chilled. Instead, let them sit out until they're room temperature.

Dry your strawberries. You'll want to wash your berries, of course. But make sure you pat-dry them thoroughly. Water on the berries will cause the chocolate to "seize" -- get all clotted and lose its smooth texture.

Leave the leaves. You could try cutting off the leaves and stem and using a toothpick to dip, but that's a little tricky. I've found it easier to just keep the leaves and stem on and use them to dip the berries. I also like that contrast you get from the green -- it makes the red of the berries stand out more.

Use chocolate and butter. Just melted chocolate chips will work fine, but adding butter to your melted chocolate chips makes for a smoother, more dip-able texture. Melt together 2 teaspoons of butter for 8 ounces of chocolate. You could just buy "dip-able" chocolate, but it's probably made with shortening. Just saying.

Make a double boiler. I don't have a double boiler, so I'll put some water in a small saucepan and nestle a Pyrex bowl over it. The water should be high enough to surround most of the bowl, but not so high that it's in danger of blurping up into the bowl of chocolate if the water boils. Try to keep the water at a low simmer, not a rolling boil.

Shake and tip. After you dip your berry into the melted chocolate as far as you can, give it a little shake to shake off extra chocolate and cover any missed spots. Then tip the berry upside down to cover more of the berry closer to the leaves.

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Chill in the fridge, but don't keep refrigerated. Once you're finished dipping your berries, they'll need about 15-30 minutes to chill and harden in the refrigerator. But chocolate does not like to stay cold for long -- it can get white and chalky. So keep your berries in an airtight container in another cool place.

Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

  • 8 ounces chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound strawberries
  1. Using a double boiler or bowl over hot water, melt your chocolate chips with the butter. Stir together until smooth.
  2. One at a time, take each strawberry by the stem and leaves, dip into the chocolate as far as you can, shake, tip upside-down, and then set on your drying sheet.
  3. When you have a sheet filled, place it in the refrigerator to dry the berries for 15-30 minutes. Test by tasting a berry. (This is the fun part!)
  4. When chocolate is completely solid, put berries in an airtight container and store in a cool place away from a heat source.

Have you ever made chocolate-covered strawberries? Got any tips to share?

 

Image via somegeekintn/Flickr

candy, chocolate, desserts, fruit, recipes, valentine's day

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ashjo85 ashjo85

Do not overheat the chocolate, especially if you're using milk chocolate. I made chocolate covered cherries for Christmas, and even on the lowest setting in a double boiler, my chocolate overheated and turned to crap within 5 minutes. Milk chocolate should not go over 90 degrees F or so. Use a candy thermeter if you have one.

Melis... Melissa042807

I always place them upside-down (on the leaves) to set, instead of on their side. They're prettier that way. And if I really want something special, I double dip them. :-) Wait until the first layer of chocolate is mostly set at room temperature, then take 'em through the chocolate again. 

jalaz77 jalaz77

Dip, cool real fast and eat is my advice!! Haha!

Maias... MaiasMommy619

Melt some white chocolate and use as an accent over the darker chocolate...makes them even more prettier :)

jessi... jessicasmom1

even melt some white chocolate and tint in pinks or red... for more color. 


 

momav... momavanessa

Cuilnary school we Temp the chocolate with a Marble slap. Since I don't have marble at home I am going to use the seeding method. Also shortening is good if you don't have butter! I am planning on making these tux style and some heart shaped red velvet cake pops too!

harym... harymarshman

I sprinkle sugar on mine. It's pretty.

Lisa Winfield

...Think imma try these with some white chocolate also:) What a way to treat yourself:)

luvcl... luvcloudydays

What she didn't mention, is that you should make sure the leaves are CLEAN if you decide to keep them on. That's where most of the dirt is held on the fruit. IMO I'd just take them off, and replace them with a toothpick like she said, or just use your fingers, nothing better than getting chocolate all over your fingers for someone to lick them off ;)

nonmember avatar Lorri

use a blow dryer to make sure they are dry - on the cool setting no heat - also thread the berries through a kabob stick when you dip them, then to dry them turn the stick over and let them hang upside down in a tall heavy glass to dry so they drip towards the leaves... all milk chocolate is not a good choice, choose a good dark and mix it half with a very good milk chocolate - also one more tip from a pro baker, don't use butter, use crisco or even a good fresh lard, lard is wonderful for chocolate so long as you know its age and source, butter has a high moisture content, your better off using a pure fat with chocolate... if you want to add some special looking leaves get some green fruit leather and cut out leaves, a stem (leather rolled up) and you can cut tiny hearts out of red leather - fruit leather doesn't bleed when exposed to the warmth of chocolate so it is perfect to decorate with cause it's bendy...

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