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Oct 30, 2011 09:01 AM

Raw Cacao Butter - What do I do with it?

I have a 1/4 pound of cacao butter I bought at a co-op. I have never cooked with it before. Any suggestions or recipes would be great.

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  1. Well, it's primarily used as an ingredient in cosmetics and white chocolate. It can also be used to dip candies and confections to give them a shiny coating. It keeps for a very long time as long as you make sure to seal it up well and keep in refrigerated. You can use it to thin out melted chocolate (by adding a bit of it to your melted chocolate mixture) and for making various types of candy.

    1 Reply
    1. re: todao

      Last summer we visited a chocolate plantation on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica, not too far from the Panamanian border near the village of Cahuita. As part of the tour, we saw the cacao trees and pods, saw how the pod seeds are roasted to bring out the chocolately characteristics. (They are very similar to coffee beans in that the roasting brings out the characteristic aromas and flavors that we associate with their corresponding products.) And of course since these are seeds, they contain natural oils (cocoa butter) which in commercial chocolate is harvested and sold as a separate commodity at a sharp premium. But the chocolate they made for us was unfiltered. Unskimmed. We ground our own roasted cacao seeds into a rough powder, where they were mixed with several ingredients including sugar, powdered milk, spices (like cinnamon), and some liquid milk. A lady then spent about 15-20 minutes vigorously stirring together the concoction, which brought out all the natural cocoa butter from the cocoa powder, until it thickened to the point where it became a dense paste. She then turned this dense goo, glistening with the sheen of all that cocoa butter, out onto a wooden board and shaped it into a round, squat cake, perhaps 10 inches in diameter. The effect of eating it was somewhere between fudge and a super dense brownie. I don't know how to describe the intense oiliness of it-- it was bursting the cocoa butter, so much so that it coated our hands. Our enthusiastic German guide spread the stuff on his face, to illustrate what a wonderful, natural product it was (yeah, mixed with sugar and powdered milk...). But it was a lovely, satiny, silky consistency and before I had this experience I never have been able to look at the drab, factory processed chocolate the same way.

      Mr Taster

    2. i use it to...

      make dairy free white chocolate....
      cocoa butter brownies
      cocoa butter-cream frosting
      cookies or cupcakes - i melt and use it instead of melted butter

      if you're interested in any recipes let me know!

      13 Replies
      1. re: Emme

        What do you sub for milk powder in your white chocolate?

        1. re: babette feasts

          Kinda curious about this too... Because, well, white chocolate is cocoa butter, milk powder, and sugar (not in that order :P).

          1. re: babette feasts

            I had planned to use an almond or soy milk powder, but instead used an Egg White powder... by Jay Robb's. The vanilla one I believed.

            1. re: Emme

              Interesting. And it doesn't taste eggy? Is it grainy at all? Do you temper this and use it like regular white chocolate, or how do you use it?

              1. re: babette feasts

                not even a little bit... granted i only use a smidgen of the powder. not grainy, i haven't tempered it. i've made blocks, then used in cookies or melted to drizzle over things....

                last time i made it, IIRC, i used...
                1.9 oz raw cocoa butter (didn't have time to get it from a cheaper source that sells it in much bigger, more appropriate quanitites)
                1/3 cup rounded powdered sugar
                1 tsp vanilla
                1/2 teaspoon or so Jay Robb's egg white powder (vanilla)
                pinch of salt

                Melted white chocolate as if i were tempering it in the microwave -- heated for twenty second stint, stirring after each, until about 75% melted, then stirred til smooth. mixed in sugar, powder, vanilla, and pinch of salt. poured into a parchment lined mold and refrigerated til firm... 5 minutes venture from start to finish, including dish and spoon washing ;)

                1. re: Emme

                  Thanks for sharing. I've never used egg white powder, so I would never think of putting it in white chocolate.

                  You should be able to temper it, you're just tempering the cocoa butter after all, but the liquid from the vanilla could be a problem. I'd like to try it with coconut cream powder. Seems like the milk powder is mostly to add bulk.

                  1. re: babette feasts

                    i figured it was to add a little protein structure, so when i couldn't find soya milk powder, that's when i thought what the hell! see how it goes with coconut cream powder... i'm allergic to and don't like coconut, so that one wasn't up my alley, but i'd love to know if it works in case i want to use it for others!

            1. re: Emme

              Hi Emme...Could you please share the cocoa buttercream frosting recipe? Thanks in advance.

              1. re: amy_wong


                Chocolate Cocoa Butter-cream

                6-8 tbsp cocoa butter, softened
                beaten then add
                1/2-3/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder (more for darker, and i often use dark cocoa powder)
                2 2/3 - 3 c powdered sugar (depending how sweet you like it)
                2-3 tbsp cream (or milk), optional
                dash of vanilla


                White Chocolate Cocoa Butter-cream

                8 tbsp cocoa butter
                2 1/2 - 3 1/2 c powdered sugar
                2 tsp vanilla
                1-2 tbsp corn syrup
                1-2 tbsp milk/cream, optional
                same methodology

                1. re: Emme

                  Thanks Emme. I'll give the chocolate frosting a try. I'm trying to find a vegan buttercream recipe without using vegan margarine, and thought cocoa butter would be a great substitute.

                  1. re: amy_wong

                    you can omit the milk or use almond or soy or whatever ya like!

            2. Slather it all over your body, smell like white chocolate. Duh.