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how to get perfectly tempered chocolate

How to Temper Chocolate

Here's how to temper chocolate! This post covers it all: best chocolate to use, correct temperatures, the microwave and seeding methods, and more! Everything you need for perfectly tempered chocolate is here. Use for chocolate covered strawberries, chocolate truffles, you name it!

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Chocolate, how to temper chocolate
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Yields: 16 ounces
Recipe by Tessa Arias

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces (454 grams) baking chocolate, finely chopped

Directions

Tempering Chocolate by Seeding:

  1. In a double boiler, melt 2/3 of the chocolate, stirring often, until the thermometer registers around 115°F, but absolutely no higher than 120°F. If tempering milk or white chocolate, heat to 110°F. Remove from the double boiler. Make sure all equipment that comes in contact with the chocolate remains completely dry. Any water will cause the chocolate to seize.
  2. Gradually seed in the remaining chocolate to bring the temperature down, stirring vigorously and constantly. Stir until the temperature drops to 84°F. This can take some time, usually about 15 minutes so just be patient, it will come down to temperature! A glass bowl will take longer to cool. Speed this process up by carefully placing the bowl of chocolate into an ice bath, making sure not to get ANY water in the chocolate.
  3. Reheat the chocolate briefly by placing the bowl back over the double boiler for 5 to 10 seconds at a time, stirring, until it reaches 89°F. This is the “working temperature.” Do not leave the chocolate over the water or let it exceed 91°F.
  4. You’re done! Test your temper by dipping a small piece of parchment into your chocolate. Let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes. The chocolate should be smooth and firm. If it’s streaky or runny, try stirring in more chocolate to the mixture to bring the temperature down further.

  5. Tempered chocolate can be tempered over and over again. You want to keep the working temperature of about 89°F when working with it. If it goes far below that temperature, set it back over the double boiler until it is 89°F again. If it goes much above that temperature, add more seed chocolate to drop the temperature.

Tempering Chocolate by Microwave:

  1. Put 2/3 of the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl. Melt at 50% power in 1-minute intervals, stirring between each interval, until melted and smooth. The chocolate should only be between 100 – 110°F.

  2. Add remaining chocolate in small amounts while stirring. Be sure that the pieces are completely melted before adding more.

  3. The chocolate will thicken and become cool, shiny, and smooth as you continue stirring and “seeding” it by adding additional small amounts. When it has reached the range 84-91°F, the chocolate will be tempered and ready to work with.

Recipe Notes

You can temper any amount of chocolate you need, but note that tempering less than 16 ounces is becomes a little more difficult.