Giving and receiving treats, feasting and over-indulgence are a big part of the Christmas festivities, as is the mother-of-all-confectionary, chocolate. 
Chocolate and Christmas go together like Father Christmas and Mrs Clause and whilst there are heaps of mouthwatering options out there, we can’t help but be allured by the brands offering a little extra. From creamy truffles to pretty gift boxes, there’s a smorgasbord of delicious vegan, eco-friendly, Fairtrade and organic chocolate options to choose from.

Some of the benefits of going against the conventional chocolate grain include: 

  • Buying ethically sourced chocolate makes a difference to the lives of cocoa farmers and their families around the world. 
  • Going organic means your chocolate will be free of chemicals, preservativespesticides, herbicides, GMOs and synthetic fertilisers. This includes the beans and any ingredient added to the blend. 
  • Raw cacao has not been heated or processed, allowing the cacao to preserve all of its rich nutrients… meaning it’s chock-full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This includes flavonoids antioxidant compounds to protect against cell damage, magnesium which helps keep a healthy brain and nervous system, iron which promotes healthy blood flow and anandamide which creates a sense of ease and happiness.
  • Selecting a vegan chocolate option helps to reduce your carbon footprint with regards to animal agriculture and green house gas emissions. 
  • Buying from sustainable chocolate brands eliminates the possibility of palm oil being used in your chocolate bar of choice. Palm oil is the main threat to the survival of orangutan populations in the wild.
  • Eco-friendly chocolate brands will often provide the goods within recyclable or compostable packaging. 
  • Choosing a dark chocolate means a lower sugar content – good for the teeth!

So forget about a big tub of Quality Street this Christmas and indulge your sweet tooth in these chocolate varieties which are kinder to the environment and your health.. 

Booja-Booja Truffles

Melt in the mouth, dairy free chocolate truffles made from a handful of simple, organic ingredients. Flavours include, toffee strudel, honeycomb caramel, raspberry chocolate, hazelnut crunch and almond salted caramel, presented in an elegant gift box of four, six, twelve or twenty.

Tried and tested feedback: The truffles are luxurious, moorish and look artisan rather than mass-produced. The box of twenty is perfect for giving as a stand-alone gift. Note these need to be kept in the fridge so need to be a gift that’s being handed over immediately and not put under the tree.

Info: Organic / Dairy Free / Soya Free
Gift boxes from £3.79 – £17.49, www.boojabooja.comGOOD FOR: Taking to a Christmas dinner party

Goodio Craft Chocolate Bars

Goodio chocolate is minimally processed to keep the ingredients as close to their natural state as possible. Made from locally sourced Finnish ingredients, Indonesian and Sri Lankan coconut palm sugar and cacao beans which originate from organic, non-GMO farms in Peru, Ecuador, and the Congo. Flavours include chai, coconut, coffee, ginger & lemongrass, wild blueberry and sea salt. Plus 50p from each Cafe Ubuntu bar sold helps to fund programs for women and special needs children in Maai Mahiu Kenya.

Tried and tested feedback: Although a small chocolate bar, the delicious rich taste and the gorgeous packaging makes these bars an excellent additional gift or a stocking filler. The raw and organic ingredients are blended perfectly so you are not aware that that it has nearly 60% less sugar than traditional milk chocolate.

Info: Organic / Dairy Free / Soya Free / Biodegradable Wrapper
From £4.99, | GOOD FOR: Sending to a friend abroad, inside a Christmas card

Green & Black’s Velvet Edition Chocolate Assorted Collection Box

Receive four, Green & Black’s Velvet Edition dark chocolate bars, elegantly presented in a stylish gift box. The Velvet Edition is a 70% dark chocolate that is rich in cocoa content, yet exceptionally smooth in flavour. Flavours range from Salted Caramel to fruity Raspberry and crunchy Hazelnut.

Tried and tested feedback: A moorish and luxurious taste and the the gift box has a premium feel to it, making it an excellent gift for chocolate connoisseurs.

Info: Ethically sourced cocoa through Cocoa Life, a global program that invests in sustainable farming.
£15.00, | GIFT TO: An older member of the family (Mum, Dad, Aunty)

Green & Black’s Organic Miniature Bar Collection

Green & Black’s has pulled together their most delightful miniature white, dark and milk bars to make a sophisticated stocking filler. Including white chocolate made from Madagascan vanilla, classic smooth milk chocolate, butterscotch, almond and the delicious milk with Anglesea sea salt.

Tried and tested feedback: Perfect for thank you occasions, stocking fillers, an after dinner indulgence or personalised advent calendars. Rich in cocoa content yet exceptionally smooth in flavour. All the taste of traditional chocolate but ethically sourced!

Info: Organic / Fairtrade / Ethically sourced cocoa through Cocoa Life, a global program that invests in sustainable farming. £5.50, | GOOD FOR: Advent calendar alternative

Loving Earth

Ethically driven, Loving Earth use a solar powered factory to craft their high quality organic and plant-based chocolate bars. Made in a way that honours both the Indigenous people that have cultivated the cocao for thousands of years and the earth and ecosystems in which they are grown. Flavours include salted caramel, dark chocolate, raspberry cashew, banoffee and coffee.

Tried and tested feedback: Super creamy and rich in taste, the 30g bars would work well as as a stocking filler, the 80g bars as an additional gift and the assorted gift box as a stand-alone gift.

Info: Organic / Vegan / Soy Free / Dairy Free / Compostable Packaging
From £1.75. | GIFT TO: A girl-mate

Montezuma Chunky Chocolate Snowmen

Dark and milk boxes of eight chunky snowmen filled with a deliciously soft truffle centre. New for 2018 is a vegan friendly Absolute Black version – 100% cocoa with a truffle centre.

Tried and tested feedback: This high quality chocolate tastes very luxurious and the truffle filling is scrumptious! Feels like you are enjoying a proper treat rather than a run-of-the-mill chocolate bar. A great stocking filler option or a little festive gift for a colleague. Be warned, the 100% cocoa version is for super hard core dark chocolate lovers only.

Info: Organic / Ethically produced / The company’s £20K ad budget is donated to charity instead of being spent on ads.
£5.99, | GIFT TO: A sibling

Montezuma Christmas Truffles

A gift box containing 16 or 25 festive flavoured truffles with flavours including frosted cranberry & vanilla cream, maple and walnut, orange and nutmeg and cherry and brandy. Each truffle contains a small amount of alcohol which contributes to their amazing flavour and adds an additional festive kick.

Tried and tested feedback: The beautiful festive gift box makes this a lovely Christmas gift option or a post Christmas dinner treat.

Info: Organic / Ethically produced / The company’s £20K ad budget is donated to charity instead of being spent on ads.
£12.99, | GIFT TO: A work colleague

Ombar Chocolate

Made with raw, organic Ecuadorian cacao, unrefined coconut sugar and real juicy fruits, every Ombar is packed full of goodness and deliciousness. No gluten, dairy or refined sugar in these bars and keeping the cacao raw helps to preserve the naturally occurring antioxidants which help you to feel good. The Ombar range comprises nine delicious varieties (35g size), meaning that there is a bar to suit every taste. 

Tried and tested feedback: Super smooth, delicious and creamy, you would’t know it was created using only all-natural, plant-based ingredients, and with absolutely no sugar. Not so fitting as a gift but perfect for socking fillers or a DIY Christmas calendar.

Info: Organic / Vegan / Fairtrade / Dairy Dree
£1.99 | GOOD FOR: A stocking-filler

Raw Halo Christmas Wishes Gift Box

A delicately gold embossed Christmas themed gift box containing 6 x 35g bars of award-winning raw chocolate. Raw Halo use organic coconut sugar to sweeten, and high percentages of cacao to ensure each bar is glowing with goodness.

Tried and tested feedback: Raw Halo has been developed as a healthier chocolate alternative and this beautifully presented gift box offers all the good chocolatey taste whilst enjoying the cacao’s nutritional benefits. Love the Christmassy flavours such as dark and sweet orange and the gold packaging adds an extra festive feel.

Info: Organic / Dairy Free / Vegan
£18.99, www.rawhalo.comGIFT TO: Your partner’s parents