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What’s in your Chocolate?

We’ve all had that disappointing moment. You buy a bar of vegan chocolate from the supermarket, take a bite and it tastes like sugar mixed with chalk! Perhaps you’re new to veganism but are struggling because you can’t find good quality chocolate? Fear not, we’re here to help!

 

We believe that being vegan doesn’t mean you have to miss out on delicious tasting food, but how can you avoid this chocolate disappointment? Forget the fancy packaging or posh sounding name, the truth is in the ingredients.

 

Cacao Beans

 

1. HOW MANY INGREDIENTS?

One of the most important things to consider when choosing a bar of chocolate is the number of ingredients it contains. This is a key indicator of quality. Truly talented chocolate makers such as Solkiki will often use only three or four ingredients in a bar. By combining world class cacao with skill and tenacity they manage to make the chocolate sing and allow all the natural brilliance of cacao to shine through. Low quality bars however are often jam full of very strange ingredients indeed. These fillers help to keep the cost low and are often an attempt to mask the bitterness of the poor quality cacao used. Supermarkets and industrial chocolate makers have been known to get incredibly creative with their ingredients in a bid to keep costs down and increase profit! A general rule of thumb is – Fewer ingredients means higher quality.

 

2. CHECK THE ORDER

You may or may not know that ingredients are listed based on their quantity in the product. The first in the list is the main ingredient. Don’t be alarmed if you see sugar as the first ingredient in a bar of white or “milk” chocolate – this is what makes them so sweet. Do definitely be alarmed if sugar is the main ingredient in a bar of dark chocolate.

 

3. IF IT SOUNDS LIKE IT SHOULDN’T BE IN CHOCOLATE, IT SHOULDN’T BE IN CHOCOLATE!

Don’t be fooled chocolate fans. Quality chocolate contains simple ingredients and chemical chocolate contains chemicals! If it doesn’t sound right, it isn’t! If you ever see “flavourings” on a packet, run for the hills. Cacao already contains more flavour compounds then any other food on the planet so the addition of artificial “flavourings” is a seriously worrying sign. Take a look at the ingredients of these two “milk” chocolate bars side by side. The first is from Tesco, the second from Solkiki – Which one do you think tastes nicer?

 

Tesco Vegan Chocolate Ingredients

Solkiki Vegan Chocolate Ingredients

 

 

4. ORGANIC IS ESSENTIAL

Always look for organic chocolate. Not only does this help you to avoid ingesting harmful chemicals, it also helps to avoid the very worst practices involved in chocolate production. Non organic chocolate is almost always industrially produced and uses the highest amount of pesticide of any food. Certainly not a good idea to eat this!

 

One of the amazing things about chocolate is the difference in price between the best and worst bars available. A chemical filled bar of sugar is only a few pounds cheaper then a master crafted bar of bliss and joy. There is no other product in the world for which this is true! Remember to check the ingredients, you deserve much better then what the supermarket is offering you!

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