You can find chocolate all around the world in numerous forms, but do you know how many different types there are? If you’re a chocolate lover or like to explore new and exciting foods, you’re in luck.
Here, I dive into the details of 10 types of chocolate for eating and baking.
Naturally, milk and dark chocolate are everywhere, but have you heard of Ruby or Couverture chocolate? Perhaps not!
Take the time to explore some of the other types I include in this list the next time you want a sweet treat. You may be surprised at just how delectable and versatile this common candy is.
Types of Chocolate
Check out common chocolates that you can eat or bake with.
Milk chocolate is a favorite among many people, including myself.
It contains chocolate liquor, which has cocoa solids and cocoa butter, milk, and sugar to create a light brown, creamy, and smooth treat.
In addition, this type of chocolate will sometimes contain an emulsifier, like soy lecithin, to increase its smoothness.
Any product that claims its milk chocolate will have at least 10% chocolate liquor and 12% milk products.
Because of the dairy ingredients, it melts faster than other types of chocolate.
The smooth and sweet texture makes it a terrific option to eat alone or with nuts, dried fruit, or other candies.
Dark chocolate is another treat many individuals crave. It doesn’t contain additional dairy products, so it’s not as smooth as milk chocolate.
Instead, dark chocolate uses 50 to 90% cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and sugar. Some lower-quality products will include vegetable oils, butter fat, or colors and flavorings.
Dark chocolate does the trick when I want a treat that isn’t too sweet. Dark chocolate products that do not have additives, such as preservatives, milk by-products, or other sugars, can also be a healthy choice for a snack.
High cocoa levels provide antioxidants that can help lower blood pressure and even minimize your risk of heart disease!
White chocolate has always been my favorite when I want a sweet delicacy around the Easter holiday.
This type of chocolate remains white because it does not include cocoa solids or nibs.
Instead, it contains cocoa butter, milk solids, sugar, and vanilla flavoring. Some varieties will have vegetable oils, soy lecithin, or other additives.
White chocolate contains at least 20% cocoa butter and 14% milk solids with sugar. So, unfortunately, you should expect to pay more for a high-quality bar of white chocolate than other popular types.
This inflated price is due to the higher amount of cocoa butter necessary to make the product.
Since I don’t enjoy this treat often, I consider it worthwhile.
Ruby chocolate is a less common product that not everyone will see at the local candy store.
It has a pink hue to it, which comes from unique cocoa beans from Brazil, Ecuador, and the Ivory Coast.
Ruby chocolate contains 47% cocoa solids from special cocoa beans, milk solids, sugar, and citric acid, setting it apart from other types of chocolate.
However, these cocoa beans are not the same as those used in milk, dark, or white chocolate. These beans do not go through the entire fermentation process that other chocolate products use.
For the manufacturer to get ruby chocolate, they add citric acid to the fermentation process and stop when the cocoa bean has a deep red color.
Although some people say it tastes like berries, I think it may be a trick of the mind. From my experience, the citric acid does give it a tangy flavor, but I’m not sure it’s quite “berry.” I think the pink hue might just be tricking some taste buds!
Semisweet chocolate is a form of dark chocolate with a sweeter taste. I prefer this type of chocolate when I don’t want to use the soft, creamy texture of milk chocolate in my baking adventures.
It contains many of the same health benefits as dark chocolate but less sugar than other types, making it a terrific alternative when you are baking in large amounts.
Semisweet chocolate will typically contain between 35 and 65% cocoa solids and less than 50% sugar, and many products include vanilla flavoring.
This type of chocolate is not as common on candy store shelves and is a staple in the baking aisle at your local grocery store. I use semi-sweet chips in my chocolate chip cookies!
Bittersweet chocolate is another popular baking product that you can use in many of the same recipes as semisweet chocolate.
Bittersweet products include 70% cocoa solids, less sugar than other types, and often have vanilla flavoring. Many recipes that call for semisweet chocolate can use bittersweet varieties without issue.
I prefer bittersweet chocolate when I want a deep, intense chocolate flavor rather than a sweet dessert in some of my recipes.
The high cocoa content provides the rich, intense flavor I love for my favorite dishes.
Baking Chocolate (Unsweetened)
Naturally, baking chocolate is not meant for direct consumption.
You could if you wanted to, but I warn you: it’s unsweetened and can taste extremely bitter. The bitterness diminishes once combined with other ingredients.
One significant difference between baking chocolate and other types of chocolate is that it contains only 100% cocoa solids and butter.
There are no additional sugars, flavorings, or even emulsifiers. You won’t find a baking chocolate snack treat in the candy store!
It comes in bars, bricks, and chips in the baking aisle so you can melt it, grate it, or chop it up for your favorite recipe.
Every year, I use it in my Black Forest Cake recipe, which compliments the cherries perfectly.
Cocoa powder is a baking staple in my pantry. This product is essentially a dried version of cocoa beans fermented and ground down to powder after extracting all its cocoa butter.
You can find it in your grocery store’s baking section, and it is perfect for adding to drinks, cookies, cakes, ice cream, and other favorite dishes.
It’s important to note that not all cocoa powders are the same. There are different types of chocolate cocoa powder that range in color and bitterness.
This variance is due to the processing, either natural or Dutch-processed, which controls the overall acidity and color of the resulting product.
When I bake with cocoa powder, I reach for the darkest product to achieve a deep, intense flavor in my recipes.
Couverture chocolate may not be common in your store, but it should be. It is a high-quality chocolate product that contains more cocoa butter than other varieties.
This additional amount helps give the chocolate a brighter sheen and provides a characteristic snap when you break off a piece.
Couverture chocolate is lower in sugar but higher in cocoa butter, ideal for the fancy desserts and cakes that need a rich buttery flavor.
Two of my favorite brands, Lindt and Callebaut, offer this type of chocolate!
Candy Coating Chocolate
Candy coating chocolate is an easy-to-work-with substitute for expensive chocolate products.
They do not contain real cocoa butter, but instead have natural oils that make it easy to melt and remold for treats, cakes, and other desserts.
Candy coating chocolate does have cocoa powder, so it can still provide you with a tasty way to enjoy chocolate at a lower price when you need to melt or mold it into shapes.
Types of Chocolate
- Milk Chocolate
- Dark Chocolate
- White Chocolate
- Ruby Chocolate
- Semisweet Chocolate
- Bittersweet Chocolate
- Baking Chocolate (Unsweetened)
- Cocoa Powder
- Couverture Chocolate
- Candy Coating Chocolate
There are so many types of chocolate to try as a small treat or in your next favorite recipe. While some people prefer sweeter, creamier milk chocolate products, others enjoy the more bitter and distinct taste from dark chocolate.
Personally, I’m not too fussy when it comes to enjoying my chocolate. I’ll try every type, and some days I have a craving for one product over another. Leave a comment below and let me know which type of chocolate is your favorite!