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An Introduction to Ceremonial Cacao

When prepared and consumed correctly as part of ceremony, cacao can profoundly open us to our hearts. The benefits of living with greater awareness of the heart are many, including greater access to love, abundance & connection.

Unlocking the Benefits of Ceremonial Cacao 

Many of us benefit from this conscious re-connection with our hearts on a regular basis. And cacao ceremony is a powerful and enjoyable (and tasty) way to do that. The problem is, very few people know how to properly prepare and consume cacao in order to receive the full benefits. And unfortunately, as a result, too many people aren’t even aware of the benefits or wrongly believe that the benefits are weak or non-existent. Which simply is not true. The benefits are big and beautiful and true.

Ceremonial cacao is the real deal. But like all relationships, you’ve got to come to it with the right understanding and approach in order to unlock the benefits. You need the right information to ensure that you do everything correctly to get access to the great benefits of cacao ceremony.

How to Prepare Ceremonial Cacao


  • 7 fluid ounces of water per person
  • 2 oz (6 tablespoons) cacao per person. If you are using a scale, you can weigh 2 oz per person. If you aren’t using a scale, 2 oz of cacao is about 6 tablespoons of chopped cacao.
  • Pinch of chili/cayenne
  • Natural sweetener of your choice such as honey, agave syrup, maple syrup, cane sugar, etc. to taste. This is optional. It is not necessary to sweeten the cacao drink to benefit from the cacao in ceremony. But most people will find the drink more enjoyable this way.
  • Optionally, add cinnamon, cardamom, and/or vanilla to taste

How to make the drink:

  • Start with the cacao bar and chop with a knife into smaller pieces so it softens easily in hot water.
  • Heat water with chili to just before a boil. It should be just too hot to the touch but not boiling
  • Add the cacao shavings
  • Add sweetening and spices to taste
  • Use a whisk to stir the brew until it's all the chunks are blended and you get a frothy top
  • It’s helpful to have a spoon or stirring stick to keep the consistency even as you consume. The cacao will settle at the bottom over time.

Serve hot & enjoy!


Tips to maximize your experience

  • If you are new to drinking cacao, I highly recommend that you drink no more than 2/3 of a 2 oz ceremonial dose to begin. Wait about 45 minutes, then gauge how you feel. If you notice absolutely no stomach queasiness, you may proceed to drink the remainder. Most people aren’t accustomed to consuming so much cacao all at once. Therefore, before you do, try going a bit more slowly to avoid possible discomfort later on.
  • Don’t mix your cacao with cow's milk (or soy). Many of us Westerners are accustomed to hot chocolate, chocolate milk, or milk chocolate that it seems natural to mix the cacao with milk or soy milk for that creaminess we’re accustomed to. But don’t do this! Milk and soy interfere with the absorption of the cacao, and that can dampen the effects. If you feel that you need some kind of added “milk”, consider coconut milk, which shouldn’t interfere with absorption as do milk and soy.
  • Eat lightly prior to consuming your ceremonial cacao drink. This will allow the cacao to absorb more fully and not dampen the effects. No need to fast, just don't drink it on a full stomach. Also, be sure to drink plenty of water as you go and then eat dense foods at the end to ground the energy.
  • Cacao, being the strong bitter it is, can stimulate the liver to detox. It is mildly laxative in higher doses. Those needing dietary detox or those on a clean or raw diet, take less the first time and see how it feels. Some folks may get nausea or mild headache 5-6 hours later even going slowly, so consider going easy at first.

 What to Expect

Most people will feel the cacao within 20-30 minutes. There is usually a strong focus of energy around the heart and an expansive feeling. Focus is easier. You will have more blood flowing to your brain with our cacao. Meditation, yoga, kirtan, sound healing and many other practices will flow more ease-fully. Creativity and inspiration come easily. Deepest effects will last 3 to 5 hours, depending on focus of attention.

Make sure to drink plenty of water and afterwards eat dense foods to help ground the energy!



 Check: New Moon Vibes Cacao Ceremony & Sacred Sounds with Darren Austin Hall + Zach Sukuweh. Link here

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