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The traditional pairing of chocolate and romance on Valentine’s Day is a perfect union, as the simple act of consuming chocolate evokes a multi-sensory, sensual experience: its intoxicating aroma, the way it melts slowly and softly on the tongue, its rich color, its heavenly flavor. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, it’s time to decide which decadent, chocolaty indulgences to gift to your special someone. But before your reach for that traditional heart-shaped box, you should know that not all chocolates are created equal, especially if you’re shopping for a vegan valentine.
Below, you’ll find my three picks of mouth-watering, vegan chocolates that have been taste-tested and approved for absolute deliciousnes. What’s truly special about these choices? They offer exotic flavor combinations that will surprise and tantalize, plus they’re organic and fair-trade.
Stirs the Soul creates organic, fair-trade, raw, sugar-free, vegan chocolates. They cater to those with food intolerances and those who simply wish to indulge without compromising clean eating. Manufacturing is done in a 100 percent nut-, soy-, gluten-, egg-, and dairy-free facility—an impressive feat. Their chocolates are made with fruits such as bananas, figs, and currants. They even offer date-sweetened hemp cups as an alternative to conventional peanut butter cups, pictured above. They are just divine! stirsthesoul.com
Not only are these delectable chocolates from Lagusta’s Luscious organic and fair-trade, but the boxes themselves are produced from 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper. Their gorgeous chocolates, truffles, caramels, and toffee will make your valentine’s eyes light up with desire. A sweet and unique flavor pairing to try: wine-infused ganache bonbon with juniper berries. lagustasluscious.com
Theo produces organic, fair-trade bars sourced from carefully selected sustainably-grown cocoa beans. My personal faves include their vegan 70% dark chocolate Theo & Jane Goodall bar and their vegan 70% dark chocolate Cherry & Chili PCC Farmland Trust bar. These bars burst with rich, chocolaty flavor, and also support great causes. theochocolate.com
Talia Fuhrman has a B.A. in Nutritional Sciences from Cornell University and is a freelance body image and nutrition writer and chef. She’s on a mission to help people understand that eating healthfully and feeling fantastic can be fun, delicious, and easy. She has written for numerous websites and magazines including Psychology Today, Positive Impact Magazine, VegNews, CrazySexyLife.com, GirlieGirlArmy.com, and DiseaseProof.com. You can find her at www.taliafuhrman.com.