Chocolate Extract…What Is It?

Rodelle Organics Organic Chocolate Extract

My newest obsession started Saturday morning, as I was searching through Pinterest, hoping to get some ideas for a new cookie recipe.  And there it was, the recipe that made me experience giddiness and delight, the recipe that had me searching the Internet for hours trying to come up with even more ideas.  What recipe could cause all that commotion?  Mexican Hot Chocolate Snickerdoodles!  At first glance my first thought was no way in hell would I ever make that.  It’s originally a recipe from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar: 100 Dairy-Free Recipes for Everyone’s Favorite Treats by Isa Chandra Moskowitz.  That one word alone, at the beginning of the cookbook title, was enough to put me off.  Vegan.  I admit to being automatically biased when it comes to any vegan recipe.  Who would purposely choose to replace butter and eggs in a recipe?  Then I took a closer look.  The only ingredient in this recipe that will never be found in my refrigerator or pantry is almond milk; perhaps I could work with this recipe.  Common sense says to just replace it with whatever milk you do have, right?  I can easily look over the fact that there is no butter in this recipe; canola oil is something I am more than willing to bake with.  The cayenne is a bit of a stretch for my taste buds, but my imagination was doing backflips thinking about what it could do for this simple chocolate crackle cookie.  Then I came across the ingredient that really got me interested…chocolate extract!  What?  This one was new to me, so I started doing a bit of research.

“Chocolate is an almost irresistible flavor and there are many ways to boost it in a recipe. For instance, you could add melted chocolate to a cake batter, extra cocoa powder to a batch of cookies or a combination of the two to a batch of ice cream. But all these things can change the chemistry of a recipe, and there is one more way that you can boost chocolate flavor without altering a recipe: by adding chocolate extract.

Chocolate extract is made by infusing an alcohol solution with cocoa beans, much as vanilla extract is made. It has an intensely chocolate aroma and flavor (although, like vanilla extract, it also has a strong alcohol note), and it is entirely natural. The fact that chocolate extract is made from real cocoa beans means that it translates into a surprisingly full-bodied chocolate flavor in whatever you add it to. The extract is used exactly like vanilla extract, and it is even better when paired with vanilla. Don’t be fooled by artificial chocolate flavors (which are, across the board, awful) because they will not give you the same results as a quality chocolate extract.

Of course, chocolate extract alone isn’t going to turn a vanilla cake into a chocolate one. You still need cocoa powder or chocolate to do that. What the chocolate extract does is enhance the chocolate and highlight it. You’ll notice it most in recipes like custards and mousses, but you’ll notice that chocolate cakes and brownies taste just a little bit better when you work a little chocolate extract into the recipe. You can find it at some specialty stores, online, and at well-stocked grocers.” – Baking Bites

Hot Chocolate with Chocolate Extract

Turns out it’s really easy to make your own chocolate extract; it’s very similar to making homemade vanilla extract.  Check out Joy in Our Journey’s Homemade Chocolate Extract if you’re interested in making your own.  I on the other hand, prefer to buy my extracts.  In my opinion, quality ingredients make a quality product, and using any old chocolate or vodka that may be sitting around your house will not result in a great product.  I decided to go with Rodelle Organics Organic Chocolate Extract.  Their site goes through Amazon, which means Super Saver Shipping for all orders over $25.00.  The downside, you have to buy a package of six bottles, and that’s a lot of chocolate extract.  The upside, I will now be using chocolate extract in every way I can possibly think of.  I started experimenting this morning by putting a 1/4 teaspoon of chocolate extract into my hot chocolate; I think I’ve discovered what heaven tastes like!  Here are a few other ideas I am considering:

Rodelle Organics Chocolate Extract Giveaway


How would you use Rodelle’s Chocolate Extract?  Comment on this post below and your name will be entered in a drawing to win a bottle of Rodelle Chocolate Extract.  Don’t forget that Valentine’s Day is coming up.  It’s the perfect time of year to experiment with Chocolate! {Contest Ends February 1, 2014 – One Winner Will Be Randomly Selected – One Entry Per Person}

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