Ruby chocolate or pink chocolate is a relatively new type of chocolate fundamentally different from the dark, milk, and white chocolates. It was introduced to the world market as the fourth type of chocolate just recently in 2017 by Barry Callebaut(January 2018 first market release ). Being of an unusual colour and taste for chocolate, some consider pink chocolate as not real chocolate while others treat it like the other three; after all, it is made from naturally occurring cocoa products.
Why Is Ruby Chocolate Pink In Color?
Dark chocolate has the highest amount of cocoa with no dairy, milk chocolate has less cocoa with more dairy, and white chocolate contains no actual cocoa beans but peaks in cocoa butter and dairy.
Pink/Ruby chocolate, on the other hand, contains unfermented cocoa beans, cocoa butter, milk, and sugar, coming in at a total of 47.3% cocoa solids, as mentioned by Barry Callebaut. The unique fruity pink colour of ruby chocolate and its sweet yet sour berry-like taste is completely natural with no added colour. The colour and taste of ruby chocolate is a result of using cocoas with a more pinkish or purple hue, as when most fruit cocoa change colour depending on how ripe they are.
Unripe cocoas are green; as they ripe, their colour changes from yellow, orange, red, and finally purple. These purple cocoas are harvested and undergo a special process using citric acid. These cocoa beans are only mildly processed to preserve the taste compared to dark chocolate; as such, the final cocoa product still retains its pinkish colour and fruity taste.
The strength of the purple hue on cocoas depends on the climate and region they grew in; as such, the cocoas used for ruby chocolate are grown especially in Ecuador, Brazil, and Ivory Coast.
Either way being such a unique product, ruby chocolates can get expensive, much like Belgian chocolates; it depends on the brand and the product(bar, powder). Ruby chocolates are also used in bakeries for pastries, cakes among others; some customers even specifically ask for products made with ruby chocolate. But it is an acquired taste; some like it while others only try it once.
Popular brands like Magnum ice cream, KitKats, Starbucks(Ruby Flamingo Frappuccino) and
Costa Coffee, Chocolove among others, have their own ruby products.
Ruby Chocolate Market
Ruby chocolate is still very new; But over the past few years, large brands have launched and featured multiple ruby products, creating more customers with each new product. The ruby chocolate market is still very much young, as more people become aware of it, the demand will automatically increase.
Barry Callebaut has reported an increase in sales last year 2020, even through the pandemic, and with parts of Asian, African and European markets slowly gaining traction, it's only a matter of time until ruby chocolate catches up with the others.
The biggest hurdle for ruby chocolate as of now is brand promotion, regions like Latin America, Africa, Southern Asia are still in the dark about ruby chocolate. But it can be overcome quickly if the native/existing companies in these countries take the lead.
In 2019, 80% of ruby chocolate revenue came from the confectionery market, among them ruby ice creams were a bit hit.
The demand for ruby chocolate is only going up in the coming years as more international markets open up, brands will try to make the most out of it by offering more premium products in line with their already best-selling bones. Ruby chocolate may not be that popular with bakers now, but it's certainly trendy in the form of snack bars, ice cream and drinks.
Ruby Chocolate Desserts To Try 2021
- Ruby Chocolate Glazed Chocolate Bundt Cake
- Ruby Chocolate Blondies
- Ruby Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Pistachio Cookies with Ruby Chocolate
- Ruby Chocolate Truffles With Raspberries
- Ruby Chocolate Crackle Cookies
- Ruby Chocolate Pistachio Fudge
- Ruby Chocolate Plaisir Sucré
- Ruby Hot Chocolate Bomb
- Millennial Pink Hot Chocolate
Working With Ruby Chocolate
Apart from the temperature, ruby chocolate is also sensitive to light; too much light can turn the bright pink to a flat grey colour; oxygen and moisture are also its biggest enemies.
So it’s best stored in an airtight container away from light sources at a temperature of 18 degrees celsius, and when baking/cooking with ruby chocolate, keep the temperature within 28°C to 30° C.
The creamy texture of Ruby chocolate works well with fat-based ingredients, fillings while it's a bit tricky with anything water-based. Of the three, ruby chocolate is most similar to white chocolate, from its creamy consistency to the delicate flavour. It can be paired with all kind of nuts, cheese, caramel, camembert, Roquefort, citrus fruit, almonds, sesame oil, hazelnuts basically anything that goes along with raspberry.