10 Best Cocoa Butter Substitutes You Can Use

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Sometimes, when we are about to make our favorite chocolate bar, we realize that we don’t have cocoa butter on hand. Such situations demand that we search for the best cocoa butter substitutes because we don’t want to quit cooking.

Cocoa Butter

Cocoa butter, undoubtedly, is a great ingredient that gives a texture and a very flavorful profile to your dishes. Hence, getting the pertinent information while choosing a cocoa butter substitute is very important.

Whether you’re a professional chef, a home baker, or a foodie like myself, there’s a good chance you’ll run out of cocoa butter at some point. What should you do in this situation? Running to a nearby grocery store is not always a reliable option.

This post is written to help you in this situation. We’ll go over the top cocoa butter substitutes in detail here.

Wait! Are you stumped as to what to use as the best cocoa butter substitute in your recipe? Don’t worry! We’ve already done all the necessary hard work for you. Some of the best cocoa butter substitutes include cocoa powder, cocoa paste, butter, shea butter, and coconut oil.

Even if you’re not big on cooking, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of cocoa butter if you use cosmetic products. Because cocoa butter is everywhere these days.

Before we go into the best options for cocoa butter substitutes, let’s take a deeper look at this popular ingredient. This will help you understand how to substitute it better.

Quick Peek: Cocoa Butter

Coco Butter

If you are someone who enjoys baking or cooking chocolate dishes, you will know the importance of cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is an ingredient that gives an amazing texture and flavor to dishes.

It has a delicious smell that is hard to resist. This section will assist you with all aspects of cocoa butter. You’ll discover what it is, how to use it, and how it tastes and feels. Take a bite of your favorite chocolate and keep reading to find out more!

What Is Cocoa Butter?

Cocoa butter is also known to many as theobroma oil. It is an ingredient that is obtained from cocoa beans. It is made by removing the vegetable fat from the cocoa beans. Since it has some fat content, it has an extremely moisturizing nature and a creamy texture.

Even though it has butter in its name, cocoa butter is a completely vegan, non-dairy product that can be used for various purposes.

It is a key ingredient in your beloved chocolate. Nowadays, cocoa butter is used for various things other than being a culinary ingredient. Due to its moisturizing nature, it is widely used in a variety of cosmetic products like body lotions, creams, and lip balms.

You can find cocoa butter in its raw form on the market. It remains solid at room temperature and has a very long shelf life. You have to melt it before using it as an ingredient.

Describing Cocoa Butter: Flavor and Texture

Cocoa butter has a slightly yellow color and a buttery texture. It has a very strong chocolatey aroma to it. Cocoa butter is one such ingredient with a stronger scent than its taste.

Cocoa butter, unlike cocoa powder, is not bitter. It has a slightly sweet undertone to it. Due to its subtle taste, cocoa butter goes well in sweet as well as savory recipes. Regardless of being a non-toxic consumable food, cocoa butter is not consumed directly. It is always melted and added as a primary ingredient.

You may know that cocoa butter is a primary ingredient in chocolate. But have you ever wondered why chocolate melts easily inside our mouths but not outside? Well, saliva definitely has a huge part to play in it.

Apart from that, cocoa butter has a melting point just below the normal human temperature. Once you eat it, the cocoa butter starts to melt, making the chocolate creamier and buttery.

Uses of Cocoa Butter

Cocoa butter can be an excellent addition to any dish that needs a creamy texture. Since cocoa butter has a very strong chocolatey fragrance, it can also be added to desserts and beverages to impart its delicious smell.

Cocoa butter is also an excellent option for people looking for a vegan substitute for butter. Another thing about cocoa butter is that it has a high smoke point and won’t burn easily. Also, since it has a very creamy, oily nature, a little goes a long way. Another thing about cocoa butter is that it has a high smoke point and won’t burn easily. Also, since it has a very creamy, oily nature, a little goes a long way. 

Cocoa butter is an excellent addition to skincare as well. It has a very high moisture-holding capacity and thereby helps to keep the skin young and hydrated. Due to its velvety texture, cocoa butter is extensively used in lip balms, body lotions, and body creams. 

Cocoa Butter On The Health Radar! Looking Through The Wellness Telescope

Just like its fragrance, cocoa butter is unparalleled when talking about its health benefits. Apart from being used in food items, cocoa butter is widely used in various medicated and non-medicated products.

Have you ever wondered how it is useful as a common element in your favorite cosmetic products? If you haven’t already, keep reading to learn more.

Source of Vitamin E: Vitamin E is abundant in cocoa butter. Vitamin E is an important nutrient for healthy vision and brain development. Besides that, vitamin e is also known for its skin healing properties.

Vitamin E is often hailed as a beauty vitamin, and it has multiple health benefits attached to it. Vitamin E helps in skin regeneration and reduces dark spots on your skin surface. 

 Moisturization: Cocoa butter contains fatty acids. The fatty acid is known for its moisturizing properties. It helps to hold moisture in the body. It also prevents moisture loss, keeping skin fresh and hydrated. Due to this property, cocoa butter is a key ingredient in many cosmetic products.

Protection: Cocoa butter also helps skin from UV ray damage. Continuous skin exposure to the sun might damage your skin barrier and make it prone to diseases like skin cancer. The phytochemicals present in cocoa butter prevent sun damage and the risk of these diseases. 

Contains Healthy Cholesterol: Whenever we hear butter, the word cholesterol automatically comes to mind if we are health enthusiasts. But cocoa butter is different here. Cocoa butter contains stearic acid.

The liver converts stearic acid to oleic acid. Oleic acid lowers bad cholesterol (LDL) and boosts good cholesterol (HDL). Therefore, we can say that cocoa butter is good for maintaining healthy cholesterol levels.

Reduce Liver Diseases: Cocoa butter is high in various nutrients, including vitamin K, vitamin E, and choline. While vitamins K and E are essential for overall health, choline plays an important part in maintaining liver health. Consuming cocoa butter can reduce liver disease risks.

Why Use A Substitute For Cocoa Butter?

This question, I’m sure, has crossed your thoughts at least once. While this is a good question, there are a few reasons why you might want to use something other than cocoa butter.

To begin with, cocoa butter is mainly manufactured in Africa and exported to a number of nations. As a result, it can be pricey and may not suit everyone’s budget. For the same reason, there’s a potential that its supply will be limited.

It also contains high-calorie content and saturated fats. Although this is a concern with most types of butter, some are healthy and worthy of attention. Also, finding cocoa butter in a grocery store is quite unusual in places like where I live. 

Furthermore, why go to the store if you have any of the substitutes on hand? You could always use a substitute to save time. These are compelling reasons to consider employing a replacement.

I believe I’ve covered everything there is to know about cocoa butter. Let me now take you to the article’s main point: the best cocoa butter substitutes. Continue reading to learn more about them!

Other Food Substitutes You Can Try

9 Best Cocoa Butter Substitutes

So that now we have discussed cocoa butter, let’s see what are the best cocoa butter substitutes. Let’s have a look!

1. Cocoa Powder

Cocoa Powder

Cocoa powder has a dark brown color and a powdery texture. Cocoa powder can work as a good cocoa butter substitute if you want a similar flavor profile. 

The cocoa powder is made by grinding the cocoa beans after eliminating cocoa butter. The cocoa powder, just like cocoa butter, has a strong chocolate fragrance. However, both cocoa powder and cocoa butter are extremely different when it comes to flavor.

While cocoa butter has a nutty, sweet taste, cocoa powder has a strong bitter taste. However, cocoa powder can work as a great cocoa butter substitute in cooking when it is combined with sugar and any other edible oil.

2. Cocoa Paste

Cocoa Paste

Just like cocoa powder, the cocoa paste is also obtained from cocoa trees. Since cocoa paste has a more pure chocolate flavor, it is a good substitute for cocoa butter.

The cocoa paste can be added to different food items. It also has a bitter taste to it. Therefore, one should mix it with sugar before adding it to any food items. Also, cocoa paste is very easy to find in grocery stores. So next time you happen to visit a grocery store, make sure to grab some if you can’t find cocoa butter.

3. Butter


Unflavored butter has a very smooth, creamy texture and a very similar taste to cocoa butter. Therefore, butter can undoubtedly be considered a good cocoa butter substitute.

Butter, just like cocoa butter, has a very high amount of fat. Hence, it will be a perfect substitute for cocoa butter in various recipes like baking. Just like cocoa butter, normal butter can keep the moisture content. This is very important in baking as it is the key to maintaining a soft texture.

But if you want a little more than texture, you can try adding a teaspoon or two of cocoa powder to butter before baking your favorite cake. It will impart a chocolaty aroma as well as a similar texture. This is the best way to replicate cocoa butter. However, if you’re allergic to dairy products or following veganism, butter isn’t a reliable option.

4. Shea Butter

Shea Butter

Shea butter has a similar texture and nutty scent to cocoa butter and can be used as a cocoa butter substitute. Chocolate manufacturers frequently replace shea butter for cocoa butter due to its hard texture.

Shea butter has a physical texture and nutritional qualities similar to cocoa butter. As a result, shea butter has become a popular cocoa butter replacement in the cosmetics sector as a result.

Shea butter, on the other hand, has a completely distinct flavor from cocoa butter. The flavor of shea butter is smoky. As a result, it’s usually a good idea to run a taste test before adding large amounts of shea butter to your cuisine.

5. Kokum Butter

Kokum Butter

Kokum butter is a prominent cocoa butter substitute in the cosmetic industry since it has similar nutritional benefits to cocoa butter.

Kokum butter, or goa butter, is a plant-based butter processed from the seeds of the kokum tree. Kokum butter has many benefits, like healing properties and good for the skin. But when it comes to chocolate making, kokum butter makes chocolate hard, and it is not always preferable. 

6. Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has a very similar fatty, sweet flavor to cocoa butter and is a reliable cocoa butter substitute. Coconut has a fruity, sweet smell and a similar flavor to cocoa butter. Hence, it can be used in recipes that call for an aromatic cocoa butter substitute. Don’t worry if you don’t like the coconut flavor.

Coconut oil has a very mild flavor that won’t affect the taste of your food. When it has a more runny consistency in texture, always check its quantity when poured into a recipe.

7. Coconut Butter

Coconut Butter

Coconut butter is thick in its consistency and has a sweet flavor similar to cocoa butter and you can use it as a cocoa butter substitute in most recipes.

Coconut butter is extracted from the flesh of the fruit. Coconut butter is an excellent cocoa butter substitute in recipes that need a good aroma. Even if you don’t get a chocolate smell, your taste will be delicious.

Coconut butter has a very similar texture to cocoa butter. It also has a very sharp flavor profile. Unlike coconut oil, coconut butter won’t affect the consistency of your food, but it can affect the taste.

8. Palm Oil

Palm oil

Palm oil is one of the easiest and most readily available cocoa butter substitutes. Palm oil is a plant-based oil and is very cheap compared to cocoa butter.

Palm oil is widely used around the globe. It is also one of the main ingredients for chocolate making as it acts as a lubricant. But palm oil has an earthy fragrance to it. It works well with classic spicy recipes, but it won’t be a suitable alternative in sweet recipes.

9. Mango Butter

Mango Butter

Mango butter, surprisingly, is obtained from the seeds of mango. It is another butter that can work well as a cocoa butter substitute.

Mango butter has a high fatty acid content. Therefore, it works great as a cocoa butter substitute in the chocolate industry. But mango butter has a harder texture than cocoa butter. Therefore, it will be good if it is used after mixing with some palm oil or coconut oil to loosen its texture.

10. Soy Lecithin

Soya Lecithin

Soy lecithin is another great edible oil extracted from soya beans and can be used as a good cocoa butter substitute in chocolate making.

Soya Lecithin gives a fine, glossy look to the chocolate. It also helps to hold the chocolate together. Even if you are allergic to soybeans, you can use soy lecithin as it won’t have most of those ingredients that cause the allergy. However, if you are allergic to soybeans, it is best to test before using soy lecithin as a substitute for cocoa butter in your food.

Short Recap Of The Best Cocoa Butter Substitutes

Are you still undecided about which of these cocoa butter substitutes you should choose? Don’t worry; here’s a little clip that may assist you in escaping this difficult predicament.

Most appropriate: Cocoa powder is the most acceptable cocoa substitute since it can practically match the flavor and taste of cocoa butter.

Easily accessible: Palm oil is the easiest option to obtain. Even if they don’t have the same flavor as cocoa, they can be used safely for baking and other dishes.

Best flavor combination: When cocoa powder is mixed with unsalted butter, it gives the best flavor profile.

Final Thoughts

I hope you found the answers you were seeking now that we’ve reached the end of the post. Cocoa butter is such a versatile ingredient that it may add a new dimension to various meals. 

It is not only useful in the kitchen, but it is also beneficial to the skin and overall health. Although most of the listed ingredients can be used in cocoa butter substitutes, there is no precise match for cocoa butter. However, if you know of any other alternatives to the ones listed above, please share them in the comments area.

How To Substitute The Above Mentioned Ingredients For Cocoa Butter

Cocoa Butter

Cocoa Butter Substitutes

Here is how you can substitute the above mentioned ingredients for cocoa butter.
5 from 1 vote


  • Cocoa Powder
  • Cocoa Paste
  • Butter
  • Shea Butter
  • Kokum Butter
  • Coconut Butter
  • Coconut Oil
  • Palm Oil
  • Mango Butter
  • Soy Lecithin


  • Go through the substitutes and see which one seems fit for the recipe
  • Collect your ingredients and use your preferred substitute.
  • Use the substitute in the required amount and proceed to make the dish according to the recipe.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I use oil instead of cocoa butter?

Yes. You can either use coconut oil or palm oil as cocoa butter substitutes. They can match the texture of cocoa butter but won’t reproduce the chocolate fragrance.

What can I use instead of cocoa butter in body butter?

You can either use shea butter or kokum butter to replicate similar moisturizing effects.

Can I make my own cocoa butter?

Yes. Cocoa butter can be easily made out of cocoa beans.

Can I substitute butter for cocoa butter in baking?

Yes. You can substitute cocoa butter as a butter replacement. Cocoa butter will be an excellent addition to baking as it has a chocolaty smell to it.

Can I substitute cocoa butter for shea butter in soap?

Yes. You can either use cocoa butter or kokum butter in your soap as a shea butter substitute.

Is shea butter and cocoa butter the same thing?

No. Shea butter is obtained from shea fruit, and cocoa butter is obtained from cacao beans. But both the butter have a similar consistency and loads of health benefits.

Is cocoa butter chocolate?

No, cocoa butter is obtained from cacao seeds and has a very chocolaty aroma to it. Whereas chocolate is made by mixing cocoa butter with many other ingredients like sugar and milk.

Are coconut and cocoa the same?

Even so, though cocoa and coconut sound similar, each of them is two different things. Coconut is an entirely different fruit, whereas cocoa is the bean of the cacao fruit.

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