Having a chocolate tasting at home is fun Valentine’s Day Activity! It’s also an affordable way to have a fun, family Valentine’s Day celebration without having to go anywhere. So this Valentine’s Day, grab your significant other, (or grab the whole family) grab these free printable tasting mats, and have your own Chocolate Tasting at home!
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I hope you enjoy this and make some fun memories. It’s really fun to have a chocolate tasting for kids on Valentine’s Day (or any day).
My First Chocolate Tasting at Home
A few years ago, Valentine’s Day rolled around and I didn’t feel like going out. I don’t remember if I was pregnant or had a new baby or what, but my energy was low and I didn’t feel like heading out for a big night. But I still wanted Valentine’s Day to be special!
At the time, I had two kids and decided I wanted them in on the fun that Valentine’s Day. So I decided our little family could have our own fun Valentine’s night! I ran to the store and picked up some things to host our own Chocolate Tasting at home, and the kids had so much fun with it! I mean, what kids wouldn’t want a parent-approved night of eating candy?
I had written down on some scrap paper some criteria for our tasting as a means to judge the chocolates we tried.
Today, I’ve made some fun printables to organize the Chocolate Tasting a little better so the whole family can enjoy it!
Whether you choose to have a chocolate tasting with the whole family, just with your someone special, on Valentine’s Day, (or on a random day in August, because why not?), it’s sure to create some fun memories and tasty entertainment for the night!
How to Have a Chocolate Tasting at Home
Prep Work for the chocolate tasting
First, you’ll want to gather a few, minimal supplies. Head to the grocery store, market, local seller booth, wherever you’d like that has some chocolate bars. Five or Six bars should be plenty, but the printable tasting mats will allow up to 10 different varieties if you’d like to do more. I think the fancier, the better. That said, I am able to find fancy chocolate bars at my local grocer on the candy aisle. You don’t have to buy fancy chocolate, but it’s much more fun to try something new than to buy a Hershey bar 😳.
Download the Chocolate Tasting Printable Mats:
Whatever you buy, make it a variety. Try different percentages of cacao, different fruits or flavors, and different add-ins like nuts and such. It will make the tasting more fun to have a variety of chocolate bars!
Next, print off the Chocolate Tasting printable, available for free above. You’ll want a Chocolate Tasting form for each person participating. You will only need one Chocolate Tasting Mat unless you have a lot of people. Then you might want to print a couple copies.
Set Up The Chocolate Tasting at home
Put a printed out tasting form in front of each person. Put the printed tasting mat in the middle of the table. Open one chocolate bar and break into a few small pieces (as many pieces as there are people. You do not need to use the whole bar). Place those pieces in box #1 on the tasting mat.
Repeat with the following chocolate bars, placing the pieces into box #2, #3, etc.
Use the Chocolate Key to write down which bar you’ve put in which boxes. You can announce each chocolate as you go, or, I recommend waiting until the end to reveal which bar each person liked most. That way, you are solely relying on your senses to decide what you like best.
Set a pen next to each tasting form.
The Main Event– how to have a chocolate tasting
Invite all the participants to sit and begin with square #1. Each person will take a piece of the chocolate in square #1. Don’t bite into it yet! Go through the tasting form in order, noting how it looks, feels, and smells. Then go in for a bite! Really savor each piece and circle your reaction on the tasting form. Finally, give that piece a grade, 1-5. Repeat with the next box of chocolate pieces until you have finished.
^^Some pieces with a high cacao content might be a bit bitter, and it’s fun to see the kids try those! 😉
Remember to go slow and really enjoy each piece! This is a very fun experience and it’s especially fun to try new chocolates that you may not ever think of trying before!
Concluding The Tasting
When everyone has finished, talk about what you graded each chocolate and why. It’s interesting to see how tastes and perceptions vary with something as seemingly-simple as a small piece of chocolate! If you don’t agree on which was best, that’s a good thing, as each person can finish off the unused portion of your favorite chocolate bar! 😉
Make an Impact with Your Chocolate Tasting
What is Fair Trade Chocolate? What does Fair Trade mean?
There are so many flavors and varieties of chocolate. It is so fun to shop and pick out the bars and find unique flavors and cacao content.
While shopping, you might notice that some of the “fancy” brands are Fair Trade Certified. What does Fair Trade mean? Well, when you purchase Fair Trade products, you are supporting businesses that are committed and adhere to high standards during production.
From protecting the earth, to fair labor, ensuring a steady income for cocoa farmers, and refusing child/slave labor, these companies are making an impact for good in many ways. It is a hard process to earn the Fair Trade Certified label.
There are many brands committed to Fair Trade, both familiar and unfamiliar. From Annie’s, Cascadian Farms, Kashi to lesser known brands, these companies make sure to support farmers, labor, and the earth. Read more details about Fair Trade Chocolate and businesses. Here is another source to learn about Fair Trade America.
If that sounds good to you, then make sure to watch for the Fair Trade Certified seal when shopping for your chocolate.
Others might have a seal revealing their commitment to the rainforest, or other causes. I love reading about the different ways that chocolate is made, sourced, and used for good!
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Looking for more fun Valentine ideas?
How to make a flower wreath (that kids can make, and it actually looks great!)
Let me know in the comments if you tried this chocolate tasting, and what you thought!
Here are some variety packs of chocolates from brands we used in our tasting: