Milk chocolate is chocolate that has a significant amount of milk powder or condensed milk added. The EU is stricter with the level of cocoa solids that need to be present for a chocolate product to be legally labelled as “milk chocolate”. In the United States the minimum level is a surprising 10%! It is therefore not surprising that many within Europe are very disparaging of the chocolate produced across the Atlantic.
The vast majority of the milk chocolate we produce is in the form of chocolate bars which are flavoured with additives such as mint and adorned with fruits and nuts. This is one of the most beautiful features of chocolate – there is just so much variety that there will be a chocolate bar suitable for everybody.
There are dietary requirements, however, and this has meant there has been increased focus on producing milk chocolate that is either dairy-free, wheat-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, soya-free, or egg-free. With this has been the increase of people that choose to restrict their intake of certain types of food which has lead them to search for vegan chocolate or chocolate suitable for vegetarians.
Also in recent years there has been a big increase in Fair Trade chocolate producers who aim to give more back to the local cocoa producers.
Milk Chocolate Gifts
Milk chocolate is a focus of the gift hunters. Whether it’s Christmas, Easter and the lovely milk chocolate Easter eggs you can buy, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or any sort of national holiday, milk chocolate seems to be the focus of attention for people willing to dive into their purses and wallets.
How To Choose Good Quality Milk Chocolate
Everyone is different. Chocolate I like, you may not. But with trying the vast quantity of chocolate I have over the years there appears to be a constant. That is that if the chocolate is very cheap, it’s likely not to be very good.
Many people say that you should only buy milk chocolate from the main brands. This is utter rubbish. Some of the best chocolate you will find will be from those producers you’ve probably never heard of. My Chocolate Bar, for example make great chocolates and so do Terre à Terre and Ooh La La. Don’t be afraid to try something different.
If you wanted to try gourmet and luxury milk chocolate then try brands such as Valrhona, El Rey, Michel Cluizel, Amedei and Pralus which you can get from Chocolate Trading Co.
If you wanted to buy milk chocolate for others and you wanted to increase your chances of finding chocolate that is more focused on the mass market then consider Hotel Chocolat, Thorntons, Montezuma’s, Chocolate Buttons, Cadbury’s and Handy Candy.
But there are a great number of chocolate shops and I’m working on a directory of them – starting with a tour of chocolate shops in London.
And don’t forget, you can buy milk chocolate in our new, and very raw, chocolate shop.
And don’t forget you can have a look at our milk chocolate Valentine’s gift guide too.
A wonderful collection of dark chocolate bars with the one 40% Ben Tre milk chocolate bar. I'd love Marc to expand this collection though as I'm sure his fans would love him to offer a wider variety in these new 22g mini bars.
I had hoped for some more flavoursome chocolate buttons and some to compete with the Hotel Chocolat ones, but alas, these fell short on the flavour stakes. But they're still much better than those scarily expensive ones from the Royston-based chocolate company.
As a chocolate bar from a little-known chocolatier it's actually very good and compares favourably to the one produced by Thorntons. It may be more than twice the price of that bar too, but I feel it's worth it.
Many people may criticise Thorntons for their chocolate, but my view is that the blocks are vastly better than the novelty chocolate stuff they sell and even the most pretentious chocolate aficionado would actually like this bar.
This certainly isn't the best milk chocolate they've produced, but I still enjoyed the sharp flavours. The lemon and sea salt did work well together and make the inherent chocolate flavour stand out more. I'd love to try a 50% version of this bar to see what the salt could do with the darker tones.
Although I typically do like dark milk chocolate, this wasn't rustic enough. There weren't enough rough edges and variation for me to class it as a remarkable bar of chocolate. It was, however, expertly made and undoubtedly it would be popular with people who like less bitter chocolate.
Say it isn't so? This is definitely for those that will eat anything. I couldn't eat more than a couple of pieces as I found it far too dry for my liking. Paul, you're a mad, mad man!
These chocolate roses from Firebox are perhaps one of the most naffist novelty Valentine's gifts I've ever had the missfortune to review.
Every chocolatier seems to sell chocolate hearts for Valentine's Day, but too few make anything worth taking notice off. Most of them seemingly use the cheapest couverture they can and then sprinkle some ingredients on top. There's nothing original about that.
One of most favourite confectionery is chocolate covered honeycomb. I know big companies make it, but I doubt any would make it as well as this.
If you're looking for something different then you should really give these sea salt milk chocolate coated popcorn clusters as they're something you just won't want to put down.
The Daniel Jones Orange & Bee Pollen milk chocolate bar intrinsically be the finest I've ever tried but it had a fantastic enjoyable quality to it which I'm sure many of you would appreciate.
This Crunchy Praline Wonder Bar from The Grown Up Chocolate Company actually surprised me a great deal. It had some flavour but not an excessive amount of sweetness that made it very enjoyable.
These chocolate treats for children aren't cheap, but they're very enjoyable. The outer packaging is very engaging whilst the chocolates inside are wrapped perfectly for sharing or for keeping for yourself and enjoying as an occasional treat.
The Divine milk chocolate advent calendar might taste a touch too sweet for me but I loved the message that it promotes - which is typically one missed at this time of year.
I wasn't supposed to like these. As they're made with peanut butter they should have tasted too salty and overpowered the chocolate, but thankfully they didn't.
If you think deeply about this Christmas chocolate Christmas tree then you'll see how they've managed to combine so many different elements that should be appreciated: flavour, appearance and frivolity.
Who loves Lindt chocolate? There'll certainly be a good number of people reading this blog that have bought and appreciated at least one of the Lindt golden chocolate figures. And there's a reason for it, despite being mass-produced they're not all that bad.
Galaxy chocolate isn't for everyone. I know ladies and children generally go weak at the knees when they come across a bar. But for me its too sweet. But at Christmas we eat all sorts of stuff.
We all love good value for money when we're buying chocolate treats, and Halloween shouldn't be any different. If you're buying these chocolate pumpkins in the gift hamper they're not too bad value for money. But on their own I'd say they're not worth the money.
Just a quick look at what you get in the organic Halloween chocolate hamper from Montezuma's.
If you're a fruit and nut fan then why not give this one a go from Green & Blacks which supports the Breakthrough Breast Cancer charity. It's actually very addictive and I'm sure would be hugely appreciated.
Perhaps not the finest chocolate treat from Hotel Chocolat, but I'm sure children will love them. But I just feel that Hotel Chocolat offer much better Halloween chocolate in their range.
If you're looking for a milk bar but with something a little bit more interesting about it than the usual fair then you should try this one out.
If you love sweet, flavoured milk chocolate that you can easily get hold of, then you've got to try this Bakewell Tart milk chocolate bar from Thorntons.
If you're bored with the hot chocolate that you'll find in each and every supermarket, and what some choice then try this Indian-inspired drinking chocolate from Devnaa which contains cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger. It's very refreshing indeed.
Madécasse are a truly inspiring company in terms of their ethics, as well as the quality of their chocolate. If you can try some then I would, but also make sure you try some of their dark bars to compare.
If you're having trouble snacking on chocolate that you know you just shouldn't eat then give these Choccy Munchy Seeds a go as they're packed full of nutrients and taste very good too. You can also find them in a variety of superstores and local health food shops.
If you like chocolate that has a strange, warm and interesting flavour then I think this will probably be the one for many of you. For me, it was good, but could have been better.
It's a crying shame that the're still a market for milk chocolate that only has a minimum of 20% cacao solids and has a fair amount of vegetable oil in. But it must be Easter as we're bombarded with this sort of rubbish at this time of year.
If you wanted something broody and bitter then obviously this Crème Caramel Milk Chocolate Bar from Chocolate Café won't be the right choice. But if you needed a sweet pick-me-up then this bar would be perfect for you.
These chocolate eggs created for the Divine Dubble brand are cute and a perfect way to buy eggs for an Easter egg hunt which are both fairly cheap and tastes wonderful.
I did very much enjoy this milk chocolate bunny rabbit from Melt, but there still wasn't enough personality in the chocolate to make me love it.
If you like sweet and sickly milk chocolate then this Lindt Petit Desserts Tarte Citron Meringue will be heaven to you. But if you like fine chocolate then give it a wide birth.
There's nothing powerful or acute with this milk chocolate bar made with buffalo's milk but Artisan du Chocolate have done a great job creating something different.
If you need something to give you a boost at work but don't want to reach for a bar of chocolate, then these Rabot Estate Cacao Nibs Rolled In Milk are a great alternative.
If you're looking for something to help with the charity work of Save The Children then you should really try this Thorntons Milk Chocolate Haiti Mango milk chocolate bar as it's excellent. Sweet it may be, but wholesome.
The Cocoaloco Koska's Blend Milk Chocolate Indian Summer Bar is a delightful and sweet bar of chocolat with a wondeful, soft spicness that lifts the bar out of the ordinary.
This Amano Ocumare 30% Milk Chocolate Bar is just no where near as good as its dark chocolate cousin. There's no real chocolate taste and too much of saccharine to be anywhere near as good as the Amano reputation which preceeds it!
This Schmerlings' Rosemarie Cappuccino Swiss Milk Chocolate has to be one of the worst bars of chocolate I've tried - but not quite as bad as Hershey chocolate. Only if you're very curious should you try this one.
Rococo Chocolates always make chocolate art that you'll love to look at and eat. The price may put some off, but if you don't like the idea of this chocolate cow, then at least try something else they make.
As chocolate stocking fillers for kids they do the job perfectly. I may be a touch put off by the price, but I am tight. But what I do know is I absolutely adore the flavour of the 40% milk chocolate.
The Pralus Barre Infernale Lait was an incredible bar of milk chocolate, even if it was adulterated by nuts.
This Original Hawaiian Chocolate Milk Bar might not have been as good as their Criollo bar, but it was still good.
This Neuhaus Speculoos Milk Chocolate With Cinnamon bar isn't worth seeking out to be honest.
I loved the Go*Do 34% Milk Chocolate Bar, but it went too quickly. I'd like another please ;-)
The Artisan du Chocolat Lumi Milk Chocolate Bar was actually much better than I thought it'd be. There was a nice level sourness to it and only the very slightest saltiness.
This Ginger, Ground Chili, Volcano Cashews & Bacon Milk Chocolate Bar from Chocri was damn wierd! What flavours would you go for?
This bean-to-bar 40% milk chocolate bar from Artisan du Chocolat is a very pleasant bar.
This is a fantastic bar of milk chocolate and should be sought after if you're in the US or in London.