Chocolate Baking Essentials
This curated Chocolate Baking Essentials collection highlights a trio of cacao-derived ingredients for baking: three surprisingly different textures and flavors from crunchy roasted cocoa nibs, to sweet cacao fruit jam, to smooth finished 70% single-origin chocolate. We’ve included our “Maybe The Very Best Chocolate Chip Cookie” recipe to get you started, and we encourage you to dive deep into your pantry to bake up your own chocolate adventure.
Making Chocolate: from Bean to Bar to S’more: our 366-page hardcover book includes everything we've learned about making chocolate since the day we first cracked open a cocoa bean. It’s a complete guide to making chocolate from scratch at home, signed by all the authors. Learn the simplest kitchen hacks, like winnowing with a hairdryer, as well as the complex science and mechanics behind making and tasting chocolate. In Making Chocolate we also share recipes that include single-origin, two-ingredient chocolate—such as our European Drinking Chocolate, Chocolate Shortbread, and Red Velvet Beet Cake—to get you started.
Weighing in at 3.5 grams each, we modeled these “chocolate facets” after the hand-piped chips our kitchen team makes for our enormous cookies, famous in our cafés. Our 70% single-origin chips are fully tempered with a snappy, smooth, shiny finish—perfect for chocolate dipping, confections, and baking.
Costa Esmeraldas, Ecuador 70% 2018 Chef’s Chips (500 grams): In this 2018 harvest of Costa Esmeraldas, we taste notes of chocolate buttercream frosting and banana—perfect for baking. These chocolate facets are the starting point for our kitchen’s “Maybe The Very Best Chocolate Chip Cookies” and “Dandelion Chocolate Scones”. Each bag contains enough large chips to make two batches of Dandelion Chocolate’s own “Maybe The Very Best Chocolate Chip Cookies,” with a handful left over for nibbling.
Chef's Ground Chocolate is made of nothing but cocoa beans and organic cane sugar ground into a coarse powder, perfect for fast and easy melting. This is what our pastry kitchen prefers for hot chocolate, cakes, pies, and creams that call for melted chocolate.
Camino Verde, Ecuador, 70% 2019 Chef’s Ground Chocolate (500 grams): In this Camino Verde 70% Chef's Chocolate we taste notes of brown sugar, malt, and walnut. We recommend trying this in our recipe for Nibbuns found on our blog and in our book Making Chocolate: from Bean to Bar to S’more.
The Cocoa Nibs
Cocoa nibs are fermented, dried, and roasted cocoa beans, broken into small pieces after the shell is removed. The holy grail of a bean-to-bar pastry kitchen, they are the purest, most direct expression of a cocoa bean’s flavor in all its delicious complexity. Nibs are a great flavor catalyst—they can be punchy and acidic like ripe strawberries, toasty and nutty like roasted almonds, or creamy and sweet like peach ice cream. Enjoy them covered in chocolate or simply roasted as a unique addition to any dish.
Dandelion Chocolate, Costa Esmeraldas 2017 Harvest Cocoa Nibs (350 grams): We recommend using these nibs like nuts—in cookies, salads, bread, confections, you name it—though they are so much more dynamic than that. They can be a straight substitution for various nuts or they can accentuate the “nuttiness” of real nuts when paired, especially with hazelnuts and almonds. They also impart the flavor of chocolate without adding sweetness. They are excellent as infusions with cream or liquors.
Feve Artisan Chocolatier, Chocolate-Covered Cocoa Nibs (50 g): We’ve partnered with Feve to layer these Hacienda Azul, Costa Rica nibs in our Camino Verde, Ecuador chocolate; together they’re crunchy with nutty and fruity flavors -- the perfect garnish on (or addition to) cakes, cookies, and ice cream. Feve dedicates a portion of the profits to microloans that improve the lives of cacao producers.
The Cacao Fruit
welovejam, Cacao Fruit Jam (9 ounces): Eric Haeberli of welovejam makes these jams using just two ingredients: sugar and cacao fruit from San Pedro Sula, Honduras (the same partners who provide the cocoa beans for our Wampu, Honduras single-origin chocolate). The tropical flavors of the cacao fruit make a tangy, refreshing jam (which surprisingly doesn’t taste at all like chocolate) with notes of lychee, crisp apple, and dry champagne. We’ve used welovejam’s cacao fruit jam in jelly rolls, truffles, pâte de fruit, and smeared on scones.
Costa Esmeraldas, Ecuador 70% 2018 Chef’s Chips and Camino Verde, Costa Rica, 70% 2018 Chef’s Ground Chocolate: cocoa beans, organic cane sugar.
All of our single-origin chocolate is made with just cocoa beans and sugar; no added cocoa butter, lecithin, or vanilla. Our chocolate is free of soy, dairy, eggs, and wheat, and it is made in a factory that does not process nuts.
Dandelion Chocolate, Costa Esmeraldas Cocoa Nibs: cocoa beans. Made in an allergen-free facility.
Feve Artisan Chocolatier, Chocolate-Covered Cocoa Nibs: 70% Dandelion Chocolate (Cocoa beans from Camino Verde, Ecuador, organic cane sugar), cocoa nibs from Hacienda Azul, Costa Rica. Made in a facility that processes peanuts, dairy, tree nuts, wheat, and soy.
welovejam, Cacao Fruit Jam: cacao pulp, cane sugar. Made in an allergy-free facility.