Our Favourite Plant-based Dark Chocolate
by Emily Neill
Most dark chocolate is vegan-friendly and we’ve put together a list of our favourite brands to help you find your bar of choice.
Is dark chocolate vegan?
Chocolate is made from cocoa beans (the dried and fermented seeds of the cacao tree). Dark chocolate is simply made by mixing these beans with cocoa butter and/or chocolate liquor instead of dairy products, making it 100% suitable for vegans! A few brands include whey, butter or milk in recipes, so it’s always worth double checking the ingredients.
If you love rich, dark chocolate you’ll love all of the chocolate bars in this list below. As if we needed another reason to love chocolate, did you know that dark chocolate is one of the best sources of antioxidants on the planet? Studies have in fact linked it with improved health and reduced risk of heart disease. So there’s your justification for a daily dose of dark chocolate.
Now without further ado here are some of the best vegan dark chocolate bars.
Doisy & Dam
Aside from being completely delicious, all Doisy & Dam chocolate is palm oil free and vegan society certified. There’s loads of 100% vegan flavours to choose from: Crunchy Almond Butter, Maple, Toasted Rice with Pink Salt, Goji with Orange, Maca Vanilla with Cacao Nibs and Coconut with Lucuma...Why not try all five? You can buy in store or online from Holland & Barrett, Boots, Sainsburys and Amazon.
Tony brings us two delicious vegan dark chocolate bars, both of which are rectangular pieces of heaven. If you’re after pure and simple dark chocolate, the 70% cocoa bar is perfect for you; or if you’re a sucker for that genius savoury and sweet combination that a lot of brands have adopted, then the Dark Almond Sea Salt Bar is delectable. Get yours in store or online from Amazon, Waitrose, Sainsburys and Budgens.
Green & Black’s
You can’t go wrong with Green & Black’s dark chocolate bars. They’re all delicious, completely organic and plenty of their bars are dairy-free and vegan-friendly too, and one of which is award winning!
Their ‘Velvet Edition’ range isn’t just delicious, but it’s also award winning; G&B won an award at Peta Vegan Food 2018 for their Roasted Almond Bar. Also leading in the plant-based dark chocolate space, there’s Sea Salt, Salted Caramel, Raspberry With Hazelnut, Mint and Orange With Almond. Not forgetting their organic bars – Maya Gold, the 70% and 85% cocoa, Burnt toffee, Ginger, Mint, Hazelnut with currant - which are also suitable for vegans. Struggling to decide which to go for like us? Get yourself a selection! TIP: if you’re looking for chocolate to cook with, we recommend G&B’s Cook’s chocolate bar.
Hotel Chocolat’s vegan chocolate has all the power of cocoa with no added milk. Hotel Chocolat chocolatiers are beautifully adventurous when it comes to the visual form of their chocolate (as we saw while exploring their vegan easter eggs). As well as the 75%, 84% and 100% cocoa bars, there are dark chocolate batons, chocolate drops and truffles. Feast your eyes on the full vegan range here. HINT: If you’re looking for a birthday gift for a fellow chocolate lover, the dark chocolate birthday slab could be perfect. If you don’t eat it yourself first...
The majority of Divine’s dark chocolate products are suitable for vegans. Enjoy 70% or 85% for a classic dark chocolate fix; Mint or Ginger with orange for additional zesty flavour or – if you’re feeling fruity – Quinoa with blueberry and Raspberry as well as many others! View the full vegan range here or you could get one of their vegan tasting hampers. Like G&B, Divine also has a dark chocolate bar specially for baking. Kudos to Divine for covering all bases.
The beautifully bright packaging of Love Cocoa chocolate bars is enough to make you smile before you’ve even tasted the chocolate. And the best news? Every one of their dark chocolate bars is vegan-friendly. Shop the collection here or purchase from Amazon.
Chocolate and love
Also with beautiful packaging that makes them gorgeous as gifts, Chocolate and love was literally born out of a love story, specifically the one between its two founders (a chocolate-craving Scotsman and a foodie Dane). Why not share the love and treat a vegan friend to their Rich dark chocolate tin or Pomegranate gift box? HINT: Valentines Day 2021 pending...
There must be something about love and chocolate because this brand was built out of a romance too! Founders Helen and Simon fell in love as lawyers and were inspired to create Montezuma’s while camping on a cocoa plantation together in South America. All of their 100% cocoa bars (the ‘Absolute Black’ collection) and their 70%+ cocoa bars are suitable for vegans. We love the concept behind their Plant power gift box as well, and for an even bigger vegan gift set, the Vegan bundle has lots of chocolate plant-based goodness to sample. Did we mention that their packaging is completely recyclable? Yet another reason to eat their chocolate.
Last, but by no means least, we had to include Ombar in our list because they have such an extensive range of delicious vegan chocolate bars. All of their bars are organic, vegan, fairtrade, gluten free, contain zero refined sugar and come in a range of flavours (we almost ran out of breath there). If you’re after chocolate that’s good for both you and the planet, give Ombar a try. And look out for it in Planet Organic, Wholefoods, Waitrose, As Nature Intended, and Revital or buy it online.
If you’re not looking for a whole bar but you want to get your hands on some dark chocolate pronto, Bournville Giant Buttons are a great shout - they’re stocked in lots of local shops. We couldn’t have been happier when they decided to branch out from their famous bars (which are great for baking) to expand fully into the plant-based market with these melt-on-your-tongue buttons. Desk snacks sorted.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this quick intro into some of our favourite dark chocolate brands. If you’re interested, you can find out more about the story behind allplants here.
by Emily Neill
Emily is our Content and Community Assistant by day, and qualified PT by… later that day. She couldn’t live without exercise (makes sense) so can usually be spotted in her favourite spin class, with our Three Mushroom Risotto for afters.