Frequently Asked Questions

And Our Answers!

How do I prepare my Cacao Artesanos Cacao Drink?

We’re glad you asked! You can find simple instructions here on how to turn your cacao paste into a delicious cacao drink.

What’s the difference between Cacao Powder and Cacao Artesanos Cacao Paste?

There is a very noticeable difference in the taste between cacao powder and cacao paste (kinda like artisan roasted ground coffee v instant, or at least to our palettes). This is because cacao powder is put through significantly more processing than cacao paste, which not only impacts in taste but also strips loads of health benefits. Learn more about the difference, including the steps in production between cacao powder v cacao paste and also about how cocoa fits in!

How do I prepare Cacao for a large group/cacao ceremony?

We’ve put together some basic measurements and important considerations when preparing cacao for a group of people. Learn more here.

Are there any other uses for my Cacao Artesanos Cacao Paste? (RECIPES!!)

You can bet your bottom dollar there are! We have collated some of our all time favourite recipes that use Cacao Artesanos cacao paste. As you will see, many of these are very healthy – many using raw ingredients and full vegan options. Yum!

Why isn’t Cacao Artesanos in a block/slab?

While living in Mexico we spent years buying our own cacao in block/slab form. This was great, but it got a little frustrating having to chop up/grate the cacao each time we wanted to use it. Here at our studio in Totnes, Devon, we chisel the cacao by hand, getting the perfect crumbly effect that allows the cacao to be easily melted into your own special concoction. Same traditional and artisan product – but added convenience!

Why does my Cacao Artesanos cacao appear discoloured?

You may notice a slight discolouration of your cacao, or a whitish coating. That’s because our cacao is the real-deal: un-tempered, whole bean cacao paste. You could say that the discolouration is proof that our product is free from added chemicals and the milling process which strips the cacao of the cacao butter and loads of nutrients.

In the business the coating is called the ‘chocolate bloom’, and it’s caused by changes in the fat crystals of the cacao. Cacao that has ‘bloomed’ is still completely safe to consume. As soon as you melt down the cacao in preparation for consumption, the discolouration will disappear.

How do I store my cacao and how long does it last?

Great question. Easy: store you cacao in a cool, dry place, in the compostable bag we provided or in an airtight container. When stored in such conditions it can last up to 8-10 years!

What does ‘Artesanos’ mean?

‘Artesanos’ is a Spanish word that means ‘craftsmen’. It is a representation of who we are! We specialise solely in bringing together the finest cacao produced by craftsmen and women from all over the world. We add our own addition in the UK by hand chiselling the cacao into easy to use crumbly bits and get it delivered fresh to your door.

el artesanola artesana, plural: artesanos
[arte’sano, a] nm/f artisans, craftsmen

What’s the historical context of cacao?

Mesoamerican and South American peoples have been preparing and drinking cacao for millennia and the history is complex, varied and rich. We have detailed some fascinating tidbits about the ancient roots of cacao here.

What is your Delivery & Return Policy?

Find out more here!

Can you explain your pricing? It seems expensive!

If you are comparing cacao paste to cacao powder, then cacao powder is much cheaper. Cacao paste(which retains the revered cacao butter) is much harder to come by – hence why it’s really hard to find in the shops. There is a huge difference in quality, taste and health benefits between cacao paste and powder. (Learn more here!) When we moved back to the UK we couldn’t find cacao paste anywhere so bought some cacao powder in desperation… we hate throwing things away…so it’s still sitting 3/4 full in the cupboard. Once you’ve had the real deal, you honestly can’t go back.

If you are comparing our cacao paste to other brands of cacao paste, then our pricing is bang in the middle. You might find some South American cacao paste in the UK which is cheaper. More than likely, this will be cacao paste that is sourced from a wholesale supplier that sources cheap cacao products in bulk from Tarapoto, Peru.

We only source cacao of exceptional quality from small artisan farms. We direct trade and pay premium prices to farmers. Why? Not only are they experts in producing the world’s finest cacao, they are also committed to sustainable and biodynamic farming. Unfortunately in today’s world this is rare and we believe it’s worth protecting.

As a customer, you join us in our mission to share the produce of heart based, earth conscious, artisan farmers from around the world!

Can I have cacao when I’m on antidepressants?

Generally, cacao is contraindicated with antidepressants, especially MAOIs and some SSRIs. It may result in a really bad headache, or worse, cause the development of serotonin syndrome which can have severe implications. Cacao paste contains tryptophan and MAO inhibitors that may cause a synergistic intensification when combined with antidepressants.

So it is definitely best to steer clear of cacao while on antidepressants.

Can I have cacao when I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?

Generally, cacao is considered totally safe during both pregnancy and breastfeeding, however a lower dose is recommended, just in case the theobromine content (the stimulant in cacao, a compound similar to caffeine, but more gentle) causes any aggravation/irritation, or nausea (we’ve only heard of this happening in first trimester though). The antidepressant characteristics of cacao i.e. the production of dopamine, serotonin, P.E.A and anandamine (the bliss molecule) could be potentially helpful for any pre- and post- natal issues, plus give a nice little energy boost too 😊.

But, we aren’t health practitioners so as with anything it is always best to double check with someone you know and trust in the realm of health.

Is Cacao Artesanos cacao organic?

Our supplier’s in Bali do in fact have all the organic paperwork showing that their whole operations, including their cacao is certified organic. HOWEVER we don’t have the paperwork on our end in the UK, basically because certification is expensive and we are a teeny tiny start up. One day we would like to go through this process and then we’ll be able to advertise as organic… but until then we can’t.