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My Vegan Chocolate Challenge! blog by Willie's Cacao

Last month, I set myself the challenge to make some properly delicious, really chocolatey, smooth, creamy, dairy-free ‘milk’ chocolates. The kitchen was humming!


I used oats as the base for my artisan vegan  milk chocolate bars and vegan cooking chocolate, whole grain groats to be exact. I add them directly into my mini melangeurs, (chocolate refiners) with my Surabaya chocolate so I don’t need to use any readily prepared plant based milk or oil products, my refiners do the job perfectly from whole grains. The whole oats contain everything needed for perfectly creamy, wonderfully chocolatey, vegan milk chocolate.  For the vegan milk chocolate I give the oats  a very gentle and even toasting first to bring out a fuller deeper flavour and for the vegan white chocolate I add them unroasted to allow the more delicate flavour of the cacao butter to shine through.

You’ll notice makers often turn to coconut when making vegan milk chocolate. However I find coconut to be a very dominating flavour, don’t get me wrong though, coconut holds a very dear place in my heart and in my chocolates! Some of my favourite limited edition chocolate have featured coconut, however for my white and milk vegan bars and cooking chocolate, I want the pure and wonderful flavours from my Surabaya single estate beans and Medellin cocoa butter to be the stars. The addition of whole grain oats, groats to be precise, soften the caramel toffee flavour of the cacao and provide perfect creaminess.   I also find coconut oil in began chocolate makes chocolate with an oilier texture.  Whole oats refined directly into the chocolate have delivered beyond expectations to provide that wonderful texture that you want from milk and white chocolate, whether it’s vegan or not. 


I’ve made 3 equally delicious artisan chocolates using whole groats oats, after much experimentation and testing (as is always the case), I arrived at with my 3 winners…

Certain beliefs underpin all the new chocolates I make. Firstly that the best natural ingredients make the best flavours. Secondly, I want the chocolates to reflect and work  the unique flavour profile of the beans I am using. And finally, that perfection is a matter of balance.  

 I’ve chosen Surabaya, the Javan breaking bean from Indonesia, with it’s sophisticated toffee caramel notes, it pairs beautifully with the oats and makes these vegan milk chocolate bars and vegan white chocolate bars just the right level of  creaminess with a depth of flavour you’ll rarely find in vegan chocolates.

Oat milk chocolate. Surabaya 42 oat milk chocolate #65

Oat milk chocolate. Surabaya 42 oat milk chocolate #65

Rich and creamy, oat milk chocolate with toffee caramel notes from the fine Surabaya cacao. Dairy Free and Vegan. Perfectly balanced. Proudly plant based.

Almonds and Sea Salt. Surabaya 42 oat milk chocolate, Marcona Almonds and sea salt #66 

Creamy oat milk chocolate with roasted Marcona almonds and flakes of Cornish Sea Salt. Dairy Free and Vegan. Perfectly balanced. Proudly plant based.

Cinnamon, fruit & nut. White oat chocolate with almonds, raisins & cinnamon #67

Toasted almonds and raisins nestling in cinnamon cream chocolate made with oat milk and our own natural cocoa butter. Dairy Free and Vegan. Perfectly balanced. Proudly plant based. 

My Limited Edition Vegan Milk Chocolate Bars are available to buy at my Online Chocolate Shop


Many top chefs and restaurants use my cooking chocolate, they love being able to choose their cooking chocolate made using different single estate beans all with their own unique character, Being able to choose  specific beans with flavour profiles to match the ingredients they are cooking with  really takes cooking and baking with chocolate to a whole new level. 

With an ever increasing  demand from their customers for more plant-based dishes on their menus, many of my chef customers were asking me if I would be able to  make vegan milk cooking chocolate and white vegan cooking chocolate too.

It was a challenge I had set myself some time ago already. So now I have made them using oats and also the Surabaya single estate cacao beans.  The deep  toffee caramel notes of Surabaya make them  great for cooking and baking  with. I’m very happy with these vegan cooking chocolates, which I make into easily weighable, evenly melting chef’s drops.  My chef customers are also very happy to be able to offer their customers 100% plant based milk cooking chocolate that tastes fantastic in their desserts and cakes!  They’re now  available from my online chocolate shop for home cooks too!

If you’ve tried my artisan vegan chocolate bars or my vegan milk and white cooking chocolate chefs drops, I’d love to hear from you! Contact me with your comments!

Published: 10/08/2022

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