9 Endangered Species Chocolate Bars, Ranked Worst To Best

There is no shortage of chocolate brands to choose from. Not only is the selection at the grocery store seemingly never-ending, but there are all the more purveyors to shop from online. In essence, you can have your favorite type of chocolate delivered straight to your door with the click of a button. 

One popular brand on the sweets scene that is available for shipping is Endangered Species Chocolate. A central part of the company's mission is donating 10% of its net profits to environmental and wildlife conservation partners and helping educate consumers about different at-risk species, like grizzly bears, bald eagles, and chimpanzees, on each product label. Not only are its chocolates made with ingredients that are Fair Trade certified, including sugar and vanilla, but many are also organic and/or vegan. 

The brand currently sells over 25 different chocolate bars as well as a range of other cocoa novelty items, like its mini truffle bars and dippable chocolate sticks. But, in an effort to only consume the tastiest chocolate out there, we have to ask: Which of the Endangered Species Chocolate bars are worth buying? I sampled some of its most popular products to see for myself and ranked them on factors including overall taste and consistency as well as how well the candy reflected the flavor description on the label. 

Some recommendations are based on firsthand impressions of promotional materials and products provided by the manufacturer.

9. Smooth dark chocolate bar

There always has to be a plain Jane in the pack, and this one ended up being Endangered Species Chocolate's smooth dark chocolate bar. It is made from 72% cocoa, like many of the other bars on this list. But while Endangered Species Chocolate was experimenting with more interesting additions for its other bars, it left this one alone. There are no frills, no fluff, and unfortunately, no flavor. You won't find any exciting fillings to help distract from the richness of the chocolate, which makes it a bar that I could feasibly take a single bite of, then leave the rest for another time. While this could work well for someone wanting a small square of dark chocolate to close out their meal, it's not really a bar I would go after if I were craving something sweet. 

The one thing that this bar has going for it is that it really is smooth. Unfortunately, a lot of other dark chocolate bars (we won't name names) have a gritty texture that rubs the back of your molars. But this one had a really solid, complete, and utterly smooth bite. It really lives up to the expectations it set on the label, so I have to give credit where credit is due. 

8. Milk chocolate mini truffle bars

The milk chocolate truffle bars are the simplest member of the truffle bar collection. Each pillowy piece of candy is dipped into a 33% cocoa coating, which truly gives it the impression of a chocolate truffle. The one thing I really liked about these bars is that they don't have the same ratio of coating to filling as other chocolate truffles — including Lindt's Lindor truffle flavor lineup. I honestly think that a thick coating hides the nougat-like filling underneath — which should really be the focus of a truffle. The coating on all of Endangered Species Chocolate's mini truffle bars, including this milk chocolate bar, is light and balanced. 

Compared with the almond and sea salt mini truffle bars (see more below), this one is admittedly plain. Honestly, this truffle bar has more of a brownie-like texture than one of the conventional chocolate truffles that I remember from my childhood. And since there's nothing there to distract from the chocolate, it's clear that this is just a nougat filling trying to masquerade as a truffle. It's certainly buttery, but it doesn't have the mouthfeel that truly pushes it into truffle territory.

If it were served to me on a plate, I certainly wouldn't say no. But, Endangered Species Chocolate has proven that it has more flavorful and whimsical options out there, which earns this treat a spot near the bottom — but not on the bottom. 

7. Extreme dark chocolate bar

I will be the first person to admit that I'm not a fan of the sharpness of an extreme dark chocolate bar. In my mind, a good dark chocolate is able to balance those sweet, fruity, and bitter notes. Extreme dark chocolate bars just take bitter to the, well, extreme. 

The extreme dark chocolate bar from Endangered Species Chocolate, which contains 88% cocoa, is about as dark as it gets. The flavor is earthy and almost dirt-like. But the eating experience isn't entirely unpleasant. I didn't detect any sort of chalkiness after the first couple bites, and very quickly I realized this was a chocolate that was best made for putting on your tongue and letting it melt away rather than one that should be chomped on using your back molars. It has the same smoothness as the regular smooth chocolate bar, but as expected, it didn't have any real flavor outside of being purely bitter. 

Although the craftsmanship and creation of this bar is very intentional and well thought out, as clearly illustrated by its texture and flavor, it's not one I would reach for as a personal preference. But maybe if you were eating it with something sweet, like freshly sliced strawberries, it could be a balanced option. 

6. Sea salt mini truffle bars

A little sprinkle of sea salt never hurt anyone, and it makes all the difference when it comes to the mini truffle bars from Endangered Species Chocolate. The chocolate coating on the outside of these bars has a higher cocoa content of around 55% – compared with the 33% in the milk chocolate truffles — and it's clear that the extra cocoa really makes a difference. 

I was so excited to see that these bars had little sea salt crystals on top of them. It's far from the ambiguous claim that many chocolate makers have about sea salt in their chocolate. Rather, Endangered Species Chocolate goes the extra mile to ensure that consumers can visually see the sea salt crystals on the top of the candy. I also think that the pairing of the dark chocolate, rather than a lighter variety, and the sea salt was masterful. If you went with a lower cocoa content, you'd lose the impact of the sea salt on the flavor of the bar.

This sea salt truffle bar had a little more going on than the plain milk chocolate one, but it doesn't come close to the mouthfeel of the almond truffle bar that ranked higher on our list. I would have also liked more salt in the base of the truffle itself rather than just stuck on as a coating. Perhaps, a caramel, contrasted with the salt, could elevate this bar even more. 

5. Caramel and sea salt bar

I am a sucker for a good caramel chocolate bar. And it just seems that chocolate bars are really made for this sweet, syrupy sauce. It can imbue each bite with a subtle brown sugar flavor, which can easily temper any bitter cacao notes. Endangered Species Chocolate uses a 60% dark chocolate for its caramel and sea salt bar — which isn't the darkest chocolate bar I sampled, but it also isn't the lightest. 

This chocolate came out of the package very, very sticky. There were tiny pockets of caramel that stuck to the gold foil, which made the packaging on this bar quite difficult to open. When the bar was revealed, I immediately noticed that there were splotches of caramel everywhere on the bar rather than contained in the squares. Although it might seem like a minute detail, in a race this close, everything counts. 

Luckily, the caramel's flavor on this bar was quite pleasant and toffee-like. I tasted more prominent butterscotch notes than caramel ones, though, and the salt got lost in the process. If I wanted a true sea salt chocolate, I would go for the mini truffle bar. Plus, there wasn't enough salted caramel in the center well of each of the bars to convey either the "salt" or the "caramel" promised on the label. But, the chocolate component of this bar was pleasant and not too bitter — though it still would have been better with more caramel. 

4. Raspberry-filled dark chocolate bar

The raspberry-filled dark chocolate bar is one of the two raspberry offerings in the Endangered Species Chocolate lineup. And I admit I was a bit skeptical going into this one. Chocolate is already smooth and soft, so I don't think it really needs anything else in that same texture department. These bars are made with 60% cocoa, so they while they aren't the darkest bar that Endangered Species offers, they're pretty high up there. 

The texture of this raspberry filling was jam-like and quite thick inside of each of the squares. So, I, very clearly, got a mouth full of raspberry jam with every bite. I also appreciated that this jammy filling balanced the fruity flavor of the berries but did not come off as being sickeningly sweet. This made the perfect segue to the darkness of the chocolate bar, which really encapsulated each bite as a balanced dessert — albeit not a sweet one. 

I admit that I'm not a fruity candy person, so this bar, while it was well constructed, did not stick out to my taste buds. I also think the softness of both the chocolate and the raspberry filling didn't do this bar any favors. While it wasn't my favorite bar, it was a chocolate that I would still consider gifting to someone who loved all things fruity. 

3. Raspberry chocolate bar

I was honestly a bit skeptical about this raspberry chocolate bar because of the lack of dried raspberry pieces that I noticed on the underside of it. Raspberry, in general, is far from a dominant flavor, so I was a bit concerned as to how a scant amount of the fruit would stand up to a 72% cocoa dark chocolate base. 

But, sometimes the best things in life truly do surprise you. Biting into one of these raspberry seeds was almost like taking a bite of astronaut ice cream. It has that unique crunchy pop that's really unexpected — and it was a welcomed textural experience after I had already devoured nearly every creamy bar that Endangered Species Chocolate sent me. The raspberry flavor percolates into the dark chocolate base, which is just as creamy and as flavorful as the other bars that I had sampled. 

The only thing that would really have helped this bar clench the top spot was if there were more of those dried raspberry pieces. The texture was just so fun and whimsical that I found myself searching for more of it, only to be left disappointed. 

2. Almond mini truffle bars

Almonds and chocolate are a tried-and-true pairing, so it's no wonder that Endangered Species Chocolate would try to make some sort of spinoff of the duo in its truffle bar series. These bite-sized bars are made with milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate and have small flecks of almond peppered throughout the interior of each bar. 

Making a good chocolate almond bar is tough. The nuts need to be the perfect size and quite fresh, otherwise you risk giving your entire chocolate bar a rancid overtone. It's a tough balance to strike, and I can confidently say that Endangered Species Chocolate has mastered it. The nuts in this bar are quite fresh and really packed with almond flavor — not like a lackluster Hershey's with almond bar that you'd get from a gas station. I also commend the brand on finding a solid ratio of chocolate to almond, which is severely lacking in many of the other almond-infused chocolates that I've sampled over the years. The inside of this bar, as with the others in the mini truffle series, is quite soft and melts on the mouth. But it's not quite the dense, fudgy, stick-to-your-ribs texture that I was expecting from a truffle. 

Of all the truffle bars, this one was my favorite because the almonds provide a nutty reprieve from the smooth chocolate. But, if the label says "truffle," I really expect a mouthfeel that reflects that. 

1. Almonds and sea salt bar

I saved this bar for last for a reason. I really liked the freshness and crunchiness of the almonds in the mini truffle bar, but I also liked the sea salt that was used in some of the other chocolate bars. So, maybe Endangered Species Chocolate's almonds and sea salt bar would be the best of both worlds. And combined with the 72% cocoa content that's found in many of the other bars, I was left asking: "What's not to love?"

The sea salt was definitely more well-distributed throughout this chocolate bar than in the mini truffle bar. It's always a good sign when I can feel the crystals gritting against my teeth and meshing with the smooth, sweet-but-not-too-sweet chocolate. The nutty undertones of this bar were slightly savory, but not so much that you couldn't enjoy this bar as an after-dinner snack or a palate cleanser. I could also see how this vegan chocolate bar could be chopped up and added as a fresh addition to gourmet trail mix

I also really appreciated that Endangered Species Chocolate went hard with the amount of almond pieces in this bar. I wasn't left searching for a bit of nuttiness or a hint of salt; it had everything I needed, all wrapped up in a little gold package. 


Over the years, I've learned that tasting chocolate is a lot like tasting wine. Not only do you have to parcel out each of the individual flavor notes of the ingredients (in this case, the fruit, the nuts, and the salt, among others), but you also have to take a step back and look at the profile of the chocolate as a whole to evaluate the sum of its parts. 

To ensure that this taste test was as objective as possible, I sampled each chocolate independently. While I didn't give any particular element precedence over the others, my main focus in ranking each chocolate was the overall mouthfeel, potency of flavors, and how well the add-ins played with the flavor notes of the chocolate. I then compared the bars to one another to decide which ones were the tastiest and most well-balanced chocolates of them all.