Organic Cacao Powder FAQ

What is Cacao Powder?

Dry cocoa solids are the components of cocoa beans remaining after cocoa butter, the fat component, is extracted from chocolate liquor, roasted cocoa beans that have been ground into a liquid state. Cocoa butter is 50% to 57% of the weight of cocoa beans and gives chocolate its characteristic melting properties. Cocoa powder is the powdered form of the solids sold as an end product.

Where does Cacao come from?

The Cacao tree is native to the Amazon Basin.  Theobroma cacao, also called the cacao tree and the cocoa tree, is a small (4–8 m (13–26 ft) tall) evergreen tree in the family Malvaceae, native to the deep tropical regions of the Americas. Its seeds, cocoa beans, are used to make chocolate liquor, cocoa solids, cocoa butter and chocolate. Our Organic Cacao Powder is a product of Peru.

What’s the history of Cacao?

Several mixtures of cacao are described in ancient texts, for ceremonial or medicinal, as well as culinary, purposes. Some mixtures included maize, chili, vanilla and honey. Archaeological evidence for use of cacao, while relatively sparse, has come from the recovery of whole cacao beans at Uaxactun, Guatemala and from the preservation of wood fragments of the cacao tree at Belize sites including Cuello and Pulltrouser Swamp. Cacao beans were a major currency system in pre-Columbian Mesoamerican civilisations. At one point, the Aztec empire received a yearly tribute of 980 loads of cacao, in addition to other goods. Each load represented exactly 8,000 beans.

What does Cacao Powder look like?

Natural cocoa powder has a light brown colour.  The processed cocoa powder is darker in colour, ranging from brownish red to nearly black, with a pH from 6.8 to 8.1. This process reduces bitterness and improves solubility, which is important for beverage product applications. Our Organic Cacao Powder is described as a fine, brown powder.

How would you describe the flavour of Cacao Powder?

Cacao Powder is mildly bitter in flavour.

What are alternative names for Cacao?

The word “cocoa” comes from the Spanish word cacao which is derived from the Nahuatl word cacahuatl. The Nahuatl word, in turn, ultimately derives from the reconstructed Proto Mije-Sokean word kakawa. Cacao is also known as Theobroma Cacao.

What’s the difference between Cacao and Cocoa?

Cacao refers to any product derived from the cacao bean that has remained raw such as Cacao Nibs and Cacao Powder. Cocoa is raw cacao that has been roasted.

Is Cacao good for you?

Cacao powder contains several minerals including calcium, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc. All of these minerals are found in greater quantities in cacao powder than in cocoa powder.

What is the suggested use of Cacao Powder?

For a nutritious introduction to Cacao Powder, try adding a tablespoon  to a smoothie or bake homemade rich chocolate brownies! Cacao Powder can even be used in the process of making cosmetics.


About the Author


As an animal lover and baking enthusiast, Georgia can often be found experimenting with plant-based recipes in her kitchen.

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