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Understanding Cacao: The Natural Superfood Ingredient

Cacao seeds

Some might need heard or examine darkish chocolate being good for you. Nonetheless, it’s not the darkish chocolate that’s good for you- it’s the cacao ingredient contained in the chocolate that holds the advantages your physique and style buds love!

At One Diploma Organics, we traveled around the globe to supply a superfood ingredient famously referred to as cacao. Why? Aside from its dietary advantages, the natural cacao ingredient provides a wealthy and mouth-watering taste to our;  Cacao Mint Tea Infused GranolaSprouted Cacao Nib Instantaneous OatmealSprouted Brown Rice Cacao Crips, and our Sprouted Oat Quinoa Cacao Granola

Be a part of us as we discover how cacao is processed, uncover the purest type of cacao, and reply dietary questions like whether or not cacao is vegan, gluten-free, and caffeine-free. 

What’s cacao?

Cacao can also be known as Theobroma cacao. Theobroma, is the Latin identify, given by Swedish botanist Carolus Linnaeus immediately interprets to ‘Meals of the Gods.’ Cacao, nonetheless, comes from the Nahuatl (Aztec) phrase xocolatl, which suggests ‘bitter water.’

How is cacao grown? A cacao tree is born from a seed discovered within the cacao pod; the seed is not going to develop whether it is dry. When the cacao tree grows it produces lovely giant leaves and cacao pods. These pods comprise the beans used to make cacao nibs, chocolate, paste and extra.

The cacao tree produces fruit, sure you learn that proper. When cracking open a cacao pod, one can find a juicy fruit layer which covers the important thing ingredient-cacao beans. The cacao tree can also be known as an evergreen tree because it doesn’t shed its leaves throughout colder months of the 12 months, not like different timber.

The place is cacao grown? The cacao evergreen tree is roughly 8m in top and is grown in hotter climates like its native Central and South America area.

How does cacao style? Properly, when harvested the pods are opened to supply the cacao fruit pulp which covers the beans. The fruity pulp is good and juicy, nonetheless, the bean itself holds a bitter and extra intense taste. The bean is the place all of the vitamins and minerals are saved.


How is cacao processed?

It isn’t arduous to see why there are such a lot of chocolate lovers round, however other than its mouth-watering style there’s a variety of work that goes into harvesting the cacao pods, processing the cacao beans, and making certain the identical beloved style is loved by tens of millions around the globe.

At One Diploma Organics, we journey far and broad to find the purest elements, when doing so, we go to the native farms, meet the farmers who educate us on how the elements are grown, and processed, and style the standard for ourselves.

One in every of our farm accomplice’s Villa Andina is in Peru, they work alongside the native cacao farmers that present us with the superfood ingredient present in all our cacao-based merchandise. We have now been lucky sufficient to shake the fingers of those cacao farmers in Peru who place the utmost care in harvesting these wealthy beans.

After the cacao pods have been harvested, the pods are opened to gather the cacao beans. The cacao beans are unloaded at their processing facility the place high quality assurance checks are accomplished to make sure cacao beans are free from plagues. As soon as the cacao beans have handed the standard checks, they’re fermented to supply its wealthy deep taste earlier than being processed.

Kinds of cacao

The cacao beans will be processed into the next merchandise;

With regards to the beans the primary problem is the excessive humidity that may be a results of heavy rain. When beans are processed, they’re positioned within the solar or machine dryers to realize the appropriate humidity and positioned by sieves to acquire purity.

The cacao nibs are the primary product that’s obtained when processing cacao. The cacao bean is roasted or dried to acquire 4% humidity. In keeping with our farm accomplice the cacao nibs present in our oatmeal’s, granolas, and cereals are the purest type of cacao.

Nibs additionally maintain about 50%-55% cacao butter inside the bean itself. As soon as the nibs have been shaped it’s then floor into smaller particles which kind a cacao paste. The cacao paste accommodates cocoa solids and cocoa butter of their pure propositions.

The cacao paste is additional refined by heating and mixing which boosts the flavour and improves the feel. The paste is then positioned into molds, nonetheless, whether it is getting used to supply chocolate, it undergoes a tempering course of.

Cacao butter is extracted from cacao beans utilizing a hydraulic press which separates the cocoa butter from the cocoa solids. As soon as that is accomplished, the cacao butter will bear a filtration course of to make sure the butter is pure.

Cacao powder is obtained as a by-product of the cacao butter. This powder is produced by urgent out the cocoa butter from the cacao paste. With regards to chocolate, nonetheless, cacao paste is refined much more and relying on the chocolate, sweetener, milk, and cocoa butter is added to supply the chocolate bars you like and know.

Cacao vs Cocoa

In easy phrases, cacao is the uncooked type of cocoa. Cacao is remodeled by the method of fermentation which develops the extraordinary chocolate taste, drying which ensures proper humidity, then roasting, extracting, and grinding to supply cocoa powder.

Are cacao nibs candy?
Cacao beans and nibs have a extra intense bitter style, so it may be overpowering if utilized in pure kind. Cocoa alternatively, presents a mellower style which is nice for baking or making chocolate.

Well being advantages of cacao

Cacao is a superfood crammed with a wealthy supply of vitamins and minerals which have quite a few advantages. Let’s break down the methods wherein cacao loves your physique by discussing what the advantages of cacao actually are.

Cacao nibs are a wealthy supply of fiber, which is important for sustaining good digestive well being. And that’s not all, cacao beans are additionally wealthy in antioxidants that support in decreasing irritation and harm to the physique.

However wait there’s extra! Cacao is without doubt one of the highest plant-based sources of magnesium. Why is magnesium necessary? Properly, it’s the fourth most ample mineral within the human physique and magnesium deficiency is related to cardiovascular, persistent, and inflammatory illnesses. So, by consuming cacao you’re offering your physique with the much-needed increase of important vitamins.

Have you ever ever heard of flavonoids? In easy phrases, they’re a gaggle of bioactive compounds which might be related to decreasing the chance of most cancers, heart problems, and neurodegenerative dysfunction.

Chocolate, cacao, cocoa have the best ranges of flavonoids than some other meals. These bioactive compounds additionally assist the physique by regulating the way it digests carbohydrates, now if this isn’t love, I don’t know what’s.

Aside from all these advantages, cacao has the ability to enhance psychological well being. The amino acid known as tryptophan is discovered inside the cacao bean. Tryptophan is a compound which is utilized by the physique to secrete our feel-good hormone, in any other case known as serotonin. So, the following time you are feeling burdened or blue, launch some pressure by having fun with the wealthy and daring style of cacao.

Cacao beans comprise a excessive supply of iron which is required for producing protein for pink blood cells that carry oxygen all through the physique. For vegetarians and pescatarians, cacao beans are a superb supply of iron. Cacao will not be solely scrumptious but additionally a superfood that may love you again with its wealthy advantages.

At One Diploma Organics we solely use cacao nibs in our merchandise to make sure that each spoonful is full of the beloved taste of chocolate and the wealthy healthful advantages of cacao.

Cacao dietary info

From cacao beans to, cacao nibs, powder, paste and chocolate, there are such a lot of methods to take pleasure in this superb ingredient. However, earlier than you do, let’s get all the way down to the nitty-gritty and reply the highest questions on cacao.

Are cacao nibs vegan? Completely! Cacao is a plant-based ingredient, so in the event you plan to make use of it in its pure kind, you don’t have anything to concern. Chocolate is constituted of cacao butter, powder, sugars, and milk, relying on what chocolate model you like, and due to the milk it doesn’t make it vegan or wholesome with all of the added sugar.

Is cacao gluten-free? Cacao is 100% gluten-free. Lastly, is cacao caffeine-free? Sadly, no. Cacao nibs comprise round 4.6 mg of caffeine per spoon. However don’t fear, it’s not sufficient to maintain you up all evening.

That is how a lot dietary worth is in 3 spoons of cacao nibs:

Identify Quantity Unit %DV
Power 140 kcal
Protein 3.99 g
Whole lipid (fats) 6.99 g 9%
Carbohydrate, by distinction 17 g 6%
Fiber, complete dietary 6.99 g 28%
Sugars, complete together with NLEA 0 g
Calcium, Ca 75 mg 8%
Iron, Fe 0.999 mg 6%
Magnesium, Mg 160 mg 40%
Potassium, Ok 250 mg 8%
Sodium, Na 20.1 mg 1%
Vitamin D (D2+D3) Worldwide Items 0 IU
Fatty acids, complete saturated 3.51 g 18%
Fatty acids, complete trans 0 g
Ldl cholesterol 0 mg

Desk sourced from: U.S Division of Agriculture, FoodData Central Search Outcomes

At One Diploma Organics, we take satisfaction in sourcing our cacao with love and care. Our cacao-based merchandise usually are not solely scrumptious but additionally ethically sourced. If you’re on the lookout for some mouth-watering cacao recipes, look no additional! We have now a listing of wonderful Household Recipes so that you can check out. And if you wish to keep updated on our newest information, recipes, merchandise, and farmers, join our e-newsletter at present. 




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