How to melt and temper chocolate


If you want to make chocolate candies, you need to know how to properly melt and temper the chocolate. Here, the world-renowned chocolate maker Jacques Torres shows how to melt and temper chocolate.

How to melt and temper chocolate

Tempering chocolate is the key for making chocolate candies. When you properly temper chocolate, when cooled, it will have a shine and will have a slight snap when broken. Also, tempered chocolate will properly shrink away from the surface of chocolate candy molds, which aids in easy removal.

Melting chocolate (Double boiler method)

  1. Place a saucepan half-filled with water over medium heat and cover with a heatproof mixing bowl large enough to snugly rest on the rim of the saucepan. Bring water to a simmer.
  2. Chop a block or bar of chocolate into small pieces.
  3. Place about two-thirds of the chopped chocolate into the bowl.
  4. Use a rubber spatula to stir occasionally until the chocolate reaches about 100°F. Make sure that the water in the pan does not boil or you may burn the chocolate.
  5. Carefully remove the bowl from the pan. Stir in the remaining chocolate.

Melting chocolate (Microwave method)

  1. If you would rather use a microwave to melt the chocolate, chop the chocolate into small pieces, place into a glass bowl and heat for 15 seconds and stir. Continue to heat for 15 seconds and stir until melted. Make sure the chocolate does not smoke, as this will ruin the chocolate.

Temper the chocolate

  1. As the chocolate cools to a temperature of about 83°F-84°F, you will see the chocolate start to crystallize (harden) around the outside edge of the bowl. Use the rubber spatula to stir the crystallized chocolate into the melted chocolate. If the chocolate is tempered, a knife tip dipped into tempered chocolate will set with a nice shine after 60 seconds in the refrigerator.
Using tempered chocolate
  1. Being careful not to overheat it, place the bowl of tempered chocolate over simmering water until the chocolate reaches the ideal working temperature of 88°F-90°F.


Transcript Hello, I’m Jacques Torres from Jacques Torres Chocolate, for howdini. And today I’m going to explain to you how to melt and how to temper chocolates. First melting, a different way of melting chocolates. You can break the chocolate in small pieces, put it on a double boiler. When you do that be careful the water doesn’t boil too fast because then you will burn your chocolate. So just simmering water, a bowl on top, and the chocolates, and then let the chocolate melt slowly and stir it time to time. Stop when the temperature reaches 100 degrees F.  

Another way to do it is to cut the chocolate into small pieces, put in a glass bowl and put it in the microwave for fifteen seconds at a time on high. By doing that the chocolate will start melting, stir it, melting it a little bit, stir it, because if you don’t do that the chocolate will get very hot in the middle and start smoking. And when the chocolate smokes it is not good anymore. So be very careful with the microwave.

Also, when the glass bowl comes out of the microwave, the chocolate is melted; transfer that into a cold bowl. That will help to temper chocolates. So, now, why tempering, and what is tempering? So why is because if you don’t temper chocolates, the chocolate will not shrink out of the mold. Chocolate with it is the right temper is just shrink then you can mold it. Now, as you can see the piece of chocolate here it is very shiny. Shiny means the chocolate was at the right temperature; also you get a nice snap. The snap means all those molecules of fat are together.

The problem when you melt chocolate is that the molecule of fat breaks down, and you need to create crystallization. Start crystallization in order to temper the chocolate. So, to do that is when the chocolate is melted put a fan on it, put it in a cool place. And then on the side the chocolate is going to start to crystallize. So what you do is you take that crystal and you mix them with the core of the chocolates. And then with a thermometer you look at the temperature of the chocolates. When the temperature reaches 88-90 degrees it is ready to e used. Anything you do from lollipops to gumbo to hold a figure, to a centerpiece you need to temper your chocolates, and this is how.  
meet theexpert
  • Jacques Torres

    Jacques Torres Jacques Torres Chocolate, NY Jacques Torres is one of the most beloved and highly regarded chocolatiers and pastry chefs in the world. And produces and sells his own line of hand-crafted chocolates and confectionery products.
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