Is Cocoa Soy-Free? What Those With An Allergy Need To Know
If you have a soy allergy or are simply avoiding soy for dietary reasons, then you're used to checking the nutritional facts on anything you eat. So many food products contain soy lecithin nowadays. It's become tricky for those trying to avoid soy to find snacks they can enjoy.
Unfortunately, chocolate is one such product that commonly uses soy lecithin in its ingredients. But, you'll be happy to know that not all chocolate contains this troublesome ingredient. You'll just have to do a bit of digging to find products that taste good and contain no soy.
If you want to know how soy-free chocolate is made, and where you can get the best soy-free chocolate, keep reading. Because today, we're going to cover everything you need to know. We'll start with a quick explanation of what soy lecithin is, and why it's so tough to find food without it.
What Is Soy Lecithin?
Soy is one of the top ingredients that cause allergic reactions, along with milk, eggs, peanuts, shellfish, and so on. Soy lecithin is a food additive derived from soy. It is used in seemingly everything, but particularly, baked goods. You'll see it on the label in salad dressings, ice creams, peanut butter, and chocolate. Why is it in everything?!
Contrary to what you may suspect, it's not for flavoring. Rather, soy lecithin is used as an emulsifier. In chocolate, for example, it ensures that the cocoa butter and the cocoa powder don't separate. That is why it's so hard to find chocolate bars or chips that don't contain any soy.
What Chocolate Brands Have Soy In Them?
A majority of chocolate brands contain soy in them, especially the big names. Ferrero Rocher, M&M's, Reese's, and so many more popular chocolate brands use soy in their ingredients.
But finding soy-free chocolate chips isn't impossible. Nowadays, chocolate brands are becoming more innovative in how they produce their chocolates. Before we share which chocolate brands don't have any soy in them, let's talk about how this type of chocolate is made.
How Chocolate Is Made With Zero Soy
Making chocolate isn't as complicated as you think. It's actually a very simple process. However, high-quality soy-free chocolates take a lot of time and patience to make. They usually get blended for a longer time to achieve the proper texture without having to use emulsifiers such as soy lecithin.
The main reason why soy lecithin is used in chocolates is for consistency and efficiency. That is why cheaper and mass-produced chocolates almost always contain soy in them. Here's the step-by-step process of how soy-free chocolates are made:
Step 1. Harvesting The Cacao Beans
Chocolate is made from the seeds of the cacao tree. To harvest the seeds from the cacao tree, you have to break open the cacao pod. Each cacao tree will grow about 20 pods, and each pod will contain between 10 to 60 seeds each, depending on its size. One 80-gram chocolate bar can be made with about 30-35 cacao seeds.
Step 2. Fermentation and Drying Phase
Once the cacao seeds are removed from the pods, they are fermented and dried for about one to two weeks. The fermented seeds are then roasted and de-shelled. De-shelled roasted cacao seeds are what we know as cacao or cocoa nibs. At this point, you can already consume the cocoa nibs. You may have even seen some brands that sell cocoa nibs before. Keep in mind that cocoa nibs aren't the true chocolate that you've come to know and love, though. There is more work to be done.
Step 3. Turning Cocoa Nibs Into Chocolate
To turn the cacao nibs into chocolate, you have to grind up the nibs. This creates a cocoa powder. The powder is then combined with cocoa butter to produce the chocolate.
These two ingredients are run through a high-speed mixing machine that heats the mixture while blending. This process is also known as conching. Whatever you call it, it is a very important step in creating the smooth texture in chocolates without having to use soy lecithin. The end result is the ooey-gooey chocolate we love without the harmful soy additives!
How Can You Tell If A Chocolate Product Contains No Soy?
The Food And Drug Administration (FDA) has made it easy to determine whether a product contains certain ingredients, including soy. They require all products that contain any of the eight major food allergens—soy, peanuts, tree nuts, milk, eggs, fish, wheat, and shellfish—to indicate as such on the label.
This rule doesn't only apply to products that contain such allergens. It also applies to products that are being manufactured in the same factory as those allergens. This is done to prevent any possible cross-contamination.
To know for sure if your chocolate contains soy or if it was manufactured in a factory where soy is present, all you have to do is check the ingredient label. You will see a label that says, “contains soy", "may contain soy", or “produced in a facility that also uses soy.” If you see any of these, you know to avoid the chocolate.
Wondering Where To Get The Best Soy-Free Chocolate?
Finding chocolate bars without soy lecithin is not easy. If you visit your local supermarket, you'll end up disappointed as you discover that this harmful compound is in all your favorite traditional chocolate snacks or baked goods.
Fortunately, you came to the right place. At MidDay Squares, you'll find the tastiest, natural soy-free dark chocolate bars! These unlock all the health benefits of chocolate that you may be familiar with. Here is why MidDay Squares is the preferred chocolate choice among health conscious individuals:
Why MidDay Squares Chocolate Soy-Free Bars Are The Best You'll Find
Don't let your food allergies stop you from enjoying what you love. With MidDay Squares Soy-Free Chocolate, you don't have to give up your favorite snack. Once you bite into a MidDay Square yourself, you'll understand why so many have made us a regular part of their day. Choose from three different delicious flavors of chocolate: Fudge YAH, Peanut Butta, and Almond Crunch.
Our Fudge Yah bars are our version of classic chocolate bars. They have a delicious classic fudge taste that'll surely perk up your day. If you're looking for a soy-free substitute for Reese's cups, then our Peanut Butta bars are for you. For chocolate lovers who like some crunch in their bars, our Almond Crunch is surely going to satisfy your cravings.
Free From Allergens, Artificial Additives, Preservatives, And Non-Organic Ingredients
The best part is, all of our chocolate bars aren't just free from soy. They're also dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan-friendly, and non-GMO. All of the ingredients we use are organic. You'll find plenty of plant-based superfoods in our ingredient list. These include raw chocolate, yacon syrup, pink salt, pumpkin seeds, cocoa butter, sacha inchi protein, maca powder, cocoa powder, and more.
High In Protein To Keep Your Cravings Satisfied Throughout The Day
We always say that our soy-free chocolate bars are everything a protein bar wishes they could be in terms of nutrition, and everything a milk chocolate bar wishes it could be in terms of taste. With our chocolate treats, you truly get the best of both worlds.
Each MidDay Squares bar contains 12 grams of protein to help you get through the day feeling satisfied and energized. It's the perfect snack for when you're on the go and you need something to keep your hunger at bay. You can also have it for dessert after a meal, or use it as a soy-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free substitute to chocolate chips when baking. Visit our blog to see how you can use our soy-free chocolate for baking.
You can get a 12-pack of MidDay Squares for less than $50. It is pricey compared to the common chocolate bars you see in the grocery, but that's because we ensure that all of our bars are made with only the best ingredients, no fillers, and no artificial ingredients—our quality is unmatched. For the absolute best soy-free chocolate bars, look no further than MidDay Squares. Head over to our site and give them a try - you won't be sorry!