The best ways to enjoy 100% chocolate

18 Nov 2021

Chocolate Knowledge Dark Chocolate

Enjoy the deep, layered notes of chocolate with 100% cacao – here’s how

What can you do when 85% chocolate doesn’t quite scratch that itch for the dark side? Go 100%, of course. 100% chocolate carries a depth of flavour like no other, making it a sensationally satisfying option for when you need to curb that cacao craving.

The complex, multi-layered notes of our cacao beans, the velvety smoothness of cacao butter, the intense flavours of our darkest chocolate yet… And to top it off — absolutely no added sugar. 100% chocolate is the purest chocolate experience nature has to offer. If you’re craving something more intense and don’t know where to start, we’ll run you through the basics. Soon you’ll know exactly what to do if you want to dip your toes into the indulgent world of this deep, dark chocolate.

100% dark chocolate with raspberries

What is 100% chocolate?

So, where exactly does the “100%” come from? Well, cacao percentage is exactly what it says on the tin — what percentage of a chocolate bar is made of cacao. This refers to both the rich cacao beans and the smooth cacao butter, which is where milk chocolate gets its creamy deliciousness. So when it comes to 100% chocolate, that means every last bit of each bar is crafted from pure cacao goodness.

You may have heard horror stories of the bitterness or chalky texture of unsweetened chocolate and be thinking to yourself, “can chocolate really taste good without sugar?” Many people may already be familiar with unsweetened chocolate in the form of baking chocolate, but that isn’t the whole story. Although you can use it for baking, our 100% chocolate is made for greater things than just a supporting role. Mixing in cacao butter gives it a smooth, velvety texture, while still keeping to the promise of 100% cacao.

Hands holding cacao beans

What does it taste like?

We all know and love the taste of chocolate, whether you prefer the mild sweetness of milk chocolate or the rich, bittersweet taste of dark. Contrary to expectations, 100% cacao chocolate has a malty, savoury taste, packed with intricate flavours and undertones.

Did you know that the first chocolate drinks developed in Mesoamerica were savoury and rich? They were made from fermented cacao beans, mixed with water. So, if you’re looking for a taste of the history of chocolate, 100% chocolate might be closer than you think.

Our 100% chocolate has a strong, fruity taste with an indulgent, smooth texture that melts in the mouth. The secret ingredient? Simple: good, high-quality beans. Just like a good perfume or coffee, cacao beans are a treasure trove of varied flavours, from deep and earthy to light and floral. Without sugar to overwhelm the taste, the real essence of pure chocolate shines through.

We grow some of our own cacao beans in our organic, eco-conscious farm in Saint Lucia. And the rest come from a variety of ethical sources around the world. Both ethics and quality are our priority, from root to wrapper — every bite contains nothing less than the best. And with 100% chocolate, where the flavour takes centre stage more than anywhere else, it’s the quality of the beans that matters the most.

100% chocolate - chopped

Can you eat 100% chocolate on its own?

Absolutely! Eating 100% chocolate on its own gives you the purest, rawest form of chocolate. This isn’t the kind of chocolate where you eat one small bite and accidentally find yourself finishing off the box half an hour later, though. (We’ve all been there!) Like most other dark chocolates, we recommend you enjoy our 100% chocolate in smaller quantities. That way, you can let it melt in your mouth and experience the intricate flavours.

This is chocolate that you can take your time with.

On its own, 100% chocolate makes an ideal guilt-free treat. It has all the decadence of good chocolate and none of the sugar. Our 100% Dark Chocolate Batons come in the perfect size and shape to nibble on or break into smaller pieces. You can easily satisfy your craving for chocolate when you feel like indulging.

If you take your coffee black, why not pair it with the darkest of chocolates? The deep flavours complement each other and lift one another up. Alternatively, if you want to balance out the strength of the chocolate, you could try it with milk to even out the intensity. And because our 100% cacao offering is entirely vegan-friendly, you can enjoy a dairy-free option by pairing it with your favourite plant milk.

If you think 100% chocolate might be too strong at first, don’t fret! You can work your way up through 75%, 85% or 90% Chocolate, and then to 100%. Why not try our High Cocoa Baton Library to get you started?

Cooking with 100% dark chocolate

Although the intricacies of 100% chocolate’s flavour come through best when eaten on its own, it’s far from the only way you can enjoy it.

Unsweetened chocolate has long been used as cooking chocolate. All sorts of baking recipes call for chocolate, from silky ganache to scrumptious brownies, so 100% chocolate can find its place in the cupboard of any keen baker.

Drinking chocolate

For those cosy winter nights curled up on the sofa with a warm mug in your hands, is there anything better than hot chocolate? Actually, yes — hot chocolate with absolutely no sugar or additives. Warm as a hug and smooth as butter, our 100% Dark Honduras Hot Chocolate sachets make a great quick and easy way to experience the intense taste of 100% cacao.

But desserts aren’t all you can do with chocolate, believe it or not. A dash of chocolate can add a subtle, deeper flavour to many savoury dishes, especially in sauces. And 100% chocolate, with all its complex, savoury flavours, is the perfect option for this. Go on, be adventurous. You may find something you never imagined yourself loving.

If you’re looking for even more ways to add a rich, chocolatey flair to your cooking, why not have a peek at our suggestions for uses of cooking chocolate?

Hot chocolate with candy canes

No additives. No sugar. All chocolate.

100% chocolate is the ideal treat for those who love to try something new, real chocolate connoisseurs, or those simply trying to cut down on sugar without cutting down on fun.

And if you decide that it isn’t for you after all, don’t worry — we won’t judge. Plus, we have a whole array of different cacao percentages to choose from. You’re sure to find the perfect chocolate for you in the Hotel Chocolat collection.