Easter and chocolate delights have been an inseparable match for quite some time now, but it wasn’t always like this. It might come as a surprise that classic chocolate eggs, oh-so-indulgent ubiquitous treats, were just created in the 19th century! Yep, you read that right. However, there’s no denying that there’s something special about the Easter candy and treats - while some might claim they are just ordinary chocolate and sweets, for us, those just don’t taste the same if it’s not Easter Sunday. So, we patiently wait all year to have a taste of the incredibly moreish chocolate eggs, bunnies, and other spring-y delights that come after the two of the most iconic chocolate treats!
The inseparable part of our secular Easter and we, of course, mean chocolate eggs, are actually relatively new creations, and we’re ready to tell you all about them. The origin of the first chocolate egg has been a topic of discussion in the culinary world for quite some time. While some claim it was England, others are confident that chocolate eggs, along with chocolate bunnies, were born in Germany. One thing is for sure - the first Easter chocolate eggs were not smooth and velvety like our current favorites. Nope! They were grainy with a coarse texture and, typically, only made from dark chocolate. However, it wasn’t eggs' fault; obviously, the truth is, we, as humankind, only really mastered chocolate in the 20th century. Before that, chocolate had an unexpected 50% or even higher amount of fat, various starches, and add-ins to make it artificially sweeter. To put it plainly, chocolate was impossible to digest. So, if we’ve intrigued you with the dark past of Easter chocolate eggs, come along to help us trace them back and dive deeper into who was the first?!
The First Easter Chocolate Eggs Around the World
In England, chocolate eggs were introduced in the 19th century thanks to Fry’s, a family-owned company. It’s thought to be one of the first companies which managed to transform beloved drinking chocolate into a bar of chocolate - which, keep the date in mind, was one of the biggest achievements on the chocolate markets worldwide. So, Fry’s took it to the next level and decided to replicate traditional bright red Easter eggs with chocolate and nothing else! The company is thought to have invented the first-ever Easter egg chocolate mold, too.
Pretty soon, just two years later, Cadbury, a fabled confectionery company, caught up to Fry’s and released the first line of chocolate eggs in 1875. However, these yummy treats really made a name for themselves when Cadbury created a milk chocolate variety - this is when sweet Easter treats really took off like hot cakes all around the UK! With 19 different patterns and advanced processing techniques, Cadbury emerged as the British leading producer of chocolate eggs, and pretty soon, bunnies followed, too. While chocolate eggs have become ubiquitous not only in the UK but around the world, too, Cadbury still holds a special place in millions of hearts!
While the UK prides itself on being the birthplace of Easter egg chocolates, we have to say it’s not an entirely accurate statement. Sorry! Just hear us out - while England might be the first to mold Easter egg chocolates, Germany, along with France, was the first country to ever come up with the concept! Yep, Germans figured out a way of making chocolate eggs from solid chocolate - now that might have been utterly delicious if they knew back then how to process the cocoa beans better, right? Imagine biting into the creamy, velvety goodness of chocolate eggs - we’re just speechless thinking about the chocolatey abundance! One thing we know for a fact is that Easter chocolate bunnies came before eggs, and they, for sure, were born in Germany. One of the first classic Osterhase treats was made at the beginning of the 19th century, and then quickly, chocolate eggs made their way to the UK and got themselves a Cadbury makeover.
However, speaking of Easter egg chocolates, it’s Italy that comes first to foodies' minds, right? As one would guess, even just by glancing at the fabled Italian Colomba cake, the country takes Easter sweets seriously, and Easter egg chocolates are no exception. If you’ve ever visited Italy in the springtime, we’re sure you have caught sight of countless chocolate eggs standing tall on the chocolate shops and supermarkets shelves. But those were not regular chocolate eggs, were they? No! Italian Easter chocolate eggs range from regular-size to over 15 feet tall, and don’t ask us why, and if you do, our answer will be, “honestly, why not?!”
Okay, please ask us why, because we came prepared. Easter eggs have become a gifting tradition - most of the time, inside bejeweled colorful Italian Easter chocolate eggs, hides a little (or not so little, depending on the size of the egg) gift for your loved one. The custom of exchanging chocolate Easter eggs began in the 19th century, but no one has ever managed to surpass Milan! With recipes passing down from generation to generation, the city is famous for the most extravagant Italian Easter eggs used to hide everything from dream car keys & engagement rings to tickets to the tropical islands. And, you might be thinking - okay, but what about the actual chocolate? Well, that’s a great question, and as your foodie guide, of course, we have an answer. Although chocolate eggs are hollow, a regular-size artisanal made one usually weighs half a pound. So, you will get a gift + premium quality chocolate, and if you know a thing or two about the history of Italian chocolate, you’d know it doesn't get any better than that!
Yep, the classic Easter chocolate eggs have a complicated history, but what’s really important is that they soon will be here to take your springtime snacks up a notch, and, of course, you do have to save some for Easter (if you can resist). Meanwhile, we will be here picking and