A Baker’s Guide To Chocolate

Information about the different types of chocolate used in baking.

What’s the distinction in between bittersweet chocolate and semisweet chocolate? Can I utilize Dutch cocoa in all my dishes calling for cocoa? Understanding the distinction in chocolate and how they are utilized is important to baking.   A basic tip is to be sure you are using the type of chocolate called for in the recipe.  In this guide, we’ll recognize the attributes of those chocolates utilized in baking.

Tips to understand the different types of chocolate used in baking.

Cocoa is the dry chocolate powder originated from chocolate liquor. It comes in 2 types: natural and Dutch procedure. Dutch processed cocoa is processed with an alkaline. It is somewhat darker, smoother, and more easily dissolved than natural cocoa. In numerous recipes, natural cocoa and Dutch cocoa are not interchangeable. Natural cocoa is somewhat acidic and will for that reason chemically respond with baking soda to create carbon dioxide bubbles and some leavening power. Dutch cocoa is somewhat alkaline, will not react with baking soda, and should rely on baking powder for leavening.

Bitter (unsweetened) baking chocolate is made from pure chocolate liquor. Unsweetened chocolate relies and has a bitter taste on sweeteners in the recipe to make it tasty.

Sweet Baking Chocolate

Sweet baking chocolate– bittersweet, semisweet chocolate– has sugar added. These items should contain 35 to 50% cocoa butter but may have as low as 15% chocolate alcohol. We prefer to utilize unsweetened chocolate in most of our baking because unsweetened chocolate has twice the chocolate alcohol.

Bittersweet and semisweet chocolate can be utilized interchangeably in recipes though there is a distinction in taste. Typically, bittersweet is a more costly chocolate and to lots of, a much better, richer-flavored chocolate.

Milk chocolate is made with ten percent chocolate liquor. It includes a minimum of twelve percent milk solids. Since it has such a low portion of chocolate alcohol, hardly ever is it melted and contributed to batter or dough.

White chocolate contains no chocolate liquor however is made with cocoa butter. Historically, the FDA has actually not controlled the manufacture of white chocolate so you require to read labels carefully. If the product was made with vegetable oil rather of cocoa butter, it will not perform the same as a product with cocoa butter.

Chocolate chips are made with chocolate alcohol with only minimal amounts of cocoa butter. Instead, they are made with grease and stabilizers to help them hold their shape. Without the cocoa butter, chocolate chips have a various taste and mouth feel. Chocolate chips will have a firmer set in puddings, pie fillings, and sauces than baking chocolate. Chocolate chips can be acquired in milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate.

Cocoa is the dry chocolate powder obtained from chocolate alcohol. Due to the fact that unsweetened chocolate has twice the chocolate alcohol, we prefer to use unsweetened chocolate in many of our baking.


  1. Alice F


    I made quite a few mistakes using the wrong chocolate. Great info!

  2. Jennie Allen


    Great info, thanks for this. Always looking for new baking ideas.


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