Is white chocolate really chocolate? We’ve all asked it. We’ve all wondered, and we’ve all received different answers. Finally, let’s end this debate.
To begin, let’s cover what makes chocolate chocolate.
Virtually all chocolates: milk, semisweet, bittersweet, etc. each have their requirements to legitimately be qualified as Chocolate.
An official “Chocolate” label means that the product must comply with strict guidelines and can only be made of the following: cacao, sugar, and in the case of milk chocolate, milk. Chocolate can also contain small amounts of lecithin and vanilla or vanillin (an artificial vanilla).
So What About White Chocolate?
For the majority of US history, white chocolate was not considered chocolate due to, now outdated, FDA’s Standard of Identity that required chocolate to contain chocolate liquor–the solids that give chocolate its brown color and familiar rich taste.
Prior to 2002, the approved FDA terms for what is known as white chocolate were “confectionery coating” or “white confectionery coating”. The term “white chocolate” was used to more accurately communicate the product to the consumer, as it had a very similar look and feel to milk and dark chocolate products.
The early 2000s, marked a pivot in how we talk about the debate about white chocolate. In 2002, the FDA amended the Standard of Identity to include white chocolate as an approved term–finally siding with the opinion of the chocolate makers themselves.
How specific does this get? To be marketed and labeled as white chocolate, it must contain at least:
- 20% cocoa butter
- 14% total milk solids
- 3.5% milkfat, and
- No more than 55% nutritive carbohydrate sweetener (sugar)
In Conclusion: Yes
To wrap it up, the answer to, “Is White Chocolate Really Chocolate?” is yes…unless you were arguing before 2002.
At Marich we make chocolate covered everything, which includes white chocolate. Shop our products with white chocolate below, and enjoy it confidently knowing that it really, truly is chocolate.