By GMB Nutritionist, Melissa Fine
We all know now that chocolate can be good for you if you choose it wisely.
So for a choccie hit that you can feel good about, here are our go-to chocolate brands. Minimally processed with clean ingredients, you’ll find these on the shelves at the supermarket or health food store…you’re welcome ☺
Peak Chocolate Bar
Why we love it: It’s a functional chocolate, providing nutrients that help you give it your all both physically and mentally during your sweat sesh – be it a morning run, weekend hike, F45 or HIIT class.
If you need a shot of coffee for a pre-workout kick, you’ll be glad to know that there’s the equivalent amount of caffeine to this in a Peak Chocolate bar.
And with a cacao content of 80%, there’s little room left for sugar in one of these babies. We also love the portion-controlled, individually wrapped serves…so you can pop a Peak Bar in your pocket!
Green & Blacks Organic Dark 70% and 85%
Milk chocolate lovers, this stuff might just convert you to the dark side! Made with fairtrade cocoa beans, you won’t believe that either of these varieties have such a high cocoa percentage. This is largely thanks to Madagascan vanilla, which provides a smooth texture and sweet flavour, sans the need for lots of sugar.
Paired with rich nutty notes, hints of freshly roasted coffee and a touch of bitter cherry, the flavour profile of these bars is complex and satisfying, really lingering in your mouth. Of all the 85% dark chocolate brands we’ve tried, Green & Black’s Organic 85% is definitely the best option for anyone trying to wean themselves off milk chocolate, but who isn’t used to the bitterness of your typical super dark choc.
A Melbourne-born brand, there’s something for everyone in this organic, vegan chocolate range. Anyone who’s tried it will tell you there’s nothing quite like the Pana chocolate experience: from carefully opening the hand-packaged, intricately carved bar, to popping a piece of the fudgey chocolate in your mouth, letting it slowly melt on your tongue.
You can’t go wrong with any of the flavours, but our picks are any of those sweetened with coconut nectar. Current faves: the 70% Cacao Fig & Wild Orange, and new to the range - 50% Cacao Strawberry & Pistachio.
One of the first raw chocolate brands to hit the Aussie market, props to Loving Earth for being at the forefront of the clean chocolate movement! Still going strong today and with countless choccie varieties, it’s hard to settle on a favourite but the individually sold heart-shaped ‘Luvju’ range is our pick.
Do yourself a favour and try the Mint Luvju; with literally three ingredients (cacao nibs, coconut nectar and peppermint essential oil!), Loving Earth proves that with chocolate, simple is often best. Share a Luvju with a friend, or perhaps just eat it with yourself and a cup of tea ;)
Lindt 85% and 90% Dark
One of the more reasonably priced quality dark chocolates on the market (often on sale for half price at the supermarket), and Lindt’s 85% variety has just 2.2g of sugar per 20g serve…that’s almost negligible, about half a teaspoon! We like this one because the intense flavour is super satisfying and hard to go overboard with…very unlikely you’ll eat the whole block!
If you find the earthy 85% a little too robust, start with the smoother, fruiter 70% variety – you may find you can train your tastebuds and build your way up to the 85%. We like the
Alter Eco 70% and 85% Cocoa
Alter Eco prides itself on chocolate that’s minimally processed using sustainable, fairtrade practices, with programs to support community development.
The flavours in the 70% range are pretty epic too, especially the Dark Salted Brown Butter bar…say what?! For the lowest sugar option in the range, go with the 85% Cocoa Dark Blackout block.
BSKT Vegan Chocolate Bars
Do yourself a favour and buy yourself a BSKT Vegan Chocolate Bar. Make a cup of tea. Dip a square of BSKT chocolate in tea. Eat and repeat!
Handcrafted in the Gold Coast (check out the BSKT wholefood café next time you’re there!), the combo of West African cocoa and cocoa butter, organic coconut sugar and natural vanilla in BSKT’s 70% cocoa variety creates creaminess and the perfect ratio of bittersweet. The other two flavours are just as awesome: Coconut Chip, and Maca Espresso! #yassplease
For anyone looking for a no added sugar chocolate, Pumpy Jackson is for you. Every flavour in the range is sweetened with monk fruit, an East Asian fruit that tastes 300 times sweeter than sugar…and which doesn’t leave that chemically artificial sweetener aftertaste that you get in commercial diet chocolates.
With only 4.1g of sugar per 100g, one serve gives you less than a gram of sugar, making it a diabetic-friendly option. Vegan too, but you wouldn’t know it thanks to creamy ingredients like cocoa butter, coconut and almond milk. Pumpy Jackson comes in four flavours…we’ll take the Rocky Pink Salt, please.
The Chocolate Yogi
While more commercial vegan chocolate brands tend to rely on refined sugar as the main ingredient, The Chocolate Yogi is all about getting artisanal, wholefood chocolate into you! With an impressive list of stoneground ingredients (think cacao, coconut sugar, coconut and coconut flour), this is no ordinary chocolate.
If you’re missing milk chocolate, you’ll love The Chocolate Yogi; with plant-based ingredients providing a smooth, creamy texture, and flavours like Frothy Toffee Whyte and Happy Thoughts Vegan Mylk, you’d swear you were eating milk choccie!
This baby featured in one of the very first GoodnessMe Box’s! The brand launched in Melbourne back in 2003, and we’re so glad to see so many Koko Black stores and stockists popping up around Australia.
We can’t resist their delicately packaged, gift-worthy chocolate bars, with our picks being the pure Dominican Republic 100%. For something slightly less hardcore, try the 80% Cocoa Nib…the perfect ratio of creaminess:crunch!
Phew! That’s our list. Any others that you’d add? Please share the chocolate love!!