I think we can all agree that the Mayans were right when they said cacao was the “food of the gods.” However, chocolate, a sacred treat for centuries, is increasingly imitated by imposters filled with highly processed additives, chemicals, and refined sugars. Don’t be fooled.

While chocolate is enjoyed in a kaleidoscope of different flavors and varieties from all around the world, all is not created equal. Here’s your guide to dodging the cheapjack candies and doing chocolate right.


Photo by Rachel Livengood

Unlike hero-villain films, when it comes to chocolate, embrace the dark side. In fact, the darker the better.

The percentage label indicates the total percentage of ingredients in weight derived from the cocoa bean. Typically, a good rule of thumb is that the darker your chocolate is, the higher its nutritional value.

According to an article from Foodmatters, there are over 40+ positive health benefits from the cocoa bean, including the reduction of stress hormones, anti-diabetic properties and even an extended lifespan-benefits worth noting and seriously celebrating (chocolate-wasted edition).

Dark chocolate is all the rage, and for good reason.


Photo by Rachel Livengood

Milk and white chocolate may be tasty, but these creamy treats are less dreamy than you think—milk chocolate only needs to be 10 percent cocoa and there are many (*cough* Hershey’s *cough*) slackers out there that are barely scraping by as real chocolate.

White, on the other hand isn’t even chocolate. It contains zero of the cocoa bean’s awesome nutrients, not to mention the ridiculously high sugar content in both of these types.

Dark chocolate wins, containing less sugar, less fat and more antioxidant advantages. Not only can it benefit your health, but also makes you feel insta-happy. No, seriously, eating it causes feelings of euphoria and chemically imitates falling in love.


Photo by Rachel Livengood

Find more reasons to go dark when it comes to chocolate here. (Hint: shoot for 70% or higher.) Once you’re ready to take the plunge, take our recommendations to find your perfect match.

Beginners, ease into dark with:

  • TCHO PureNotes Dark “Nutty” (65%)
  • Chocolove Rich Dark (65%)
  • Chocolove Ginger Crystallized in Dark Chocolate (65%)

Darker but still sweet:

  • TCHO PureNotes “Chocolatey” (70%)
  • Theo Coconut Dark (70%)
  • Chocolove Currants and Almonds in Dark Chocolate (73%)

For the bitter-loving and brave:

Have your (chocolate) cake and eat it too. Pay attention to the quality of your choice and spread the love through intelligent consumption and consumerism.

Don’t stop the craving here, read up even more on everyone’s favorite treat