I’m sure that most of the time you don’t need to even worry about how to store chocolate. But if you are a home chocolatier or want to make chocolate treats for parties or gifts, you might be wondering what’s the best way to keep chocolate, so that it doesn’t get spoiled.
The good news, is that storing chocolate is not that difficult. Here are my top tips for storing chocolate at home and for small chocolate business.
for chocolate lovers…
Best way to store your chocolate treats
Don’t store your chocolates in the fridge (unless you live in a very very hot country)
Your chocolates will be perfectly fine in a cold (around 18 C) place, which is also dark and out of the direct sunlight. Something like a kitchen cupboard is perfect. What’s more important than just the temperature is the fact that the temperature won’t flactulate.
For example, keeping the chocolate in a cupboard next to your oven will make the chocolate temperature to go up and down (as you use your oven), which will cause the cocoa butter to separate from the rest of the chocolate, travel to the surface of the chocolate and the chocolate will start to look streaky.
This is called ‘bloom’. If the chocolates are still in date, they will be probably still fine to eat, bloom is more of a technical issue than chocolate going off.
So, whilst hard chocolates are best stored outside the fridge, something like chocolate sauce for your churros can be stored in the fridge. This is because it’s a liquid and can go off a lot sooner than a firm and dry type of chocolate.
for home chocolatiers…
Best way to store your chocolate coverture (drops/callets)
The best place to store your coverture (the chocolate callets you have for your chocolate making) is in their original packaging placed in an airtight container or at least another box.
Make sure that you always close properly any boxes and secure the inner bag properly as any moisture and temperature fluctuation from air can have a negative impact on the chocolate (especially over time).
It’s also a good idea to keep the chocolate boxes off the floor to make sure that they are kept at an ideal temperature.
You also want to make sure that your chocolate is stored somewhere out of the direct sunlight and that the temperature inside the room (or next to the chocolate boxes) is constant. This is ideally a room with no heating, hot pipes or anything that could make the room hot or cold too much over time.
What happens if you store your chocolate incorrectly?
Chocolate absorbs smell
Chocolate absorbs moisture
Chocolate dries out
Cocoa butter starts to go off
Frequently asked questions about storing chocolate
Great question! I know it feels like the obvious thing to do to keep chocolates somewhere cold, so that they don’t melt.
Unfortunately, your domestic fridge is usually too cold to keep chocolates in for a long periods of time. Unless your chocolates are placed in a air-tight container, they can also pick up any smell or odour from other food in your fridge. Chocolate is quite sensitive.
The last reason why it’s not such a good idea to store chocolate in a fridge is because of the condensation. Chocolate will pick up on any moisture that’s in the air and absorb it. This can cause the chocolate to bloom (white streaks on your chocolate)
Ideally chocolate shouldn’t be stored in the freezer, as the freezer temperature is too low.
If you had a chocolate ganache (chocolate filling), that can be safely frozen for up to 3 months and used as normally when you defrost it.
Strawberries covered in a chocolate are better off kept in a cold place, than in fridge. Similarly like with chocolate bars, the chocolate can pick up moisture from the fridge and your chocolate strawberries are not going to look their best when you want to serve them.
This is for final product such as chocolate snack bars, filled chocolate bars and finished chocolate truffles and if you have purchased your chocolates to eat.
As I mentioned before it’s still better to store your chocolates somewhere out of the direct sunlight and not directly in the fridge. But if it’s very, very hot where you are and there is no better place to store your chocolate than your fridge, here is what to do.
Place your chocolate or chocolate boxes in an airtight container (plastic box, sturdy plastic bag etc.) and keep the chocolates somewhere in the middle of your fridge (off the sides, bottom and the back of your fridge, where it’s generally coldest.
If you need to store away a few chocolate snack bars, the best for them is the fridge door compartment as this area of the fridge is the warmest one.