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Article: Let's Talk About Bittersweet & Semisweet Chocolates

Image shows brown chocolate discs on a brown plate.
best chocolate nyc

Let's Talk About Bittersweet & Semisweet Chocolates

Are you eating some chocolate now? If so, do you think it's bittersweet or semisweet? This blog article might be helpful if you're stumped for an answer.

In essence, bittersweet and semisweet chocolate are almost identical. According to FDA regulations, both fall under the sweet chocolate category. Any chocolate labeled as "sweet," "bittersweet," or "semisweet" must contain a minimum of 35% cocoa and less than 12% milk solids. Consequently, bittersweet and semisweet chocolates are classified as types of dark chocolate, as they cannot be categorized as milk chocolate, which necessitates a minimum of 12% milk solids.

There are certain distinctions though that separate "bittersweet" from "semisweet". For starters, chocolate are typically labeled as semisweet when their cocoa content approaches 60%, while chocolates labeled as bittersweet tend to have cocoa content closer to 70%. Therefore, bittersweet chocolate contains slightly more cacao and less sugar, resulting in a more intense flavor profile.

Bittersweet chocolate contains a reduced amount of sugar and a higher proportion of cacao. While it maintains a subtle sweetness compared to unsweetened chocolate, the predominant flavor profile is characterized by rich cocoa notes rather than sweetness. Bittersweet chocolate is also distinguishable by its darker coloration.

Semisweet chocolate, on the flip side, is crafted with a higher proportion of sugar and cocoa butter, often accompanied by the addition of vanilla and lecithin to enrich its flavor profile. Despite containing more sugar than bittersweet chocolate, semisweet chocolate retains its classification as a darker chocolate variant. Opting for semisweet chocolate promises a decadent and traditional cocoa flavor with a subtle touch of sweetness.

If you're looking for a box that has both "bittersweet" and "semisweet" flavors, ROYCE' Chocolate's Pure Chocolate "Venezuela Bitter & Ghana Sweet" selection may just be apt. Each box contains individually-wrapped chocolate discs comprised of "Venezuela Bitter" at 68% cacao and "Ghana Sweet" at 59% cacao.


ROYCE' Chocolate's confections from Hokkaido, Japan can be shopped for in the US through some boutiques in-store and online through roycechocolate.com.

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