Why does chocolate go so well with salt?

Have you ever wondered why almost every chocolate maker has an inclusion bar with SALT in his/her assortment? Why does chocolate go so well with salt? There are several reasons:

Salt makes chocolate “sweeter” and more flavorful

When sodium is present, sensors located in our intestines and on our tongue that normally don’t alert to sugar process glucose as sweet. Salt not only alerts our ‘salt sensitivity’, but also triggers a reaction with our ‘sweet sensitive’ taste buds to make them more receptive to sweet flavors. It’s like a second sugar detector is being signaled that you’re eating something sugary. That pinch of salt enhances tastes and makes flavors “pop”, giving life and energy to the simplest recipes. Most sweet foods, desserts or baked goods will have some amounts of salt added for this purpose. Our beloved chocolate is no exception. With the addition of salt, a fuller chocolate flavor comes up and all the intrinsic flavors are faster brought to the surface to be enjoyed.

Salt also contrasts sweetness

Although a “pinch of salt” can be used to enhance sweetness, a more substantial amount of salt can be useful to actually contrast the sweetness of a chocolate creation. With ingredients like caramel, milk, vanilla or dried fruits, it’s easy to reach an overwhelming level of sweetness fast. By adding salt in this kind of inclusion bars, chocolate professionals ensure that the sweet ingredients are kept at bay thanks to the sodium. This sweet-and-salty contrast can also bring to life innovative chocolate creations that challenge the limits of our palates.

Salt adds texture

Crunchiness often makes chocolate more intriguing. A coarser or grainier texture can be the secret to revive a flat chocolate, or to bring a wonderful one to glory. The salt crystals give a salty crunch and taste to the chocolate, and the result is grainier chocolate where salt can be detected at first bite.

Do you like salt in your chocolate?

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