What Exactly Is Ruby Chocolate? Where to Purchase It and Ingredients

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Pink chocolate has piqued the public’s interest since since ruby chocolate was presented at a trade fair in Shanghai in 2017. After all, China isn’t exactly recognized for its skilled chocolate production. Yet, one of the world’s top chocolate makers opted to launch their new variety of chocolate there.

The company then presented the first publicly accessible version of the new chocolate in Japan, before expanding to Europe in mid-2018 and the United States in 2019. Recently, the business unveiled another new product: WholeFruit Chocolate. So, what’s the big deal with ruby chocolate, and is it really justified?

*This article was first published in March 2018 and has been updated hundreds of times since then with other sources on where to get ruby chocolate, as well as frequently-asked questions and further information on its worldwide spread.

Prices for ruby chocolate may be found on Amazon by clicking here.

What exactly is Ruby Chocolate?

Ruby chocolate, like blonde chocolate a few years ago, has been billed as the fourth form of chocolate, after white, milk, and dark chocolates. It was also recently branded “millennial chocolate,” however that moniker never took on. The creators of ruby chocolate, Barry Callebaut, have identified so-called ruby cocoa beans as the cause of the distinctive hue.

According to Callebaut, the ruby cocoa bean is not a new variety of cacao and has not been genetically engineered.

For the past several decades, researchers have made a deliberate effort to capture and save the genetic information of each cocoa cultivar that has been found. So this isn’t some rare ruby cocoa bean unearthed in the wild. Ruby cacao is only the name given to the beans used to produce ruby chocolate, and the fermentation process (and other processing) is a well guarded trade secret. Could it be the same red-hued cocoa beans that Callebaut patented in 2009?

Whatever the solution, pink cocoa pods are not it. In reality, Callebaut has legally kept customers in the dark about pink chocolate manufactured from rare pink cocoa pods. He refers to commercial secrets. And, while Callebaut insists that no genetic alteration of any type is involved, we suspect it has something to do with how he handles these ruby cacao beans after harvest.

So, what exactly is ruby chocolate composed of? To address this issue, we must examine both the ingredient list and the source of those components. So, based on the components, where does ruby chocolate originate from? In 2019, the so-called ruby cacao bean is sourced from Brazil, Ecuador, and the Ivory Coast. Nevertheless, Callebaut has not been as forthcoming about the provenance of ruby chocolates’ other components, which include cocoa butter, sugar, citric acid, and milk powder, as well as emulsifiers. Cocoa liquid (unsweetened chocolate) and natural flavors are now included in newer formulations, although nearly no cocoa solids remain.

Some individuals believe ruby chocolate is a forgery, consisting of flavored cocoa butter or other colored fat. Yet I can assure you that this pink chocolate contains cacao beans. I’ve tried it countless times myself. The first time was exactly two weeks after the Japanese release date of January 19th, 2018. Since then, I’ve been convinced that ruby chocolate is the result of years of market research and a fairly inventive approach to chocolate production.

Ruby Chocolate’s History

This chocolate’s moniker, Millennial Chocolate, is a deliberate branding strategy and a not-so-subtle hint to its target demographic. Yet, thus far, this branding decision has not worked in their favor. The extended period of time between the announcement of ruby chocolate and the introduction of the ruby kit kat in early 2018 seems to have left the public somewhat uninterested. Prolonged gaps between releases in various regions exacerbated this apathy, as did the introduction of American Ruby Chocolate goods.

What has piqued people’s interest seems to be Callebaut’s insinuation of uncovering a new red cocoa bean in the wild. Despite the fact that Barry Callebaut maintains that ruby beans originate from a number of places, including Brazil, Ecuador, and the Ivory Coast, he continues to offer a distinctiveness to the product.

Ruby chocolate appeals to people’s need to be fashionable and one-of-a-kind, which is emphasized by the fact that only a limited quantity of ruby kit kats were made available in that initial batch (just 5000 in the world, supposedly). There have undoubtedly been many more ruby kit kat runs since then, but the novelty has gone off.

I suppose we’ll never know how much Nestle paid to be the first distributors of a ruby chocolate product, but if the $94USD sets of 5 ruby kit kats (plus some complimentary kit kats) are any indicator, it’s a lot. But, the ruby cocoa kitkat was the first pink chocolate bar I tried, and for many months it was the only ruby chocolate accessible abroad. This is because Nestle held exclusive distribution rights to ruby chocolate for six months, which reportedly ended in April 2018, when ruby chocolate was made accessible to culinary experts in Belgium.

The product’s name is Ruby RB1, and it was immediately made accessible to chocolate specialists in other regions of Europe in the months that followed. This ruby cacao couverture is now accessible across Europe, but exclusively to chefs (and anyone buying products from them). Callebaut’s strategy seems to be based on the trickle-down idea, in which the chocolatiers to whom they provide pink chocolate will conduct the marketing, and demand will grow from there.

Callebaut was cautious from the outset to hedge its bets on when ruby chocolate would really be on the worldwide market, noting that it might be anywhere between 6 and 18 months. This variety enabled his team to strike partnerships with chocolatiers, produce more chocolate to meet demand, and create the excitement that this pink chocolate sorely need. It also provided them time to get a temporary authorization to legally advertise ruby chocolate as chocolate.

The early news pieces regarding ruby cacao and ruby chocolate kept public interest for a while, but internet searches have dropped drastically in the past several years. The top ten search results for ruby chocolate and even ruby cocoa are all fluff pieces based on Callebaut press releases or blogs. There has been very no social media, no advertisements, no talk programs, or anything of the type, as one would anticipate during these strange times, when it seems that everyone is attempting to sell their product.

It makes us wonder what makes ruby chocolate so unique.

After all, chocolate is one of the most popular foods on the planet. The chocolate business is worth billions of dollars globally and is often seen as recession-proof. Even in the worst-case scenario (such as right now), you can still buy a chocolate-flavored candy bar. So I guess a $4 kit kat (or even a $1 one) might be done up and sensationalized sufficiently to begin recouping the costs of creating the ruby chocolate producing technique. After all, people will always crave chocolate.

See the video below for an example of a press release-style video.

Where Did Pink Chocolate Originally Appear?

The decision to unveil ruby chocolate in Japan first may simply be because Nestle won the bidding battle, but I could also understand if Callebaut hand-picked the chocolate giant. While being manufactured in the United States, the Kitkat brand has gained fame in Japan, where its numerous unusual flavors are admired by visitors and cherished by residents. Kitkat has gone farther in Japan than it has in the United States, where they are unlike anything you’ve ever tasted.

They’re no longer really American, particularly the pink chocolate variety. With Asia’s expanding fine chocolate industry, the first release in China came as no surprise. There is a lot of interest in healthy eating in Asia, but there is also a lot of interest in attractive and fashionable dishes. With chocolate consumption increasing throughout Asia, engaging the Asian market in the launch was a calculated decision.

Japan is definitely the right market for this novel food: they are open to new ideas, are passionate about exquisite chocolate, and are prepared to spend extra for unusual meals and experiences. It’s been proved that the Japanese like giving pricey food products as gifts, so why not pink chocolate? The price difference in ruby chocolate is comparable to paying more to be the first to acquire the latest iPhone or Jordans. It is paying for the hype since more items will be developed using it in the future.

Barry Callebaut has spent far too many years creating and investing in order to create amazing chocolate, and I can’t see him passing up such a brand-boosting chance. I’m not sure how much of it was due to the introduction of ruby cocoa goods, but Nestle Japan has also established numerous new Kit Kat Chocolatory outlets throughout the globe since the launching of its ruby chocolate kit kats, including one in Melbourne, Australia.

Ruby Chocolate Review: Expert Views

Despite the fact that several chocolate industry experts were invited to the trade event where Ruby chocolate was debuted in 2017, Ruby still lacks social media visibility years later. If millennials are the intended demographic for this chocolate, Callebaut needs a social media plan, since every chocolate expert I’ve talked with has been unimpressed. We were, in fact, skeptical.

The announcement that the new range will be launched first as kitkats was the proverbial final straw. Chocolate specialists started noisily chatting about it amongst themselves. Several of us then went out to conduct our own research while nibbling on red chocolate.

On my end, I purchased a couple red kit kats (and later on, some bonbons and a ruby chocolate bar or two). In line with the purity concept, ruby kit kats are larger than regular ones and only available in individually wrapped boxes. I’ve seen that half of us experts were eager to taste the new pink chocolate, while the other half still believes it was all a marketing gimmick years later.

Dom Ramsey, a well-known figure in the fine chocolate business, was reported in the New York Times as noting that Ruby chocolate is mostly a marketing word. Mr. Ramsey, I have to agree.

Even after tasting ruby chocolate US product Chocolove Valentines Day bars, many distinct ruby chocolate bonbons, a few pure ruby cacao bars, and ruby cacao wafers, I still don’t see what’s so wonderful. It’s simply another berry-flavored sweet delight with an odd look.

Frankly, I have an issue with the hoopla because of the sources. Callebaut even admits on its website that just 36% of its cocoa is obtained sustainably. So, after all the money spent on developing the product, who’s to tell it wasn’t created using child slave labor?

How Does Ruby Chocolate Taste?

Ruby chocolate tastes like extremely sweet white chocolate with hints of raspberry and lemon. Yet, as I’ve noted in other articles, everyone’s taste senses vary. Moreover, these small papillae taste the five tastes at varying intensities.

Saltiness, sweetness, bitterness, sourness, and umami are all possible flavors. It all depends on where you lay the chocolate on your tongue and what other components are in a bar (like flour-based wafers).

Ruby chocolate is officially manufactured in the milk chocolate style, using components such as cocoa butter, milk powder, sugar, and a trace of cocoa mass (like citric acid). Ruby chocolate was available in Chocolove Ruby Chocolate bars, produced particularly for Valentine’s Day, while I was doing chocolate research in the United States. Unlike the snack bars, they were made of pure ruby chocolate, yet they were carefully sold without ever using the word chocolate.

Trader Joes, which debuted pink chocolate wafers in February 2019, is another way to acquire ruby chocolate in the United States. Some chocolate reviewers have remarked that ruby chocolate contains berry undertones, similar to ice cream, but it hit my taste senses too hard to be ice cream-like. According to Barry Callebaut’s marketing material, it has a fresh berry-fruity flavor and a distinctive hue. Nonetheless, it is genuinely sour.

Prices for ruby chocolate may be found on Amazon by clicking here.

Ruby chocolate also lacks the mild cocoa fragrance seen in high-quality white chocolate (which makes sense, since its technically a milk chocolate). In fact, I don’t detect any cocoa overtones in ruby chocolate. It’s all vivid berries, which is consistent with what Callebaut said about the taste. That makes sense given that citric acid, an extremely sour organic compound produced from citrus fruits, is one of the constituents.

Ruby chocolate will be difficult to blend into the backdrop of a truffle or bonbon in the future since the strong taste is unfamiliar to our palates. The pink chocolate bonbons I got from Presquile Chocolaterie in Tokyo, in particular, aimed to compliment or enhance the berry fruitiness rather than oppose it.

The fruity flavor is difficult to pin down to a specific berry, and the acidic aftertaste might strike you harder on some bites than others. But I can immediately see a variety of additional inventive applications for the chocolate, ranging from caramelized ruby chocolate to ruby chocolate-covered cacao beans. As contentious as its launch has been, this may be a great product to construct a learning curve for.

Ruby Chocolate is it vegan?

Vegan ruby chocolate does not yet exist. This is due to the fact that ruby chocolate is a proprietary product of the Belgian business Callebaut, which first marketed it in China in 2017. In reality, unlike other forms of chocolate, making ruby chocolate at home is impossible. There is no ruby chocolate recipe, but we do know what it is comprised of.

Ruby chocolate is created in the form of milk chocolate, using cocoa butter and ruby cocoa beans, as well as sugar and milk powder and a few other components. These extra components are said to play a significant role in what makes the chocolate so fruity, while the milk powder and sugar make it creamy and sweet.

To create a vegan ruby chocolate bar, replace the usual cane sugar with a vegan-friendly substitute. So you’d have to look for a dairy-free milk powder, such oat milk powder or even coconut milk powder. Also, the natural flavors indicated in the ingredients list should be checked for animal sources.

Sadly, all of these changes would alter the flavor of the chocolate to the point that it would not taste like the ruby chocolate we’ve grown to know and love. Moreover, since Callebaut is the only maker of ruby chocolate, it is up to them to develop a vegan ruby chocolate version and make it accessible to the general public.

Ruby Chocolate Items

Following the 2017 debut of ruby chocolate kitkats, the confection has been used in a variety of items. After the wafer-based sweets came pure ruby chocolate bars, which were initially available in Europe. The product has now been made available to professional chocolatiers, who are responsible for the bonbons and truffles sold in chocolate shops across the globe.

Since bonbons have a limited shelf life, chocolatiers have come up with some really inventive ways to employ red chocolate. There are the standard basic pink chocolate bars, but I’ve also eaten one with candied violet flowers and toasted almonds. Despite the minimum quantity of cocoa mass, chocolatiers I spoke with stated it tempers like white chocolate.

One chocolate ruby bonbon I used raspberry puree to accent the confection’s inherent sour tones, but I’d like to see more experimentation with salt and cacao nibs. Sadly, there is currently no vegan ruby chocolate version; else, I would want to try it using coconut milk instead of dairy milk.

Additionally, the Callebaut legend of finding ruby cocoa beans is a fabrication, adding to the topic of is ruby chocolate fake. Since it is only processing that changes the flavor of the cacao, future ruby chocolate products must consider not just the flavor of the couverture, but also how ruby chocolate is manufactured.

Is it possible to leverage the product’s high sugar content as a foundation for further complexity? Can it be caramelized like white or milk chocolate? Does adding dark or milk chocolate reduce the sweetness or damage the fruity flavor? Which dried fruits might complement its tartness?

Regrettably, there is no method to manufacture ruby chocolate at home right now, but there are other ways to make chocolate from scratch at home! You may readily find instructions for making white, milk, or dark chocolate at home, but no ruby (for now).

Ruby Chocolate Frequently Asked Questions

Is ruby chocolate real chocolate?

Although this depends on your definition of chocolate, I believe ruby chocolate is true chocolate since it contains cocoa mass and cocoa butter.

Can you make ruby chocolate at home?

As previously said, there is presently no ruby chocolate recipe available online, as opposed to white, milk, or dark chocolate. You may either tint white chocolate pink with red food dye or make your own chocolate at home using white, milk, or dark chocolate recipes.

How is ruby chocolate made?

Ruby chocolate, like white and milk chocolates, is prepared by grinding cacao derivatives (chocolate liquor, cocoa butter) with sugar and milk powder, but with a few more ingredients: citric acid, soy lecithin, and natural flavor. The pink tint is attributed to the under-fermented cacao beans that Callebaut handles using their proprietary technique.

Is ruby chocolate vegan?

No. Simply simply, ruby chocolate is made in the same way as milk chocolate is. The first three components are cocoa butter, sugar, and milk powder, indicating that ruby chocolate is vegetarian but not vegan. Ruby cocoa beans are mentioned after those three on the ingredients list, and ruby chocolate has 4% cacao mass.

Can you use ruby chocolate for baking?

Yes! If you choose, you may use ruby chocolate in the same recipes that you would use white chocolate. You could, for example, prepare a cake, icing, or brownies with a ruby as the centerpiece.

What makes ruby chocolate pink?

Is ruby chocolate pink by nature? The primary element in the color of ruby chocolates is a processed cacao product called ruby cocoa beans from Callebaut. One notion is that Callebaut bred the cacao plants to produce fruits with a stronger pink tinge (99% of cacao has a reddish-purple color when raw). Ruby chocolate contains cacao mass, cocoa butter, milk powder, and sugar (not in that sequence), thus the cacao must be extremely pink to keep the color. Moreover, it is thought that they utilized fruitier, unfermented cacao beans treated with acids to get the vivid hue. This makes logical given that citric acid is usually included in ruby chocolate ingredient lists.

What exactly is Ruby Couverture? What exactly are ruby chocolate chips?

In the United States, ruby couverture refers to the variety of ruby chocolate, whilst ruby chocolate chips refers to the. Due of the United States criteria for what is known as chocolate specifications, which ruby chocolate did not fulfill until recently, US ruby chocolate has been legally required to be marketed under a different name. So they went with couverture, a French word often used in chocolate to describe to chocolate produced for making bonbons and other confections.

Couverture has more cocoa butter than other chocolates, however this does not imply that American ruby chocolate contains more cocoa butter. Due to Callebaut’s legal team pushing for the confection to be recognized as the 4th kind of chocolate, the newest ruby chocolate USA releases will be allowed to legally call themselves chocolate for a short time.

But I’m interested how this fourth variety of chocolate would taste if it were prepared using a regular dark, milk, or white chocolate recipe.

Is ruby chocolate organic?

Indeed, ruby chocolate is created in the same way as any other chocolate, using cacao beans and sugar, as well as additional cocoa butter and milk powder. Nevertheless, it is unknown how much preservatives are in the ruby chocolate itself, since chocolate producer Callebaut seems to have varied formulas of ruby chocolate for different applications, just as there are varying percentages of white, milk, and dark chocolates.

The pink chocolate used to manufacture those Japanese kitkats may taste different from that used by professional chocolatiers, and it may also taste different in future formulations. Ruby chocolates on the market currently have distinct tastes due to variable concentrations of each component. Also, any preservatives applied during the cacao’s post-harvest processing will not be disclosed on the label (just like your strawberries and apples dont list the weed killers sprayed on them just before they were picked).

If you appreciate organic or fair trade chocolate, Ruby chocolate is not for you, and it is surely not manufactured with transparently traded cocoa.

Where to Purchase Ruby Chocolate Globally

What is the price of ruby chocolate?

Individual bars were no longer available when I visited the Kitkat chocolatory in Seoul, South Korea, barely two weeks after their introduction. You have to purchase them in sets of 5 bars for 26500 ($24USD) (2 ruby + 1 of each white, milk, and dark). This may seem excessive for Kit Kats, but Valentine’s Day is a major deal in Japan and Korea. There is an 8% sales tax in Japan, however it is nothing compared to the prices in the United States and other territories.

As of 2019, the usual prices in Japan is still 400 + 32 tax, so 432 per kit kat ($4USD). In both Japan and Korea, kit kats cost roughly $4 USD. But, as of September 2018, ruby chocolate kitkats and pink chocolate masterpieces from chocolatiers around Europe are now available in general shops across Europe. Costs vary widely, with Trader Joe’s current ruby chocolate wafers being the lowest alternative in the US as of 2020.

Where can I find ruby chocolate in the United States?

Ruby chocolate goods are now widely available in the United States, ranging from Trader Joe’s Ruby Cacao Wafers and Chocoloves Valentine’s Day bar to ruby chocolates bought overseas from other suppliers. According to Callebaut, new chocolate varieties will be available shortly. He’s dubbed the US ruby chocolate ruby couverture, but he hasn’t indicated which businesses will sell it. You may also purchase a good selection of bars online, albeit the quality varies.

NEW: Click here to view pricing and purchase ruby chocolate right now.

Where can you get ruby chocolate on the foreign market?

UPDATE 2020: Ruby chocolate bars are now available globally through Fortnum & Mason, which charges high shipping rates but will ship to practically any location on the planet (though you can buy ruby chocolate in the US for cheaper on Amazon). Ruby RB1 Chocolate was made accessible to Belgian chocolatiers and pastry chefs beginning in April 2018. Pink chocolate kit kats are currently available at Albert Heijn shops in Belgium and the Netherlands, abka and Freshmarket stores in Poland, and Rewe stores in Germany. Ruby chocolate was available in Australia beginning in May 2018, and in South Africa beginning in September of the same year.

Since huge quantities of ruby chocolate are sold solely to confectioners and not to people, it is now only available at local chocolate stores. Moreover, although some bars employ pink chocolate, the chocolate covering the items may have had additional ingredients added to it, diluting the product’s taste. Callebaut hasn’t said if they want to license the processing procedures or sell the ruby chocolate beans directly in the future.

If you have any remaining questions concerning pink chocolate, please post them in the comments below and I will try my best to address them in future updates to this page.

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