Home/What are the Different Types of Chocolate?
Home/What are the Different Types of Chocolate?

What are the Different Types of Chocolate?

Milk Chocolate

The timeless and classic milk chocolate combines chocolate liquor with sugar and milk. Some add soy lecithin as an emulsifier to make the texture smoother. Milk chocolate requirements are stated as at least 10% chocolate liquor and 12% milk. There is no parameter for sugar content, which is why some milk chocolate is much sweeter than others. Every chocolate maker gets to decide for themselves.

Whether in bar form or mixed with other ingredients, milk chocolate is the most common form of chocolate found in shops. The flavour profile includes caramelised sugar notes with a light vanilla aftertaste, making it great for just plain old eating by itself.

White Chocolate

Despite the libel and slander accusing it of not being chocolate white chocolate does, in fact, meet the official definition of chocolate. That’s because it contains a cacao plant byproduct: cocoa butter.

You make white chocolate by mixing cocoa butter with sugar, milk, vanilla, and lecithin. Lecithin is an emulsifier that helps all the ingredients blend better for a smoother texture. White chocolate must contain at least 20% cocoa butter, 14% milk, 59% sugar and no more than 3.5% fat.

The flavour profile of white chocolate is very sweet, with some bold notes of sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. There is very little classic chocolate taste, as it contains no actual chocolate liquor. However, the cocoa butter base gives it a rich, creamy texture that melts on your tongue. The high sugar content and smooth texture make it a popular choice for confectionary decorations. Plus, it’s white, so with a little bit of food colouring and some imagination, you can turn white chocolate into almost anything.

The reason some accuse white chocolate of not being chocolate comes from the fact that cocoa butter is, on the whole, costly. Thanks to its extensive use in the cosmetics industry, there’s always a high demand for it. To get around this, some companies will either dilute or entirely replace cocoa butter with vegetable fats or other oils. These imposters do not meet the official standards for white chocolate – or any chocolate, for that matter.

Dark Chocolate

With plenty of research to support a wide range of health benefits, dark chocolate has risen in popularity in the last decade. This more-bitter version of chocolate contains no dairy products whatsoever and is made entirely from chocolate liquor and sugar. Most dark chocolate contains around 50% chocolate liquor. When you’re looking at chocolate bars in the shops and see percentages advertised on the front, they refer to the chocolate liquor content. The higher the percentage, the more actual chocolate is in the bar. This also leads to higher levels of bitterness. Sugar content is around 25%.

No matter the percentages, dark chocolate is noticeably more bitter than its sweeter relatives. Dark chocolate is also more robust than white or milk chocolate, and really gives a satisfying snap when you break a bar in half.

Dark chocolate offers an intense chocolate flavour that is sometimes accompanied by earthier tones and a slight vanilla aftertaste. In the baking world, dark chocolate is best when you want a deep, rich chocolate flavour. Dark chocolate is sometimes referred to as plain chocolate. It has an average shelf life of 20 months.

Ruby Chocolate

Back in 2017, a Belgian chocolate maker named Barry Callebaut officially introduced ruby chocolate to the world. While it may look like white chocolate with some food colouring, ruby chocolate is, in fact, a new kind of chocolate altogether. It derives its name from the unique ruby cocoa bean variety, but the specifics of what makes a cocoa bean qualify as a ruby cocoa bean are unknown. Callebaut owns the patent for ruby chocolate and its production process is a secret.

What we do know about ruby chocolate is that it does have a pinkish colour. Since what makes ruby chocolate special is the actual ruby cocoa beans, it stands to reason that ruby chocolate can technically be made into ruby white chocolate, ruby milk chocolate, and ruby dark chocolate.

However, as it currently stands, there hasn’t been a wide range of ruby chocolate varieties on the market. Officially, ruby chocolate must contain no less than 1.5% non-fat cacao solids and no less than 20% cacao fat. There are also restrictions regarding additives such as antioxidants, spices, colouring, and natural and artificial flavours.

As far as flavour, most reports agree that ruby chocolate tastes a bit like white chocolate flavoured with raspberries. Often described as both sweet and sour, it’s significantly more acidic than other chocolates.