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Dress Up Your Desserts with These Easy Handmade Chocolate Curls
Grab your favorite chocolate bar. That’s right, you can easily make cholate curls from milk, white, or dark chocolate. Just make sure it doesn’t have any fillings or add-ins, such as nuts or fruit, to ensure smooth curls.
- Carefully draw a vegetable peeler ($11, Target) across the broad surface of the chocolate bar. This works best if the chocolate is at room temperature. For narrower curls, use the side of the bar.
- Use a toothpick or bamboo skewer to place the curls and prevent fingerprints (and melting) to decorate your dessert. Or you can gently set them onto a paper towel-lined airtight container and store in the fridge until they’re ready to use.
How to Make Large Chocolate Curls
A handy trick to making big chocolate curls is turning a glass baking dish upside down and spreading melted chocolate over it. Here’s how to do it:
- In a microwave-safe bowl, melt 2 oz. chopped bittersweet chocolate or milk chocolate and 1 tsp. shortening 45 seconds or until melted and smooth. Alternatively, you can melt in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly.
- Use an offset spatula ($12, Bed Bath & Beyond) to spread the chocolate evenly over the inverted glass baking dish. Let stand 30 minutes or until set. If needed, place the dish in freezer 1 to 3 minutes to help set the chocolate; let stand at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes.
- Hold a straight-edge metal spatula ($10, Target) at an angle at one edge of the chocolate. Apply gentle, steady pressure, and push the spatula forward to create curls. For looser chocolate curls, push the spatula forward in an arc. You might need to repeat freezing and standing to get chocolate to the right consistency.
- As mentioned above, gently lift curls with a wooden skewer to avoid making fingerprints in the chocolate. Use immediately or place a single layer on paper towel. Cover and store in the fridge until ready to use.
After you’ve got your chocolate shaving technique down, put those chocolate curls to good use. Add some white chocolate curls to a peppermint cream pie. Make your hot chocolate extra-fancy by topping it with whipped cream and adorable little chocolate curls. Or literally make any chocolate cake, mousse, or trifle look like a professionally-made bakery treat.
This is a step-by-step tutorial on How to Make Easy Chocolate Shards/Bark. These pretty curls are a decorative way to adorn cakes and desserts. Make them using, dark, semi-sweet, milk or white chocolate.
These chocolate shards came about when I was coming up with the recipe for my Christmas Yule Log.
In the past, to achieve the effect of bark on the log, I simply used a fork to draw lines in the chocolate covering the log. A simple method taught in cooking class, but rudimentary and I was looking for something more realistic and the shards add a dramatic 3-D effect.
My friend Olivia from Liv for Cake, decorated her Black Forest Cake with dark chocolate shards and also made stunning red and white ones emulating candy canes for her White Chocolate Candy Cane Cake, very festive for Christmas.
Chocolate shards step by step
So, let’s get to the step-by-step for these Easy Chocolate Shards/Bark. There is a video tutorial floating around the page somewhere so you can see me in action.
I begin by melting the chocolate in the microwave. I place chocolate pieces in a microwave-safe dish and microwave on high for 30 second increments, stirring in between until fully melted.
A piece of parchment paper is laid out flat. A puddle of chocolate is poured onto the edge closest to you. Spread the chocolate to a fine, even layer. The width of the chocolate will dictate how long the shards are.
Start rolling the paper over the chocolate. Making sure that only paper touches the chocolate, no chocolate to chocolate or it will stick together and fail. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (it can be kept for 2 days this way).
Slowly unroll the paper with the chocolate facing upwards toward you, the shards will start to break on their own.
You will notice the chocolate is now facing you . The reason is because the chocolate dried/set on the other side of the paper when was rolled onto it.
Which chocolate is best for shards?
I like to use a non-baking chocolate. Just a regular bar of chocolate you would eat as they melt the best. And not chocolate chips don’t melt as well as they are made to hold their shape.
- Add the chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl in pieces. Microwave for 30 seconds and stir. Repeat until fully melted.
- Lay a sheet of parchment paper on a flat surface. Spread a thin, even layer of chocolate over the paper. The shards will be as long as the chocolate spread is wide.
- Take the edge of paper closest to you and roll over the chocolate, making sure that no chocolate is touching.
- Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, then unroll.
I find that regular chocolate (not baking) works best
1Amount Per Serving 6g 4g 0g 2g 0g 0g
This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.
Looking for dessert recipes? Try Pumpkin Snickerdoodles, Caramel Popcorn, Butterfinger Bars, or Cherry Cobbler!
Why I love this recipe
- An Easy “Wow” Factor – chocolate shavings dress up any dessert and immediately make it look professional and elegant. It is sure to impress your guests! Even though chocolate curls look intimidating, they’re simple and anyone can make them.
- Delicious – No one is going to complain while eating a dessert topped with these beautiful and delicious chocolate decorations.
Pour melted chocolate onto the back of a baking sheet and smooth it into a thin layer. I use an offset spatula to smooth the chocolate into as thin of a layer as I can. Place pan in the fridge for a 3-4 minutes to allow the chocolate to set up.
Form Curls: Remove chocolate from the fridge. Grab a metal spatula or scraper and hold it horizontally in front of the pan. Slide it at a 45 degree angle, scraping the chocolate up as you push the scraper forward. If the chocolate is set right it will begin to curl over itself as you push.
- If the chocolate shreds into pieces instead of folding into a curl, it’s probably too cold, so allow it to come to room temperature for another 2-3 minutes.
- If the chocolate pulls up from the pan limp and wont curl, it is too soft, so return it to the fridge for 30 seconds to 1 minute to allow it to set up more.
*Be patient! It may take a little practice, and don’t forget that even imperfect looking ones are worth keeping because they’ll still add beautiful shape and texture piled high on your dessert. Also, a little melted chocolate goes a long way. so melt a more chocolate on the pan if you need to make more.
Storing Instructions: Gently move chocolate curls to an airtight container or bag and refrigerate for several days, until ready to use.
Use Chocolate Curls On
- Melt 1 cup of good quality chocolate. I use Ghirardelli baking chips or a bar of Baker’s chocolate, chopped. I like to make my own “double boiler” to melt the chocolate by placing a heat-proof bowl over a saucepan on the stove that has 2 inches of simmering water in it. Or melt the chocolate in the microwave at 50% power, stirring every 30 seconds.
- Pour melted chocolate onto the back of a baking sheet and smooth it into a thin layer. Use an offset spatula to smooth the chocolate into as thin of a layer as you can.
- Use a metal spatula or scraper to make the chocolate curls. Hold the metal spatula horizontally in front of you and press it firmly against the pan at a 45 degree angle, scraping the chocolate up as you push the scraper forward. If the chocolate is set right it will begin to curl over itself as you push.
- If the chocolate shreds into tons of small pieces instead of folding into a curl, it’s probably too cold, so allow it to come to room temperature a little longer.If the chocolate pulls up from the pan limp and wont curl, it is too soft, so return it to the fridge for 30 seconds to 1 minute to allow it to set up more.
- Move chocolate curls to a plate and refrigerate if needed to set up for another minute before transferring them to an airtight container or bag and refrigerate for several days, or until ready to use.
White Chocolate Chips: You may substitute high quality white chocolate baking chips, chunks, or a bar.
Did You Make This Recipe?
Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.
You can turn ordinary desserts into show-stoppers just using a vegetable peeler! Chocolate curls can add so much to a dessert, and these chocolate swirls and twirls are so much fun to make! Here we’ll show you the simplest techniques to curl chocolate.
Why Make This?
There are so many ways to make desserts elegant by using chocolate shavings and curls. Our technique is fast, it’s easy and it’s fun! You can pile the curls atop a French silk pie, garnish a layered parfait or cover a shaved chocolate cake.
What You’ll Need
All you need to make curly chocolate is a large milk chocolate bar and a simple vegetable peeler.
Making a Variety of Curls
Several plates filled with various types of chocolate curls showing how to make chocolate curls with a peeler.
There are many ways to make chocolate curls. We think making chocolate curls with a vegetable peeler is the easiest. Using a candy bar is the simplest method with consistent results. Our family has been using this method for 50 years!
To make a curl, use a standard vegetable peeler on a large, room temperature milk chocolate bar (no nuts).
Gently peel strips off the bar, rotating as the chocolate warms in your hands. Try to dig into the bar a little and get a grip on the chocolate. If you have cold hands, or you can’t shave curls off the bar, consider placing the chocolate bar in the microwave for 10 seconds ONLY.
We’re going to show you five different kinds of chocolate decor we typically make. We’ve named them all to keep track of them. Let’s take a look at how to make chocolate swirls, chocolate twirls, chocolate curls, chocolate waves and chocolate shavings!
For swirls, peel the narrow edge of the chocolate bar.
For chocolate swirls, peel the narrow edge of the chocolate bar.
Shaving the sharp edge of the chocolate bar will create twirls.
Shaving the sharp edge of a chocolate bar will create chocolate twirls.
For fat curls, shave the flat side of the chocolate bar with your peeler.
Peeling the flat side of the chocolate bar can give you chocolate curls that resemble tree bark.
Make “C” shaped waves with your cheese grater or using short strokes of your peeler.
You can make chocolate “C” shaped waves with a grater or with short strokes of a peeler.
Use a grater to shred the chocolate bar and make shavings galore to top a dessert!
Use a grater to shred a chocolate bar and make chocolate shavings to top a dessert.
Factors to Consider when Purchasing Chocolate Bars
It’s easiest to shave a chocolate bar when it’s at room temperature. It may even start to melt in your hand.
- Chocolate curls are an elegant garnish for any dessert. They make beautiful cake decor. Try them atop cream pies, trifles, parfaits, tortes and hot chocolate.
- To shave chocolate there are a variety of methods. You can do it with a paring knife. Also, you can use a metal spatula to scrape melted chocolate that has hardened. We think a peeler on a chocolate bar is the easiest technique!
- Chocolate decor can elevate your dessert to pro level. For a dessert that’s covered in chocolate curls like the chocolate raspberry cake (below), you’ll probably use an entire large Hershey’s chocolate bar. The simple addition of chocolate curls can elevate your dessert into something special with that looks like a came from a pastry chef.
How to Store Curly Chocolate
Once you have enough curls, set them aside in the refrigerator to keep them firm. They’re quite delicate, and can break and melt easily. As a result, you don’t want to handle them until you’re ready to use them.
Chocolate curls can be frozen for up to three months. Freeze them in an airtight freezer container, taking care to stack them gently in the container. Do NOT overfill the container, because the curls can break.
Easy instructions to make elegant chocolate curls using a vegetable peeler and a candy bar.
All Desserts, Cooking Tips and Tricks
- Large Hershey Bar approximately 8 ounces.
- Standard, straight vegetable peeler. Don’t use a peeler with a guard.
- There are many ways to make chocolate curls. We think making chocolate curls with a vegetable peeler is the easiest. Using a candy bar is the simplest method with consistent results. Our family has been using this method for 50 years!
- To make a curl, use a standard vegetable peeler on a large, room temperature milk chocolate bar (no nuts).
- Gently peel strips off the bar, rotating as the chocolate warms in your hands. Try to dig into the bar a little and get a grip on the chocolate.
- If you have cold hands, or you can’t shave curls off the bar, consider placing the chocolate bar in the microwave for 10 seconds ONLY.
Start with a room temperature chocolate bar. It’s good to start with a room temperature chocolate bar. If it’s stored in the fridge, try microwaving for about 10 seconds before shaving chocolate. The softer bar allows you to dig into the bar and create defined curls.
Chocolate curls are an elegant garnish for any dessert. They make beautiful cake decor. Try them atop cream pies, trifles, parfaits, tortes and hot chocolate.
To shave chocolate there are a variety of methods. You can do it with a paring knife. Also, you can use a metal spatula to scrape melted chocolate that has hardened. We think the peeler on a chocolate bar is the easiest technique!
How to store chocolate curls:
Chocolate curls are easy to make, and they add a touch of elegance to any cake, cupcake, trifle, or cheesecake! In this post, I’ve provided step-by-step instructions on How to Make Chocolate Curls, plus I’m sharing the best types of chocolate to use for chocolate curls, how to store the curls, and more!
What Are Chocolate Curls Used For?
Shaved chocolate curls are an easy way to elevate any dessert. From cakes to cupcakes to trifles, chocolate curls add a touch of elegance to your favorite sweet treats!
Home cooks don’t often think to add chocolate curls to their desserts, mistakenly thinking they’re difficult or time consuming to make.
However, shaved chocolate curls are incredibly simple to prepare! Simply melt some chocolate, smooth it over a baking sheet, and use an offset spatula to create the curls.
If melting the chocolate sounds like too much work for you, I’ve also included instructions on how to make chocolate curls or chocolate shavings with just a vegetable peeler!
Ingredients in Chocolate Curls
To make chocolate curls, you’ll need ½ cup (4 oz.) of your choice of chocolate (more on that in a moment) and 2 teaspoons of your choice of fat.
- Coconut oil
- Vegetable shortening
All of the fat options listed above work equally well for making chocolate curls, it’s just a matter of what you have on hand and your dietary preferences.
Since you’re only using 2 teaspoons of fat per ½ cup of chocolate, you really can’t taste a difference between the butter, coconut oil, or shortening.
If using butter, I recommend using unsalted butter for the purest chocolate flavor.
Coconut oil will impart a very slight coconut flavor to the chocolate curls, but I promise it’s an imperceptible flavor difference.
Shortening is the cheapest option, but I understand if you don’t want to buy an entire container of it just to use 2 teaspoons in this recipe.
Can You Use Any Type of Chocolate for Chocolate Curls?
Yes, you can use either milk, dark, or white chocolate to make shaved chocolate curls!
However, I recommend using an actual chocolate bar rather than chocolate chips. Chocolate chips contain stabilizers that make the resistant to melting, so they’re not the best option for making chocolate curls.
Can You Color White Chocolate Curls?
Yes, once melted white chocolate can be colored before turning it into chocolate curls.
To color melted white chocolate, you must use an oil-based food coloring that’s intended for coloring chocolate. A regular liquid food coloring from the baking aisle won’t work, as those are water-based and will cause the white chocolate to seize up.
Can You Use Dairy-Free Chocolate?
Yes, most definitely! Most dark chocolates are naturally dairy-free, but you’re welcome to substitute your favorite dairy-free milk chocolate if desired.
To keep the chocolate curls completely dairy-free, melt the chocolate with either shortening or coconut oil rather than butter.
Required Tools for Making Chocolate Curls
Although shaved chocolate curls are a breeze to make, you do need some very specific tools to create them.
Here are the tools you’ll need to curl chocolate perfectly every time:
- Baking sheet — You can use either a flat cookie sheet that doesn’t have any sides, or you can flip over a regular baking sheet and use the bottom of it.
- Offset spatula — You’ll need an offset spatula to smooth the melted chocolate evenly across the entire baking sheet.
- Metal spatula — The size of the curls depends on how large your metal spatula is. I always use this spatula to make medium-sized curls. Alternatively, a bench scraper or a similar kitchen tool will work.
- Parchment or wax paper — I always line the baking sheet before spreading the melted chocolate over it. This makes cleanup later on so much easier!
My preferred method for making chocolate curls involves melting together the chocolate and fat source, then spreading the mixture over the back of a baking sheet and scraping it off to make curls.
Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of how to curl chocolate:
- Flip over a half baking sheet and place parchment paper or wax paper over it. Set aside.
- Combine ½ cup (4 oz.) of chocolate and 2 teaspoons of butter, shortening, or coconut oil in a heat-proof bowl. Set aside.
- Place the bowl of chocolate over the saucepan, making sure the bottom of the bowl is not in direct contact with the water.
- Continually stir the chocolate until fully melted and smooth.
- Working quickly, spread the melted chocolate mixture over the back of the lined baking sheet. I like to use an offset spatula to smooth the chocolate into an even layer.
- Transfer the baking sheet to the fridge to firm up the chocolate.
- Once firm, use a metal spatula to push forward on the chocolate to create chocolate curls. If the chocolate won’t curl, return it to the fridge until firmer. If the chocolate flakes rather than curls, it needs to sit at room temperature for a few minutes to warm back up slightly.
- Make as many chocolate curls as you can, working at a steady pace.
Tip: You can also melt the chocolate in the microwave at 15-second intervals, but I prefer the double boiler method as it ensures the chocolate won’t seize up suddenly.
Tips for Making Shaved Chocolate Curls
- Melting the chocolate: I prefer melting the chocolate on the stovetop using a double boiler. You can also melt the chocolate in the microwave, but white chocolate in particular tends to seize up when melted this way.
- Adjusting the size of your curls: The larger the metal spatula you use, the larger your curls will be. Likewise, smaller metal spatulas result in smaller curls.
- Chocolate temperature: If the melted chocolate is left in the fridge too long, it’ll harden too much and you won’t be able to make curls. If that happens, let the chocolate sit at room temperature for 3 to 5 minutes, then try again.
How to Make Chocolate Shavings
Yes, there’s a difference between chocolate curls and chocolate shavings, although most people use the two terms interchangeably.
Chocolate curls are more uniform in appearance and are often larger in size. Conversely, chocolate shavings look like smaller flakes of chocolate that are usually sprinkled over an entire dessert rather than dotted individually over the surface.
Making chocolate shavings is even easier than making chocolate curls, and you don’t have to melt the chocolate beforehand. Here are the top ways to make chocolate shavings using a vegetable peeler, a knife, or a box grater.
Use a Vegetable Peeler
- Working over a cutting board or plate, hold a bar of chocolate on its side.
- Carefully but firmly run the vegetable peeler down the side of the chocolate bar in short bursts.
- Rotate the chocolate bar as needed, using all sides to create chocolate shavings.
Tip: If you run the peeler down the entire length of the chocolate bar, you can make tight chocolate curls instead of chocolate shavings. However, this method for making chocolate curls can be finicky and results in shavings more often than not.
Use a Sharp Knife
- Place a bar of chocolate upside down on a clean kitchen towel so that the smooth side of the chocolate is facing up.
- Scooch the chocolate bar flush against your body. I like to fold the kitchen towel up my body so that the chocolate doesn’t come into contact with my clothing.
- Using a large, sharp knife, scrape the surface of the chocolate bar. You’ll want to scrape the bar in your direction.
- Repeat this motion until you’ve made enough chocolate shavings.
Tip: You may need to use multiple chocolate bars, depending on the amount of shavings needed. As the chocolate bar becomes thinner, it will be more difficult to produce chocolate shavings.
Use a Box Grater
- Halve a standard-sized chocolate bar. Each half should easily fit into the palm of your hand.
- Refrigerate the chocolate bar halves, if needed. (You’ll likely only have to do this if your house is warm or if it’s summer).
- Once firm, gently run the chocolate bar over the smallest holes on a box grater to create shavings.
Tip: A microplane zester can be used in place of a box grater.
How to Store Chocolate Curls
Chocolate curls should be stored in the fridge in an airtight container. I recommend storing the curls in a Tupperware container or something similar, rather than a plastic bag. When stored in a plastic bag, chocolate curls tend to get crushed.
If stored properly, chocolate curls will last up to 1 month in the fridge.
Can You Freeze Chocolate Curls?
Yes, chocolate curls can be frozen for up to three months. Freeze them in an airtight freezer container, taking care to stack them gently in the container. Do NOT overfill the container, otherwise the curls will be squished.
Frozen chocolate curls will last up to three months.
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Just a tad different from the one I grew up with with a crust made of chocolate cookies rather than vanilla wafers and almond butter instead of peanut butter, but still just as good and just as worthy of sharing with someone you love.
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- 1/2 cup chocolate (4 oz.)
- 2 teaspoons butter (vegetable shortening or coconut oil may be substituted)
Amount Per Serving
8g 5g 0g 2g
GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy. This provided information is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.
Want to make show-stopping chocolate curls to take your desserts to the next level? You’ve come to the right place! These easy chocolate curls take about five minutes, and are completely full proof.
I absolutely love chocolate curls. They are beautiful and delicious, and who doesn’t love a little extra something to top your favorite desserts, especially around the holidays? These easy chocolate curls take about five minutes to make, and are perfect for topping your cakes, cookies, cheesecakes, and more. Let’s make them.
What you’ll need to make these easy chocolate curls
Semi sweet chocolate chips or chunks
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I love providing gluten and dairy free substitutions so that those with alternate dietary needs can enjoy my recipes to their fullest! These are subs that I have either used and continue to stock in my own home, or that have come highly recommended from others. I want your baking experience to be the best it can be, and avoiding gluten or dairy shouldn’t hinder that process in the slightest.
As always, here is a list of tried and true dietary substitutes, so that you can enjoy this recipe without the additions of gluten or dairy.
Miyokos butter is a plant based brick that closely resembles dairy butter not only in its look, but it’s taste as well. It melts, browns, and spreads just like real butter, and truly is a fantastic substitute in this recipe. Use it as a 1:1 ratio sub, same as the flour, so the recipe measurements will not change.
Enjoy Life makes a dairy free + allergen friendly semi sweet chocolate chip that would work great in this recipe.
If you loved these easy chocolate curls, I’d be so grateful for you to leave a 5 star rating + review!
Lastly, post this recipe to any of your boards by tapping the Pinterest icon and clicking on your favorite photo. Save and enjoy.
Check out my Dark Chocolate Tart for a fabulous base for these easy chocolate curls.
Want to make show-stopping chocolate curls to talk your desserts? You’ve come to the right place! These easy chocolate curls take about five minutes, and are completely full proof.
chocolate, chocolate curls, semi sweet chocolate
chocolate, curls, Dessert, garnish
chocolate, chocolate curls, easy, garnish, semi sweet chocolate
How do you melt chocolate in the microwave?
Be especially vigilant with this method. Checking the chocolate regularly is important, as chocolate can catch and burn really quickly in a microwave.
- Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl.
- Microwave for 20 seconds. Check the chocolate, stir and keep cooking and checking every 5 seconds or until it has completely melted.
Read our guide on how to melt chocolate in the microwave for even more top tips and recipe suggestions.
Choosing your chocolate
Chocolate melts faster the higher the percentage of cocoa butter and fat, so dark chocolate melts the fastest. Once melted, it’s glossy and has a good viscosity. Good-quality dark chocolate with no less than 70 per cent cocoa solids will leave you with a darker, richer flavour. Anything lower than that is usually too sweet.
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Milk and white chocolate has a higher sugar content and can catch and burn quicker, so it must be stirred continuously when melting. It has a slightly thicker overall consistency than dark chocolate when melted.
How to make chocolate curls
- Once the chocolate has melted, spread it over a baking sheet in a thin layer.
- Leave to set until firm but not completely solid.
- Hold a knife at a 45 degree angle to the surface of the chocolate and push along so that it causes a thin layer to curl up.
Preparing the chocolate
When melting bars of chocolate, it’s best to chop the chocolate first so that it melts quicker and more evenly. There’s no need to be precise when it comes to chopping – in pieces or chunks is fine, as long as they’re all roughly the same size.
Many chocolatiers or pastry chefs will favour chocolate drops over bars of chocolate for melting. Chocolate drops are small and uniform, and come in different percentages of cocoa. Their shape means they are more likely to melt at the same time, avoiding burning.
How do you melt chocolate on the hob?
Melting chocolate on the hob is the most controlled method. Make sure your chocolate never comes into contact with water, as it will become grainy and clump together – this is called ‘seizing’. Try these easy step-by-step instructions:
- Fill a medium saucepan with 4cm of water. Place over a medium heat and bring to a very gentle simmer.
- Place a heatproof bowl on top of the pan so that it fits snugly but doesn’t touch the water.
- Lower the heat to a very gentle simmer.
- Break up the chocolate and add to the bowl, then leave to melt for 4-5 mins, stirring regularly.
- Carefully remove the pan from the heat and allow the chocolate to cool a little before using.
- Make sure that the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water and that no water comes into contact with the melting chocolate. These may cause the chocolate to seize and become unusable.
- Don’t let the water get too hot – the chocolate may burn and then split.
Want to expand your chocolate skills? Learn how to temper chocolate for a smooth, glossy mixture with a satisfying snap.
Making the Curls + Troubleshooting
These curls are not only super fun to make, they are quite easy as well. The crux here is both the temperature and the thickness of the chocolate.
You will begin by placing the butter and chocolate chips or chunks in a small microwave safe bowl, and microwaving iton high for about 30 seconds. Whisk well, until the chocolate is smooth and lump free, about thirty seconds. With a spatula, spoon the melted chocolate onto the reverse side of a cookie sheet. Smooth out the chocolate until it is thin and evenly covering the surface. It is also best to try and keep the edges straight, so you can maximize all of the chocolate for the making of the curls.
Freeze the tray of chocolate for three to four minutes. I have found that my sweet spot for the chocolate temperature is three minutes and thirty seconds. Pull the chocolate out, and using a small metal spatula, begin to gently push a thin section of the edge of the chocolate back into a curl. The chocolate has to be the prefect temperature for the curls to form correctly. If the chocolate is not set enough and will not curl, pop it back into the freezer for an additional thirty seconds at a time. Keep a close eye on it. If the chocolate is too hard and cracks, allow it to sit on the counter for 30 seconds and then try again. As soon as you make the curls, put them on a parchment lined plate and place them into the refrigerator or freezer to keep them from melting.
I generally work in two stages, and pop the chocolate back into the freezer when I’m about halfway through making the curls. You can do this as well if you sense that the chocolate is getting a bit too soft for the curls to form properly. Remember to work quickly but also give space for additional freeze time when necessary. This will ensure that the curls will come out beautifully every single time.