There are a few ways to make white chocolate. If you are looking for a simple and easy way to make white chocolate at home, this post is for you.
White chocolate available in stores is loaded with tons of sugar and preservatives, which is why we always recommend making white chocolate at home. But what ingredients will you need? How long will it take to make chocolate? How can you store your homemade chocolate? These are some of the questions that we look at in this post.
Making white chocolate requires cocoa butter, sugar, powdered milk, and the know-how of a few simple techniques like melting appropriately, refrigerating, and storing in the right way. With the right ingredients and techniques, you can conveniently end up with the tastiest white chocolate at home.
The white chocolate that you find in stores is loaded with several undesirable ingredients. Tonnes of sugar is added to give the chocolate the right flavor and texture and are loaded with preservatives to increase the shelf life. Some manufacturers even replace cocoa butter with hydrogenated oils, which gives the chocolate a waxy texture and can also be detrimental to your health. So if you really want to enjoy white chocolate, the best thing you can do to yourself is to make white chocolate at home.
With years of experience in making white chocolate at home, we are in a position to give you a detailed insight into how to make white chocolate. So let’s get started.
How to Make White Chocolate
Making homemade white chocolate is relatively easy. It requires few basic ingredients, and the process is relatively simple. The three key ingredients that you need to make white chocolate include
- Cocoa Butter
- Dry Powdered Milk
- A sweetener
Let's take a closer look at each of the three ingredients and better understand how to make white chocolate.
Simply put, cocoa butter is edible fat (which has the consistency of vegetable oil) that comes from cocoa beans. Since it is not solid (unlike what we need to make dark chocolate), understanding cocoa butter can be challenging, so let's break it down a little further.
The process of extracting cocoa butter starts from the cocoa pod. When the cocoa pod is ripe, it is harvested for its seeds. These seeds are then fermented, dried, and then roasted. Roasting the seeds helps remove the shells through which we get cacao nibs. Following the extraction of the cacao nibs, they are processed into chocolate liquor. The following process involves the separation of liquor into two parts; the cocoa(which are turned into the regular chocolate or cocoa powder that you see) and the cocoa butter (the fatty content of the cacao nibs).
Cocoa butter doesn't have the flavor of chocolate at all. Instead, it is added to give a soft, smooth, and buttery texture to the chocolate.
If you are wondering which cocoa butter is best for your homemade white chocolate, know that you can go for any food-grade cocoa butter, but it is a good idea to use good quality cocoa butter so you can get the right texture for your white chocolate.
Dry Milk Powder
The other critical ingredient that you need to make homemade white chocolate is milk powder. You can choose any store-bought milk powder or go for homemade milk powder for your white chocolate, depending on your preference and convenience. However, if you are looking for vegan options for milk powder, you can choose soy milk powder or coconut milk powder.
Remember that you can only use dry milk powder. Using liquid milk for this recipe can ruin your white chocolate as your chocolate will not solidify.
You can use your favorite granulated sugar and make your own powdered sugar, depending on your choice. Cane sugar, coconut sugar, and monk fruit powder can all be used to make white chocolate, but if you are looking for low-calorie and sugar-free alternatives, you can also use powdered erythritol.
Again, just like you should avoid using liquid milk, you should also avoid using liquid sweeteners like maple as it can cause the chocolate to seize.
Optional Ingredient – Vanilla
An optional ingredient that you can use to enhance the flavor of your homemade white chocolate is vanilla. You should use vanilla straight from the pod for best results, but you can also use powdered vanilla.
Techniques Involved in Making White Chocolate
Now that you know the key ingredients that you need to make white chocolate, it's time to learn about a few techniques that are involved in making white chocolate at home. Remember, regardless of the form of cocoa butter (chocolate blocks or chips) you have chosen to make your white chocolate, the melting techniques will remain the same.
To get started with making white chocolate, you need to chop cocoa butter. Since it has a low melting point, it will melt easily. But if you are trying to melt a large block of cocoa butter, you will have a very tough time doing so.
Therefore, it is best to start by chopping the block of cocoa butter into small pieces, which helps in reducing the overall melting time. The finer you chop, the less time it will take for the chocolate to melt, and fewer will be the chances of scorching. Moreover, you can look forward to a more uniform melting of cocoa butter, resulting in a finer and smoother white chocolate.
While chopping aids in faster melting of the cocoa butter, make sure you never chop cocoa butter way in advance. Doing so will rip away the moisture from the butter and dry it out. Hence, it is best to always chop cocoa butter just before use. Moreover, you should never leave the block of cocoa butter out in the open, and make sure you seal it properly until you need it the next time.
To make white chocolate using cocoa butter, you need to melt solid cocoa butter. However, you should do it cautiously because cocoa butter can scorch easily which can negatively impact its taste and consistency. Moreover, remember that melting white chocolate is more challenging than dark chocolate due to its greater milk fat content. Furthermore, it melts at lower temperatures as it has a lower melting point, further increasing the risk of scorching. Thus, the safest way to heat the cocoa butter is to either use a double boiler or heat it in a microwave.
Cocoa butter can burn when heated above 95° C, and heating it directly can quickly burn it. Therefore, the best way to deal with chopped cocoa butter to make white chocolate is to use a double boiler to heat it, so the butter melts through indirect heating.
You can also place a saucepan with water on the stove and turn on the flame to heat the water. Next, you need to place another saucepan on top of your first saucepan such that water from the first saucepan doesn’t get into the cocoa butter. Once the water starts to heat up, let the water simmer, and that's when you can add chopped cocoa butter into the second saucepan. Keep stirring to ensure that all the cocoa butter melts evenly. Moreover, make sure the water in the first saucepan is not boiling and doesn’t get into the cocoa butter because even a single drop of water can cause the cocoa butter to clump or seize.
If water gets into your melted cocoa butter, you will have to discard the whole lot or use it for another recipe, but you can't make white chocolate using it.
The other method for heating cocoa butter is heating it in the microwave. While doing so, you need to place the chopped cocoa butter in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 20 seconds at medium or 50% power. Take out the bowl and stir the melting butter using a whisk. You may not be able to find any change following the first 20 seconds, but you can microwave it again for 20 seconds. Take out the bowl again and keep stirring. You will notice that the cocoa butter may have softened, so it's time to repeat the heating for 20 seconds. Take it out again and stir it and continue to microwave it at 20-second intervals until you find that your cocoa butter has melted completely. Stirring in between reduces the risk of overheating and scorching and ensures that the butter melts evenly.
Depending on the amount you want to melt, the time required to melt cocoa butter will vary. But if you have to melt a large piece of cocoa butter, it’s best to use the double boiler method.
Another technique involved in making white chocolate is tempering, and you need to know about it. The technique gives a shiny texture and the snapping sound that you hear when you bite the chocolate. The technique involves heating and cooling the cocoa butter at the right temperature, which ensures the formation of uniform crystal structure in the chocolate and involves continuously stirring the melted cocoa butter using a spoon until you obtain a shiny texture.h
Once you have melted the cocoa butter, you can add the remaining ingredients i.e., sweetener and dry milk powder, and stir the mixture well. Continue to mix and lift the mixture using a spoon or whisk.
While stirring, make sure you keep scraping the sides of the dish that has cocoa butter deposits until you get a shinier texture. At this point, if you feel your mixture is thick enough, you can place the bowl containing all the ingredients over a double boiler and allow the heat to melt it a little.
To check if your white chocolate has been tempered correctly, you can smear a little white chocolate onto a thin sheet of butter paper. If your white chocolate hardens within 5 minutes and has a glossy appearance, you have done the job right. In the case of improper tempering, your white chocolate will appear grainy and will have an unappetizing appearance due to the formation of non-uniform crystals during the tempering process.
Pouring into Molds
Following tempering, your white chocolate mixture is ready, and you can pour it into molds. You can easily find chocolate-making molds at any supermarket, and if you don't have one, you can use an ice-cube tray or jelly mold to pour your white chocolate mixture.
Once the white chocolate is set, you can place the mold on the middle shelf of your refrigerator, as it ensures uniform cooling. You can freeze your white, but it is not recommended because the process doesn't cool down the chocolate uniformly.
Refrigerate the chocolate for 4 to 5 hours before you eat it.
You can store white chocolate in an air-tight container with cling film before closing the lid and store the container in a cool, dry place. Remember, since white chocolate contains milk solids, it is highly perishable, so make sure you store it adequately and consume it within a few days to ensure that you get fresh and tasty white chocolate.
How To Flavor White Chocolate?
With these three ingredients mentioned above, you can create the base for white chocolate, but when it comes to flavoring white chocolate, you have tons of options! Some of the variations that you can try out to give a unique flavor to your white chocolate include spices (ginger and cinnamon) as well as freeze-dried fruit powder (such as strawberry and raspberry). You can also use oreo biscuits, peppermint, and crushed/ chopped candy bars of your choice.
About THE AUTHOR
Lori has been a Culinary Arts instructor for twenty years. She has taught in the public school setting, at the collegiate level and through adult continuing education as well as running several cooking and baking camps for children. She has participated in several cooking, cake & chocolate contests and has been well recognized. She has raised thousands of dollars for charities using the byline “Saving the World one Cupcake at a Time”. Additionally, she has had several articles regarding food published in various magazines.Read More About Lori Gilmore