Can vegans eat chocolate? Yes! Chocolate can absolutely be vegan. Most dark chocolate is vegan, but you’ll want to inspect the label to be sure. However, chocolate containing dairy products is not vegan-friendly, and the processing of some chocolate products can also make it not vegan.
What Makes Chocolate Vegan?
What Types of Chocolate Aren’t Vegan?Most chocolate falls into one of three categories: dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and white chocolate. While dark chocolate is usually vegan-friendly, milk and white chocolate typically are not.
- Milk Chocolate, as the name implies, contains dairy, making it not vegan, unless it is made with a nondairy milk like oat milk or almond milk.
- White Chocolate also frequently contains dairy products. There’s also quite a bit of debate  as to whether white chocolate technically qualifies as chocolate because it doesn’t usually contain cocoa solids.
Ingredients to Avoid on Chocolate Labels
- Contains milk
- Whey (milk derivative)
- Casein (milk derivative)
- Lactose (milk derivative)
- A cholesterol level greater than 0%, since this is only found in animal products 
- White refined sugar
- Refined sugar
- Honey, which is avoided by some vegans since its production can include exploitation of bees
Things to Look for On a Vegan Dark Chocolate Bar Label
Is Vegan Chocolate / Dark Chocolate Healthy?
- Improve heart health
- Improve brain function
- Reduce stress
- Balance the immune system
Is There a Vegan Milk Chocolate?
By substituting cow's milk with milk alternatives, you can achieve a taste and texture that closely resembles traditional milk chocolate. Among these alternatives, nut milk is a commonly favored choice among vegans. Nut milk is produced by straining liquid from crushed nuts and imparts distinct flavor notes depending on the nut variety. However, if you aren't a fan of nutty flavors, consider oat milk chocolate as a delightful alternative!
Chocolates crafted using oat milk offer a superb substitute for dairy or nut-based milk chocolates in the vegan realm. Oat milk chocolate boasts a natural, creamy texture reminiscent of classic milk chocolate.
Oat milk tends to have a gentler flavor profile compared to nut milks, allowing the inherent cocoa bean nuances to shine through. Due to the presence of oats, some may detect subtle undertones of malt and cereal in the chocolate.
Further reading: Learn About Dairy-Free Oat Milk Chocolate
Where Can I Buy Vegan Chocolate?
Nowadays, most health food stores offer a variety of vegan options. And if you’re buying online, the options are nearly limitless! These online retailers are approved by the Fair World Project, an organization that advocates for fair trade practices globally:
- Dr. Bronner’s Magic All-One Chocolate
- Alter Eco
- Chocolate and Love
- Divine Chocolate
- Equal Exchange
- Theo Chocolate
- Lake Champlain
- Alter Eco