This Keto Milk Chocolate Bar recipe is super easy. And when you need chocolate this is key. I love working with chocolate but it’s extremely fussy, so I wanted a fail safe recipe, that is kind of a cheat. Meaning, I’m not actually making the milk chocolate from scratch, I’m just putting it together so that it seems miraculously awesome.
When I say making chocolate from scratch, I mean, I’m not grinding a cocoa bean or nibs into a liquor and then adding it with all the other ingredients to a melanger, or a concher, where the machine rolls, kneads, heats, and aerates the chocolate to refine everything together so it’s perfectly smooth when you eat it.
That’s also why I don’t add cocoa powder or cocoa liquor and then add other ingredients. Because, even I, a self-admitted kitchen gadget freak addict, do not have a home chocolate refiner (yet).
And honestly, while such a thing would be brilliant to have, they are expensive and not small, so while it would make a fantastic gift (hint hint to husband!), it’s not high on my list of kitchen necessities much to my chagrin. Why is this relevant? Because this refining process, that takes up to 10 hours or more, of mixing the chocolate in a refiner between granite stones, is why commercial chocolate has no grit.
So, if we are making it at home, we have to take steps to reduce grit as much as possible when we make it ourselves. And, while the chocolate itself can contribute to the graininess, sweeteners also contribute to this phenomenon.
So with that in mind, there are a couple of secrets to success with this Keto Milk Chocolate Bar recipe, and they apply to any chocolate bar, candy, or even cream recipe so, do not skip reading this part.
Before launching into the meat of this how-to, if this is a chocolate crisis and you don’t have time to actually make this keto milk chocolate bar recipe, and simply need a quick fix, this is the solution. Add about 2 ounces of melted sugar-free chocolate chip, with 2 to 3 tablespoons (or more if you want it really milky) of heavy cream powder and then place the mix into a chocolate bar mould, put it in the freezer for 20 minutes so it can set (you can lick the bowl while you wait).
If you do not have heavy cream powder, your only alternative would be to use heavy cream at a ratio of 1 part cream: to 4 parts melted chocolate as a ganache, and heating the cream before slowly blending the melted chocolate into the warmed cream.
However, if you go with this option, the chocolate would have to be stored in the fridge as it would get too soft at room temperature. This is not my preferred method but if it’s a crisis this is what can you do. However, you do need to keep the following in mind. Moreover, if you make my Keto Milk Chocolate Bar recipe, this is especially important.
First, and I cannot stress this enough, water is the enemy of chocolate. Even one drop, can kill a whole batch of wondrously smooth and silky melted chocolate. Even a tiny amount, will create grainy clumps. This is called seizing. If your chocolate becomes seized, you will become overcome with sadness, unless you’re Vulcan rationalist. But if so, why would you need emergency chocolate? Gotcha there! Sorry, I digress.
Here’s a picture of what seized chocolate can look like. I did it on purpose and still felt devastated that my chocolate seized on me. I had a wee cognac to ease my soul as I was so sad. I hope you appreciate my sacrifice.
Seized chocolate cannot be saved for use in bars or candy-like applications. You could use it as filling, and add more liquids to it to resurrect it from its sad horrid state, but not for this keto milk chocolate bar recipe. In the case that your chocolate gets seized, put it in a container for later use as a ganache , or make the ganache right away by adding the same amount of warmed cream to the seized chocolate.
So, back to this recipe, do not let any water get in your mix. And, I mean none. That includes making sure you don’t add too much water in your double boiler so that the steam adds condensation to the melting chocolate above. Also, this means you don’t want a rolling boil in the double boiler that would also add increased steam.
Cocoa butter is an important addition to chocolate. The addition of cocoa butter will affect the mouth feel, melting point and other textural components of your finished chocolate.
And I use cocoa butter not cacao butter. While they are essentially the same thing cacao butter is the raw fat from the cacao bean and cocoa butter is the cocoa fat as it is extracted under heat when making cocoa.
Some argue that cocoa butter has additives that aren’t healthy, and raw cacao has more antioxidants. First, I don’t use cheap cocoa butter that would have additives. I use good quality ingredients that have no additives.
Second, chocolate making is fussy, I have far better luck using cocoa butter that was made through the Chocolate Making process that has been around for centuries, than I have using raw materials that aren’t as reliable for me, and frankly expensive, moreover truly disappointing when your keto milk chocolate bar doesn’t turn out. You can use either one, but make sure it is food grade as both are used readily in cosmetics and the latter may not be suitable to eat.
Next, it’s so important to chop your cocoa butter and chocolate so it is in nice, fine, bits and pieces. You want to melt the chocolate first and then set it aside and then melt your cocoa butter. You can use a chocolate melting pot if you have one and leave it on warm once melted (Do watch the temperature on those, and turn it off if you are worried. We do not want the chocolate getting too hot).
This is because you want to add at least half your dry ingredients and lecithin to the cocoa butter before it gets to the temperamental chocolate. It’s how it is best incorporated and blended. Moreover, cocoa butter can withstand higher temperatures and doesn’t burn until it hits 400ºF, so you have far more flexibility by doing things in this order.
Among the ingredients is Sunflower Lecithin. It’s not the bad one, like soy lecithin, that’s in almost every candy bar on the market. Using Sunflower lecithin is a good thing, good for you and good for your chocolate. While it’s technically optional, I suggest not foregoing it, and also suggest the liquid version, rather than the granules.
Lecithin helps reduce the viscosity a little bit, so it reduces the thickness of the texture. This gives your keto milk chocolate a more workable consistency. It also helps when you add liquids as it helps with emulsification. This is especially important if you’ll be using it in a ganache later. In other words, it helps prevent things from separating and looking all yucky (yes, that is the professional term I’m using).
As with any chocolate bar or candy recipes, and especially low carb chocolate recipes, do not let the melted chocolate get too hot. Why, you ask? Great question. As discussed, chocolate is incredibly fussy.
That means, your chocolate can be perfectly shiny and smooth one minute and then clumpy and seized up the next. That shine on hard, cooled chocolate means the chocolate has been tempered. And there is nothing like that ‘snap’, when you break a piece of chocolate off a bar! Once you lose the shine, you have to re-temper it to get it back.
Also, chocolate has a lower melting point and burn point than cocoa butter. So, for dark chocolate, melt or reheat to 88°F to 91°F. For milk and white chocolate, reheat to 87°F to 88°F. If you keep your chocolate within these temperature ranges, it will stay in temper and be liquid enough to use. Fun, right?!
Moreover, many ingredients in keto sweeteners like allulose and inulin have a lower browning point then regular sugar. This could make them even more susceptible to seizing.
Therefore, to manage this process, once my cocoa butter is hot and melted, I reduce the heat. After which, I add at least half the allulose and powder into the cocoa butter, a bit at a time.
Once it gets thick, I slowly add the chocolate and the remaining powder,
again, a bit of each at a time, alternating between them.
Personally, I don’t normally add vanilla bean to my milk chocolate as I’m a purist but a lot of people enjoy the added flavour. If you’d like to add it, add it after all is melted and your chocolate is removed from heat. Do not substitute for vanilla extract or else your chocolate could seize.
Once everything is incorporated, pour it into your chocolate moulds and put in the fridge for an hour to solidify and that’s it. Once I get it all the chocolate chopped up, it takes me all of 10 minutes to do. I have a number of different bar moulds and can get about 4 or 5 Keto Milk Chocolate Bars from one recipe. So easy, so long as you follow the rules of chocolate. My recipe is below. Don’t forget to take a picture and tag me if you make these fabulous Keto Milk Chocolate Bars.
Hope you enjoy them as much as I have,
Nutritional Information and portions are estimated from the USDA Food Database. Net carbs exclude fiber, sugar alcohols, and products like allulose, because they do not generally affect blood sugar. I try to be accurate, but feel free to make your own calculations.
Yup, that’s me with my eyes closed while my hubby takes the picture. Totally me. I’m in my happy place doing one of my favourite things: on a hike in the Cape Breton Highlands.
I started my low-carb journey three years ago, for health reasons, determined to make a Low Carb, High Fat, Keto diet work for me as a lifestyle, without the exercise in deprivation with constant calls to the fun police.
I thought, as someone with a severe peanut/tree nut allergy, I am already a pro at adapting recipes to my nut-free existence, so adapting Keto to also be nut-free is something I can master. Truly, I love both the experimentation and the glee when I hit upon something fabulous and all with no sugar! It’s here where the idea was born for lafemmenikketo.com. I feel like a superhero baker and cook with a whisk in hand, whipping the carbs gone to make fabulous nut-free treats without the sugar. This, to me, is simply joyous. I hope you think so too!