If any of you saw our last post, you’ll know I’m a big fan of chocolate. Knowing I was going to miss out on delicious dairy milk was the hardest part of going vegan for me. There were times, soon after I’d become vegan, where I’d stand in the chocolate isle in the supermarket and just stare at all the packets of Maltesers and Cadbury bars thinking, ‘why can’t they all be vegan?!’ I’d completely resigned all hope to the fact that I would never again experience that sweet creamy taste of milk chocolate! I then discovered that there was a whole world of vegan chocolate out there that I never knew about!
I’ve tried lots of dark chocolate, with varying percentages of cocoa, all the way up to 100% (that was an interesting experience), from supermarket home brands and other bigger companies, to smaller chocolate brands that you can find in specialist shops. Whilst dark chocolate is great, I have always been a girl with a heart for milk chocolate. For a while now, Vego has been my go to but since the lovely people at Ombar reached out to us to and sent us 6 bars of the stuff, I’ve finally had a chance to try it, and oh boy it’s shaken things up!
For those of you who’ve not heard of Ombar chocolate before, it’s all vegan, dairy free, gluten free, organic, refined sugar free and raw… now I know you’re probably thinking, “Jesus Christ what on earth is left?!” Well, the main ingredients in all of their bars are raw cacao, cocoa butter, coconut sugar, and, wait for it, live cultures! So this is pretty healthy as far as chocolate goes! According to Ombar “most chocolate is made by roasting cacao at high heat, which reduces its natural goodness”. So they process it at a much lower temperature meaning all of the nutrients are left in the chocolate. Although it sounds, and is, mega healthy, it definitely doesn’t feel like it when you taste it. It’s beautifully creamy and sweet and 100% hits the spot when you’re craving chocolate.
You can get bars of Ombar from Waitrose, Ocado & Amazon, and we’ve also seen it stocked in lots of little health food shops too. The 35g bars are £1.99 and the 70g are £2.99 - so definitely on the more expensive side, but no more than other premium quality chocolate that is currently on the market. They would be perfect to give as a gift, or even if you just want to treat yourself to some luxury chocolate - this stuff is no Bournville, we’re on another level here!
Ombar Centres: Breakfast in Bed
I’m a big fan of eating meals in bed. I’m such a sloth, I could happily lounge around in bed all day, watching movies & eating little snacks, so it made sense for us to try out some of the Ombar chocolate in one of my favourite places! We have been working on a banana pancake recipe for a couple of weeks now and thought a little bar of Ombar would be the perfect accompaniment. The Ombar Centres Coconut & Vanilla sounded like an excellent match so we melted it down to make the chocolate drizzle. We have also been going a little fruit crazy recently since the weather has gotten nicer, so we made a simple summer berry compote to pour over the pancakes. To top it all off we broke up the Ombar Centres Raspberry & Coconut into pieces and placed it on top of the stack with some crushed pistachio nuts. This resulted in probably the most decadent pancake stack I have ever eaten, as you can see by the photos, it’s overflowing with fruity chocolaty goodness.
We both loved the Ombar Centres Coconut & Vanilla, it melted really well, yet still kept it’s beautiful flavour and remained lovely and creamy from the additional ingredient of creamed coconut. The Raspberry and coconut was tasty and went well with the fresh raspberries we had on the pancakes, however personally, I’d rather just have fresh fruit and plain chocolate. Even as I child I never really liked fruity flavoured things, so the Raspberry & Coconut wouldn’t be my first choice of chocolate. If you’re into fruity chocolate though, you’d love this as the fruit flavour doesn’t taste fake at all and isn’t too overpowering against the chocolate.
I believe that breakfast in bed is never complete without a hot cup of tea or coffee. To keep in line with the theme of: eating so much chocolate you need a nap afterwards, we decided to make a mocha. We melted down some of the Ombar 72% Cacao to make a little chocolate shot which we topped up with freshly brewed coffee. All of Ombar’s chocolate bars are so smooth and creamy that they melt down effortlessly. However, we did feel this flavour really shines when left as a whole bar. Compared to the others it’s got a little more bite to it, and although it has a high percentage of cacao, it doesn’t taste as bitter as other dark chocolates.
This really was the breakfast of dreams! Eating the Ombar in three different ways made the whole occasion very decadent, I felt like a queen sat on my cosy mattress throne. Although not all the Ombar Centre flavours did it for me, I definitely appreciated the high quality of the chocolate I was eating, and I really loved how the centres made the whole bar super creamy and melt-in-the-mouth’. Plus, being able to say to myself ‘oh but it's healthy chocolate!’ really helped me feel less guilty about the mountain of food I’d just eaten!
Ombar 35g: Snack On The Go
When I’m not working on Lovely Jubley I work freelance in the film & TV industry, and one of the big perks is that I get all my meals given to me on set as the hours are often so long that you don’t usually have time to cook for yourself at home. However, being vegan can sometimes make this a little tricky. Although the majority of the time people always do their best to cater for everyone's dietary requirements, there have definitely been times when the 6pm snack tray is brought out with all sorts of yummy looking treats, and there’s nothing for me to eat. So I always make sure I’ve brought a little vegan snack with me for moments like this. The 35g Ombar bars are perfect for this situation. You can throw them in your bag to eat on the go, or you can nibble them sat at your desk when you need that mid afternoon pick me up.
I did exactly this the other day, when I took the Ombar Strawberry Mylk out with me. I’m not gunna lie I really wasn’t a fan of this flavour, as I said before, fruity flavoured chocolate really just doesn’t do it for me; particularly strawberry flavoured things. I never liked Haribo, Gummy Bears, Fruit Pastels, Skittles - any of that stuff really! I’d be very happy with a Crunchie Bar though. So it wasn’t really a surprise I didn’t love this one. Ignoring the strawberry flavour though, it’s still the same sweet creamy chocolate, and any fan of strawberry flavoured things would love this chocolate bar! In fact I shared it with my friend Kate, one such strawberry lover, and she loved it. Next time I’ll make sure to pack a small bar of the Ombar 72% Cacao, as this is much more up my street.
Ombar 70g: Movie Night At Home
I love a night out as much as the next girl, but I’m really much more of ‘stay at home with takeout and a movie’ kind of gal. Charlie and like to get a selection of snacks for our movie nights, usually some chips n dips, popcorn, wine, and something chocolaty. We knew we had to save our two big bars of Ombar Coco Mylk and Ombar 72% Cacao for such an occasion. Luckily Charlie loves dark chocolate, which meant I could have the bar of Mylk all to myself! I’m really not over exaggerating when I say the Coco Mylk is the best vegan chocolate I’ve ever had! It was so moreish, I just kept eating piece after piece until the I’d nearly eaten a whole bar! I think what I loved so much about it was that I genuinely felt like I was eating the dairy milk chocolate bars that I used to stare at longingly in the supermarket. I know it sounds ridiculous, but I always know I’ve found an amazing vegan replacement when I get a bit emosh… this chocolate was so yummy I found myself getting a little teary. When you’ve spent years looking, and hoping to find that amazing bar of chocolate that takes you back to childhood days of stuffing your face with chocolate buttons - it’s a pretty good feeling!
All of the Ombar chocolate has coconut in, so if you hate coconut then maybe this in’t the brand for you. However, maybe it’s because I’ve gotten so used to the taste of coconut in vegan products, I didn’t really notice it in this chocolate at all. It just blended together perfectly with the cacao and sugar to create a lovely bar of chocolate.
As I said earlier, Charlie prefers dark chocolate, so the Coco Mylk didn’t have quite the same dramatic effect on him than it did me. He said it was too sweet and too creamy…I’m mean, is that even possible though?! Luckily, he had his bar of 72% Cacao, which he wolfed down equally as fast as I did mine! He commented on how it tasted like dark chocolate but wasn’t biter like other dark chocolate he’s eaten. He also preferred how this bar had more of a bite to it, and unlike the Ombar Centres, it didn’t “disintegrate” in his mouth.
Although we didn’t love all the flavours, there were definitely a couple that were winners for us. In fact, the Coco Mylk and the 72% Cacao have become Charlie and I’s new favourite chocolate! However, at the price point they’re at, this definitely isn’t chocolate we’ll be eating on the reg! We’ll be saving Ombar for special occasions, and gifts for our friends and family. Thanks to the lovely people at Ombar for sending this to us - you’ve made converts out of us!
Disclaimer: These chocolate bars were gifted to us, however, the opinions are all our own, and the thoughts given are 100% honest.
Have any of you tried Ombar chocolate? We’d love to know what you thought of it, leave us a comment below, or find us on social media.