How to Make Chocolate Covered Strawberries
Need a last-minute treat for a romantic occasion? Chocolate covered strawberries are the answer. Follow my easy how-to for a truly luscious indulgence!
Happy Valentine’s Day!
I’ve been making Valentine’s Day treats all week, to get you prepped for today. I’ve shared a sinfully decadent chocolate cheesecake, these adorable red velvet sugar cookies, and there are TONS more ideas in the Valentine’s Day category of my recipe index.
And I know it’s literally today, but I still think there’s enough time to squeeze in one more recipe: chocolate covered strawberries!
Normally I wouldn’t post a holiday recipe on the actual holiday, but this one is so easy you could totally pull it off before your sweetie even gets home from work!
Chocolate covered strawberries may be the most simple of treats, but there are a few important things to know that will guarantee the best results, so read on!
WHAT KIND OF CHOCOLATE TO USE FOR CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES
Use the best quality chocolate you can find. I can’t stress this enough, because it truly makes a difference, on so many levels.
- Flavor (obviously). Higher quality chocolate tastes better than cheap chocolate.
- Consistency. Good quality chocolate will melt nice and smooth without seizing up.
- Appearance. You want chocolate covered strawberries that look smooth and shiny, not grainy or mottled.
Avoid using chocolate chips, as they contain stabilizers that help them to keep their shape under higher temperatures. I know chocolate is a pain to chop, but it’s really worth the extra bit of effort to use baking bars rather than chips. They melt easily and beautifully.
HOW TO PREPARE STRAWBERRIES FOR DIPPING IN CHOCOLATE
To avoid sweating or leaking, use the freshest strawberries you can get your hands on. If they have any soft spots, the sugar in the chocolate will draw out their liquid and you’ll have puddles of juice. Look for berries that are firm, plump, and shiny.
Rinse them gently in cool water, and carefully dry them with paper towels. For the chocolate to stick properly, the strawberries need to be completely dry, so it’s a good idea to let them air out for a half hour or so before dipping.
HOW TO MELT CHOCOLATE
You basically have two options when it comes to melting chocolate: the microwave or a double boiler.
MICROWAVE METHOD FOR MELTING CHOCOLATE
This is my preferred method, for ever and always. It’s the most foolproof way because there is no water involved, and chocolate really does not like water.
Just place your chopped chocolate in a bowl (I recommend something small and tall-ish, to make it easier to dip your strawberries all the way in), and heat it in quick 20-second bursts, stirring after each interval. Be careful not to overheat it, or it could burn. It’s best to stop when there are still a few small lumps, because as you stir they’re likely to finish melting with just the residual heat in the bowl.
DOUBLE BOILER METHOD FOR MELTING CHOCOLATE
If you don’t have, or prefer not to use a microwave, you can melt your chocolate in a double boiler.
Heat about an inch of water in a small pot, place your chopped chocolate in a glass or metal bowl, and rest it on top. The water should just barely be simmering, and the bottom of the bowl should not be touching the water.
As you stir it, the chocolate will melt from the heat of the steam, but be really careful that no steam is escaping around the bowl, or condensation can make its way into the chocolate and cause it to seize. If your chocolate clumps up into a big mass and won’t melt no matter what, you have seized chocolate on your hands, and you need to start over.
Once your chocolate is beautifully smooth and melted, transfer it to a small, tall-ish bowl and start dipping your strawberries.
HOW TO DECORATE CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES
Dip the strawberries into the melted chocolate, all the way up to their “shoulders.” To avoid a puddle of chocolate underneath the berries, gently drag the bottom of the strawberry along the lip of the bowl, to remove any excess. (You can see what I mean when you watch the video in the recipe card below.)
Then place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
While the chocolate is still wet, you can top them with all sorts of yummy things. Here are a few ideas:
- Chopped nuts
- Shredded coconut
- Colorful sprinkles
- Toffee bits
- Crushed up Oreo cookies or graham crackers
Or anything else your heart desires!
You could also give them a drizzle of a contrasting kind of chocolate. For what you see here, I used dark chocolate to dip the berries, then gave them a drizzle with milk chocolate for contrast.
Another fun option is to make tuxedo strawberries. You can see how that’s done here: Tuxedo Cupcakes.
CAN CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES BE MADE AHEAD?
To avoid sweating or leaking, it’s best to make chocolate covered strawberries the same day you plan to serve them.
But the good news is, they will keep at room temperature for as long as 10 hours, without a problem.
Just leave them in a cool, dry place, uncovered, on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
SHOULD CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES BE REFRIGERATED?
I do not recommend refrigerating chocolate covered strawberries.
For one thing, it will cause condensation to form on the outside of the chocolate, and that just doesn’t look as pretty.
For another, the chocolate becomes so hard it will just shatter when you bite it.
And lastly, I find a room temperature chocolate covered strawberry so much more enjoyable to eat than a cold one. I feel like the flavors are fuller, and it’s nicer on your teeth too!
Are you planning a romantic evening for two tonight? If so, make it even more special by whipping up a quick batch of these chocolate covered strawberries! And don’t forget the champagne!
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Chocolate Covered Strawberries
- Place the chopped bittersweet chocolate in a small, tall-ish bowl and melt in 20-second intervals in the microwave*, stirring after each, until the chocolate is smooth and liquid.
- Grasp each berry by the leaves, and dip into the melted chocolate
- Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and allow the chocolate to set at room temperature.
- Melt the milk chocolate, and transfer to a piping bag fitted with a #1 round tip
- Drizzle the milk chocolate over the berries.