This is my Ceremonial Cacao Recipe: Heart Opening Rose. Cacao is a delicacy and the perfect morning beverage. It enhances my focus and creativity while relaxing my body. As with any ancient plant medicine, the setting is critical; slow mornings with a delicious warming drink allow the body to lean into whatever intention you choose.
Cacao versus coffee
This is the ceremonial grade cacao recipe I've been drinking for over two years. I've made many adaptations along the way and have found this exact recipe to be the most expansive.
A go-to recipe is key whether you've never heard of ceremonial cacao or are experienced in its magical benefits!
American culture has created a similar morning ritual with coffee. The National Coffee Association recently did new scientific studies that relayed that 62% of Americans drink coffee weekly.
I'm not going to say coffee is unhealthy because it isn't, especially in moderation, but what's highly important is the state you're in while you consume it. Are you relaxed, setting a space to connect, or rushing out of the drive-thru line into traffic?
On a quick side note, if you are a coffee drinker, it's good practice to look into the company that supplies you; just like with cacao, I'm always looking for the highest quality.
Why setting matters
Another study revealed the more relaxed someone is while drinking coffee, the better our bodies react to it.
The mega-important adrenal glands release hormones like cortisol when we are rushing or in a stressful state - add coffee on top of that, and our systems are thrown off.
The more mindful and relaxed you are, the healthier the ritual will be.
What is ceremonial-grade cacao?
Ceremonial-grade cacao is made from pure cacao beans and is minimally processed. It should be free from pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, and genetic modification, which is harmful to those who consume it. It can also be extremely damaging to those who have had contact with it during farming.
Essentially ceremonial cacao is chocolate coming from the cacao bean. It has been used worldwide by ancient indigenous communities to gather, connect, share, and grow by participating in cacao ceremonies.
Cacao use dates back thousands of years, and archeologists have discovered it was used as a form of currency.
This ceremonial drink is more than the setting it's used in. My definition of ceremonial cacao is that the supplier has ethical standards in farming and trading and that the cacao is minimally processed and organic, essentially fair trade.
What to look for when buying cacao
Number 1: Is it ethically sourced? Does the company or person selling cacao share details on where it came from and how they obtained it? This is number one because the chocolate farming industry has pillaged communities and left many with lifelong health concerns due to farming practices. These communities are often in remote lands that cannot expose they are being taken advantage of. Many are not paid nearly what they should be, and well-known chocolate companies have been exposed to using child labor on cacao farms.
Number 2: What are the ingredients? Is the cacao pure, or does it have additives like sweeteners, etc.?
Benefits of ceremonial cacao
If I were to ask a group of people if they have a healthy relationship with chocolate, a large percentage would say some type of "no". Drinking cacao brings intention and purpose. It's a powerful plant that deserves respect.
Benefits of drinking cacao:
☕Enhanced creativity and focus
☕A great alternative coffee replacement, cacao has caffeine but in a smaller dose.
☕Relaxation in the body. Often, people will feel more open and loving when drinking cacao.
☕Connection with a significant other or community (similar to meeting with friends for a beer). Cacao has a good way of opening up conversations.
My cacao ceremony
My first cacao experience was with a group of friends outside in nature. It was an intentionally set ceremony with an opening blessing. Which followed by each of us sharing a current life happening, a meditation, dancing, and then closing prayer.
Pretty woo-woo, but I loved it! It was a fun day getting to know people deeper, enjoying their company, playing like children, and leaving with an open and light feeling.
From there, I started going to other ceremonies and, over time, developed what fit into my morning practice.
This was a great way to see what I liked and didn't like. It's essential to mindfully prepare the cacao with a variety of added herbs and spices, picked intuitively. Finally, I like my favorite, a large cup, and sit down by myself or with Michael.
To start I...
I light a candle (unscented Good Light brand) to open the space and take a few deep breaths. Sometimes it feels nice to move my body by stretching, circling my head, and tugging at my hamstrings. I pull out my journal and write a few sentences about what has been going on in my world, followed by a writing prompt.
Then, I pull three tarot cards or a card from an oracle deck, and then I either do a mini-meditation or follow a breathwork track. I close the space out by thanking myself for showing up, blessing my day, and blowing out the candles. I've finished the cacao by this time. I'm primed to start my day in a wonderful way.
Other times I sit on the couch, light a candle on the coffee table, and Michael and I talk over our cup of cacao. We tend to have good morning conversations and enjoy the connection.
There's no wrong way to have a first-time cacao ritual as long as there is intention (going in with a purpose, even if it's to simply connect to yourself). You're in an appropriate setting to relax and consciously aware you're consuming energy that requires respect.
What brand do I recommend?
They have a variety of flavors; I use Boundless Belize. It has an amaretto, nutmeg flavor, and I find it very expansive.
There are many different methods and ingredient variations in preparing hot cacao. If your intention is to create a heart-opening effect with your cacao ceremony, you'll easily find the best ritual for you and reap all the health benefits!
Ceremonial Cacao Recipe: Heart Opening Rose
- 25 grams of ceremonial-grade cacao you can weigh it for accurate dosage or ¼ cup of chopped cacao
- 8 ounces of filtered water or coconut milk *do not use soy milk or lactose milk as it interferes with the absorption of cacao
- 2 tablespoons rose petals
- 2 tablespoons of maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon of chili powder or a pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch of sea salt
- If your cacao is served as a bar: chop an edge with a sharp knife to release shavings that equal ¼ cup or if you're weighing it 25 grams.
- Bring filtered water or coconut milk to a boil hot water in a saucepan.
- Add in chili powder or cayenne, depending on your heat preference and the rose petals.
- Turn down to low heat and bring cacao shavings, maple syrup, cinnamon, and salt in next.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool while the roses steep.
- Strain through a sieve to remove the rose petals.
- Optional: use a milk frother or blend in a blender to create a latte-like consistency.
- Top with additional cinnamon and serve in your favorite mug.