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How To Temper Chocolate?

Tempered chocolate is one of those fancy chef terms often seen in dessert recipes that can overwhelm home cooks. But, with a little practice and patience, it’s very doable in your own kitchen.

We’ll walk you through how to temper chocolate without any stress. Plus, we’ll cover the best chocolate to use and the most straightforward methods. You’ll be creating chocolate-covered truffles, fruits, and even Easter eggs like the pros in no time.  

Ready to create more wonders in the kitchen? Find out how to make colored chocolate here


What is tempered chocolate?

Tempering is a process of gently melting and cooling chocolate. It creates a shiny, delicious glaze that hardens quickly. Plus, it prevents the white, waxy texture that sometimes occurs.  

Carefully monitoring the temperature of the chocolate allows the cocoa fats to separate gently and create a solid, silky-smooth surface. When do you need to use tempered chocolate? If your recipe calls for a glossy chocolate coating that snaps rather than crumbles when bitten into. Remember, if you’re simply baking with chocolate and adding it to a batter, you don’t need to temper it.  

What are the benefits of tempered chocolate? Aside from its luxuriously shiny outside and satisfying crispness, the chocolate won’t melt quickly. Instead, tempered chocolate will remain hard at room temperature.  


Tempered chocolate recipe

Try Venchi's tempered chocolate recipe. For best results, only use top-quality chocolate. Before starting the process, make sure the chocolate's finely chopped to melt it evenly and smoothly.  

Rules for tempered chocolate? Don't let even a droplet of water or liquid make contact with the chocolate. Place the chocolate in a completely dry bowl. It's essential, or else it turns lumpy. 


Yields: 6 oz tempered chocolate  

Preparation Time: 25 minutes  



  • Medium saucepan of water  

  • Heatproof metal bowl that fits snugly on the saucepan  

  • Cooking thermometer  

  • Spatula  





  1. Chop the chocolate into even pieces.  

  2. Bring a saucepan with about 1 inch of water to a low simmer. 

  3. Fit the metal bowl snugly on top of the saucepan. Be careful that the bowl doesn't touch the water.  

  4. Add 2/3 of the chopped chocolate to the bowl. Stir frequently. 

  5. Check the temperature of the chocolate with a thermometer.  

  6. When the chocolate is between 110-115°F, take the bowl off the water and heat.  

  7. Place the bowl with the chocolate on a kitchen tea towel.  

  8. Gradually add the remainder of the chocolate (the "seed"). Stirring the whole time.  

  9. Wait until the chocolate cools down to 89°F. Don't panic. This can take at least 15 minutes.  

  10. 89°F is the perfect working temperature for the chocolate.  

  11. Tempered chocolate's ready for use.  

  12. If the chocolate cools too much and becomes thick, put the bowl of chocolate back on top of the hot water. Only for 5-10 seconds at a time. Stir to get it back to 89°F. 


Tempering dark, milk and white chocolate  

You can use the Venchi recipe for dark, milk, and white chocolate. The only difference is in the temperature.

Only heat milk and white chocolate up to 110°F, no higher. Then remove the bowl of chocolate from the simmering water. Dark chocolate is tempered around 110-115°F.  

Keep in mind that whatever the variety, chocolate is highly sensitive to heat and can seize quickly. That's why the water in the saucepan must be simmering gently. Never heat the chocolate higher than 120°F.  

How do you know when the chocolate's tempered? With a simple test. Into the chocolate, dip a knife or spoon and set it aside at room temperature. If the chocolate is tempered, it will become hard within 3-5 minutes. It should glisten and leave your finger clean when you touch it. 


How to temper chocolate in a microwave

While the traditional way of tempering chocolate is on the stovetop, you could also use the microwave. It works just as well. Here are the steps.  

  1. Break the chocolate into even pieces.  

  2. Add 2/3 of the chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl.  

  3. Heat it on 50% power for 1 minute. Then stir the chocolate.  

  4. Check the temperature. Make sure it's only between 100-110°F. 

  5. Keep repeating the 1-minute intervals until the chocolate is smooth and melted.  

  6. Once 2/3 of the chocolate is melted, leave it on the counter.   

  7. Next, add the remaining chocolate (the "seed") in small amounts. Stir continuously. Make sure the pieces are completely melted before adding more.  

  8. The chocolate will continue to cool and thicken as you stir and add more pieces.  

  9. Check its temperature. Once it's at 84-91°F, it's tempered and ready to be used.  


How to temper chocolate without a thermometer      

Of course, using a thermometer will give you more precise temperature readings, but you can also temper without it. Read on to find out how to temper chocolate without a thermometer. You'll need to pay close attention to your chocolate and then adapt accordingly.   

Remember these essentials. If the chocolate's too hot, take it off the heat, stir and slowly add more seed chocolate. If the temperatures are too low, put the bowl of chocolate back on the heat for 1-minute intervals.  

If you're without a thermometer, temper the chocolate exactly as per the Venchi recipe above. There's only one difference. Instead of checking the temperature of the chocolate with a thermometer, check it with your skin.  

First, you'll need to test whether the melted chocolate is hot enough to take off the heat. Do this by dipping a spatula into the chocolate and then dabbing a tiny amount on the inside of your wrist. It should sting a little. This means it's warm enough to put the bowl of chocolate on the tea towel and begin to stir in the seed chocolate.  

The next test is to check if the chocolate has cooled down enough to be ready. After all the chocolate has melted, touch it against your skin again.  

If the chocolate still feels warm, add a few more pieces of seed chocolate and stir. If you don't feel anything, it means the chocolate is at the same temperature as your body. Keep stirring until it cools down a little more.  

The tempered chocolate's ready when it feels refreshing on your skin. Then, it will look shiny and smooth. Now all that's left is to find some strawberries and dip away!