Cocoa Body Butter that Will Make you Swoon!

Today, I am going to be writing about food without writing about food. “How”, you ask, “is this possible?” Read on my aspiring domestic goddesses and gods and you will see!

In a previous post (a recipe for chocolate brazil-nut butter), I raved about The Body Shop’s brazil-nut body butter. While this is my favourite flavour, a close second, is their cocoa butter body butter. Despite how much I love this product though, the truth is that I’ve always wanted a body-butter that was even more, well cocoa-ey. (By now, if you’ve been reading one or two of my blog-posts, you know that I am definitely not a “less is more” type of person; more is definitely better in my book!) In the past, I’ve made my own body and face oils, having been inspired and coached by an old friend of mine, Ralph, who now practices naturopathy and Ayurveda in South Germany. So the concept of making my own skin-products isn’t entirely new to me; I’ve just never gotten around to it.

Then, in December last year, before I pushed off to India for the holidays, I had friends over for dinner, and one of them mentioned making her own lip balm. This got me thinking, and I resolved to make my own body butter someday. And then, I promptly tucked away said resolve somewhere in the back of my mind and forgot all about it. What with packing, flying to India and having wildly inappropriate dance parties with my insane family (and by this I mean my parents, Aunts, and Uncles happily prancing about to bollywood dance music with us young’un’s), I just didn’t have the chance to give it a go.

And then today, I woke up with a rather inexplicable craving for homemade body butter. It may have something to do with an email I got yesterday from The Body Shop asking me to “Indulge in Chocomania: it’s Sinfully Good and Totally Guilt Free”. Guilt free? Really? Not when I am spending what is literally my entire week’s entertainment budget on lotions and potions that smell like the food I would be buying if I had any money left!

So I went out exploring in my neighborhood and bought some pure shea butter and cocoa butter. And then, I made my own, deliciously decadent body butter and I am not exaggerating in the least when I say that the smell, texture, and look of it had me giggling, smiling and babbling excitedly.

The first whiff of it was absolute, pure delight. Try it and you’ll see what I mean!

Equipment:

A double boiler or a microwave

Hand-held mixer or whisk

One medium bowl and one large, deep bowl

Jars to put the body butter in

Ingredients:

(All the ingredients I used were organic)

100 ml pure Cocoa butter

50 ml pure Shea butter

2 tbsp Vitamin E oil (at least 2000o IU)

3 tbsp Sweet Almond Oil

1/4 to 1/2 tsp Vanilla Essence or Vanilla Oil

1 Tbsp Mineral Water

Method:

You can buy cocoa butter in the form of “chips”, or in a jar. If you buy it in a jar, you might have to place the jar in warm water for a bit, just to soften it up a bit, before you take it out. I placed both the shea butter and cocoa butter jars in a bowl of warm water in the sink for about 5 minutes.

Now measure out the cocoa butter and shea butter into the medium bowl and place it in the microwave. I would heat it on a very low setting (time defrost) for about 20 seconds at a time, checking on it periodically. You want the butters all melted and looking like this:

It’s important to do this carefully as you don’t want to overheat the butters. Once the butter-mixture is nice and melted, stir it a bit and place it in the freezer for 5 minutes to cool down. Then, add the sweet almond oil and vitamin e oil, stir and put the mixture back in the freezer for another 5 minutes or so, until the mixture has firmed up. Once firm, take it out, add a tablespoon of water and using the hand held mixer or whisk, beat the mixture.

At this stage in the process, I was taking in the wonderful smell when I realized the only thing that would make this smell better would be vanilla essense. Since I bake a lot, I had some lying about, and so I added 1/4 tsp to the mixture and whipped it up into a wonderful, light, creamy and delicious smelling mixture 🙂 When I smelt it, I felt it needed some more vanilla, so I added another quarter teaspoon. On a side-note, I would have used vanilla oil if I had some around because vanilla extract has alcohol (which dries the skin). However, if you don’t have any lying about, I am sure the essence is fine, since you’re using such a small quantity of it.

When you feel it’s suitably fluffy and you’re happy with the texture, scoop the mixture into clean, dry jars!

And there it is, your very own, delicious body butter that will have you smelling like something you want to eat. I am not sure why I want to smell like something I’d eat, I just do! It makes me wildly happy and if this sounds like the sort of thing that makes YOU cheerful, go ahead and give it a go- it’s easy!

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18 Comments Add yours

  1. jo says:

    wow..this is very new to me. I only use chocolate and nuts for baking and eating..but that being said, I would actually go out and buy shea/cocoa butter body creams. I would give this a go if I have time..may I know where you did you buy your shea butter from?

    1. choconutmeg says:

      I got the Shea butter at a health food store. You might be able to find it Whole foods or Trader Joes if you live in the U.S. You could also try online. Sorry, I wish I could help more, but it depends entirely on where you live I think. It’s really easy to get it here, there are about 5 health food stores within walking distance of mine and they all had it.

  2. Kameshwari says:

    WOW WOW Megha. I think you have found your alternative metier. Are you sure you do not want to set up shop. Next time time I want the body cream you make and not from Body Shop. i am going to forward this link to Nishi aunty who I am sure will enjoy this blog. She will not only try out yr recipes but will add her own!!!

    Am terribly impressed
    Love
    Mom

    1. choconutmeg says:

      Ha ha, thanks Mummy! I will definitely make you tonnes of body butter! I am going to try out some variations in flavours as well, such as orange-chocolate, lavender and possibly hazelnut.

  3. margaret21 says:

    I’m almost as much of a chocoholic as you, but somehow, the thought of spending the day smelling like a chocolate emporium really doesn’t do it for me. I also find vanilla as a body scent a bit of a no-no. Sorry, it sounds as though your delicious food recipes are more my style!

    1. choconutmeg says:

      Ha ha, well to each her own.

  4. Wow….great job with making your own body butter! Thanks for sharing the steps too!

    1. choconutmeg says:

      You’re welcome 🙂

  5. estradpao says:

    I am definitely trying this sometime soon!

    1. choconutmeg says:

      You should! The butter did harden a bit after I put in the jar. But it’s still perfectly manageably and the cocoa butter melts as soon as it touches your skin.

  6. Chef Lorenzo says:

    Hi, Choco…I was reading your recipe above, and thought I’d give you an idea from a chefs perspective. The vanilla…you’re right about the alcohol, it tends to dry skin. The essence oil, well, is an oil, which may seperate out after a day or two. Why not just use a piece of real vanilla bean, say a 1 inch piece or so to start (adjust amount through experimentation), and add it to the butters just before you put it in the microwave. The slight heat will help draw out the aroma…then remove the bean before proceeding with the rest of the recipe. That would also keep your product more “natural”.

    Just a thought…

    By the way, some ancient cultures thought of vanilla as an aphrodisiac! 😉

    1. choconutmeg says:

      What a brilliant idea Chef! I shall try this out the very next time I whip up another pot of this stuff! Thank you so very much for this 🙂

  7. Chef Lorenzo says:

    you are so very welcome. Let me know how you make out, and keep up the good work!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Help, if anyone is still reading this, my butter smells great, but it is really hard. It’s not creamy, it actually feels like the consistency of real butter. What can I do?

    1. choconutmeg says:

      Hi, thanks for visiting my blog! It could be that the ambient temperature in your home is lower than in mine, which is causing the butter to harden. You could add more almond oil and whip it in; that should soften it up. Or, you could increase the proportion of Shea butter, it’s softer than cocoa butter. Alternatively, you could use the butter in a hardened form, sort of like those ‘massage bars’ they have at Lush. By this I mean that you could just shape the butter into various shapes, and then rub it in your hands or directly on your body when you are ready to use it. Finally, some people use beeswax in their recipes.

      Also, it’s important to note, that I make and use this butter fresh; I don’t keep it lying around for very long, so I am not sure how it behaves after a month or two, as it has no preservatives or emulsifier. Hope that helps!

      1. Bon says:

        Hi, thanks, I was thinking about what I could do with it. I was planning on making some sunscreen lotion bars anyway. Do you think I could add some melted beeswax and powdered zinc oxide and make bars out of it? Next time I think I’ll change the ratio of butters. More softer butter ratio to the hard cocoa butter. I just ordered mango and avocado butters. What fragrance would work well with them?
        I must say, I just slathered my feet and ankles and it melted and feels great.

      2. choconutmeg says:

        I am not sure if the sunscreen bars would work; I’ve never tried it. I’m just a wee bit worried about experimenting with sunscreen and/or sunblock given that too much sun exposure can cause serious skin problems. As for the mango and avocado butters, I am actually not very fond of either fruit, so I am not sure if I can help you there. Good luck with both projects 🙂 Sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

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