Impact of Storage on Dark Chocolate: Texture and Polymorphic Changes

Lia M. Nightingale, Soo Yeun Lee, Nicki J. Engeseth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chocolate storage is critical to final product quality. Inadequate storage, especially with temperature fluctuations, may lead to rearrangement of triglycerides that make up the bulk of the chocolate matrix; this rearrangement may lead to fat bloom. Bloom is the main cause of quality loss in the chocolate industry. The effect of storage conditions leading to bloom formation on texture and flavor attributes by human and instrumental measures has yet to be reported. Therefore, the impact of storage conditions on the quality of dark chocolate by sensory and instrumental measurements was determined. Dark chocolate was kept under various conditions and analyzed at 0, 4, and 8 wk of storage. Ten members of a descriptive panel analyzed texture and flavor. Instrumental methods included texture analysis, color measurement, lipid polymorphism by X-ray diffraction and differential scanning calorimetry, triglyceride concentration by gas chromatography, and surface properties by atomic force microscopy. Results were treated by analysis of variance, cluster analysis, principal component analysis, and linear partial least squares regression analysis. Chocolate stored 8 wk at high temperature without fluctuations and 4 wk with fluctuations transitioned from form V to VI. Chocolates stored at high temperature with and without fluctuations were harder, more fracturable, more toothpacking, had longer melt time, were less sweet, and had less cream flavor. These samples had rougher surfaces, fewer but larger grains, and a heterogeneous surface. Overall, all stored dark chocolate experienced instrumental or perceptual changes attributed to storage condition. Chocolates stored at high temperature with and without fluctuations were most visually and texturally compromised.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)C142-C153
JournalJournal of food science
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2011


  • Bloom
  • Chocolate
  • Descriptive analysis
  • Polymorphism
  • Storage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of Storage on Dark Chocolate: Texture and Polymorphic Changes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this