Raw Cacao Butter Chocolate Bark

Raw cacao butter chocolate bark (paleo, dairy-free, sugar-free)
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Although I am not a huge fan of milk chocolate, I do enjoy a square or two of dark chocolate bar (for both the flavour and the antioxidants). I also like playing with chocolate in the kitchen, and my last game was to make a smooth, crunchy dark chocolate bark using raw cacao butter.

Before I begin the recipe, here are some facts about cacao butter.

What Is Cacao Butter?

  • Cacao butter and cocoa butter are almost the same thing. Cacao butter is the raw version of edible, vegetable fat derived from the cacao bean. It is extracted and treated using very low temperatures, and is therefore considered raw and more nutritious; cocoa butter is produced by applying more heat. The same difference applies to raw cacao powder versus cocoa powder with the latter being the roasted, processed type. Again, raw cacao is deemed superior when it comes to health benefits.
  • In its solidified form, cacao butter looks like white chocolate. It has the same mouthfeel and consistency when you taste it, minus the sweetness.
  • Cacao butter and cocoa butter are very stable fats with long shelf life and will solidify at room temperature. Both are used in beauty products and are commonly seen as ingredients in raw, dairy-free treats including raw chocolate. You can cook with it and you can rub it on your skin or lips as it will melt at body temperature.
  • Based on the latest research findings, Mauro Serafini, PhD, of Italy’s National Institute for Food and Nutrition Research in Rome, and colleagues, claim that “milk may interfere with the absorption of antioxidants from chocolate… and may, therefore, negate the potential health benefits that can be derived from eating moderate amounts of dark chocolate.” This makes raw, dairy-free chocolate more nutritious.

Look for cacao or cocoa butter in your local health food store or online. Raw cacao powder can be replaced with regular cocoa powder or powdered chocolate (unsweetened).

Please note that the original recipe that used coconut sugar has been amended to use honey or other liquid sweeteners as some people experienced issues with the sugar melting.

More Chocolate Recipes

Full Recipe 

Find the full list of ingredients, instructions, and a nutritional breakdown below. If you have questions or cook this recipe, please let me know in the comments, and make sure to rate this recipe so it’s easy for others to find.

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Raw Cacao Butter Chocolate Bark

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Author: Irena Macri
Servings: 12
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Dessert
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4.41 from 5 votes
Calories: 212kcal
This Paleo friendly, amazing raw dark chocolate bark is made with raw cacao butter, raw cacao powder, vanilla and other yummy goodies.


  • 225-250 g cacao butter solid, broken into chunks, about 1 cup
  • 6-7 tablespoons raw cacao powder or cocoa powder
  • 3-4 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or essence
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoons slivered almonds
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flakes optional
  • 1 tablespoon dried blueberries or cranberries or raisins
  • You will also need a saucepan quarter filled with water digital thermometer, a heat proof bowl that goes over the saucepan, a whisk, shallow baking tray and non-stick baking paper.


  • Bring a quarter-full saucepan of water to boil and turn the heat down to simmering. Add cacao butter to a heatproof bowl and place over the simmering water. Make sure no water gets in the cacao butter.
  • Stirring with a spatula, heat the cacao butter, and when almost all melted, stick the digital thermometer in. Make sure the temperature doesn’t go over 48° C / 118° F. If it’s close, remove the bowl from the heat and let the butter melt further on the countertop. The temperature will start to drop and that’s what we’re after.
  • Add the cacao powder, vanilla and honey or maple syrup to the melted cacao butter and whisk until dissolved and well incorporated. The temperature will drop once you add other ingredients. Keep it at about 32-35° C, warm it up if needed, but NOT all the way up to 48° C. This will keep it smooth and silky, and decrease the chances of chocolate seize (when it turns into grainy paste).
  • Finally, add the salt and whisk together. Line a tray with baking paper, covering the sides so no chocolate is spilt over the edges. Pour the chocolate into the tray and let is spread into a thin bark layer. While still melted, sprinkle with pumpkin seeds, almonds, coconut flakes and dried blueberries, or other nuts and dried fruit of your choice.
  • Place the tray in the fridge for at least 2 hours. The bark will solidify within 30 minutes, but it’s a good idea to let it stand for a little longer. Keep in an airtight container, in or out of the fridge, depending on how crunchy you like it. It will keep for a few weeks.


Calories: 212kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.001g | Sodium: 98mg | Potassium: 66mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 0.1IU | Vitamin C: 0.05mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords: Snacks, Chocolate, Vegan, Cacao Butter, Cacao Powder
Tried this recipe?Mention @cookedandloved or tag #cookedandloved
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Irena Macri
By Irena Macri

About the author: Hi, I’m Irena Macri. I share delicious recipes that I have cooked and loved. I am a published cookbook author, have been food blogging for over 10 years and have a Diploma in Nutrition. You will find many healthy recipes as well as my favourite comfort food. More about me here | Subscribe to my newsletter and freebies

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  1. Hey! I simply, and enthusiastically, LOVE your site and your recipes. I cannot wait to try them as soon as I can get to the store. I tried to buy your cookbook thru your little “early bird” offer but the link just took me to your video. I enjoyed the video and hope you can send me the info on how to buy it.

    thank you,

  2. I on the other hand am absolutely obsessed with all things chocolate. When I saw this my mouth started to drool. This is a must try for me! Keep em coming!

  3. Oh.. my.. god… THANK YOU SO MUCH!! I’ve been looking wildly for a chocolate recipe which uses cocoa butter, and I somehow found this after all too long. I will be trying this, replacing some of the cocoa powder with milk powder to make it more of a milk chocolate. I’ll tell you how it went :)!

      1. No I haven’t. I’m sure you can experiment by adding some butter, milk or cream. I’m not a fan of milk chocolate personally, so I never try 😉

  4. I am excited about making chocolate from the raw ingredients. I have already made my first batch before seeing your site. Am pleased I used my intuition and have done it right. Cant wait to taste. Thank you for your site. Looking forward to better health. 🙂

  5. Hi, this looked like a great recipe to use the cacao butter I recently purchased. So i made it. I love the yummy bits to add in. I even chopped up some hazelnuts to throw in. The hardened chocolate seems a tad oily compared to most chocolate. Is yours that way, or maybe I did something wrong in the cooking process. It was my first time to make chocolate.

    Thanks for the recipe.

  6. Hi, I made this recipe tonight just as you have instructed, but when looking at it after 2 hours I found it has separated. The cacao butter is all on the top with the cacao on the bottom. Do you have any idea what went wrong?
    Many thanks/

    1. Hey Lora-Jane,

      That usually means that the chocolate didn’t temper properly. Basically, what it means that the chocolate overheated. Another possible cause could be that some water got in the mix. I had a look through instructions again and noticed that I didn’t explain the tempering process properly, I’ve now updated it.

      p.s. even though cacao butter separated, the bark is still fine to eat…it just doesn’t looks as pretty.

  7. Hi, I made this recipe tonight just as you have instructed, but when looking at it after 2 hours I found it has separated. The cacao butter is all on the top with the cacao on the bottom. Do you have any idea what went wrong?
    Many thanks

  8. Hey there,

    I have made this recipe twice now and I cannot seem to get the coconut sugar to fully (or even mostly) dissolve. It stays as a grainy paste on the bottom after watching temp and whisking the hell out of it. Any advice there?

    1. I use organic birch xylitol (not from corn, but from the birch tree). Like coconut sugar, it won’t dissolve in the mixture. You have to dissolve it ahead of time. I usually take 2-4 Tablespoons of water and heat in the microwave (or on the stove), and stir in the xylitol and the Celtic sea salt (as fluoride has been found in Himalayan, and Himalayan sea salt actually comes from Pakistan – not the Himalayas). I will re-heat, if necessary, and continue stirring until the xylitol and salt liquify. It becomes a syrup that I easily add to the mixture, and it blends a lot better that way. Otherwise, I’ve found that the salt and sugar can fall to the bottom of the pan instead of blending with the chocolate.

  9. I made this today and it worked fantastically! I sweetened it with stevia and that worked out just fine. Filled it up with roasted nuts, cranberry’s and cacao nibs. Thank you so much for this recipe!

    Tip: I didn’t use a thermometer instead i put something metal ( blunt knife) in the butter and pressed it just under my bottom lip, just beneath 48C it should sting but not to much. At that point i removed it from the heat on to the counter. Risky but it worked for me.

  10. I also could not get the sugar to dissolve even the tiniest bit in the cacao butter mixture. I eventually had to strain the mixture to save the chocolate. I even tried putting the sugar-paste in a food processor and even that did not get it to dissolve. I then tried honey and that did not emulsify with the cacao butter either, even with gentle heat over the double boiler. Clearly, there is something in the chemistry of cacao butter that prevents sugars from dissolving or emulsifying. I also found the texture of the final product to be a bit greasy.

    1. Without some small amount of water, the sugar cannot dissolve as it will not dissolve into fat or oil.

  11. This recipe might be fine with any other sweetener besides coconut sugar but with coconut sugar it is horrible. The coconut sugar will not combine with the chocolate and it turns into sludge and once it dries it gets extremely hard. This recipe should either be changed or taken down before anyone else wastes expensive ingredients.

    1. I know from making vegan cookies that sugar and fat need a dash of liquid to help them blend fully, and it takes a LOT of mixing. I’m new to chocolate-making, though, and don’t know how much liquid a batch can take before seizing up, so I’ve had a similar struggle with any kind of crystalized sugar. Liquid options like agave and honey have worked much better, and once again, you have to keep on mixing, mixing, mixing until the proper chemical reactions needed for sugar and fat to mix actually happen.

    2. Agreed. The coconut sugar just won’t dissolve. I’ve been stirring for 30 minutes with no noticeable progress.

  12. Hello, Is using vanilla powder more healthy than organic vanilla extract?
    Also does it taste better?

  13. I followed the recipe and when it was still liquid it tasted good. But when i took it out of the fridge the chocolate wasn’t good. It had two colors: white from the cacao butter and underneath is was brown as chocolate should be but the bottom was liquid and sweet. I think the sweetness sank to the bottom. I melted the whole thing to try it again and made a thinner piece. Still no succes. What can i do?

  14. Just made this and thank you for the recipe, I didn’t have some of the ingredients so substituted walnuts and Goji berries – super easy and super yummy. My husband is a huge chocolate fan so I will be in the good books until the next one. Thanks again.

  15. 4 stars
    Hi, Will this kinda chocolate stay unmelted/solid at room temperature? Awaiting your revert pla.. have been trying hard to make my own speciality from cocoa butter

  16. Have made this a few times (It’s yummy) and haven’t managed to make it without the honey sinking to the bottom in a sticky mess. I’ve tried runny and set honey but same story. Any ideas?

    1. Try to warm up the honey slightly as it’s possibly too thick and doesn’t dissolve in time, so it sinks to the bottom.

  17. I made this with Yacon syrup and chopped almonds soaked in vanilla water overnight. Maybe my favorite thing ever. Melting the chocolate makes any scented candle seem very sad. I used Bulletproof Cacao Butter.

  18. 3 stars
    I’ve made 3 batches of this recipe and in all three, when refrigerated, the cacao butter seems to go to the top and leaves a greasy cream colored coating. Does anyone know what causes this?

  19. Thank you! This recipe worked perfectly!

    I swapped out the vanilla for some peppermint extract (no alcohol), subtracted the nuts and berries… and voila! Mint Andies! Crushed, they make a perfect “mock” mint chocolate chip ice cream (in a smoothie) ?. I was wondering, would this recipe work just as well if I bought 100% Cacao chocolate… and then just added in the honey and extract? Making this recipe was my first time working with chocolate, so any advice would be appreciated!

  20. 5 stars
    Oh my gosh! I just made this and it is absolutely delicious! Next time I will double the recipe! 🙂

  21. 5 stars
    Hi, thanks for the recipe. It sounds great. I noticed that the spatula was not included in the list of equipment needed in case you wanted to add that. If not, no worries since most people would already have one I think in most cases. Thanks again!

  22. Hi, great blog. I’m looking for a recipe that doesn’t make the chocolate melt in your hand in room temperature. I thought honey or liquid sweetener make it melt easier? If not then I’ll be so happy 😀
    Thank you!

    Kind regards Tuyen

  23. Thanks so much for this recipe. I’ve been experimenting with mint and found a good way to preserve it is to freeze it. Well I froze it in as some Thai Kitchen Coconut milk and when it froze I chunked it into ice cubes. However I also realized that if I could have added some chocolate chips then I would have a home made mint chocolate chip ice cream I could make by just popping in my Magic Bullet blender. Well I wasn’t sure how to go about making healthy homemade chocolate chips and each recipe still sounded unhealthy. So I decided maybe I could make some out of my cacao powder. I found this site and I’m so going to try this.

  24. 5 stars
    Waiting for these to chill now ! I have some chocolate bar molds which half the recipe fit perfectly .. thanks for the recipe 😊
    I had a little liquid chocolate left and spooned that right into my mouth … delicious!

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