The 8 Types Of Cocoa Powder And How To Use Them

You probably won’t find dark cocoa powder on the shelf of your regular grocery store. This specialty item is a form of Dutch cocoa powder that has been exposed to more of the alkalization process, leading to dark cocoa powder with a much higher pH than other varieties.

Dark cocoa powder is a natural food coloring used to create dark baked goods — it can be used as a substitute for Dutch but not natural cocoa powders, according to Modern Mountain Flour Company. If you’re using it as a substitute, it’s best to only swap out some of the cocoa powder in a recipe, according to Mashed. It is best used in conjunction with other cocoa powders, as dark cocoa powder alone can result in crumbly, dry baked goods. This could partly be due to its low fat content, with the Weirdo Good brand running at 10% and Modern Mountain Flour at around 14%.

If the color of dark cocoa powder reminds you of Oreos, you’re on the right track. Dark cocoa powder can be really dark, but that depends on whether it’s organic or not. According to organic dark cocoa producer Weirdo Good, organic regulations only allow certain amounts and types of alkalizing agents to make dark cocoa powder, preventing them from turning as dark as non-organic brands. They point out that there are downsides to truly dark cocoa powder: If the alkalization process is taken far enough, ultra-Dutch cocoa powder can lead to bitter, burnt flavors.

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