A team of chemists led by Dr Stefan Bon from the University of Warwick in the UK have made chocolate healthier by swapping out 50% of the fat content for fruit juice. They infused the droplets of juice into chocolate using a ‘Pickering emulsion’ and were able to maintain the Polymorph V content; the substance in the crystal structure of the fat which gives chocolate its glossy appearance, firm and snappy texture, and allows it to melt smoothly in the mouth.
They infused orange and cranberry juice into milk, dark and white chocolate, creating a fruity-tasting product. Other flavors of juice could also be used, or water and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) instead of juice to keep its chocolatey taste intact. Dr Bon said:
Our study is just the starting point to healthier chocolate – we’ve established the chemistry behind this new technique but now we’re hoping the food industry will take our method to make tasty, lower-fat chocolate bars.
Hopefully the food industry will start producing this half-fat chocolate and scientists will find ways to make other fatty foods healthier too, without sacrificing taste.