Are Vegan Chocolate Bars Healthy?
Are you trying to stick to a vegan diet, perhaps because you are trying to live a dairy-free lifestyle or care deeply about the well-being of animals? If so, you might be wondering, “are vegan chocolate bars healthy?”
As with anything in life, moderation is key - a little bit of chocolate here and there won’t hurt you.
However, some chocolates are better than others - and vegan chocolate is one of the best cacao-based treats you can eat if you want the benefits and delicious taste of chocolate without the dairy.
What is Vegan Chocolate?
Vegan chocolate is made without ingredients that come from animals.
With chocolate, this is actually quite easy to do. It simply requires omitting most of the fillers that are used to sweeten regular chocolate.
Instead, vegan chocolate will have few ingredients. Look on the packaging to ensure it contains things like pure cacao, vanilla, cocoa butter (despite the name, cocoa butter is actually vegan), chocolate liquor, and natural sugar with as few additives as possible.
High-quality dark chocolate bars are great options for vegans. They don’t have to be boring, either! Vegan dark chocolate can contain all kinds of mix-ins like almonds, int, dried fruit, and more.
Is Vegan Chocolate Candy Healthy for Me?
Whether you are vegan for health reasons or for ethical ones, the good news is that chocolate doesn’t have to get kicked to the curb.
And thank goodness for that - did you know that the Latin name for the cacao tree, Theobroma cacao, translates to “food of the gods?”
Chocolate not only tastes good, but it’s good for us. It has antioxidant properties and can increase your cardiovascular function. The higher the amount of cacao in a chocolate bar - up to 85% - the purer and the bar is and the healthier it is.
Just check the ingredients to make sure there aren’t any fillers like milk, whey, casein, milk solids, and milk fat.
Vegan chocolate bars tend to be much healthier than non-vegan ones because they don’t contain these fillers and contain more of the health-boosting cacao ingredient in its pure form.
In addition to serving as an antioxidant, cacao contains things known as catechins. These elements help speed up fat burning and offer a variety of other benefits, too.
Though chocolate is not low-calorie, often containing lots of sugar and fats, there are some vegan chocolates that contain sugars from more natural ingredients like maple syrup and agave. These natural sweeteners help to produce vegan dark chocolate that is dairy-free and plant-based but has the same delicious flavor you would enjoy in a typical bar of chocolate.
Because of this, vegan chocolate can easily be part of your everyday snack habit without causing you to pack on the pounds or suffer any ill health effects associated with milk chocolate.
What Are the Healthiest Chocolate Bars?
For many people, chocolate is a daily essential. It’s not just an occasional treat but something that can be eaten as a snack, dessert, mix-in for yogurt or overnight oats, and more.
The healthiest chocolate bars are those that contain the highest available cocoa percentage. Most chocolate bars have this information printed directly on the front of the package. Anything higher than 70% cocoa is going to be considered dark chocolate.
The higher the percentage, the more bitter the chocolate bar will be - but the healthier it will be, too. That’s because the higher cacao percentage indicates a larger amount of flavonoids and antioxidants in your chocolate, which are known to have health benefits.
Not only that, but a 100g organic dark chocolate bar can contain as much as 11% fiber along with large percentages of copper, magnesium, iron, and manganese. Though not quite as abundant, dark chocolate bars also contain residents like zinc, potassium, and phosphorus.
Is Dark Chocolate Always Vegan?
By now, it’s probably safe to assume that dark chocolate bars are the healthiest kind of chocolate you can eat if you want to maintain your health.
Most of the time, this dark chocolate is also vegan. With that said, it pays to always check the label before you buy as some dark chocolate is not always vegan.
But what if you’re not a fan of the sharp, bitter taste of dark chocolate? If you don’t like the taste, there’s probably no amount of convincing that’s going to persuade you to eat this kind of chocolate instead of milk or white chocolate.
The good news is that, with veganism on the rise, more companies are producing vegan chocolate bars that taste like milk or white chocolate but without all the extra animal products.
How to Find the Healthiest Vegan Chocolate
The market is packed to the brim with vegan chocolate brands - and while that’s good in the sense that it will give you more variety, the downside is that it gives you a much more difficult decision to make.
Some vegan chocolate brands aren’t as healthy as they might appear, either. They can be heavily processed and contain lots of fillers or milk substitutes that are just as bad for your health as the real thing - we’re talking things like gums and starches that add calories and don’t do much to improve your overall health.
Look for a vegan chocolate bar with as few ingredients as possible - but the highest pure cacao content you can find. Remember, the higher the cocoa, the better the health benefits.
While it’s perfectly fine to select vegan candy with mix-ins like almonds, sea salt, and mint - and these mix-ins often offer health benefits of their own - there are some you should avoid if you’re trying to stick to a vegan diet.
Skip things like caramel and toffee, as these often contain dairy. Dairy-free chocolate is the name of the game when it comes to healthy vegan recipes.
Some vegan candy contains coconut oil to help make the chocolate richer & creamier. Coconut oil is vegan and offers a variety of health benefits but it is still high in calories - so keep that in mind as you’re looking for the right brand.
As with all diets, there are varying degrees and types of veganism. Some companies that advertise vegan chocolate bars use honey as a sweetener. Many vegans opt-out of eating honey since it’s technically an animal byproduct - if you fall into that camp, you’ll want to steer clear of these chocolate bars, too.
What is the Healthiest Vegan Chocolate?
As with anything in life, moderation is key. While vegan chocolate can have a positive impact on your health, you’ll maximize the benefits by practicing healthy eating practices.
Of course, starting with the best vegan chocolate bar doesn’t hurt, either.
Mid-Day Squares is a company that specializes in producing functional, plant-based chocolate bars that are not only healthy and vegan-friendly but also will knock your socks off in the taste category, too.
Why is Mid-Day Squares the best? We’ll break it down for you.
Why Mid-Day Squares Vegan Chocolate Is The Healthiest, Best Tasting Option
First, the ingredients. Mid-Day Squares contain healthy ingredients like all-natural cocoa beans and other vegan superfoods such as yacon syrup, dates, hazelnut butter, and pink salt.
Looking at the ingredients label for a Mid-Day Squares bar, you might assume you’re looking at the label for a protein bar - that’s how healthy it is.
Give one of these chocolate bars a nibble, though, and you’ll quickly realize this isn’t your ordinary nutrition bar. These vegan chocolate bars - which come in a wide variety of flavors like a fudge brownie, almond crunch, and peanut butter - taste fantastic.
You’ll feel good about your choice - both your health and your conscience will thank you. Mid-Day Squares are not only vegan but also soy-free, gluten-free, and non-GMO.
If you’re vegan, there’s a good chance that you’re health-conscious, too. But you don’t have to ditch your daily chocolate habit in order to uphold your ethics and maintain your health. Choose Mid-Day Squares for your midday snack and you can have your (chocolate) cake and eat it, too.