This quick and easy healthy homemade magic shell is the perfect chocolate topping for frozen fruit, smoothies, or any cold treat!
I’m just going to put it out there. During the summer months, I use this homemade magic shell recipe just about every day. Now, if you think homemade magic shell is only good as a topping for ice cream or ice cream cake—I’m about to open up a whole new world to you. You can actually use this magic shell recipe to drizzle on top of smoothie bowls, frozen fruit, or homemade popsicles! You can even use it to make homemade almond butter/peanut butter cups! It’s why I use it all throughout the recipes in my book.
The funny thing is, this recipe for magic shell totally happened by accident.
It was a warm summer day (one of those days where the coconut oil is liquid at room temperature), and I had planned to use coconut oil to make a dark chocolate dip for some strawberries I had preserved in the freezer. I laid them out to let them thaw, and of course, my strawberries were half-frozen when I started eating them. Much to my surprise, the chocolate hardened instantly. Right then, homemade magic shell was born.
The cool part is, this homemade magic shell isn’t just melted chocolate candy and coconut oil. You can actually make chocolate using cacao powder, which is packed with antioxidants, and coconut oil, which is a nourishing fat packed with medium-chain fatty acids. Simply, nourishing, and healthy!
What is Magic Shell?
If you were a kid in the 80s or 90s, magic shell was likely one of those toppings you begged your mom to get. It was a special liquid chocolate topping that magically hardened when it came in contact with ice cream. It made sugary dessert even more sugary, which is why it never showed its face in our house.
But my grandma? She knew what was up. Every time we went to visit her on her small farm in southern Virginia, she had a fresh bottle of magic shell waiting for us. She loved watching us smile and enjoy pouring it all over our ice cream by ourselves.
Now, I always get a little bit of nostalgia when I make my homemade magic shell. And I love that it takes just a few minutes to make!
The Ingredients in Homemade Magic Shell
The main component of homemade magic shell is coconut oil. Because coconut oil is made up of beneficial medium chain fatty acids, it is solid at room temperature. This means it will harden quickly when in comes in contact with frozen foods.
Raw cacao powder is made by cold-pressing cocoa beans. Because it is unheated and unprocessed, raw cacao powder is packed with antioxidants, fiber, and important minerals like magnesium. You can also use cocoa powder for this recipe, which is cacao powder that has been roasted. Roasting gives the cocoa a mild and smooth flavor.
Raw, unfiltered honey is a natural sweetener that contains vitamins, enzymes, and phytonutrients. While this ingredient is optional, raw honey is great when you want to add a bit of sweetness to things.
Vanilla extract gives the homemade magic shell a richer, deeper flavor. Make sure to get a pure vanilla extract that does not contain sugar or additives. I personally use bourbon vanilla extract, which almost makes the chocolate completely irresistible. Use at your own risk.
How to Make Homemade Magic Shell
This recipe for homemade magic shell couldn’t be easier! First, in a small bowl, combine the melted coconut oil, raw honey, and vanilla extract. I like to do this in a pourable cup, like these silicone squeezable measuring cups. Stir well.
Add the cacao powder and gently fold it into the mixture until well combined. This may take a second so be patient.
Let magic shell slightly cool. Pour it on top of frozen fruit, a smoothie bowl, or cold frozen treats like ice cream!
Tips + Tricks
- This recipe will serve two people. You can double the recipe if you’re serving more!
- I love using this recipe to make my Chocolate Covered Berries and Cream Bowl. Just throw some frozen berries in a bowl, pour chilled coconut milk overtop, and then pour homemade magic shell all over it!
- You can swap the raw honey for maple syrup if you don’t have honey on hand.
- You can make it a little sweeter to taste. Just add a little more honey or maple syrup after you’ve mixed it up. Give it a shot on top of frozen treats—it tastes so good with ice cream!
- Got bananas about to go bad? Peel them, throw them in the freezer, and slice the banana into frozen banana coins. Then, dip the banana coins in homemade magic shell and place them on parchment paper and place them back in the freezer. Such a good snack!
- You can also stack fruit on a popsicle stick, freeze it, then dip those popsicles in homemade magic shell! See photo for inspiration.
How Do I Store Leftovers?
This recipe works best if eaten immediately. So, I recommend only making as much as you want to eat. Overtime, you’ll notice the homemade magic shell starts to separate slightly. But, if you have extra and you don’t want to eat it, you can store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature. Heat it slightly and mix again before pouring it over cold treats.
Can I make this recipe sweeter?
This recipe is intentionally richer and more chocolatey that conventional magic shell you buy at the store. If you want to make it more sweet, you can add more honey or even maple syrup to the homemade magic shell. Just taste it after you mix it up, and add a little more depending on your preference.
Stocking the Pantry
I personally use Thrive Market for most of my pantry needs because it saves me some cash—especially when it comes to commonly used items like coconut oil and cacao powder. For a complete list of my recommend pantry items and what I use in my home, check out my Baking and Cooking Resources Page.
Other Recipes You’ll Love
- Fudgy Paleo Brownies (Crackly Top, Gluten-Free)
- Chocolate Zucchini Muffins (Gluten-Free, Paleo)
- Baked Chocolate Donuts
- The Best Paleo Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Double Chocolate Banana Bread
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
- 1/8 tsp pure vanilla extract (optional)
- 1 1/2 tsp raw honey or maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
- In a small bowl, combine the coconut oil, raw honey, and vanilla extract. Stir well.
- Add the cacao powder and gently fold it into the mixture until well combined.
- Let magic shell slightly cool before pouring on top of frozen fruit, desserts, or ice cream.
What other creative ways have you found using this recipe for homemade magic shell? Come back and let me know below!