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Is It Safe to Eat Chocolate That Has Turned White?

When you find white, chalky stuff on chocolate, it's called chocolate bloom, not mold, and there's two different types of chocolate blooming, which affect the texture and appearance of chocolate, although they're both perfectly safe to eat.

By Cookist

It happens to the best of us: finding a forgotten chocolate bar or one that was stored for a bit too long, opening it, and seeing that white chalky stuff coating the top and coming off of it, looking quite unpleasant. Is that mold? Can we still eat the chocolate, or is it best to throw it away?

Why Does Chocolate Turn White?

What you’re witnessing is something called chocolate bloom. There are two types of chocolate bloom: fat bloom and sugar bloom. Fat bloom occurs when the fat within the chocolate, typically cocoa butter, separates and rises to the surface. This can happen due to temperature fluctuations or improper storage, giving the chocolate a whitish, sometimes greasy appearance. Sugar bloom, on the other hand, happens when moisture comes into contact with the chocolate, causing the sugar to dissolve and then recrystallize on the surface. This leaves a rough, grainy texture that can look equally off-putting. Neither of these blooms is indicative of spoiled chocolate; rather, they are cosmetic changes resulting from the natural properties of the ingredients.


Is It Safe to Eat Blooms Chocolate?

The big question: can you eat chocolate that has bloomed? The good news is, yes, it’s generally safe to eat. The blooming process does not mean the chocolate has gone bad or that it’s harmful to consume. Fat bloom and sugar bloom do not affect the safety of the chocolate, only its texture and appearance. While the chocolate might not look as appetizing and may have a slightly altered mouthfeel, its flavor remains largely unchanged. So, unless you’re using it for a pristine baking presentation or a fancy dessert platter, there’s no need to toss that bloomed chocolate. Embrace it as a tasty, albeit slightly less attractive, treat.

Can Chocolate Bloom Be Avoided?

Now, how can we prevent this chalky situation from occurring in the first place? Preventing chocolate bloom is all about proper storage. To avoid fat bloom, store chocolate in a cool, stable environment, ideally between 65-68°F (18-20°C). Avoid drastic temperature changes which can cause the fats to separate. For sugar bloom, keep your chocolate in a dry place, away from moisture and humidity. Using airtight containers can help maintain the right conditions. Additionally, if you must refrigerate chocolate, ensure it’s sealed tightly and allow it to come to room temperature before opening the package to prevent condensation. With a little care, you can keep your chocolate looking as good as it tastes.

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