Chocolate bars are a staple of the candy world. While many chocolate bars may seem rather basic, there are some out there that are trying to stand out from the crowd. Here are 10 crazy chocolate bars you should try right now!
10. Compartes Chocolates Vegan Kale Dark Chocolate Bar
Scientists have proven that chocolate is actually really good for you but there are a few caveats to that. The darker the chocolate means the more health benefits there are. Dark chocolate is the result of more cocoa beans being used and it’s in those beans that the benefits stem from. Benefits of the cocoa bean include its high levels of antioxidants, improved blood flow, lowering of bad cholesterol, and reduced risk of heart disease, among other things. Apparently there’s nothing that this little magic bean can’t do (if only Jack had traded his cow for cocoa beans instead of those beanstalk beans!). Some companies, like Compartes Chocolatiers, have taken these health benefits to the next level! Compartes added some equally healthy ingredients to their dark chocolate bars like kale, pumpkin and sesame seeds. The company makes these vegan dark chocolate bars by hand in Los Angeles. So while you’re satisfying your sweet tooth you’re also getting the aforementioned benefits as well as some great vitamins and minerals! Who says you can’t have candy for breakfast!
9. Vosges Matcha Green Tea and Spirulina Super Dark Chocolate Bar
Now there are dark chocolates and there are DARK chocolates. In most cases, the darker the chocolate the more bitter the chocolate tastes, which is why people started adding things like milk and sugar to their cocoa beans. For those who loathe that bitter taste, there is a helpful percentage system that accompanies most fancy dark chocolates these days. The higher the percentage of dark chocolate the more bitter the chocolate tends to be. There are 100% dark chocolates but those are really only used for baking as they’re way too bitter to be eaten by most people. Vosges Matcha Green Tea and Spirulina Super Dark Chocolate Bar (say that ten times fast) is above 70% dark chocolate. Luckily they offset the bitterness with the sweetness of green tea. This bar has been described as having a “grassy aftertaste” but in a good way. It’s on brand, though, as this is another in a line of “superfood” chocolate bars that are targeted towards health nuts who also love chocolate. It seems to be working as they’ve either won or been runner up in a lot of health food chocolate competitions, as well!
8. Chuao Chocolatier Pop Corn Pop Bar
One of the larger conundrums in life is deciding what snacks to get when we’re at the movies. Luckily for humanity, there’s the Chuao Chocolatier Pop Corn Pop Bar, that combines the best of both worlds by creating a Frankenstein’s monster of things you’d typically find at a movie theater. While there are other chocolate-covered popcorn products out there, this is a bit different and thus unique as it’s a candy bar that is a mix of puffed whole grains, toasted corn chips, popping candy and sea salt! They take those ingredients and cover them with milk chocolate. It’s apparently delicious and takes advantage of the sweet and savory flavors that so many people enjoy. This chocolate bar must be pretty darn good as this Venezuelan product was featured on the Oprah website! As we know, everything Oprah touches turns to gold, and while it may go against her newest venture as the part owner and full-time spokesperson for Weight Watchers, we’re sure she would agree that it’s worth the 5,000 Weight Watchers points to give this a taste or two. The most interesting aspect of this bar is the popping candy. I mean, chocolate, popcorn and pop rocks don’t sound like they’d go together, but if Oprah says it’s good who are we to say otherwise?
7. Divine 70% Dark Chocolate with Ginger and Orange
As we’ve established, the higher the percentage of dark chocolate the more bitter the chocolate tastes (but also, the higher the percentage of health benefits derived from the cocoa beans in the chocolate). That means Divine is pretty healthy, bitter and dark. So, like most high-percentage dark chocolates, Divine’s bitterness is offset with something sweet which is, in this case, both ginger and orange, which have their own health benefits. Divine is also one of many “fair trade” chocolate bars, meaning that the company behind Divine (and the companies that it does business with) work only with suppliers that are fair to it’s workers in the countries that their ingredients are supplied from. Considering that cocoa beans come from developing countries, there’s a high chance for exploitation, and thus fair trade companies have helped change the game in those countries by forcing the powers that be to increase wages and provide safe work environments. So when you eat Divine, or any number of the healthy chocolates on this list, you can be rest assured that not only are you doing something good for your body, you’re also doing something good for the developing world! It’s hard to find a candy bar that’s fair trade and also tastes good, and apparently Divine bucks that trend. Not only is the bar aesthetically pleasing but it’s apparently both crisp and delicious, a chocolate concoction that is fruity, deep, woodsy, zesty and tangy! Yum.
6. DAGOBA Lavender Blueberry Dark Chocolate
Speaking of fair-trade and good for the earth candy, DAGOBA understands this and thus takes fair trade to the next logical step by also including Rainforest Alliance Certified cacao in their chocolates. The DAGOBA bar that’s getting a lot of love online is their Lavender Blueberry Dark Chocolate. It may sound like a candle or lotion you might buy at the last minute on Mother’s Day, but it’s actually as good to your taste buds as it is to the environment. While dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants as it is, this bar has even more of them than the typical bar, which is really good for you as antioxidants help protect your cells from free radicals. Vitamins C and E, for example, are also big antioxidants which basically helps keep your cells from aging. So, you might want to pick up a few of these bars the next time you’re on Amazon. You can say you’re only doing it for the health benefits.
5. Marie Belle Cacao Market Rosemary Truffle Salt Bar
One of the newer trends when it comes to candy bars is the addition of herbs to the chocolate. A lot of… what we call ‘Artisan’ bars…have mostly used dark chocolate. The Marie Belle Cacao Market Rosemary Truffle Salt Bar is no different. This bar falls in around the 60% range which definitely isn’t the darkest or most bitter on this list but is up there compared to some others. While most people are used to really only eating Rosemary when they’re scarfing down sweet potatoes (or sweet potato fries) they might very well start ingesting more and more rosemary as the Marie Belle Cacao Market Rosemary Truffle Salt Bar has been called a slam dunk by critics online (and online critics hate everything!). The fact that this chocolate bar also contains truffles just adds to the taste. Truffles are delicious but typically also means more dollar signs. Truffles are expensive for a reason, they are super hard to find (unless you have a trained pig and a large forest with just the right temperatures and a certain type of trees at your disposal). So while this is one of the more pricey entries on this list, it’s definitely worth the extra money to try this bar.
4. Alter Eco Deep Dark Quinoa Crunch
The most famous example of adding grains to chocolate comes courtesy of one of the biggest players in the chocolate bar industry, Nestle. Their Nestle Crunch bar is a mix of milk chocolate and crisped rice that’s been a staple since it was introduced in 1928. It also has one of the worst slogans in the game, “Munch now. Munch some later”. As outside of ‘Munch’ rhyming with ‘Crunch’ it’s basically just saying “eat some now, and then eat some later’. But that’s beside the point. Alter Eco is the next logical step in the grain and chocolate game as it includes something instead of puffed rice: Quinoa. Quinoa is found in the Andes mountains which is grown and cultivated for its edible starchy seeds. Alter Eco Deep Dark Quinoa Crunch is also GMO-free, which means that it doesn’t use any genetically modified ingredients in these puffy masterpieces. Give this bar a try and see how it stacks up against the big boys.
3. Éclat Chocolate Porcini & Thyme
First off, Thyme is an herb that is known to be very powerful, pungent and strangely bitter. As we’ve established, dark chocolate can vary from kind of bitter to very bitter, so adding another bitter ingredient, especially one as non-typical as thyme seems like an odd choice. That is, of course, unless it’s offset by something sweet like oranges or apples, or really any fruit. That’s where the Éclat Chocolate Porcini & Thyme Bar takes another left turn as the ‘porcini’ in its name refers to the porcini mushroom, which definitely isn’t a sweet fruit. Now, there are some mushrooms that taste sweet, which could definitely offset the doubling down of bitterness between the chocolate and thyme, however, that’s not the case with porcini mushrooms as they actually have more of a nutty taste. That makes them great on things like steak or in brown sauces, which makes the Éclat Chocolate Porcini & Thyme bar one of the more interesting chocolate bars in the world!
2. Chocolove XOXOX Chillies & Cherries in Dark Chocolate
Speaking of different ingredients, there may be no stranger combination of chocolate and other stuff than the Chocolove XOXOX Chillies & Cherries in Dark Chocolate bar! As the Carolina Reaper challenge has shown, hot peppers have become increasingly popular over the years and some question why people would subject themselves to the inescapable horror of eating a really hot pepper. It’s been found that the body releases endorphins when it’s introduced to super hot peppers, and it’s that “high” that it is thought to keep bringing pepper enthusiasts back. The “put peppers in everything!” movement has reached the chocolate bar industry and the Chocolove XOXOX Chillies & Cherries in Dark Chocolate bar is the best and most delicious example of that. Not only does it have something spicy and sweet, but the Chocolove is also “only” 55% dark chocolate. This still makes it relatively dark but it’s definitely less bitter than other entries on this list. It’s also relatively inexpensive as you can nab 12 bars for a little over $30 dollars, which for a non-GMO bar is quite the steal. Because the bars aren’t bitter the cherries actually compliment the heat, and it’s that combination that has made the Chocolove XOXOX Chillies & Cherries in Dark Chocolate beloved in the chocolate bar community. It’s made multiple top 5 and 10 lists of best candy bars in the world so perhaps they’re on to something with their mixture of sweet, savory, spicy and fruity. They seem to have gotten the XOXOX part of the name right as clearly people really love this chocolate bar.
1. Dylan’s Candy Bar Pizza Bar
There are strange ingredients and then there’s Dylan’s Candy Bar Pizza Bar. While we’ve covered things like cherries, peppers, thyme and mushrooms, it’s Dylan’s Candy Bar Pizza Bar that definitely takes the cake … or pie … or pizza pie? A product of Belgium, Dylan’s Candy Bar Pizza Bar has a rather strange name for a chocolate bar. Perhaps there was a miscommunication when printing the wrappers and someone mixed in their lunch order with the typeset and due to a limited budget the company decided to just roll with Candy BAR Pizza Bar. If you have reservations about this bar being anything other than an abject disaster, you’re not alone. Sadly, it turns out that most people online have said that the bar ranges from being “pretty bad” to “so bad that it’s fascinating”. That’s not hard to believe as a combination of chocolate and pizza just sounds gross. While sweet and savory works, this doesn’t even sound good on paper (let alone in reality), so it’s not a surprise that this bar, while interesting, is just a bad idea. According to critics online there are two things wrong with this bar, tomato and garlic. Yes, tomato, garlic and chocolate. It’s actually a high-quality bar (made with high-quality chocolate) that tastes a lot like pizza, it’s just that the combination of chocolate and pizza is not a good one. However, it is marketed as ‘unique’ and it definitely is that, and perhaps the most unique chocolate bar flavor that exists. Maybe this is the nudge that Domino’s needs to get onboard the chocolate pizza craze.