Tips for Purchasing Vegan Chocolate
When cold winter months set in, a cup of hot vegan chocolate does the magic of warming you up. If you are a vegan and crave for a cup of hot chocolate, you can purchase pre-made options at the store. The best part of this is that you can also learn to make your own vegan hot chocolate right at home.
What to Look for When Purchasing Your Vegan Chocolate
Preparing hot vegan chocolate is not just about replacing milk with a dairy-free alternative. Remember that most hot chocolates on the shelves contain dry milk, milk proteins, and whey. You have to be careful with mixes that are cross-contaminated with milk products.
Vegan chocolate with minimal ingredients like those with low sugar content are healthy. They also allow you to manage additional ingredients you want to add, such as coconut milk or vegan marshmallows.
Choosing Your Vegan Chocolate
High-quality vegan chocolate should contain cacao butter without additional fats or oils. You should select from high-end chocolate brands which have taken further steps to ensure no cross-contamination with dairy products. Clear your doubts by asking the manufacturer if their vegan brand is free of traces of dairy. If they are unsure, stay safe by avoiding their products.
There are pure vegan brands that are genuine. In most cases, you will find a V symbol on the packet.
Steer Clear of Butter Oil
Cacao butter is a solid fat obtained from pressed cocoa beans. It is called theobroma oil, and it is not bitter. Its chocolate aroma is quite amazing.
White chocolate comes from this cacao butter, and it is often golden white color.
The melting point of chocolate is almost the same temperature as the human body. This gives it a soft and sticky texture when you eat it. The same goes for vegan chocolate, which contains cacao butter with the same melting point and mouth texture.
Since cacao butter is expensive, manufacturers will tend to cut costs by replacing it with cheap and inferior oils such as butter and palm oil.
Butter oil is a dairy product. And palm oil cannot be considered vegan if it is not sustainable. Always check the labels to avoid getting the wrong products.
Beware of Vegan Chocolate Contaminated With Milk
Large chocolate manufacturers can easily contaminate vegan chocolate with milk. They often do not separate their lines when manufacturing both dairy and non-dairy products. In the end, there will be traces of milk in their vegan chocolate ingredients.
Nowadays, there are strict rules about labeling because many people have allergies. When you are looking for vegan chocolate, be keen for labels that say ‘may contain traces of dairy.' If the packet is labeled vegetarian, it may not be vegan chocolate.
How to Know If It Is Pure Vegan Chocolate
When looking for vegan chocolate, make sure it’s organic with no added vanilla or lecithin. It should just be crushed cocoa beans with a minimal amount of organic sugar.
The vegan chocolate you are purchasing should come from environmentally sustainable farms. It should also be ethically traded.
Recognizable brands are not a guarantee of quality. You can also find unique and fresh vegan chocolate with few preservatives from small chocolate manufactures. Always beware of labels that stress the word chocolate on their labeling with cheap price points. They may not be using real chocolate.
It’s easy to visually inspect chocolate for quality. Chocolate with white chalky substances on the surface indicates that it was passed through extreme temperatures. This means the cocoa butter is not evenly distributed, and it’s not safe to consume.
Always take precautions to check the labeling of your vegan chocolate packets. Ask questions or verifications if you have to. This will ensure that you have the right products that will give you the vegan chocolate taste you are looking for.