Sinking your teeth into an indulgent chocolate candy bar can be one of the most pleasant experiences. It instantly melts your troubles away, leaving you in chocolatey heaven. But if your chocolate bar has mold, it will be anything but enjoyable.
The good news is that most of the time, chocolate does not grow mold. That’s because mold requires a moist environment, and chocolate bars are far too dry. If you see a white, chalky appearance on your old chocolate bar, it’s simply “bloom” and a-okay to eat.
Hey, everyone! I’m Michelle, and my family and I love chocolate bars. I’ve stumbled across chocolate bars with a chalky appearance once or twice in my lifetime, and I always wondered whether or not it was mold – and if it would make me sick.
I’m here to share my findings. Let’s talk about mold.
- Can Chocolate Mold?
- What is the White Stuff on Chocolate?
- How to Tell if Chocolate is Moldy (3 Signs)
- Does Mold on Chocolate Make You Sick?
- Final Words
Can Chocolate Mold?
Chocolate does not typically get moldy. That’s because mold requires a moist environment to grow, and chocolate bars are dry. However, that doesn’t mean they’re entirely immune to molding.
Some of the factors that can cause chocolate bars to mold include:
- The chocolate bar was created using moldy cocoa beans.
- Subpar packaging allowed pathogens to seep through the wrapper.
- Added ingredients more prone to molds, like nuts or fruits, are found in the chocolate bar.
- You made a homemade batch of chocolate using wet ingredients.
Even under these conditions, it is still rare for a chocolate bar to actually “mold.” Most of the time, chocolate bars take on a white, chalky substance – but contrary to some beliefs, this coating is not mold.
What is the White Stuff on Chocolate?
So, if the white coating isn’t mold, what is it? The white substance that forms on chocolate bars over time is known as “bloom.” Bloom is caused by sugar or fat content.
- Sugar bloom. Sugar bloom occurs when the sugars of the chocolate bar crystallize from temperature fluctuations or come in contact with moisture. It causes an apparent white hue on the chocolate bar and may create unpleasant graininess.
- Fat bloom. Fat bloom occurs mainly from inadequate tempering (heating and cooling chocolate to make candies) or temperature fluctuations. The fats melt and solidify improperly, creating the white film on your chocolate bar.
Is it Safe to Consume?
If you see a chalky white substance on your chocolate bar, know it is 100% safe to consume. It is not mold but “bloom.” The bloom may alter the texture and flavor a bit, but it shouldn’t be so much so that it’s unpleasant to consume.
If you take a bite of your chocolate bar and the flavor is grotesque, you may be dealing with another issue: actual mold.
How to Tell if Chocolate is Moldy (3 Signs)
Knowing that chocolate bars with a white coating don’t equate to mold is a good thing, primarily if you’ve found an old chocolate bar at the bottom of your purse and can’t wait to dive in.
However, that also makes things all the more complicated. After all, other food items like fruits and bread will grow white mold, so it’s easy to be confused that the same isn’t true for chocolate bars.
That said, it’s essential to know the actual signs of moldy chocolate. Let’s take a closer look.
1. There’s Green Growth on the Chocolate
A white coating? Perfectly safe and OK to consume. A green discoloration? That’s another story.
If your chocolate has a green discoloration (which may or may not be fuzzy), throw it away immediately. Eating green mold on chocolate can definitely make you sick – especially if you have a weak immune system or an allergy.
2. It Has an Odd Odor
Chocolate bars are supposed to smell good. When you inhale the scent of a chocolate bar, the cravings are meant to set in immediately. No wonder they’re so irresistible!
But if you smell your chocolate and it smells stale, dull, or downright funky, it’s best not to risk it.
3. It Doesn’t Taste Right
This should be the very last test to see if your chocolate bar is moldy. After all, consuming mold is not only unpleasant – but can make you sick.
Moldy chocolate bars won’t taste good. It’s as simple as that. If you notice that your chocolate bar has an odd flavor, spit it out and throw the rest of the bar away.
Does Mold on Chocolate Make You Sick?
Anything moldy can make you sick – including chocolate. However, there’s a difference between a moldy chocolate bar and one with “bloom” on it. The bloom (white coating) is safe to consume, while a green mold is not safe to eat.
Wow, that was a doozy – but now you know moldy chocolate can make you sick if it’s the green and fuzzy kind, not the white and chalky variety. If you want to keep learning, check out these FAQs, chocolate fanatics!
How long does it take for mold to grow on chocolate?
Mold does not typically grow mold. If it’s going to develop any type of mold, it will likely take years. Not only that, but the chocolate would need to be stored improperly or have other contributing components, like the inclusion of fruit or nuts.
Is the white stuff on old chocolate mold?
The white stuff on the chocolate is not mold and is perfectly fine to consume. Just note that the flavor and texture may be altered a bit. The chocolate may taste staler or have a noticeable grainer texture.
What should I do if I ate moldy chocolate?
If you ate chocolate with green mold, you should be OK. A healthy immune system should be able to handle the mold. However, not everyone is so lucky. You may need medical treatment if you experience shortness of bread, a high temperature, or unwavering vomiting or diarrhea.
Can melted chocolate make you sick?
If your chocolate bar is melted, don’t worry – it’s still safe to consume. There is a higher chance of the white film showing up after a chocolate bar has melted and solidified. Again, it is still safe to consume and should be (almost) just as yummy.
Chocolate is unlikely to mold, and the white, chalky substance you see on a chocolate bar is still safe to consume. The only time you should not eat a chocolate bar is if there is a green discoloration (which may be fuzzy). A foul odor or strange flavor is also caused for concern, and the chocolate should be thrown out ASAP.
Have you ever eaten a moldy chocolate bar? Did you know that white film is safe to consume? Comment your thoughts below!About Michelle