Keto Chocolates: 9 Best Low Carb Dark Chocolate Bars & Brands

So you’ve decided to eat a low-carb diet.

woman enjoying chocolate

You’ve made an excellent decision for your health - on a ketogenic diet, you can lose weight rapidly and improve your overall well-being.

But you already know you will be giving up a lot of foods.

While you do not have to stop eating them entirely, you do need to reduce them to a bare minimum.

Sweets of course fall into that category.

Desserts tend to be high in carbohydrates since they contain a lot of sugar, and that includes chocolatey favourites like cakes, pies, ice creams, cookies and so on.

But do you really need to avoid chocolate while you are on a low carb diet?

In this article, we’ll take a look at the pros and cons of chocolate, as well as which low-carb chocolates are best if you want to stick with your keto rules.

Types of Chocolate

Technically, chocolate isn’t actually a sugary dessert in and of itself. This is surprisingly easy to forget.

It is simply a tasty ingredient which tends to be used in such sugary desserts.

You should be avoiding sugar, but chocolate itself is a different story.

To understand how chocolate can fit into a healthy keto diet, we need to examine its nutritional properties.

First of all, what is chocolate?

Chocolate is a substance made out of seeds from the cacao tree, also called the cocoa tree and known scientifically as Theobroma cacao.

In order to make chocolate, the seeds must first be fermented, roasted and then ground up.

Chocolate may be a solid block, or it can take the form of a liquid or a paste.

People have been enjoying chocolate since at least 1900 BC.

white, dark, milk chocolate bars with knive and fork

There are a few common types of chocolate:

Baking chocolate

This is cocoa solids and cocoa butter combined without any form of sweetening.

Sometimes, this type of chocolate is also referred to as unsweetened chocolate or bitter chocolate.

Take note however that some products marketed as “baking chocolate” are in fact sweetened.

Milk chocolate

This is the type which most people are talking about by default when they mention “chocolate.”

Milk chocolate is a sweetened form of chocolate which has condensed milk or milk powder added to it.

Both cocoa butter and cocoa solids are contained in milk chocolate.

White chocolate

This is a sweetened treat which contains milk, sugar, and cocoa butter. Unlike milk chocolate, there are no cocoa solids.

For this reason, it is debatable whether it actually should be classified as “chocolate” in a meaningful sense.

Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate is also a sweet chocolate, but it generally has a more bitter flavor than milk chocolate.

This is because it contains a higher percentage of cocoa solids. The more cocoa solids which are in dark chocolate, the more bitter it tastes.

Semi-sweet chocolate

This refers to a subset of dark chocolate which is low in sugar.

Bittersweet chocolate

A form of chocolate liquor to which sugar, vanilla and cocoa butter added may be known as bittersweet chocolate.

Raw chocolate 

This form of baking chocolate is required to be 75% composed of cacao.

Not sure where chocolate liquor is? 

This should not be confused with "chocolate liqueur." The former contains no alcohol, while the latter does.

Chocolate liquor is simply a paste consisting of roughly 50% cocoa solids and 50% cocoa butter.

Indeed, it is simply another way of referring to baking chocolate. When it is subjected to heat, it melts.

KEY POINT: Chocolate comes in a number of varieties.

The one that most people think of automatically is milk chocolate, which is a sweetened form of chocolate. 

Nonetheless, there are other varieties as well, including dark chocolate (which contains a higher percentage of cocoa solids) and baking chocolate (which is unsweetened.

Is Cacao Different From Cocoa?

You will often see the words “cacao” and “cocoa” used interchangeably. But are they the same?

The answer seems to depend largely on who you ask.

Aromatic cocoa, powder and food dessert background

Many people actually do use these two words interchangeably, so there is not always a definite difference between them.

Some people however use them in more specific way:

  • Cacao refers to the raw, unprocessed substance.
  • Cocoa on the other hand refers to cacao which has been alkalized. This process can reach nutrition out of the product.

So if you want to maximize your nutritional benefits, you may want to shop specifically for “cacao” products.

Just be aware that sometimes products labelled “cacao” might be processed, and in other cases, those labelled “cocoa” may not be, since these two words are so often interchanged.

For that reason, if it concerns you, I recommend that you check the product labeling to see if whether alkalizing has been used or not.

If you cannot find that information on the packaging, you can call the manufacturer and ask directly.

KEY POINT: For those who like to get specific, “cacao” is raw and unprocessed, while “cocoa” has been alkalized.

As many people use these two terms interchangeably, however, you should do some extra research when you're shopping.

Going off of the word used alone may not be enough to tell you what you are getting.

​Nutritional Facts for Chocolate

Now that you are familiar with some of the basic types of chocolate you might see for sale, we can look at nutritional facts for a few of them.

Milk Chocolate

pile of milk chocolate bars

Here is what is contained in 100 grams of milk chocolate (1):

  • Calories: 535
  • Carbohydrates: 59.4 g
  • Sugars: 51.5 g
  • Total fat: 29.7 g
  • Saturated fat: 18.5 g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 7.2 g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 1.4 g
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: 122 mg
  • Omega-6 fatty acids: 1218 mg
  • Protein: 7.5 g

Here are some nutrients which milk chocolate contains notable amounts of:

  • Riboflavin: 0.3 mg (18% DV)
  • Vitamin B12: 0.7 mcg (12% DV)
  • Calcium: 189 mg (19% DV)
  • Iron: 2.4 mg (13% DV)
  • Magnesium: 63.0 mg (16% DV)
  • Phosphorus: 208 mg (21% DV)
  • Potassium: 372 mg (11% DV)
  • Zinc: 2.3 mg (15% DV)
  • Copper: 0.5 mg (25% DV)
  • Manganese: 0.5 mg (24% DV)

Dark Chocolate, 45-59% Cacao Solids

lindt 50% cacoa

Here is what is contained in 100 grams of dark chocolate consisting of 45-59% cacao solids (2):

  • Calories: 543
  • Total carbohydrates: 61.8 g
  • Sugars: 47.9 g
  • Total fat: 30.6 g
  • Saturated fat: 18.5 g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 9.5 g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 1.1 g
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: 86 mg
  • Omega-6 fatty acids: 999 mg
  • Protein: 4.9 g

This form of dark chocolate also contains:

  • Iron: 8 mg (45% DV)
  • Magnesium: 146 mg (37% DV)
  • Phosphorus: 206 (21% DV)
  • Potassium: 559 mg (16% DV)
  • Zinc: 2 mg (13% DV)
  • Copper: 1 mg (51% DV)
  • Manganese: 1.4 mg (71% DV)

Dark Chocolate, 70-85% Cacao Solids

lindt 85% cacoa

Here is what is contained in 100 grams of dark chocolate consisting of 70-85% cacao solids (3):

  • Calories: 599
  • Carbs: 45.8 g
  • Sugars: 24 g
  • Total fat: 42.7 g
  • Saturated fat: 24.5 g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 1.3 g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 12.8 g
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: 34 mg
  • Omega-6 fatty acids: 1218 mg
  • Protein: 7.8 g

This type of dark chocolate also contains:

  • Vitamin K: 7.3 mcg (9% DV)
  • Iron: 11.9 mg (66%)
  • Magnesium: 228 mg (57%)
  • Phosphorus: 308 mg (31% DV)
  • Potassium: 715 mg (20% DV)
  • Zinc: 3.3 mg (22% DV)
  • Copper: 1.8 mg (88%)
  • Manganese: 1.9 mg (97%)

Baking Chocolate, Unsweetened, Squares

baking chocolate

100 g of unsweetened baking chocolate has the following nutritional properties (4):

  • Calories: 501
  • Carbohydrates: 29.8 g
  • Sugars: 0.9 g
  • Total fat: 52.3 g
  • Saturated fat: 32.4 g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 16.1 g
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: 117 mg
  • Omega-6 fatty acids: 1437 mg
  • Protein: 12.9 g

This much baking chocolate also provides you with the following nutritional benefits:

  • Vitamin K: 9.7 mcg (12% DV)
  • Thiamin: 0.1 mg (10% DV)
  • Calcium: 101 mg (10%)
  • Iron: 17.4 mg (97%)
  • Magnesium: 327 mg (82%)
  • Phosphorus: 400 mg (40%)
  • Zinc: 9.6 mg (64%)
  • Copper: 3.2 mg (162%)
  • Selenium: 8.1 mcg (12%)

Comparing these nutritional facts for the different types of chocolates, you can make the following observations:

  • Surprisingly, dark chocolate comprised of 45-59% actually has the highest carbohydrate content at 61.8 g. Milk chocolate’s carb content is lower, at 59.4 g. Lower yet is dark chocolate with 70-85% cacao solids, with 45.8 g carbs. The lowest carb content by far is 29.8 for unsweetened chocolate.
  • Baking chocolate is the most nutritionally dense form of chocolate. In general however, the nutrient content across the board is pretty similar. Chocolate isn’t particularly high in vitamins, but it is a great source of minerals.

So, interestingly enough, you cannot apparently assume flat-out that dark chocolate is always a more keto-friendly choice than milk chocolate.

Not all dark chocolates are equal.

For this reason, you should actually check the nutritional information on the back of the package before you invest in any chocolate.

Make sure that the carbs really are within the range you are aiming for.

KEY POINT: You are now familiar with the nutritional content of several types of chocolate.

The most keto-friendly choice is unsweetened chocolate, but dark chocolate with a high concentration of cacao solids is also a good option.

​Is Chocolate Actually Bad For You?

You should be able to see just from reviewing the nutritional data above that calling chocolate “bad” for you is an oversimplification.

Chocolate obviously is quite nutritious in some respects.

Still, there is a tendency for people to think of it as unhealthy since it often shows up in unhealthy dessert dishes.

Chocolate sweet question mark

Let’s consider based on the information above a few ways in which chocolate is unhealthy:

  • Omega-6 fatty acids significantly outweigh omega-3 fatty acids. This is a pro-inflammatory ratio.
  • The carbs can add up fast if you are eating a lot of chocolate. Of course, if you are keeping it to a minimum, they are not so problematic. A single square of unsweetened chocolate for example only contains 8.7 total carbs.

Beyond that, most of the news is good.

Consider the fat profile for example. Only a relatively small percentage is comprised of polyunsaturated fat.

That is great, because that type of fat contains less stable bonds, and is thus not as good for you as other types of fat.

Obviously the protein and mineral content of chocolate is beneficial.

So you do not want to overindulge, but eating a reasonable amount of chocolate as part of your regular diet should not be harmful, especially if you are balancing it out by eating other foods which are rich in omega-3 anti-inflammatory fatty acids.

KEY POINT: You should not eat too much chocolate since it is high in omega-6 fatty acids and does contain significant carbohydrates.

But on the whole, its nutritional profile is largely favourable.

But Wait … Is Chocolate Contaminated With Heavy Metals?

Back in 2015, a consumer watchdog called As You Sow tested more than 120 different chocolate products, and discovered that 96 of them were contaminated with more cadmium and/or lead than is safely permitted by Proposition 65 in California.

chocolate with spoon

Very few brands escaped unscathed from As You Sow’s tests.

That includes huge brands like Hershey’s, Trader Joe’s, and Ghirardelli, and smaller, more specialized brands like Equal Exchange and Endangered Species.

You can view the results of the tests directly on As You Sow’s website (17).

You can also read an article the Washington Post ran on this topic (18).

Now, it is important to keep in mind that this was several years ago.

These companies have had time to change their sourcing and manufacturing processes and/or label their products correctly with the required warnings.

This was very big news when it broke.

You will notice this when you read product reviews and customer questions and answers for chocolates while shopping online.

A lot of buyers are asking about heavy metal toxicity.

My recommendation is to do your own research.

If there is a company you are thinking of buying chocolate for, see if that company has provided any updates on its chocolate toxicity issues, and find out what kind of testing they may be doing to prevent contaminated products from reaching the market.

KEY POINT: Chocolate contamination by heavy metals such as lead and cadmium is a valid concern, as discovered by a consumer watchdog in 2015.

Since time has passed, many companies may have taken steps to prevent contamination.

Be aware of this issue while you are shopping for chocolate, and check for current testing data on the chocolates you buy.

​Health Benefits of Chocolate

chocolate heart on hands

Now that you know you do not need to be afraid of chocolate, let’s talk about some of its advantages for health:

  1. ​Chocolate is rich in polyphenols (6, 7, 8, 9, 10).
  2. Ingredients in chocolate can help you lose weight and potentially prevent diabetes (11, 12).
  3. Chocolate has benefits for cardiovascular health (13, 14, 15)
  4. Eating chocolate supports brain health (14, 15).
  5. You can get a very real boost to your mood from eating chocolate (16).
  6. Chocolate is dense with nutrition (3).
  7. The polyphenols in dark chocolate can reduce oxidized LDL (19).
  8. Eating dark chocolate may protect your skin from the sun (20).
  9. HDL levels improve thanks to dark chocolate (21).
  10. You can improve blood pressure by eating dark chocolate (22).
  11. It is possible that eating dark chocolate may even help to prevent cancer (23).
  12. Reduce the risk of stroke as well as blood clots (24).
  13. Chocolate may be good for your eyes (25).

To examine these benefits in detail, read our article 13 benefits of dark chocolate.

​Buying the Right Chocolate for a Keto Diet

Now that you know more about both the good and the bad concerning chocolate and health, and you are aware of the different types of chocolate as well as some of the nutritional variations between them, we can come up with a shortlist of action tips to help you choose the right chocolate when you're shopping.

milk, dark and white chocolate on wooden background

Dark chocolate is often a more keto-friendly choice that milk chocolate or white chocolate.

While dark chocolate is usually preferable to milk chocolate, it depends on the concentrations of the different ingredients, so you should always check the nutritional information on the back to find out how many carbohydrates are really in a serving.

Try looking for semi-sweet chocolate.

This type of dark chocolate specifically has a low sugar content, and may be superior over other forms of dark chocolate for a keto diet.

Consider simply buying unsweetened baking chocolate if you are preparing a recipe.

This gives you the option of using an alternative sweetener while preparing food or beverages, keeping sugar to the absolute minimum.

Just keep in mind that this is not the best choice if you are simply looking for some chocolate too much on. For that, dark chocolate is preferred.

Watch out for unnecessary additives. Sugar is not the only thing you want to avoid on a keto diet.

You also want to avoid unwanted artificial ingredients.​

Be aware of the possibility of heavy metal contamination.

If in doubt, look for recent testing data for lead, cadmium and other heavy metals for the chocolate brand you are thinking of purchasing.

Do not neglect flavor and texture.

While nutrition is your primary concern, flavor and texture can vary quite a bit between brands, so that is something else to consider while you are shopping.

KEY POINT: Shopping for chocolate to enjoy on a ketogenic diet is fairly simple and straightforward now that you are familiar with the different classifications of chocolate and are willing to look at the nutritional facts on products before you purchase them.

Top ​13 ​​Low Carb Keto Chocolates

​To save you time in your search for the most low-carb keto-friendly chocolates, I have done some research to bring you some of the best options which are currently out there.

I have also included total and net carbs for ​easy comparison.​

Dark Chocolates

This is a dark chocolate from Lindt which consists of 90% cocoa.

​It makes for a delicious treat, and is a good choice for those who like their chocolate very dark.

Ingredients: Chocolate, cocoa butter, cocoa powder processed with alkali, sugar, bourbon with vanilla beans.

From serving size 40g (4 squares):

  • Fat: 22 g (13 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 12 g (3 g sugar, 5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 7 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 55 g (32.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 30 g (7.5 g sugar, 12.5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 17.5 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • Lindt chocolate has a smooth, creamy texture which not all competing brands can boast. I have to admit that I am biased however, as I am rather a big fan of Lindt chocolate.
  • 4 squares of chocolate contains only 12 g of carbohydrates.
  • This chocolate is gluten-free.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • The package says that there may be trace amounts of milk, tree nuts, peanuts or soybeans.
  • The alkalizing process used on the cocoa powder strips away some of the antioxidants.

While this product may appear to be nearly identical to the one above, I have included it for a specific reason, and that is that the alkalizing process is not used for the 85% bar.

Ingredients: Chocolate, cocoa powder, cocoa butter, demerara sugar, bourbon vanilla beans.

From serving size 40g (4 squares):

  • Fat: 18 g (11 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 15 g (5 g sugar, 6 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 9 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 45 g (27.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 37.5 g (12.5 g sugar, 15 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 22.5 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • Lindt chocolates are delicious, smooth and silky.
  • This is a gluten-free chocolate product.
  • 4 squares contains 15 carbs. This is not as low as the carbs for the 90% Lindt dark chocolate bar above, but it is still pretty low.
  • There is no alkalizing process used for this dark chocolate.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • This chocolate may contain trace amounts of soybean, milk, peanuts or tree nuts. Obviously this is only an issue if you happen to be allergic.

Another dark chocolate product you can try is Lily’s Dark Chocolate Chips.

These chocolate chips are sweetened with this stevia and other natural alternative sweeteners instead of sugar.

Ingredients: Unsweetened chocolate, erythritol, cocoa powder, inulin, cocoa butter, organic soy lecithin, natural vanilla, and stevia extract

From serving size 14g (6 chips):

  • Fat: 4 g (2.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 8 g (0 g sugar, 3 g erythritol, 2 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 4.5 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 28.6 g (17.9 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 57.1 g (0 g sugar, 21.4 g erythritol, 14.3 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 21.4 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • The ingredients list contains nothing but natural, wholesome goodness.
  • These dark chocolates are sweet to the taste, but completely free of sugar.
  • Because no actual sugar is used in these chocolates, they are not as overwhelming sweet in flavor as some others you may have tried.
  • Online, you can get a pretty good deal buying these dark chocolate chips in bulk.
  • These are of course ideal for making chocolate chip cookies, but they also make a delicious snack.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • This product contains soy, which isn’t good for everyone.
  • The product is manufactured in a facility which also handles tree nuts, peanuts, and milk.

If you want to purchase delicious, nutritious dark chocolate while protecting endangered species, you can do so by purchasing this product manufactured using shade-grown cocoa beans.

Ingredients: Bittersweet chocolate (chocolate liquor, cane sugar, soy lecithin, vanilla).

From serving size 43g (1/2 bar):

  • Fat: 20 g (11 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 17 g (5 g sugar, 6 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 11 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 46.5 g (25.6 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 39.5 g (11.6 g sugar, 14 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 25.5 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • The ingredients list is short and natural..
  • The cocoa used in this product is purchased through fair trade practices from Alliance Certified™ farms owned by small families.
  • 10% of your purchase price is donated by the manufacturer to protect endangered species.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • This product contains soy and possible traces of peanuts.
  • Like many other chocolates, Endangered Species Panther, Dark Chocolate is manufactured in a facility which also processes peanuts, tree nuts and milk.
  • Some purchasers claim that the texture of this chocolate is a bit on the crumbly, brittle side.

This dark chocolate is made using ingredients harvested in Bolivia, and consists of 85% cocoa.

Ingredients: Organic cacao beans, organic cocoa butter, organic raw cane sugar, organic vanilla beans.

From serving size 40g (5 section):

  • Fat: 22 g (13 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 11 g (6 g sugar, 5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 6 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 55 g (32.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 27.5 g (15 g sugar, 12.5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 15 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • The products uses all-natural ingredients.
  • The manufacturer chooses to partner with small-scale Bolivian farmers who follow sustainable agricultural practices.
  • This chocolate is GMO free and vegan friendly.
  • This chocolate is a particularly suitable choice for cooking since it melts effectively, even though it is 85% cocoa. Many buyers feel that this extra level of quality is worth the higher price.
  • This company does not use alkalizing to manufacture its chocolates.
  • While the chocolate is strong, it is not as bitter as some other competing products.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • The price per ounce is significantly higher for this product than it is for many others on our list.
  • Trace amounts of milk, cashew, almond or hazelnut may be present.

Another popular dark chocolate bar which is similarly priced to the Alter Eco Americas Organic Chocolate Bar above is the 88% cocoa bar from Equal Exchange, marketed as their “Extreme” dark chocolate bar.

Ingredients: Organic chocolate liquor, organic cocoa butter, organic raw cane sugar, organic ground vanilla beans.

From serving size 40g (12 pieces):

  • Fat: 22 g (13 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 12 g (4 g sugar, 5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 7 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 55 g (32.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 30 g (10 g sugar, 12.5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 17.5 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • Equal Exchange dark chocolates contain natural organic ingredients.
  • This chocolate has a delightfully smooth texture.
  • The chocolate is free of soy and gluten.
  • All ingredients used are obtained through fair trade and are grown on small-scale farms in Paraguay, Peru and the Dominican Republic.
  • USDA Certified Organic.
  • Certified Kosher.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • Some customers complain that the texture of the chocolate is a bit hard, but this is expected with dark chocolate.
  • Equal Exchange dark chocolate bars tend to be a bit pricier than many competing bars.
  • May contain peanuts

A dark chocolate bar with similar ingredients to others on this list is the 85% Green & Black’s Organic Dark Chocolate bar.

Ingredients: ​ Cocoa mass, cocoa butter, fat-reduced cocoa powder, raw cane sugar, vanilla extract.

May contain ​nuts, and ​milk​. Organic Dark Chocolate: minimum Cocoa Solids 85%, Cocoa, Sugar, Vanilla

From serving size ​20g (pieces):

  • Fat: 10.5 g (​6.4 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 4.5 g (​2.7 g sugar, ​2.3 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 1​.8 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 53.5 g (32​ g saturated)
  • Total carbs: ​22.5 g (1​3.5 g sugar, 1​1.5 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: ​9 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • Contains natural ingredients: ​Organic dark chocolate.
  • USDA Certified Organic.
  • Chocolate is Fair Trade and UN Certified Ethically Sourced.
  • The texture of this chocolate is surprisingly creamy considering how dark it is.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • There may be trace amounts of soy, tree nuts and milk from the manufacturing process.
  • This product contains soy.

If you are looking for a dark chocolate bar with a lower cacao content, consider the DAGOBA Organic Chocolate Candy Bar.

This bar is 74% cacao.

Ingredients: Organic dark chocolate (organic cocao butter, cane sugar, cocao beans, non-gmo soy lecithin), milk.

From serving size 40g (12 pieces):

  • Fat: 20 g (12 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 15 g (8 g sugar, 4 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 11 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 50 g (30 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 37.5 g (20 g sugar, 10 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 27.5 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • Ingredients are natural.
  • The ingredients come from Rainforest Alliance Certified Farms. This makes this bar an eco-friendly choice for those who want to protect the environment.
  • Certified Organic.
  • Gluten-free.
  • Kosher.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • There is milk in this product, so it is not vegan-friendly.
  • There is soy in this chocolate.

This product is an import from Germany, and consists of 85% cocoa.

Ingredients: Chocolate (cocoa liquor, cocoa butter, fat-reduced cocoa), sugar, soy lecithin emulsifier, vanilla extract.

From serving size 50g (2 pieces):

  • Fat: 25 g (15 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 18 g (7 g sugar, 6 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 12 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 50 g (30 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 36 g (14 g sugar, 12 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 24 g
What we like about this dark chocolate:
  • The ingredients list is short and simple.
  • This product has a smooth, delicious texture and taste.
What we don’t like about this dark chocolate:
  • The alkalizing process was used to make these dark chocolate bars.
  • The bars contain soy.
  • There is not as much information on these chocolate bars online as there are on some competing products.

​Baking Chocolates

Ghirardelli is one of the best-known names in the chocolate world.

Chances are good you have already tried some of their sweetened products. But did you know they also make baking chocolate?

Ingredients: Unsweetened chocolate.

From serving size 42g (3 sections):

  • Fat: 22 g (13 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 14 g (0 g sugar, 7 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 7 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 52.4 g (31 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 33.3 g (0 g sugar, 16.7 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 16.6 g
What we like about this baking chocolate:
  • This baking chocolate is 100% cacao with no added ingredients.
  • There is no sweetening of any sort with this chocolate.
  • This brand of chocolate is well-respected for its delicious flavor and creamy texture. Even unsweetened, it is relatively smooth. It is not too hard to break apart.
What we don’t like about this baking chocolate:
  • The chocolate may contain trace amounts of milk, soy and tree nuts owing to manufacturing.

This product is a bag of cacao nibs, which are actually just cacao beans which have been crushed.

You should note that this means that they do not taste like other chocolate products that you tried.

They are most similar in flavor to 90% dark chocolate, but still more bitter than that.

Ingredients: Certified organic cacao nibs (Theobroma cacao).

From serving size 30g (3 tbsp):

  • Fat: 15 g (9 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 11 g (0 g sugar, 8 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 3 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 50 g (30 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 36.7 g (0 g sugar, 26.7 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 10 g
What we like about this chocolate:
  • There is only one ingredient: certified organic cacao nibs. This product is as pure as it gets, and comes straight from Peru. The nibs have been carefully processed in such a way as to preserve as much of their nutritional content as possible.
  • This is a great source of magnesium and potassium.
  • This is a versatile cocoa product which can work great in snack foods, cereals, yogurt, and desserts and much more.
  • There is no sugar at all in this product, only pure cacao.
  • This is a dairy-free product which is entirely plant-based, and therefore an excellent choice for vegans and vegetarians.
  • The manufacturer is B Corps certified. This is a measure of environmental friendliness.
What we don’t like about this chocolate:
  • Some nibs still have some shell attached. This is not really a problem, but some customers may find it annoying.
  • There are customers who may feel that this product has a somewhat sour taste and odor which is off-putting. Most however enjoy the flavor.

Another option for unsweetened baking chocolate is the Scharffen Berger Baking Bar.

This bar consists of 99% cacao with the remaining 1% being comprised of vanilla.

Ingredients: Cacao beans, whole vanilla beans.

From serving size 55g (1 block):

  • Fat:  30 g (19 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 14 g (less than 1 g sugar, 9 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 6 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 54.5 g (34.5 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 25.5 g (less than 1.8 g sugar, 16.4 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 9.1 g
What we like about this baking chocolate:
  • The ingredients list is short and simple.
  • The product is gluten-free according to FDA standards.
  • You get large bars in this package, so they should last you a while.
What we don’t like about this baking chocolate:
  • This baking chocolate is a bit more expensive per ounce than some of the others on this list.

​Other Chocolates

If you are looking for a healthy cacao powder which you can use to make hot cocoa, smoothies, shakes and so forth, you might consider this popular product from Viva Naturals.

It can also be used for baking.

Ingredients: Organic cacao powder (Theobroma cacao)

From serving size 5g (1 tbsp):

  • Fat:  0.5 g (0 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 3 g (0 g sugar, 1 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 2 g

From 100 g:

  • Fat: 10 g (0 g saturated)
  • Total carbs: 60 g (0 g sugar, 20 g fiber)
  • Net carbs: 40 g
What we like about this cacao powder:
  • The only ingredient is organic cacao powder. This is the real, pure deal. Criollo cacao beans from Peru are used to provide a rich chocolate taste without a really bitter edge.
  • Because the beans are grown at a high elevation, they are not exposed to as much moisture, which helps keep nutritional content intact.
  • Viva Naturals subjects all its beans to third-party testing to ensure that they are nutritious and uncontaminated by mold or heavy metals. The company is responsive to questions on this topic and offers thorough public responses.
  • Non-GMO.
  • Fair Trade and sustainably harvested.
  • Certified Organic.
  • Gluten-free.
What we don’t like about this cacao powder:
  • Some customers complain that there are some small bits of shell or stem mixed in with the powder.

Conclusion: You Do Not Have to Sacrifice Chocolate on a Ketogenic Diet

It is true that while eating a low-carb keto diet you will need to avoid a lot of traditional desserts, but that does not mean that you have to give up chocolate in the bargain.

Unsweetened chocolate is not nearly as high in carbohydrates as you might think.

So long as you stick with this type of chocolate for your recipes, or you select low-carb dark chocolate to snack on, you should be able to enjoy chocolate on a regular basis without going over your daily carb limit.

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  • Updated February 10, 2019

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Wow these look delightful! Dr. Pawluk who specializes in magnetic field therapy treatment also advised that dark chocolate is great for you!

That’s interesting. I didn’t know about the toxicity.

Thanks for sharing this info on this brand of chocolates! Love to learn more!


#7 Green & Black 85% Dark, has wrong information in the 100g nutrition values, also an error in the “what we like about” the item. The ingredients listed is NOT what is listed on the bars or in the description above ingredient list. It does not contain organic milk powder or soy lecithin. The 100g totals are not correct as a full 100g bar has 2.5 x the 40g totals which do look correct according to the packaging. How can sugar be 8g for 40g and only 10g for 100g portions? Same for all the other listed values in the… Read more »

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