How to Choose Palm Oil Free Easter Eggs

Have you noticed that some chocolate has a grainy, floury feel on the tongue?  That is likely because vegetable fat, usually palm oil, has been added!

The silky melt-in-your-mouth texture and sheen of real chocolate comes from cocoa butter, but as cocoa becomes more expensive, confectioners are adding fat substitutes such as palm oil that are cheaper!

Not only do chocolate easter eggs containing palm oil taste poorly, palm oil is high in saturated fats, and is destroying the habitat of already endangered species like the Orangutan, pygmy elephant and Sumatran rhino. 

Choose Palm Oil Free Chocolate this Easter - Our Favourite Palm Oil Free Easter Chocolate Picks - Biome Eco Stores

We've done the research and reviewed most of the Easter 2024 chocolates in the supermarkets.  We've found that most easter eggs with filling contain palm oil

Global icons like Kit Kat by Nestle, Lindor Balls by Lindt, Mini Eggs by Cadbury and Red Tulip, Kinder Surprise, Ferrero and Cadbury Creme Eggs, and Mars eggs, all have vegetable fat or oil ingredients.  And you can be sure that it is palm oil, because if it was coconut or another more palatable oil, they would not hide it under the generic "vegetable fat" name!

Easter is the perfect opportunity to send a message to these corporations by exercising our consumer choice. At Biome, you can be sure that all our chocolates and easter eggs are free from dairy and palm oil.  But we also explain below how to you can avoid palm oil in the supermarkets too.


What's wrong with palm oil? 

Look at the sweet face of an orangutan and one thing comes to mind. How can we ever purchase products with palm oil that is causing their forest home to be destroyed? 

Global chocolate brands like Nestle, Cadbury, Mars, Ferrero and Lindt are not taking enough action to ensure their palm oil supply chains are free from harm.

Palm oil production is the number one cause of deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia. It is creating havoc for animal and human habitats; and, when the precious carbon-sinks forests are clear-felled and burned, it contributes to global warming, which affects us all.


Is there palm oil hiding in my Easter chocolate?

At Easter, chocolate sales go gangbusters for the big chocolate companies. But to reduce costs, cocoa butter alternatives such as palm oil and shea butter may be used in the chocolate shell and fillings of Easter eggs.

All chocolate starts with the Theobroma cacao tree, native to South America. Cacao nibs and cacao powder are raw, while cocoa powder and cocoa butter are heated and processed (find more on the confusing difference below!)

The ingredients in genuine chocolate are meant to be only cocoa/cacao/cocoa liquor/cocoa mass, mixed with fat from cocoa butter, milk (dairy or non-dairy milk), and sugar.

Cocoa butter gives chocolate its sheen, taste and snap, but as cocoa becomes more expensive, confectioners are exploring other fat substitutes (such as palm oil) that are cheaper.   A "compound chocolate" uses some percentage of vegetable oil substitute for cocoa butter. 

According the Codex Alimentarius Commission, which is the international food standards body, chocolate products may contain vegetable fats other than cocoa butter only up to 5% of the finished product. However, the product must carry a conspicuous and clearly legible statement with the words “contains vegetable fats in addition to cocoa butter”.  

Which Easter eggs and chocolates contain palm oil this year?

We reviewed the Easter themed chocolates available at the major supermarkets and found that most chocolate eggs with some form of filling contain vegetable fat (AKA palm oil).   

We've noticed in recent years there is less palm oil in the plain chocolate products like hollow bunnies.  For example, in 2009, Cadbury reversed its decision to add palm oil to its chocolate recipe due to a big push back from Australian and NZ consumers.

Here is just a sample of the eggs containing palm oil that we spotted for Easter 2024. 

Nestle Kit Kat egg

Ingredients: Sugar, Milk Solids, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Vegetable Fats, Whey Powder, Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Flavour, Roasted Hazelnuts (6%), Cereal and Wafer Pieces (5%) [Rice Flour, Wheat Flour, Sugar, Whey Protein Concentrate (Milk), Raising Agent (500), Vegetable Oil, Salt.


Ingredients: Sugar, Vegetable Fats, Cocoa Butter, Whole Milk Powder, Cocoa Mass, Lactose, Skim Milk Powder, Milk Fat, Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Barley Malt Extract, Flavourings.
Cadbury Mini Eggs Woolworths
Ingredients: Sugar, milk solids, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, vegetable oil, vegetable fat, modified starch, emulsifiers (442, 476), flavours, maltodextrin, colours (163, 162, 160a, 160c).
Red Tulip mini easter eggs
Ingredients: sugar, glucose syrup, milk solids, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, sweetened condensed milk (milk, sugar), vegetable fat, invert sugar, emulsifiers (soy lecithin, 476, 471), acidity regulator (331), flavours, salt.
All kinds of Kinder Surprise: Sugar, Milk Powder, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Emulsifier (Lecithins (Soy), Flavouring (Vanillin), Skim Milk Powder, Sugar, Vegetable Fats (Palm1, Shea), Anhydrous Milkfat, Emulsifier, Flavouring
Cadbury Creme Egg
Ingredients: sugar, milk solids, wheat glucose syrup, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, invert sugar, vegetable oil, emulsifiers (442, soy lecithin), egg albumen, flavours, colour (160c).
Ferroro easter chocolate eggs
Ingredients: Sugar, Milk Powder, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Emulsifier: Lecithins (Soy), Sugar, Vegetable Oil (Palm*), Hazelnuts (9.5%), Whey Powder, Wheat Flour, Fat-Reduced Cocoa Powder, Milk Powder.
Mars Milk Chocolate Mini Eggs
Ingredients: Sugar, Milk Solids, Cocoa Butter, Glucose Syrup (Sources Include Wheat), Cocoa Mass, Vegetable Fat, Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Dextrose (Sources Include Wheat), Salt, Flavours.

How to avoid palm oil in Easter chocolates

All that you need to do is make a quick check of the ingredients for any mention of Vegetable Oil or Vegetable Fat.  There may be palm oil derived ingredients in the emulsifiers, but that one is impossible to judge, so let's keep it simple and at least avoid those with vegetable fat.

A genuine milk chocolate will have ingredients similar to this: Sugar, Cocoa Mass, Milk Solids, Cocoa Butter, Emulsifier, and any flavours. 

While a good quality dark vegan chocolate has even more simple ingredients: Cocoa mass, raw cane sugar, cocoa butter, and any flavours.

Steer away from chocolates with creamy or smooth fillings as this seems to be where the palm is lurking.  Except of course hand made beauties like Loco Love, whose divine ganache-like centres are vegan and palm oil free! 

Loco Love palm oil free ganache like filling

Loco Love divine ganache-like palm oil free centres!

Where to find palm oil free chocolate this Easter

At Biome, we are all in for an ethical Easter! Biome stocks a large range of Easter chocolate and gifts that are completely palm oil free and dairy free, and mostly made in Australia by small brands.  We also offer many gluten free chocolate choices. 

Buy vegan easter eggs & chocolate here

Which easter eggs in the supermarkets are palm oil free?

It appears that these Coles Brand Easter egg products and Woolworths mini eggs do not contain vegetable fat and thus likely no palm oil.  Thank you for once to the big two for making a difference!

Coles Easter EggsWoolworths mini eggs

Assuming there is no palm oil in the emulsifiers, these products are also free from vegetable fat/oil:


Darrell Lea

Lindt Gold chocolate bunny

Cadbury Clinkers Chocolate Easter Bunny


What is the difference between Cacao and Cocoa Butter?

Chocolate lovers, let's solve this - what's the difference between cacao and cocoa butter. Are they the same thing? Is one better than the other? Well, here's a sweet and educational journey.

Cacao butter and cocoa butter are both fats that come from the cacao bean, which is the seed of the cacao tree. The cacao bean is composed of two parts: the cacao nib, which is the edible part that gives chocolate its flavour, and the cacao shell, which is the outer layer that protects the nib.


To make cacao butter, the cacao beans are cold-pressed, which means they are crushed at a low temperature to separate the oil from the solids. The oil is then filtered and solidified into a creamy white substance that has a mild chocolate aroma. Cacao butter is considered raw and unrefined, and it retains most of the nutrients and antioxidants of the cacao bean.

Uses: Cacao butter is great for making raw chocolate bars, truffles, or energy balls, because it gives them a rich and smooth texture. You can also use it to make homemade white chocolate, by mixing it with some powdered sugar and vanilla extract.

See products with Cacao


To make cocoa butter, the cacao beans are roasted at a high temperature, which changes their colour and flavour. The roasted beans are then pressed to extract the oil, which is then bleached and deodorised to remove any impurities and odors. Cocoa butter is more processed and refined than cacao butter, and it has a more neutral taste and smell.  You can buy organic Cocoa butter chunks at Biome.

Uses: Cocoa butter is perfect for making traditional chocolate bars, cakes, or cookies, because it helps them set and harden. You can also use it to make chocolate frosting, ganache, or glaze, by melting it with some chocolate chips and cream.

See products with Cocoa

Both Cacao butter and cocoa butter are both excellent for moisturising your skin and hair, because they are natural emollients that nourish and hydrate. You can apply them directly to your skin or hair, or mix them with some essential oils to create your own DIY beauty products. 

So, is it ever called cacao butter? Well, technically, yes. Cacao butter is just another name for the raw and unrefined version of cocoa butter. However, most people use the term cocoa butter to refer to both types of fat, since they are very similar in appearance and function. Cocoa butter is widely used in chocolate making, cosmetics, and skincare products, because it has a smooth texture, a long shelf life, and a high melting point.

There you have it! The confusing difference between cacao and cocoa butter explained.  I hope you learned something new today, and maybe even got a craving for some chocolate. Just remember: cacao or cocoa, butter or not, chocolate is always delicious! 


Our Favourite Gluten Free and Dairy Free Chocolates


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