What's better than a chocolate cake

The large selection of chocolate baking ingredients in the supermarket can be confusing. The prices vary extremely in some cases. The appearance is similar. Like couverture, chocolate is made from cocoa mass, cocoa butter and sugar. So what should you take then for baking, decorating and glazing? What is different about the different products? In summary, one can say: The main differences between chocolate, cake icing and couverture are in the fat content - and accordingly also in the processing.


Couverture for coating pralines, cakes and biscuits, as I said, contains cocoa butter and cocoa mass in addition to sugar; it usually has significantly more fat than normal chocolate. According to the cocoa regulation, more than 31 percent cocoa butter is used for couverture and a little more than half for chocolate. This means that couverture is more liquid after melting, so you can cover a cake better, for example. The fat content also means that you have to temper the couverture at the right temperature. I explain here how tempering works.

Here's another tip to save some money: You can also buy and store couverture in larger quantities, such as the couverture from Callebaut

Cake icing

Chocolate icing or fat icing containing cocoa looks similar to couverture, but is a different product than normal chocolate or couverture. So-called cake icing is also available in flavors such as lemon, vanilla or nut - which already shows that it sometimes has little to do with chocolate. Instead of cocoa butter, it contains other (cheaper) fats such as palm oil or coconut oil, which makes it inferior and cheaper, but has the advantage that it does not have to be tempered. For beginners or if you want to be on the safe side, it might be a good alternative after all. In terms of taste, however, it doesn't really come close to real chocolate.

Cake icing comes in many different shapes and sizes, here are a few examples:

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