By Allrecipes Staff
May 20, 2015

When it comes to chocolate, there's less guilt and more goodness on the dark side.

Dark Chocolate Cake I | Photo by Grace Y.

Sweet News for Chocolate-Lovers. Nutrition experts say dark chocolate is especially high in natural antioxidants, and that eating dark chocolate may improve cardiovascular health and reduce stress. Milk chocolate has milk added to the mix (but you knew that) and does not offer the same health benefits as dark chocolate.

Indulge dark chocolate cravings -- in moderation -- and lower blood pressure at the same time? Sweet!

Chocolate Grows on Trees. It's true. The dark chocolate you love to eat is made from cocoa -- the roasted and ground seeds, or nibs, of the cacao tree. Sugar is added to offset the natural bitterness of the cocoa, along with cocoa butter for that luscious mouthfeel.

Tweaking the amount of cocoa, cocoa butter, and sugar produces different kinds of dark chocolate:

  • Bittersweet has the least amount of sugar
  • Semisweet has more sugar than bittersweet
  • Sweet has the most sugar
  • Cocoa powder can be sweet or bitter, and has the least amount of cocoa butter
  • Couverture has the most cocoa butter; great for melting, dipping, and molding

Here are just a few ways to eat dark chocolate to your heart's content.


Best Big Fat Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie | Photo by cherryberry

Cakes and Cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Bacon Cupcakes | Photo by The Gruntled Gourmet


Chocolate Cappucccino Cheesecake | Photo by sugarmints


Chocolate Truffles Garnished with Edible Blossoms | Photo by Meredith

Custards and Puddings

Ultimate Chocolate Dessert | Photo by Chef John

Covered with Chocolate

Chocolate Covered Strawberries | Photo by Meredith

You'll find many more favorite desserts in our collection of Dark Chocolate Dessert Recipes.