If Your Chocolate Looks “Dusty,” This Is What It Is

Turns out, there's a scientific reason why chocolate can look dusty. Here's what it is, and why you shouldn't be too worried about it.

If you’re anything like me, your mind is already one season ahead—I’m talking fall, baby! It’s never too early for a bunch of cutely carved pumpkins around the house, you know what I mean?

And what else comes with Halloween but candy? I hold trick-or-treating near and dear to my heart. But sometimes I open up a Snickers bar to see a weird dusty coating. What gives?

Why does my chocolate look dusty?

That strange dust or powder on chocolate is called chocolate bloom. The explanation for chocolate bloom is simple food science—it happens when the fat in chocolate separates from the rest of the candy. When chocolate is left in a warm place and melts, the fat in the chocolate (also known as the cocoa butter) will separate from the rest of the ingredients as it cools and reforms. Then, as the fat rises to the surface, it creates that white, dusty film.

In a similar process known as sugar chocolate bloom, the sugar will crystallize due to excess moisture. When that happens, you’ll typically see a speckled appearance on top of the candy bar. Speaking of speckled—this is what it means if you see speckles or bumps on your eggs.

Is bloomed chocolate safe to eat?

The short answer is yes, it’s safe. The taste may end up a little off, but it’s edible nonetheless. If you’re uneasy about eating bloomed chocolate but don’t want to waste the candy, use it for baking.

Next, learn what that white stuff on baby carrots is and if it’s safe to eat.

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Originally Published on Taste of Home