Science Agrees: This Is the Healthiest Type of Chocolate
As all great lovers do, we made you a mix, dear reader—of chocolate, that is. In all seriousness, if you're trying to eat healthier but also refuse to give up your chocolate addiction, we have a solution for you: gourmet and health-conscious dark chocolate bars. According to Josh Axe, DNM, DC, CNS, the antioxidants in dark chocolate can protect you against disease-causing free radicals while the flavanols can improve cardiovascular health, among other benefits. And according to those of us with a sweet tooth, it's good for overall happiness simply because it tastes so good.
To celebrate this incredible news, we decided to round up the best dark chocolate bars and bites. Some are foodie-friendly while others allow you to shop with a conscience or stay true to your dietary restrictions, from kosher to vegan to gluten-free. Once you decide which chocolate treat you want to try first, we suggest sticking it in your purse or on your bedside table for easy access next time your sweet tooth starts to nag at you.
Ready to get cuckoo with some cacao? (Sorry for that sentence, it must the sugar talking.) Scroll through our selection of the 15 best dark chocolate bars to indulge in below.
Dandelion Chocolate Mantuano, Venezuela ($8)
Located in San Francisco, Dandelion Chocolate makes thoughtfully crafted, small batch bars. This one comes from "Coperativa Flor de Mantuano, a small-scale, women-run cooperative on the northern Venezuelan coast." If you like farm-to-table dining, you'll love bean-to-bar nibbling.
Zenbunni Moonjuice Chocolate ($3)
Zenbunni collaborated with Moon Juice to bring us these bite-sized alchemical chocolates. Low in calories and high in healing properties like intracellular antioxidants and chlorophyll, this treat will improve metabolism. It's particularly special for astrological Cancers since you share a ruling planet and element (moon and water respectively).
Letterpress Chocolate Liberia, Liberation Cocoa ($12)
This chocolate bar is so much more than just a dessert option. As stated on the Letterpress Chocolate website, "Liberation Cocoa rehabilitates cacao farms in the Butuo region of Liberia. Former child soldiers are hired and trained to cultivate and harvest cacao in Grand Bassa and Grand Gedee, and relocate with their families to safer areas."
Askinosie Dark Chocolate and Toasted Coconut Bar ($9)
This bar is the yummy result of a collaboration between Askinosie and the founders behind A Beautiful Mess. Close your eyes as you bite into this bar, and the sweet, fruity taste of toasted coconut will make you feel like you're on a tropical beach getaway.
Sakara Probiotic Chocolate ($30)
While these tasty bites aren't exactly a great dessert choice, they definitely taste like they are. They're sort of like the grown up version of those gummy vitamins you took as a kid. In fact, each bite of dark chocolate contains 10 billion active bacterial cells to support gut health, plus coconut sugar to prevent insulin spikes.
Which of these bars do you think is the best dark chocolate? Make your cases below, and let the games (and snacking) begin in the comment section.