Types of Chocolate – Our Favorite Sweet Treat

Chocolate comes from the seed of the Theobroma cacao tree that grows in Mexico, South America, and Central America. Mankind has been eating various forms of this treat for thousands of years. The beans from the cacao tree are fermented to help rid them of their very bitter taste and then they are roasted. Once roasted, the shells are removed and the part left is called cacao nibs.

To make chocolate, the nibs are ground and then liquefied. The resulting product is called chocolate liquor. This liquor can be further separated into cocoa butter and cocoa solids. The various types of chocolate available today are made from varying proportions of liquor, cocoa butter, and cocoa solids. Milk and sugar along with other flavorings are also added.

Baking chocolate has a strong bitter taste. It is made from the liquor which is added to a fat so it solidifies into a block form. This is the type used to bake cookies, cakes, and brownies. The semi-sweet variety is also used in cooking and is made from cacao, fat, and a very low amount of sugar. Dark Chocolate is made from cacao, fat, and sugar, while milk chocolate is made from cacao, fat, sugar, and milk. White chocolate is made with cocoa butter, nutmeg, and powdered sugar. It contains no cocoa solids.

Many types of candies and desserts are made from this popular sweet food. Ingredients such as peanuts, caramel, and fruit are often added to the mix in order to create tasty little treats. These are often sold in gift boxes or gourmet gift baskets. They are popular to give as gifts on holidays like Valentine’s Day and anniversaries.

These sweets are some of the first that we are introduced to as kids so most of us develop a life long love of this confection. That is why they make a perfect gift, even for people that are difficult to shop for. Hardly anyone would not like a nice box of delectable sweet treats.

It is easy to find sweets like candy bars at any type of store but to find true gourmet candy, you have to really look around. In fact, candy of high quality can be difficult to find. The best place to shop for them is over the internet where the selection is nearly limitless.

There are many types of chocolate and all kinds of candies and treats that can be made from them that range from the very sweet to the strong and bitter. You will find a variety that few other foods are able to deliver and that’s why so many people are in love with this treat.

Healthy Sweet Treats

When people think of healthy eating, immediately the idea of sweet treats fades into a one-time guilty pleasure, but it doesn’t have to fade away completely. While refined sugar is not the best for anybody, there are alternatives that can satisfy that sweet tooth while helping you reach your weight loss goals.


Fruit is always a good quick fix for a sugar craving. Biting into an apple can ease that sugar craving while providing ample amounts of vitamin A. One medium size apple contains only 95 calories and 4 grams of fiber. If apples aren’t your favorite, try frozen grapes. Grapes are another great bite-size treat that also prove key vitamins. One cup of grapes has over 100 calories and 1 gram of fiber.

Blending fruits like pineapple, bananas and mangoes with a little bit of yogurt can make a delicious smoothie that is nutritious and tasty. If you need more portable treats, add some dried fruits to your bag and you have a sweet treat at your fingertips all the time. However, remember that dried fruits have more sugar and are less filling per ounce than their fresh counterparts.

Frozen Yogurt

Frozen yogurt can quickly satisfy that sweet tooth, and is pleasant and refreshing year round. It has been shown that yogurt has natural cultures that aid in digestion and help regulate the digestive track. It also adds a healthy boost of calcium to your diet. The added bonus with frozen yogurt is the vast array of flavors you can get. It isn’t just vanilla anymore, so you can indulge in other sweet flavors, like chocolate and strawberry, and many frozen yogurt shops include fresh fruit among the available mix-ins. With significantly fewer calories than ice cream, this is a healthy dessert which enhances your weight loss plan while easing that sweet tooth.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt has come a long way too. Different varieties of Greek yogurt are available for healthy diets. With flavors like caramel, honey and chocolate, Greek yogurt can satisfy any sugar craving while providing the same benefits as frozen yogurt.

No matter your preference, sugar doesn’t have to be completely omitted from a healthy diet. Honey and blue agave are also great natural substitutes for refined sugar. If you have a sweet tooth, don’t worry – you can have your sweets and lose weight too. With a proper diet and exercise regiment, you can reach your weight loss goals; however, a good natural weight loss supplement can assist a solid diet and exercise program, especially a natural appetite suppressant that can help curb those sugary cravings.

Frosting Choices For Sweet Treats

Most cakes, unless prepared by an expert, have to rely on frosting to give them a bit of punch. That sweet, smooth and creamy layer on top is what adults and children tend to look for when shopping for and sampling cakes. It may surprise amateurs to know that there are different types of frosting and each offers a unique flavor.

To make frosting, powdered sugar or sugar substitute is always used. Cream, egg white, artificial coloring and essences are added to transform an ordinary round cake into one that features patterns, vibrant colors and a combination of flavors.


Cakes and other baked goods with a glistening surface have glaze applied to them. This is nothing but a simple preparation of sugar and liquid that can be brushed or poured. When it sets, it hardens into a shiny layer. If ordinary glaze is not used, melted chocolate can be applied to achieve a richer flavor.


Buttercream is a soft, sweet and buttery frosting that’s extremely popular. It can be spread like butter and is favored by both children and adults as an indulgent treat. It doesn’t set into a hard candy-like finish.

Comprising powdered sugar, liquid and artificial flavoring and color, buttercream achieves its creamy state because of prolonged beating or whisking to make it fluffy, smooth and easily spreadable.

Royal icing

More popular back when buttercream wasn’t, royal icing is still favored by many for decorating elaborate cakes as it sets and holds its shape. Like the rest, it contains powdered sugar, liquid and artificial color and flavor. Meringue powder is sometimes used.

Where buttercream is creamy, royal icing feels and tastes like candy. Use it when you intend to decorate cakes more elaborately.

Whipped cream

Easy to make and an all-time favorite, whipped cream frosting can be used to top cakes, cupcakes, cookies and pies. It isn’t as heavy as buttercream or royal icing and not as sweet. This makes it especially suitable for summertime desserts. You can also use it along with other types of frosting. Its composition is the same as the rest but with the addition of whipped cream.

Cream cheese

For a rich taste that will linger long after sweet treats are eaten, choose cream cheese. It’s smooth, thick and very filling. Cupcakes, muffins and carrot cakes go especially well with cream cheese frosting. Try to avoid dyes which create too bright a color and enjoy the original ivory texture.

Fudge icing

Wintertime treats can be topped with rich fudge icing for an energy boost. It’s rarely dyed as the dark brown color is what transforms cakes, brownies and cookies into mouth-watering goodies. To make fudge icing, use powdered sugar, butter, milk, cocoa powder and vanilla essence. Refrigerate to preserve it for up to a week.


A simple mix of cocoa powder and heavy cream, ganache can be fluffy or stiff. It boasts a rich chocolate flavor and a delicious deep brown. The mix is beaten until fluffy or stiff to use as cake decorations, make truffles or coat a cake with a creamy layer of sweetness.

Rolled fondant

Where overly sweet frosting is not desired, rolled fondant delivers a blander taste. It’s pliable with a satin smoothness that makes it suitable for complex cake decorations. Consisting of powdered sugar, glycerin, gelatin and glucose syrup, it’s the only frosting that can be stored up to 2 months when refrigerated.