One of the most asked questions since we introduced Skinny Chocolate, is what is the difference between Skinny Chocolate and dark chocolate. We use dark chocolate as the base of our Skinny Chocolate, but that is where our story just begins. We are not bean to bar chocolate makers. We source fair trade organic, soy & gluten free dark chocolate wafers as the base of Skinny Chocolate. That is where any similarity between Skinny and dark chocolate ends, or begins depending on the point of view.

During the chocolate production process, chocolate makers use different recipes in order to achieve the final product. Regardless of well documented health benefits of dark chocolate, on it’s own it has bitter and sour flavor, which is not pleasant to eat. That is the starting point that distinguishes one chocolate maker from another. Depending on their goals, sale’s price target and other factors, chocolate makers determine what to add to the base, in order to create a product that is pleasant to eat. So let’s look at the list of most frequent add-ons, and the reason for adding them.

Everything in this article is solely my personal opinion, based on my personal research.

  1. Sugar, Cane Sugar, Brown Sugar, Powder Sugar

Sugar in any form is the most common addition to the chocolate (Bean to bar chocolate makers had already put some sugar into the mix. I am referring to added sugar). Adding more sugar has few reasons: to enhance the flavor and to inflate the weight (dark chocolate base is not a cheap product, thus added sugar lowers the production cost and end price), As a side effect, the end product increases glycemic index (blood sugar levels) in the blood, which in return makes a person craving for more sugar or more food in general.

  1. Milk, Milk Powder, Dairy

Milk or dairy based products are the next addition to the chocolate. I do not know the exact percentages, but a fair estimate would be that dairy is as common as added sugar. Milk or dairy products (I.e. butter), are making the difference between dark chocolate and what people call chocolate. Chocolate is basically a product that has added milk or some form of dairy. Dairy makes chocolate smoother and shinier, and as a side effect adds calories. Usually added dairy and added sugar go “hand in hand”. Also dairy is cheaper than dark chocolate base. It mixes well with the base, thus inflating the weight and lowering the cost. Dairy enriched chocolate might have more pleasant flavor than dark chocolate, but it comes with side effects.

  1. Soy, Lecithin, Oil, Vanilla and other extracts

All these additives are added to enhance the flavor, smoothen the chocolate, to “bind” the ingredients and to act as preservatives, extending the shelf life. At the end, the more add-ons means less dark chocolate (remember, dark chocolate is always the base and among everything mentioned the healthiest ingredient). I personally see most of them as cheap “cheats” and weight inflatiors, except for coconut oil. Manufacturers add mostly palm oil or similar, due to the lower cost comparing to coconut oil.

Why would all this even matter, after all?

For people who see chocolate as a candy, it does not matter. Beside chocolate, gummy bears, all kinds of snacks, spreads, sugary drinks and tons of other foods, do the same.They keep adding ingredients to the food to enhance the flavor, to inflate the weight and to lower the cost. The side effects such as obesity, diabetes, anxiety, mood swings, insomnia, to name a few, seem not to be of any concern. Why even bother trying to “purify” the chocolate, if majority of other foods are done pretty much the same, unhealthy, way?

Once we realized that there was virtually nothing on the market that could be served as a healthy supplement in a form of taste full dark chocolate, Skinny was born! As we were developing our recipes, we tried several dozen products. Some of them that seemed (based on ingredient list) pure and to have health benefits, had harsh flavor. Others were just labeled as dark chocolate, but once we checked the ingredients…That is how Skinny Chocolate was created. Health benefits of dark chocolate are well documented and known for ages. To remind: dark chocolate is rich in amino-acids, healthy carbs & fat, probiotics, anti-oxidants, flavanoids. It helps digestion, it might lower blood pressure, it might lower cholesterol, it is good for the heart, blood flow, brain function, skin, hair, it assists with weight management and the list goes on. Skinny Chocolate is the product that keeps all the health benefits of pure dark chocolate intact, and only uses carefully chosen add-ons that even enhance it’s benefits by supercharging the product (propriatory secret) without adding sugar or calories. Our serving of any chocolate has 2-3 grams of sugar, just enough to support healthy digestion. Despite delicious flavor, we do not encourage our clients to consume more than necessary (we established 5 minute rule). In our view daily intake should be 1oz. Each ingredient in Skinny Chocolate is ethically sourced with one intention only: to preserve everything dark chocolate has to offer and to deliver even more, with no side effects. One of the add-ons we are using, among the others, is with intention to lower glycemix index, thus cutting the need for more sugar or excess food in general. Our motto is Less is More! Eat less Skinny Chocolate, but use it as a daily supplement.

The main difference between Skinny Chocolate and dark chocolate is that Skinny Chocolate is not a candy. It is scientifically crafted, chocolate based super-food.

Wendy Dawn is an artisanal chocolate maker and creator of Truffolie chocolates (truffolie.com). Wendy studied at the French Culinary Institute and L’Ecole Vahlrona in New York.