Carob Powder Uses

Carob powder is made from the dried, roasted pods of the carob tree. It resembles cocoa powder in color and texture and has a sweet, caramel-like flavor.

Carob Powder Uses

While carob powder contains no caffeine or oxalic acid like cocoa powder does, carob powder can be used in recipes as a substitute for cocoa powder in a 1:1 ratio.

With its naturally sweet taste and high fiber content, carob powder offers many versatile uses in cooking and baking.

Nutrition Profile of Carob Powder

Carob powder provides minimal fat but packs nutrients like fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, riboflavin and niacin. Here is the nutrition breakdown for 2 tablespoons of carob powder:

  • 6 grams sugar
  • 42 mg calcium (4% Daily Value)
  • 5 grams fiber (over 20% DV)
  • 0.35 mg iron
  • 6 mg magnesium
  • 99 mg potassium
  • 0.055 mg riboflavin
  • 0.228 mg niacin

With virtually no fat or sodium, carob powder fits well into low-fat or low-sodium diets. Its high fiber content helps with gut health and weight management. Compared to cocoa powder, carob powder offers more calcium thanks to its lack of oxalates that interfere with calcium absorption. It also provides antioxidants from polyphenol compounds like gallic acid and flavonoids.

Key Takeaway: Carob powder delivers key nutrients like fiber, minerals and antioxidants with minimal fat and no caffeine or oxalates.

Carob Powder as a Cocoa Substitute

When used as a substitute for cocoa powder, carob powder works best in recipes where chocolate flavor is not the absolute focus, like in cakes or cookies with other bold flavors. Expect a different flavor profile closer to caramel or malt.

Since carob powder tastes mildly sweet on its own, cut back on the sugar in recipes when swapping an equal amount of cocoa powder for carob powder.

Consider adding a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg or vanilla extract to complement carob's flavor when subbing for cocoa powder. Garnishing baked goods with chocolate chips or drizzling with chocolate syrup can also help enhance chocolate cravings.

Carob powder makes an especially good cocoa sub in recipes for kids or pets since it contains no caffeine or theobromine, making it safe for young ones and animals. Many commercial dog treats actually use carob powder for this reason.

Baking Uses for Carob Powder

From brownies to banana bread, carob powder lends moisture, texture and rich flavor to all kinds of baked goods. It serves as an ideal base for dairy-free, vegan baking too. Here are some examples of how to bake with carob powder:

Carob Brownies

Make fudgy gluten-free carob brownies by substituting 1/2 cup carob powder for every 1/4 to 1/3 cup cocoa powder called for. With an almond butter frosting, they come out decadently moist with intensely deep flavor.

Carob Protein Bars

Whip up homemade protein bars with carob powder, nuts, seeds, oats and nut butters. The carob powder keeps them ultra-moist while providing antioxidants. Dates or maple syrup lend natural sweetness too.

Carob Bread

Add 2-3 tablespoons of carob powder per cup of flour to any yeast bread recipe. The carob powder enhances flavor complexity in hearty loaves like pumpkin bread, zucchini bread or dark rye varieties.

Carob Cookies

Oatmeal carob cookies make perfectly crisp-chewy, gluten-free treats with just a hint of chocolatey richness from the carob powder. Walnuts or chocolate chips can incorporate nice texture too.

Carob Pancakes

Fluffy carob pancakes come together fast by adding 3-4 tablespoons of carob powder to the dry ingredients in any basic pancake mix. Top them off with fresh fruit, coconut flakes and maple syrup.

Carob Muffins

Swap cocoa powder for carob powder in recipes for deeply moist chocolate muffins, zucchini muffins or other breakfast breads. The carob powder supplies ample antioxidants to make them nutrient-dense.

Carob Drinks & Smoothies

Carob powder stirs up rich flavor and nutrition in both hot and cold beverages. Blend it into dairy or non-dairy milks, fresh juices, coffee drinks and smoothies. Kids especially love the sweet taste of carob drinks. Ideas include:

Carob Milk

Simply whisk 2 tablespoons carob powder into 1 cup heated dairy milk or milk alternative until frothy. Sweeten to taste with sugar, honey or maple syrup for a delicious hot chocolate substitute.

Carob Frappes

Make carob frappes in the blender by combining 1-2 tablespoons carob powder, 1 cup plant-based milk, 3-4 ice cubes and sweetener. Blend until frothy and top with whipped cream if desired.

Carob Smoothies

Add 1-2 tablespoons of carob powder to any fruit smoothie recipe. It teams up especially well with bananas, cherries, raspberries, coconut, almonds and vanilla protein powder.

Carob Shakes

For thick carob shakes, process 1 cup plant-based milk with 2 tablespoons carob powder, 3-4 ice cubes and sweetener in a blender or food processor until thickened.

Iced Carob Latte

Brew coffee as usual then stir in 1-2 teaspoons carob powder and sweeten to taste. Chill over ice for an iced mocha-style latte without coffee's acidity or caffeine crash.

Savory Uses for Carob Powder

While best known as a chocolate substitute, culinary adventurers have found carob powder also complements many savory ingredients. It lends subtle sweetness and rich notes to sauces, rubs and marinades. Try adding 1-3 tablespoons carob powder to:

  • Barbecue sauces and meat marinades
  • Asian noodle or stir fry sauces
  • Chili or mole sauce
  • Salad dressings and chicken rubs
  • Soups and stews as a finishing touch

Spicy or strong flavors help balance out carob powder's natural sweetness in savory recipes. Smoky paprika, cumin and cayenne work especially well.

Carob Powder Desserts

From no-bake cookies to frozen treats, carob powder makes delectable appearances in all types of desserts. It supplies moisture and fudgy texture when used in doughs, batters or fillings. Those sensitive to caffeine or chocolate appreciate it as a dessert ingredient too.

Carob Pudding

Blend ripe avocado with carob powder, sweetener and vanilla extract for healthy, dairy-free carob mousse or pudding. Top it off with fresh raspberries or toasted coconut.

Carob Candy

Homemade carob fudge comes together by simmering full-fat canned coconut milk with carob powder, vanilla and sweetener. Pour into a parchment-lined pan and refrigerate until firm.

Carob Ice Cream

Make carob ice cream by blending carob powder into your favorite dairy or non-dairy ice cream base before churning or freezing. Fold in mix-ins like chopped nuts or swirl in carob syrup too.

Carob Cookies

Whip up crisp carob cookies with oat flour, almond flour and carob chips for wholesome texture with just a kiss of chocolate. Sandwich them with carob buttercream frosting for extra decadence.

Carob Ganache

Mix coconut cream and maple syrup with carob powder then chill to make easy carob ganache. Use it to fill layer cakes or coat strawberries for an elegant finish.


Where do you buy carob powder?

Carob powder can be found in the baking aisle or bulk bins of natural food stores, often near the cocoa powder. It also sells online through places like Amazon and organic marketplaces. When buying, look for raw or roasted carob powder.

Does carob powder taste like chocolate?

While similar to cocoa powder in color, carob powder actually has its own unique sweet and almost malty flavor. Expect a caramel-like taste different from chocolate’s strong, bitter profile. Combining carob powder with vanilla or cinnamon helps enhance its natural flavor too.

Is carob powder Keto?

With just 27 grams of total carbohydrates and 21 grams of fiber per 100 grams, most of carob powder's carbs come from indigestible fiber rather than sugar. This makes carob powder a fantastic low-carb, Keto-friendly ingredient perfect for Keto baking, hot drinks, smoothies and fat bombs.

What can you use instead of carob powder?

For anyone without access to carob powder, unsweetened cocoa powder works as the next best substitute in recipes. Just use the same amount called for and add extra sweetener since cocoa powder tastes more bitter on its own. In drinks, brewed black coffee can mimic carob powder too.

Is carob powder healthy?

Thanks to an impressive nutritional profile including fiber, antioxidants and essential vitamins and minerals, carob powder makes a very healthy ingredient to incorporate into diets. With no fat, sodium or caffeine, carob powder supports gut health, heart health and stable energy levels.


As a naturally sweet and versatile cocoa powder alternative, carob powder offers many uses spanning both sweet and savory recipes.

It brings an aromatic, almost malty flavor and substantial nutrition to baked goods, breakfasts, desserts and drinks.

Carob powder also avoids the caffeine, oxalates and bitterness associated with dark chocolate.

For anyone avoiding chocolate or just seeking a nutritionally-dense, low-fat ingredient, carob powder makes an excellent addition to any kitchen.

Sarah Cortez
Sarah Cortez

My name is Sarah and I'm a baker who loves trying out new recipes and flavor combinations. I decided to challenge myself to use a new spice or ingredient powder in my baking each week for a year. Some successes were the cardamom sugar cookies, vivid turmeric cake, and beetroot chocolate cupcakes. Failures included the bitter neem brownies and overwhelmingly hot ghost pepper snickerdoodles. Through this experience I've discovered amazing additions to spice up desserts while learning how to balance strong flavors. Follow my journey as I push the boundaries of baking with unique powders!

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