Eating good chocolate is my ultimate vice. Whether it’s a flavorful bar with a satisfying crunch or a piece of sweet truffle with an innovative twist, I could never turn down an opportunity to indulge. But not all chocolates are created equal. There’s the mainstream candy bar, which is all the rage during Halloween season, and then there’s gourmet chocolate, the decadent treat that can take your palate to a whole new level.

Given my obsession with artisanal chocolates, I decided to taste test the best of the best and rank each of them, from ice cream-inspired bonbons to cocoa truffle bars. But before I dive into each review, here’s a breakdown of how I rated them:

  • Value (Is it worth the price?)
  • Quality (Is it rich? Does it melt on the tongue, or does it taste like wax?)
  • Aesthetics (Does the packaging catch your eye?)
  • Texture (Is it creamy and smooth, or grainy and chalky?)
  • Flavor (Is there depth of flavor? Does it taste artificial?)

I’ve sampled my fair share of chocolates over the years, but the following 21 brands definitely stand out.

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Gatsby Chocolate

21. Gatsby Chocolate

  • Value: 15/20
  • Quality: 16/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 15/20
  • Flavor: 17/20
  • Total: 83/100
Standout flavor: Almond Dark Chocolate Style

What’s inside: Esterified propoxylated glycerol (moderated plant-based oil), cocoa powder, allulose, almonds, cocoa butter, sugar, medium chain triglycerides (MCT), sunflower lecithin, vanilla flavor

If you love the taste of traditional chocolate bars but want to avoid the extra calories, fat and sugar, then allow me to introduce you to Gatsby chocolate. Founded by Halo Top ice cream cofounder Doug Bouton, the brand launched with two flavors: Classic Milk Chocolate and Dark Chocolate Almond. Thanks to my affinity for crunchy bars, the latter immediately caught my attention. But after taking my first bite, I could definitely tell that it was low-cal. The dark chocolate isn't very rich and I detected a slightly powdery texture, but it still has a pleasant taste, a little crunch and the right amount of sweetness.

Buy it (Pack of 6 for $30)

Other noteworthy flavors: Classic Milk Chocolate Style

gourmet chocolate lilys
Lily's

20. Lily's

  • Value: 16/20
  • Quality: 17/20
  • Aesthetics: 18/20
  • Texture: 18/20
  • Flavor: 15/20
  • Total: 84/100
Standout flavor: Hazelnut Milk Chocolate

What’s inside: Unsweetened Chocolate, Cocoa Butter, Hazelnuts, Erythritol, Chicory Root Fiber, Dextrin, Whole Milk Powder (rBST free), Milk Fat (rBST free), Sunflower Lecithin, Stevia Extract, Vanilla Extract

The sugar-free, keto-friendly bar is made with gluten-free and non-GMO ingredients, but best of all, you can treat yourself to a generous amount without feeling too guilty (half a bar makes one serving). Aside from the crunchy hazelnut pieces, there's very little flavor in the chocolate itself, but it’s not too sweet. It also melts on the tongue, but it’s not super rich and only slightly creamy. Try this one out if you’ve got a sweet tooth while trying to stick to your keto diet.

Buy it (Pack of 4 for $24)

Other noteworthy flavors: Peppermint White Chocolate, Salted Caramel Milk Chocolate

gourmet chocolates lakrids
Lakrids By Bülow

19. Lakrids By Bülow

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 19/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 17/20
  • Flavor: 15/20
  • Total: 87/100
Standout flavor: Salt & Caramel

What’s inside: Dulce Chocolate (sugar, milk powder, cocoa butter, whey powder, cacao mass, milk fat, emulsifier: soy lecithin, natural flavour), Rice Flour, Invert Sugar Syrup, Sugar, Treacle, Glucose syrup, Raw Liquorice, Sea Salt, Rapeseed Oil, Salt,Dextrose, Alkalised Cocoa, Glazing Agent: Shellac, Anise Oil

Sweet licorice covered in salty, caramelly dulce chocolate sounds rather odd, but it makes for a deliciously unique flavor combination. Despite my aversion to all kinds of licorice, I was intrigued enough to try out the Danish confectionary brand. And while I can’t say that it made me fall head over heels for the chewy candy, I was impressed with the chocolate coating. The crunchy sea salt flakes paired well with the sweet, caramel flavor.

Buy it ($18)

Other noteworthy flavors: Wild Blueberry

gourmet chocolates vermont chocolates
Vermont Nut Free Chocolates

18. Vermont Nut Free Chocolates

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 19/20
  • Aesthetics: 18/20
  • Texture: 18/20
  • Flavor: 17/20
  • Total: 89/100
Standout flavor: Milk Chocolate Sun Blossoms

What’s inside: Milk chocolate, sunflower butter (roasted sunflower seeds, dehydrated cane syrup, salt), powdered sugar, cocoa butter, salt, vanilla extract

Considering how much I hate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (I'm sorry, but gritty peanut butter coated in sugary chocolate doesn't cut it for me), I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed these sun blossoms. I would've never thought to pair sunflower butter with chocolate, but it works. The butter is surprisingly nutty and creamy, and though the chocolate is a bit on the sweeter side, it's rich and smooth. Each cup is about the size of a regular Reese's cup and there are roughly 8 grams of sugar in each. Anyone with a peanut allergy will appreciate these, since they're 100 percent nut-free.

Buy it (pack of 12 for $26)

Other noteworthy flavors: Dark Chocolate Sun Blossoms

gourmet chocolate cocomels
Cocomels

17. Cocomels

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 18/20
  • Aesthetics: 18/20
  • Texture: 18/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 90/100
Standout flavor: Madagascar Vanilla

What’s inside: Organic 60 percent dark chocolate (organic chocolate liquor, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, soy lecithin (emulsifier), organic vanilla extract), organic coconut milk (organic coconut, water), organic brown rice syrup, organic cane sugar, sea salt, organic Madagascar vanilla extract (water, organic ethyl alcohol, organic vanilla bean extractives), xanthan gum

From the makers of the famed vegan, coconut milk-based caramel comes these seriously addictive bites. The dairy, gluten and GMO-free treats are made with Madagascar vanilla-infused coconut milk caramel and organic chocolate, and each bite-sized piece has less than 2 grams of sugar. The chocolate coating is creamy and only slightly bitter, and notes of vanilla shine through the sticky chewy filling.

Buy it ($8)

Other noteworthy flavors: Chocolate Covered Toffee Bites, Crispy Chocolate-Covered Coconut Milk Caramel Bites

gourmet chocolate ghirardelli
Ghirardelli

16. Ghirardelli

  • Value: 16/20
  • Quality: 18/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 19/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 91/100
Standout flavor: Sea Salt Almond Intense Dark Chocolate

What’s inside: Sugar, unsweetened chocolate, almonds, cocoa butter, milk fat, sea salt, soy lecithin, vanilla extract

Dark chocolate enthusiasts will appreciate this line by Ghirardelli, which, surprisingly enough, isn't too bitter at all. The chocolate is rich and intense, but not too overwhelming, and only mildly sweet. Still, it’s the roasted almonds and sea salt that really sold it for me, since they added a nice crunch.

Buy it (6-Pack of Squares for $24)

Other noteworthy flavors: Salted Caramel, Roasted Hazelnut, Intense Dark 72% Cacao Twilight Delight

gourmet chocolate unreal 1
Unreal

15. Unreal

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 19/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 18/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 92/100
Standout flavor: Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars

What’s inside: Organic coconut, organic cassava syrup, dark chocolate

Think Mounds, but with less than half the calories. These vegan and gluten-free bars are made with just three ingredients, including very finely grated coconut—but you wouldn't be able to tell from the taste. Each fun-sized bar contains 70 calories and 3 grams of sugar, so if you’re looking for healthier alternatives to give trick-or-treaters on Halloween (or nosh on when that mid-day sugar craving strikes), get into these “unreal” treats.

Buy it (6 Packs for $34)

Other noteworthy flavors: Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter & Crunchy Quinoa Cups

Raaka

14. Raaka

  • Value: 19/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 16/20
  • Total: 94/100
Standout flavor: Coconut Milk

What’s inside: Organic cacao beans, organic cane sugar, organic coconut, organic cacao butter

I bit into this vegan bar expecting a tropical, coconutty flavor and was surprised to taste strong notes of berry. It’s much fruitier than I anticipated, and the coconut flavor is very subtle, but I absolutely love the quality and silky-smooth texture of this chocolate. It’s only slightly bitter (made with 60 percent cacao), so lovers of sweeter bars might not enjoy it. But if you like good-quality dark chocolate with complex notes, you seriously need to try this.

Buy it (Pack of 6 for $27)

Other noteworthy flavors: Green Tea Crunch, Maple & Nibs

Skinny Dipped

13. Skinny Dipped

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 18/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 94/100
Standout flavor: Almond Sea Salt

What’s inside: Unsweetened chocolate, almonds, cane sugar, allulose, cocoa butter, sea salt, sunflower lecithin, vanilla

As someone who’s obsessed with crunchy, nutty chocolates, one of the biggest factors for me is the chocolate-to-nut ratio. No one wants to finish an entire almond chocolate bar that has little to no crunch in each bite. And fortunately, that’s not the case with this tasty bar. It’s loaded with almond pieces, so you’re guaranteed to get plenty of texture. Plus, there’s a nice balance of sweetness and saltiness. There are only three grams of sugar in each serving (one bar has 2.5 servings) and no artificial sweeteners, so this is the kind of bar you can finish in one sitting without the guilt.

Buy it (Pack of 4 for $20)

Other noteworthy flavors: Salted Caramel Dark Chocolate Bar, Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

gourmet chocolate lindt
Lindt

12. Lindt

  • Value: 19/20
  • Quality: 17/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 19/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 94/100
Standout flavor: Hazelnut Milk Chocolate

What’s inside: Sugar, cocoa butter, hazelnuts, milk, chocolate, skim milk, soy lecithin, barley malt powder, artificial flavor

I’ll confess, seeing “artificial” in the ingredients was a bit of a turn-off for me. Still, I couldn’t resist including this popular Swiss brand in the roundup. Since nuts and chocolate go together like bread and butter, naturally, I made a beeline for the nutty flavors. And out of everything I sampled, the hazelnut milk chocolate turned out to be a winner. While it was a bit sweet, it turned out to be a lot smoother than I expected, and the hazelnuts added a nutty, Nutella-like quality that took the flavor to a whole new level.

Buy it ($4)

Other noteworthy flavors: White Chocolate Almond

Seattle Chocolate

11. Seattle Chocolate

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 18/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 18/20
  • Total: 94/100
Standout flavor: Vanilla Orange Cream Truffle Bar

What’s inside: White chocolate, non-hydrogenated coconut oil, orange extract, orange oil, sea salt, citric acid

It’s like a Creamsicle in the form of a chocolate bar, and I could not be more obsessed. You don’t even have to chew on it, because it melts on the tongue (tip: it’s better to keep these bars at room temperature so they’re not cold and solid). The sugar content is rather high (21 grams of sugar per serving, two servings per bar), but it still delivers in terms of quality. The vanilla and orange flavors don’t taste artificial, which elevates it above your average, mainstream bar. The Vanilla Orange Cream Truffle Bar often sells out, but you can join the email waitlist so you're notified the second it's back in stock. Or you can try one of the other noteworthy flavors below.

Buy it ($4.75)

Other noteworthy flavors: Neapolitan Truffle Bar, Malted Milk Ball Ice Cream Truffles

gourmet chocolate compartes
Compartés

10. Compartés Chocolatier

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 19/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 95/100
Standout flavor: John Legend Carrot Cake

What's inside: White Chocolate (Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Whole Milk, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla), Carrot Cake (Wheat Flour, Carrots, Eggs, Vegetable Oil, Cane Sugar, Sea Salt, Baking Soda, Cinnamon, Vanilla)

As a carrot cake fan, I had really high expectations for this bar—and it didn't disappoint. Unlike most white chocolate bars that I've had, this wasn't waxy or chalky like milk powder. The texture was very smooth, and the cake pieces were super soft. I could taste notes of carrot and cinnamon in the cake, which blended nicely with the white chocolate. But it's definitely on the sweeter side, so you might want to consider rationing smaller pieces instead of munching the entire bar in one sitting.

Buy it ($10)

Christopher Elbow

9. Christopher Elbow

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 19/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 19/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 95/100
Standout flavor: Pistachio Cherry Bonbon

What’s inside: White Chocolate, dark Chocolate, ground pistachio, cream, butter, morello cherry puree, amarena cherries, sugar, glucose syrup, apple pectin

I was torn between eating these Instagram-worthy confections and taking selfies with them. But I had to find out: Do they taste as phenomenal as they look? I sampled multiple flavors from their 36-Piece Signature Chocolate collection, but their Pistachio Cherry was a clear winner. The bobbons were inspired by the classic Italian dessert, spumoni ice cream, and they’re made with pistachio-infused white chocolate ganache, sweet Italian cherries and white chocolate. I tend to steer clear of chocolates paired with fruit, but the pistachio ganache is wonderfully creamy and flavorful. The only downside is that the candied cherries are a bit sweet for my taste.

Unfortunately, this limited edition flavor isn't offered right now, but you'll definitely enjoy these other noteworthy flavors (also included in the 36-Piece Signature Chocolate collection): Macadamia Praline, Fleur De Sel, Vanilla Bean

gourmet chocolate candid1
Candid

8. Candid Noons

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 19/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 96/100
Standout flavor: Cacao & Quinoa Crispies

What’s inside: Cacao, Organic Quinoa, Cocoa Butter, Organic Coconut Sugar, Cacao Pulp, Sea Salt

Upgrade your snack game with these delectable, bite-sized vegan treats. All flavors are paleo-friendly, gluten-free and non-GMO, but the Cacao & Quinoa Crispies get first place for flavor and crunch. There are subtle, fruity notes and just a hint of sweetness. Plus, each pack boasts 5 grams of protein and just 5 grams of sugar. Totally a win-win.

Buy it (6 for $20)

Other standout flavors: Cacao & Almond, Pineapple & Coconut

nib mor 1
Nib Mor

7. Nib Mor

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 96/100
Standout flavor: Sea Salt

What’s inside: Organic chocolate liquor, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, organic cacao nibs, sea salt, organic lecithin (soy), organic vanilla extract

The flavor combination in these squares is definitely complex. I enjoyed the smoothness of the dark chocolate and the sprinkle of sea salt to offset the bitterness. But I especially liked the toasted cacao nibs, which added a nice crunch, a subtle tart flavor and a touch of nuttiness. Each little square, which can be finished in about two to three bites, has 42 calories and less than 3 grams of sugar (3 pieces make one serving), so if you're watching your sugar intake, Nib Mor is a solid choice.

Buy it (Pack of 2 for $15)

Other noteworthy flavors: Original Dark Chocolate, Extra Dark Organic Dark Chocolate

hakan review
Håkan Chocolatier

6. Håkan Chocolatier

  • Value: 17/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 96/100
Standout flavor: Elaichi Cardamom Dark Chocolate

What's inside: Cocoa Mass, Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Vanilla Bean Seeds, Organic Cardamom

I was immediately intrigued by the brand’s tiny chocolate shop during a quick visit to Beacon, NY, and quite frankly, I wanted to buy almost everything in sight. But what really drew me was the quality and eye-catching designs of their bonbons and bars. I tried the Elaichi Cardamom flavor, made with Tanzanian dark chocolate that's infused with Indian cardamom, and it was so smooth and decadent. After just three bites, my cravings were satisfied—as opposed to the typical grocery store chocolate bar, where I can inhale the whole thing and still feel unsatisfied. The texture is velvety, with notes of eucalyptus mint, vanilla and a hint of citrus. As an added bonus, there are only 7 grams of sugar per serving.

Buy it ($8.50)

Other noteworthy flavors: Maillard Salted Caramel Milk Chocolate, Sunrise Ruby Chocolate

gourmet chocolates beyond good
Beyond Good

5. Beyond Good

  • Value: 19/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 19/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 97/100
Standout flavor: Crispy Rice Dark Chocolate Bar

What’s inside: Organic cocoa beans, organic cane sugar, organic cocoa butter, organic sunflower lecithin, toasted coconut, natural coconut flavoring, vanilla extract

Not only is it deliciously creamy, but the flavor is deep and rich, with hints of vanilla and apricot. The crispy rice also adds a nice texture—a slight crunch but not tooth-cracking tough—making it nearly impossible to pause long enough to let the chocolate melt on the tongue. (Fair warning: It’ll take some serious self-control to stop at just one serving.)

Buy it (6 for $25)

Other noteworthy flavors: Orange Zest, Salted Caramel

gourmet chocolate omnom
Omnom

4. Omnom

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 19/20
  • Total: 97/100
Standout flavor: Coffee + Milk

What’s inside: Cocoa butter, organic cane sugar, Icelandic milk powder, Rainforest Alliance coffee beans from Reykjavík Roasters, sunflower lecithin

Is it weird that I felt more inclined to nibble on this bar than drink actual coffee for breakfast? Probably. But in my defense, it’s creamy, authentic java in chocolate form. The Icelandic bar has a silky, grit-free texture. The flavor isn’t very sweet, and as you chew, you’ll notice subtle notes of popcorn, and it’s not very sweet. Those who aren’t big fans of coffee might find the flavor a bit overpowering, but if you, like Lorelai Gilmore, wish you could get your caffeine fix through an IV, then you have to try this.

Buy it ($9)

Other noteworthy flavors: Cookies + Cream, Caramel + Milk, Milk of Nicaragua

gourmet chocolates theo
Theo Chocolate

3. Theo Chocolate

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 19/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 20/20
  • Total: 97/100
Standout flavor: Bread & Chocolate Organic Dark Chocolate

What’s inside: Cocoa beans, cane sugar, toasted bread, butter, cocoa butter, sea salt

If you love bread as much as you love chocolate, then meet your newest obsession. This organic bar, which is made with 70 percent dark chocolate, has the smoothest texture and it’s filled with buttery, toasted breadcrumbs for an irresistible combination. The chocolate isn’t too bitter or sweet (with 15 grams of sugar in each bar), and the hint of sea salt really adds to the depth of flavor in this unique pairing.

Buy it (Pack or 12 for $36)

Other noteworthy flavors: Double Chocolate Organic Cookie Bites, Dark Chocolate Salted Almond, Hazelnut Crisp

elements truffles review
Elements Truffles

2. Elements Truffles

  • Value: 20/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 18/20
  • Total: 98/100
Standout Flavor: Raspberry with Beetroot

What's inside: Organic Raw Cacao Butter, Raw Honey, Organic Raw Cacao Powder, Raspberry Essential Oil, Organic Beetroot Powder, Organic Freeze Dried Raspberry, Himalayan Sea Salt

Health-conscious chocolate lovers, meet your new favorite brand. Like all of their products, this Ayurveda-inspired truffle bar is 100 percent organic, non-GMO, dairy-free and gluten-free. Plus, it contains beetroot (a vegetable filled with nutrients and minerals that boost the immune system). Since I'm not a big fan of raspberries, I expected this to be my least favorite flavor, but I was pleasantly surprised by the bar's richness. This chocolate is satiny smooth and instantly melts on the tongue. It also has subtle notes of raspberry and just the right amount of sweetness (5 grams per serving, 2 servings per bar).

Buy it ($7)

Other noteworthy flavors: Orange Quinoa with Turmeric, Peppermint with Lavender, Sea Salt with Turmeric

Honey Mama's

1. Honey Mama's

  • Value: 18/20
  • Quality: 20/20
  • Aesthetics: 20/20
  • Texture: 20/20
  • Flavor: 20/20
  • Total: 98/100
Standout flavor: Cherry Hazelnut

What’s inside: Organic raw honey, organic hazelnuts, organic unrefined coconut oil, organic cocoa powder, organic Bing cherries, flake salt, vanilla extract, almond extract

As mentioned above, I’m not the biggest fan of fruit and chocolate combos (I find that most fruity chocolates are either way too tangy or overwhelmingly sweet). But here I am, confessing that Honey Mama’s just might’ve changed my mind. The Bing cherries in this flavor aren’t too sugary or overpowering, but they add the right amount of fruitiness and pair nicely with the crunchy hazelnuts. The quality of the cocoa bar itself is rich and feels delightfully creamy as it melts. There are subtle notes of honey, and the flakes of salt balance out the bar’s sweetness.

Unfortunately, this limited edition flavor isn't offered right now, but you'll definitely enjoy these other tasty options: Coconut, Peruvian Raw, Original Dutch, Coffee Nib Crunch

The PureWow100 is a scale our editors use to vet new products and services, so you know what's worth the spend—and what's total hype. Learn more about our process here.

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