Cocoa solids are a mixture of many substances remaining after cocoa
butter is extracted from cacao beans. When sold as an end product, it
may also be called cocoa powder or cocoa.
Cocoa solids are a key
ingredient of chocolate, chocolate syrup, and chocolate confections.
In contrast, the fatty component of chocolate is cocoa butter. Cocoa
butter is 50% to 57% of the weight of cocoa beans and gives chocolate
its characteristic melting properties. Cocoa liquor or cocoa mass is a
paste of roasted cocoa beans with cocoa butter and solids in their
natural proportions. Recipes for chocolate require the addition of
extra cocoa butter to cocoa liquor, leading to a cocoa solids surplus
and thus a relatively cheap supply of cocoa powder. This contrasts
with the earliest European usage of cocoa where, before milk and dark
chocolate was popularized, cocoa powder was the primary product and
cocoa butter was little more than a waste product.
Cocoa solids contain flavanol antioxidants, amounts of which are
reduced if the cocoa is subjected to acid-reducing alkalization.
Health benefits have been attributed to cocoa flavonoids.
1 Physical properties
4 See also
6 External links
Dutch process cocoa (left) compared to natural cocoa (right)
Natural cocoa powder has a light brown color and an extractable pH of
5.3 to 5.8. The processed (alkalized) cocoa powder is darker in
color, ranging from brownish red to nearly black, with a pH from 6.8
to 8.1. The alkalization process reduces bitterness and improves
solubility, which is important for beverage product applications. All
of these pH values are considered safe for food use.
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
954 kJ (228 kcal)
μg = micrograms • mg = milligrams
IU = International units
Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Cocoa powder contains several minerals including calcium, copper,
magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc. All of these
minerals are found in greater quantities in cocoa powder than either
cocoa butter or cocoa liquor.
Cocoa solids also contain 230 mg
of caffeine and 2057 mg of theobromine per 100g, which are mostly
absent from the other components of the cocoa bean. Cocoa solids
also contain clovamide (N-caffeoyl-L-DOPA).
Main article: Health effects of chocolate
Cocoa powder is rich in flavonoids, a subset of polyphenols. The
amount of flavonoids depends on the amount of processing and
manufacturing the cocoa powder undergoes. Alkalization, also known
as Dutch processing, causes its content of flavonoids to be
Cocoa and cacao powders products may contain cadmium, a toxic heavy
metal and probable carcinogen. From January 1, 2019, the European
Union will impose a limit for cadmium in cocoa powders of 0.6 µg
per gram of cocoa powder, and 0.8 µg per gram for chocolate with
>= 50% total dry cocoa solids. In Canada, a daily serving of a
natural health product must contain no more than 6 µg of cadmium
for an individual weighing 150 pounds (68 kg) and 3 µg for
a 75 lb (34 kg) individual. While the U.S. government
has not set a limit for cadmium in foods or health products, the state
California has established a maximum allowable daily level of oral
cadmium exposure of 4.1 µg, and requires products containing
more than this amount per daily serving to bear a warning on the
label. One investigation by an independent consumer testing
laboratory found that seven of nine commercially available cocoa
powders and nibs selected for testing contained more than 0.3 µg
of cadmium per serving gram; five of these products exceeded the
proposed EU limit of 0.6 µg per gram.
^ a b c Miller, Kenneth B.; Jeffery Hurst, William; Payne, Mark J.;
Stuart, David A.; Apgar, Joan; Sweigart, Daniel S.; Ou, Boxin (2008).
"Impact of Alkalization on the
Antioxidant and Flavanol Content of
Commercial Cocoa Powders". Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
56 (18): 8527–8533. doi:10.1021/jf801670p. PMID 18710243.
^ a b c Steinberg, F. M.; Bearden, M. N.; Keen, C. L. (2003). "Cocoa
and chocolate flavonoids: Implications for cardiovascular health".
Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 103 (2): 215–223.
doi:10.1053/jada.2003.50028. PMID 12589329. Retrieved November 9,
^ Materials Handled Cocoa Powder: Overview. Retrieved: 2 April 2014.
^ "USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 24,
^ Sanbongi, Chiaki; Osakabe, Naomi; Natsume, Midori; Takizawa, Toshio;
Gomi, Shuichi; Osawa, Toshihiko (1998). "Antioxidative Polyphenols
Theobroma cacao". Journal of Agricultural and Food
Chemistry. 46 (2): 454–457. doi:10.1021/jf970575o.
^ Arlorio, Marco; Locatelli, Monica; Travaglia, Fabiano; Coïsson,
Jean-Daniel; Del Grosso, Erika; Minassi, Alberto (2008). "Roasting
impact on the contents of clovamide (N-caffeoyl-L-DOPA) and the
antioxidant activity of cocoa beans (
Theobroma cacao L.)". Food
Chemistry. 106 (3): 967–975.
^ a b "Product Review: Cocoa Powders, Dark Chocolate, Extracts, Nibs,
& Supplements". ConsumerLab.com. ConsumerLab.com LLC. 17 May 2014.
Retrieved 10 February 2015.
Chocolate Terms". Thenibble.com. Retrieved 2013-05-27.
^ "Amending Regulation (EC) No 1881/2006 as regards maximum levels of
cadmium in foodstuff". 2014. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
^ "Quality of natural health products guide". Retrieved 22 August
^ "Proposition 65 Maximum Allowable Daily Level (MADL) for
Reproductive Toxicity for
Cadmium (Oral Route)" (PDF). Retrieved 22
Hamel, PJ (10 January 2014). "The A-B-C's of cocoa". Flourish. King
Arthur Flour. Retrieved 30 May 2015.
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