Chocolate is one of life’s many pleasures and a treat that you shouldn’t have to go without because of any dietary restrictions. If you’re vegan, lactose intolerant or simply cutting milk out of your diet, our range of delicious dairy-free chocolate bars and spreads is the perfect place to get your fix. So what else can you expect?
Whether you’re baking banana bread or tasty vegan cookies, our milk-free chocolate is the perfect accompaniment to your baking supplies as well as your treats stash – especially with dairy-free dark chocolate drops and buttons. Enjoy them as part of a balanced diet without the guilt. Likewise, if you’re new to dairy-free chocolate, allow us to explain how it’s made and what to look out for.
Is a question we often receive from our customers. After all, we’re used to 99% of the chocolate on our shelves being made with milk. In fact, it’s only more recently that dairy-free chocolate products have entered the mainstream market on the back of consumer preferences. Let’s take a look at the various types of dairy-free choc.
Believe it or not, most of the dark chocolate you see is naturally free from milk. Dark chocolate should only contain two ingredients — cacao beans and sugar. Of course, volumes of each ingredient will vary between brands, and you’ll often find a percentage rating. In terms of dark chocolate, it’s usually the case that the higher the percentage of cacao, the more bitter the taste, but that’s a matter of preference.
As for how it’s made, cacao comes from the Theobroma cacao tree, also known as the cacao tree or cocoa tree. We often speak about cacao in terms of the tree’s raw beans and use the word cocoa after those same cacao beans have been through a fermentation and drying process (which is how you make chocolate). As both terms are used interchangeably, you won’t have to worry too much about the difference.
Another tip is to not let the words cocoa butter confuse you. This edible fat is extracted from cacao/cocoa beans and often added to chocolate to give a creamier flavour. You’ll also recognise cocoa butter as an ingredient in a moisturising cream. Unlike its name suggests, cocoa butter doesn’t contain any butter or dairy products.
Not all dairy-free chocolate is dark chocolate.In recent years, eco-conscious and organic brands have also been making dairy-free milk chocolate variations. After all, not everyone likes their chocolate to taste bitter. How do they do it? The answer is often by using milk alternatives, like oat milk, soya or various nut milk drinks. That way you can enjoy a creamy, milkier tasting chocolate without any dairy.
The great thing about dairy-free chocolate is you’re also not limited, with mint and orange-flavoured chocolate across our range. Some of the brands we stock that specialise in dairy-free chocolate include:
Holland & Barrett – our own-label selections
This question relates to the percentage of cacao or cocoa in chocolate. The answer is it depends on your preferences. Often the higher the percentage of cacao, the lower the percentage of sugar and the more bitter the chocolate tastes.
You’ll often hear chocolate connoisseurs recommending chocolate that’s 70% cacao and above. Again, you can simply use this as a guide to determine how bitter or how creamy each bar of dairy free chocolate is.
Now you’ve got all the information, help yourself to a delicious treat to enjoy as part of a balanced diet from our Holland & Barrett chocolate shop.