Vegan Chocolate

Vegan Chocolate

It’s official! Vegan chocolate is now delicious and we have lots of it! Here’s a sneak preview…

Click HERE to see the full range!

Hadleigh Maid - Dark Chocolate Cappuccino Truffle Walnut Whirls, Twin Pack (90g)

Walnut Whips

Hadleigh Maid’s version of an old traditional British favourite with premium truffle filling offered as a vegan friendly product and also suitable for…

Clarana - Colourful Chocolate Beans (Vegan Chocolate Smarties alternative) (125g)


Vegan Smarties are a thing! Rejoice. Clarana have created a chocolatey core surrounded by a crisp, colourful shell. The chocolate beans can be used to…

Booja Booja Hazelnut Chocolate Truffles (104g)

Chocolate Boxes

A cocoa dusted chocolate truffle that balances a slight bitterness to the rich and crunchy 56% cocoa truffle centre. Packed with hazelnuts and flavour…

Moo Free - Everyday Bar - Fruit & Nut (80g)

Fruit & Nut

This large fruit & nut bar is made with Moo Free’s award winning, dairy free rice milk chocolate topped with delicious, juicy raisins and hazelnuts. The…

Go Max Go - Mahalo Bar (Bounty Alternative) (57g)

Bounty Alternative

If you crave a gently sweetened coconut candy bar topped with three whole dry roasted almonds and covered in a luscious chocolatey coating… hang loose…

NOMO - Vegan Dark Chocolate Bar (85g)

Dark Chocolate

NOMO dark chocolate is brought to us by Kinnerton Confectionery. This delicious chocolate delivers all the great taste while being free from Dairy…

Moo Free - Bunnycomb Mini Bar (20g)

Moo Free

These snack sized dairy free chocolate bars treats are extremely popular and taste amazing. To make them we have taken our award winning free from…

Galaxy - Vegan Caramel & Sea Salt Bar (100g)

Milk Chocolate

Indulge with the delicious combination of rich cocoa and crunchy caramel pieces blended with smooth and creamy hazelnut paste. Enjoy a moment of vegan…

Divine - Dark Chocolate Mint Thins (200g)


Chocolate squares with a soft mint filling, made with Divine’s award-winning dark chocolate

Ombar - Coco Mylk Raw Chocolate (70g)

Raw Chocolate

Delightfully creamy ‘mylk’ chocolate, made using Ecuadorian cacao and smooth, creamed coconut for a delicious melt in the mouth bar. This bar contains…

Hadleigh Maid - Artisan Chocolate Truffle Collection (100g)

Chocolate Truffles

Vegan-friendly premium selection box containing four different truffles: Raspberry Chocolate Almond nut butter, and Salted caramel All enveloped in…

iChoc - Organic White Vanilla (80g)

White Chocolate

With the finest spice and the smoothest rice milk chocolate, experience the lightness of being. No artificial flavourings, just 100% real bourbon…

Clarana - Colourful Chocolate Beans (Vegan Chocolate Smarties alternative) (125g)

Smarties Alternative

Vegan Smarties are a thing! Rejoice. Clarana have created a chocolatey core surrounded by a crisp, colourful shell. The chocolate beans can be used to…

The Raw Chocolate Co - Organic Cacao Butter Buttons (200g)

Cacao Buttons

Welcome to ingredients with soul – the Raw Chocolate Company scour the planet to find the best raw ingredients for you to get creative with. These vegan…

Vego - Mini Organic Whole Hazelnut Chocolate Bar (65g)

Chocolate Hazelnut

This mini Vego vegan chocolate bar is made from the highest quality ingredients including Italian hazelnut paste, hazelnut cocoa cream and whole…

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Have you tasted our delicious vegan sweets!

Vegan Chocolate: Unveiling the Best Dairy-Free Delights

Vegan chocolate is an indulgent treat that caters to the dietary preferences of vegans and those interested in plant-based eating.

The traditional chocolate-making process often incorporates dairy and other animal-derived ingredients. However, with the rise of veganism, there has been a significant shift towards creating chocolates that omit these components in favour of alternatives derived from plants.

These confections are designed to provide the same rich flavours and textures that chocolate enthusiasts have come to expect, without compromising on ethical standards or dietary restrictions.

The key to vegan chocolate lies in its ingredients; common non-dairy alternatives include cacao butter, nut milks, and various sweeteners that align with vegan principles.

It’s essential for consumers to understand what goes into their chocolate to ensure it aligns with their dietary choices.

Beyond just being animal-friendly, many vegan chocolates focus on sustainability and fair trade practices.

They come in a range of types and varieties, from dark to ‘milk’ styled bars, pralines, and even cooking chocolate.

Understanding the nuances of flavour, texture, and usage can enhance the chocolate experience while adhering to a vegan lifestyle.

Key Takeaways

  • Vegan chocolate provides a plant-based alternative to traditional chocolate, aligning with ethical and dietary choices.
  • Ingredients in vegan chocolate replace dairy with plant-derived options like nut milks and cacao butter.
  • Vegan chocolates come in various types.

Understanding Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate is gaining popularity as more individuals seek alternatives that exclude animal products. This section explores the composition and considerations of vegan chocolate, its rise in tandem with veganism, and how it contrasts with traditional chocolate.

Defining Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate is crafted without any animal-derived ingredients, particularly dairy. It is suitable for vegans who abstain from all animal products.

Instead of milk solids or butter traditionally found in chocolate, vegan varieties employ alternatives like almond milk, rice milk, or coconut oil to achieve that essential creaminess.

The Rise of Veganism and Its Impact on Chocolate

The continuing growth of veganism has significantly influenced the food industry, including chocolate production. As consumers become more environmentally conscious and kinder to animals, the demand for dairy-free chocolate options has surged.

Manufacturers are compelled to provide a greater variety of vegan chocolates to cater to this growing market segment, which prioritises sustainability and ethical consumption.

Differences Between Vegan and Traditional Chocolate

The primary distinction between vegan and traditional chocolate is the exclusion of dairy products in vegan options. Here is a quick comparison:

Vegan chocolates often focus on cocoa’s natural flavours, and they can provide a richer taste experience than their traditional counterparts for those who prefer less sweetness and more intensity in their chocolate.

Ingredients and Alternatives

In crafting vegan chocolate, chocolatiers replace dairy and other animal-derived ingredients with plant-based alternatives. Key components include various forms of cacao, dairy-free milks, and natural sweeteners to ensure a rich and satisfying taste.

Common Ingredients in Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate typically starts with cacao, which is the raw, unprocessed version of cocoa. Cacao may come in the form of:

  • Cacao beans: The seeds from which all chocolate is made.
  • Cacao butter: The fat extracted from the beans, providing a creamy texture without dairy.
  • Cacao powder: Ground cacao beans that offer the classic chocolate flavour.

Cacao products are prized for their rich flavour and antioxidant properties.

Dairy Alternatives Used in Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate utilises dairy-free milks to achieve creaminess. Popular choices include:

  • Almond milk: A light nutmilk with a subtle taste.
  • Soy milk: Known for its high protein content and smooth texture.
  • Coconut milk: Adds a tropical hint to the chocolate.
  • Oat milk: Offers a naturally sweet and mild flavour.
  • Rice milk: Provides a delicately sweet taste and is often hypoallergenic.

These alternatives are used to replace cow’s milk without compromising on the smooth and velvety texture typical to traditional chocolate.

Natural Sweeteners and Flavour Enhancers

To sweeten vegan chocolate, natural sweeteners are used. These may include:

  • Unrefined cane sugar: A less processed sweetener that retains some of the natural molasses.
  • Maple syrup: Imparts a distinct flavour while adding sweetness.
  • Agave nectar: A fructose-rich syrup with a low glycaemic index.

Moreover, flavour enhancers like vanilla extract and sea salt can be added to enhance the chocolate’s taste profile. Vanilla adds depth and warmth, while sea salt can elevate the sweetness and complexity of the flavours.

Health and Nutritional Considerations

When examining vegan chocolate, it is essential to understand its nutritional content and the potential health benefits it offers, particularly when it includes dark chocolate, which is integral to a plant-based approach to confectionery.

Nutritional Profile of Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate is made without the dairy products found in traditional chocolate, relying instead on alternatives like nut milks and cocoa butter to achieve a creamy consistency. Dark chocolate is often a primary ingredient, which naturally contains high levels of cacao solids and minimal sugar, making it a preferable option within a vegan diet.

  • Calories: Comparable to regular chocolate, with variations based on added ingredients.
  • Fat: Usually contains cocoa butter and occasionally other plant-based fats; generally less saturated fat due to the absence of dairy.
  • Sugar: Often lower in sugar, but this can vary with the brand and type of vegan chocolate.

Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Studies suggest that dark chocolate can be a beneficial part of a balanced diet when consumed in moderation. It is rich in flavonoids, a type of antioxidant.

  • Heart health: The flavonoids may help support heart health by lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow to the heart.
  • Blood sugar control: Dark chocolate’s lower glycemic index compared to milk chocolate could be beneficial for blood sugar management.

It’s important for consumers to check labels, as vegan chocolate can still contain high levels of fat and sugar, which can diminish these benefits.

Types and Varieties

The variety of vegan chocolate available caters to a wide range of tastes, providing credible alternatives to traditional dark, white, and milk chocolates as well as incorporating innovative flavours and textures.
Remember the yucky vegan chocolate of yesteryear? Well those days have long gone thankfully!

Dark, White, and Milk Chocolate Alternatives

Dark Chocolate: Vegan dark chocolate typically has a higher cocoa content, ranging from 70% to even 90%, and is appreciated for its rich, intense flavour. It is made using cacao beans, and commonly avoids ingredients such as milk, utilising plant-based emulsifiers like sunflower lecithin instead.

White Chocolate: Vegan white chocolate is crafted without the dairy products found in traditional white chocolate. Brands such as Pascha Organic provide options that are rich in cocoa butter but use alternatives like rice milk powder and almond milk to achieve the creamy texture white chocolate is known for.

Milk Chocolate Alternative: To mimic the smoothness and sweetness of milk chocolate, vegan versions often use rice milk, almond milk, or oat milk. These plant-based milk alternatives are blended with cocoa and sweeteners to deliver a familiar milky taste without any animal-derived ingredients.

Innovative Flavours and Textures

The vegan chocolate market is not limited to mimicking classic types; it’s continually innovating with unique flavours and textures.

For instance, chocolates infused with caramel and sea salt, or filled with caramel nougat, introduce a satisfying variety to the palate.

Combinations such as crumbled cookie pieces or mint, and options that feature quinoa for added crunch, demonstrate that vegan chocolate can also provide interesting textural contrasts.

Companies like Vego and Booja Booja are at the forefront of these developments, offering an array of vegan chocolates that excite both traditional and adventurous chocolate enthusiasts.

Production Process

The production of vegan chocolate adheres to a strict technique that begins with selecting high-quality cacao beans and ends with the crafting of chocolate bars. Throughout this process, ethical sourcing and sustainability play pivotal roles.

From Bean to Bar: How Vegan Chocolate Is Made

Selection of Cacao: The journey begins with the selection of ethically sourced cacao beans, emphasising quality and flavour profiles. Cacao beans are typically fermented and dried in their country of origin.

Roasting: Subsequently, these beans are roasted at precise temperatures to bring out their characteristic chocolate flavour.

Winnowing: The roasted beans are then cracked and winnowed, separating the nibs from the husks.

Grinding: The nibs are ground into a paste called cocoa liquor, which contains both cocoa solids and cocoa butter. For vegan chocolate, plant-based alternatives to dairy, such as rice, almond, or oat milk, may be added at this stage.

Conching: This ground liquor is conched; a process of continuous mixing and grinding that refines the chocolate’s texture and flavour.

Tempering: After achieving the desired flavour profile, the chocolate is tempered by being carefully warmed and cooled to ensure a glossy finish and a crisp snap.

Moulding: Finally, the tempered chocolate is poured into moulds, where it solidifies into bars.

Ethical Sourcing and Sustainability in Chocolate Production

Fair Trade Practices: Ethical sourcing in chocolate production ensures that cacao farmers receive fair compensation. It encompasses fair trade practices, avoidance of child labour, and assurance of worker’s rights.

Sustainable Agriculture: Sustainability focuses on environmentally friendly practices, such as avoiding harmful pesticides and promoting biodiversity.

When producing organic chocolate, strict regulations govern the use of chemicals and farming methods, adhering to organic certification standards to ensure the final product is genuinely organic.

Brands and Market Offerings

The vegan chocolate market has diversified significantly, offering numerous brands that cater to different preferences and tastes. Consumers can now enjoy a wide spectrum of products ranging from popular mass-market options to exclusive gourmet selections.

Popular Vegan Chocolate Brands

MOO FREE is well known for providing a variety of vegan chocolates that don’t compromise on taste.

Vego also stands out in the vegan chocolate space with their signature hazelnut chocolate bars, which have earned a reputation for their rich and indulgent flavour.

Specialty and Gourmet Options

Gourmet vegan chocolate providers, such as Booja-Booja is an artisanal brand that is synonymous with luxury. Their chocolates are handmade and organic, often presented in beautifully decorated boxes, making them ideal gifts for those with a discerning palate.

For those seeking something contemporary, LoveRaw provide an innovative takes on classic chocolate bar formats with their own unique twists.

LoveRaw’s vegan chocolate buttercups are a particular highlight, while Butterm!lk delivers on taste with their assortment of ethical, accessible, and dairy-free treats.

Consumer Guidance

Choosing the right vegan chocolate can enhance your chocolate craving, ensuring satisfaction for those seeking dairy-free alternatives. It is important to look for both quality and ethical considerations.

How to Choose High-Quality Vegan Chocolate

When selecting high-quality vegan chocolate, consumers should consider the cocoa content. Typically, a higher percentage of cocoa reflects a richer flavour and darker chocolate.

Fans of dark chocolate bars might prefer options with cocoa contents that range from 70% to 85% for a bold taste.

Texture matters as well; smoothness and a clean snap when broken can indicate good tempering and quality.

Culinary Uses

Vegan chocolate has a versatile range of applications in the kitchen, from cooking and baking to crafting exquisite confectioneries.

Its use ensures that those following a vegan diet can still enjoy rich chocolate flavours without the inclusion of animal products, providing a cruelty-free alternative that can be adapted into countless recipes.

Cooking and Baking with Vegan Chocolate

When one considers vegan chocolate bars, their applications in cooking and baking are remarkably flexible.

Chefs might melt chocolate to incorporate into vegan dessert sauces, glazes, or even blend it into smoothies for a rich, chocolatey infusion.

Baking sees a significant use of vegan chocolate, especially in recipes like brownies, vegan chocolate chip cookies, or cakes that are designed to be indistinguishably delectable from their non-vegan counterparts.

  • Brownies: Mix melted vegan chocolate into the batter for a gooey texture.
  • Cakes: Use as a key ingredient in sponges or for icing to add indulgence.

Vegan Chocolate in Confectionery

The crafting of confectionery with vegan chocolate allows for the creation of a diverse array of sweets, such as truffles, pralines, or chocolate-covered fruits.

Artisans typically choose high-quality vegan chocolate to achieve the desired taste and texture, producing luxury hampers filled with an assortment of vegan-friendly treats.

  • Truffles: Silky ganache centres coated in vegan chocolate.
  • Hampers: Curated selections of assorted vegan chocolates.

Creative Recipes

In this section, they will explore innovative ways to indulge in the delight of vegan chocolate, highlighting homemade concoctions as well as decadent desserts and treats.

Homemade Vegan Chocolate Recipes

Creating vegan chocolate at home allows for customisation and experimentation with unique flavours.

To make a basic vegan chocolate, one simply melts cocoa butter and combines it with cocoa powder and a sweetener such as maple syrup.

  • Salty Pretzel: Stir in crushed pretzel pieces before setting to add a crunchy, salty dimension.
  • Crunchy Orange: Infuse with orange zest and incorporate rice crisps for a citrusy bite with a satisfying crunch.

Desserts and Treats Featuring Vegan Chocolate

Vegan chocolate effortlessly enhances any dessert, lifting the dish to a new level of indulgence.

They can find it front and centre in truffle boxes, where it’s moulded into rich, velvety confections, perhaps with a sprinkle of sea salt or a hint of mint.

  • Cupcakes: They can top fluffy cupcakes with a swirl of vegan chocolate frosting and a sprinkling of orange zest for an elegant finish.
  • Tart: For a grander dessert, fill a vegan tart shell with silken chocolate ganache made from high-quality vegan chocolate, and garnish with candied orange peel to impress any chocolate connoisseur.

Allergies and Dietary Restrictions

When selecting vegan chocolate, it’s crucial to consider allergies and dietary restrictions.

One must ensure that chocolates are truly free from allergens and cater to other dietary needs such as gluten intolerance.

Ensuring Your Vegan Chocolate Is Allergen-Free

For individuals with allergies, particularly to dairy, it is imperative to verify that the vegan chocolate is truly dairy-free.

While vegan chocolate inherently omits dairy ingredients, there is a potential for cross-contamination during manufacturing.

Brands may label their products with a “may contain milk” warning if they are produced in a facility that handles dairy, which is vital information for those with severe allergies.

Vegan chocolate options often display allergen warnings and it’s important to read these carefully to avoid accidental exposure.

Gluten-Free and Other Dietary Considerations

Many consumers also seek gluten-free options due to celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.

Though not all vegan chocolate is gluten-free, as some may contain barley malt or wheat products, although many varieties are made without these ingredients.

It is recommended to look for gluten-free labelling for assurance.

Besides gluten, individuals may need to avoid other allergens like nuts, soya, or eggs.

It is critical to scrutinise ingredients and labels to confirm that the chocolate meets your specific dietary needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes a chocolate bar qualify as vegan?

A chocolate bar is considered vegan if it contains no animal products, including dairy & refined sugar, which is commonly found in traditional chocolate.

Instead, they utilise ingredients like cocoa butter and natural sweeteners to achieve a similar taste and texture.

Where can one find a selection of vegan chocolates in the UK?

One can find a diverse selection of vegan chocolates at Vegan Supermarket UK.

Where can you buy vegan Easter Eggs?

You can buy vegan Easter Eggs at Vegan Supermarket UK

Are there any festive vegan chocolate varieties available during Christmas?

During Christmas, a variety of festive vegan chocolates become available. These include seasonal flavours and novelty shapes.