Masterclass Making Chocolates with Fruit and Nuts"
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making chocolates with fruits and nuts

Masterclass: Making Chocolates with Fruits and Nuts

The Chocolatier Fruit and Nut Masterclass is an online, three week* program of intensive, interactive training. It includes live demonstrations of best practices/techniques in successfully using fruit and nut ingredients in your chocolate bonbons and bars, as well as live group discussions and guided recipe work in your own kitchen. By the end of the program, you'll learn to perfect your use of fruit purees, pate de fruit, nut pastes, and pralines to achieve the most flavorful combinations and textures. The recipes and techniques in this program are especially helpful for those chocolatiers creating vegan chocolates and plant-based, non dairy chocolate recipes.

Next Program: September 4 - 21, 2024

This program is not just about recipes. It's about understanding the science of hydrocolloids, fat eutectics, acid reactions, nut carmelization, and fruit preservation, while collaborating LIVE with your instructor, Rachel McKinley and your fellow students to develop the perfect fruit and nut fillings for your bonbons.

To that end, this Chocolate Masterclass program includes:

3 live interactive instructional sessions, scheduled on consecutive Saturdays over 3 weeks.

Live session dates: Saturdays - September 7, 14, 21.

The September 7 session will be 2 hours long, and the September 14 and 21 sessions will be three hours long. All sessions will begin at 12noon PST. Please adjust for your local time zone in your calendar

Approximately 6 hours of guided kitchen homework activities and assignments.

Students should be ready to commit approximately 14 hours of work to complete the program.

A downloadable recipe book

Registration fee: $975.00 US

The minimum number of students for the program to run is 6 to a maximum of 12 - we are restricting the number of students in order to make sure each student leaves the program with the information and advice they need to succeed in making exceptional fruit and/or nut bonbons in the future.

When you're ready to pay your registration fee of $975.00 please click here: REGISTER NOW

Making Pate de Fruit

What Will I Learn?

Three week online program

Those of you who know us know that since 2003, Ecole Chocolat has been committed to providing online professional chocolate learning experiences that are not just a chef doing a demonstration, but focused on engaging, interactive and ongoing dialogue between the instructor and student.

Please see Your Learning Experience below for a full description of what you will learn.

By the end of the program, you will have all your questions answered about successfully incorporating fruit and nut ingredients in your bonbon fillings.

Pre-requisites: some experience in general bonbon fillings such as ganache, caramel, and nut pastes.

Again, please note that this program is focused on recipe development - not chocolate work. So there will be no instruction on tempering, enrobing or molding bonbons. We expect you, as a chocolatier, to already be proficient in those skills.

Rachel McKinley, Chocolatier
Chocolate Bark

Your Learning Experience

Rachel McKinley was born and raised in small town Manitoba. After careers as a competitive ice dancer, social support worker, and paramedic, she obtained degrees in microbiology and English literature at the University of Manitoba. It was during the second degree that she fell in love with the alchemy of chocolate, and abandoned her path towards medical school for a career in the kitchen. After starting with studies online, she went on to train in chocolate in Montreal, Minneapolis, New York, Paris, Florence and Pisa, and opened her business in Vancouver, CocoaNymph Chocolates & Confections, which she owned and operated for 10 years. More interested in inventing new chocolates than running a business, she pursued a career in product development as the Master Chocolatier at Purdys Chocolatier. She is now an instructor at Ecole Chocolat, and a consultant working with chocolate businesses. She also went on to study drawing and painting at Emily Carr and is an obsessive painter, maker of fine food and embroidered goods, and is working on her first novel.

*This program is the same format as our other Recipe Devlopment programs but because of Rachel's work schedule, she can only lead the live sessions on Saturdays. That is why the live sessions are spaced one week apart instead of the normal two per week. In order to get you the best expert instructors as possible, we accommodate their scheduling needs.

In the program, we will use a number of learning activities to help you identify your challenges including: live demonstrations of best practices and techniques, live group discussions and guided recipe development practice in your own kitchen. And the live online sessions will end with some "homework" for you to do in the next week between live online sessions.

Yes, all live sessions will be recorded so if you have to miss one, you can catch up afterwards. Also you can record the sessions yourself to have a copy on your computer.

Live Session 1 - Hydrocolloid factors in fruit
Hydrocolloids and gelling agents for perfect pate de fruit, fruit marshmallow, agar agar applications, and gelatin gummies.
2 hr Kitchen Homework Assignment

Live Session 2 - Nut and chocolate love and interactions
Fat eutectics for fabulous texture and understanding the Maillard reaction for carmelizing nuts for flavor.
2 hr Kitchen Homework Assignment

Live Session 3 - Using fruit in ganache and caramel
Using fruits as the flavor focus in classic confection recipes, with or without dairy.
Combining nuts and fruits to elevate flavor and texture
Using fruit couvertures, perfecting layered bonbons of nut and fruit.2 hr Kitchen Homework Assignment


This program is delivered in English.

Again, please note that this program is focused on recipe development - not chocolate work. So there will be no instruction on tempering, enrobing or molding bonbons. We expect you, as a chocolatier, to already be proficient in those skills.

This Masterclass is a technical, science based dive into fruit purees, pate de fruit, nut pastes, and pralines. We will be discussing the natural properties of fruits and nuts as well as their interactions as they relate to each other in the traditional confectionery/bonbon space. Keeping that in mind, the recipes provided in the masterclass (and on which your assignments will be based):

  • may call for sugar - the participant can decide to use refined or unrefined cane sugar, beet sugar, coconut blossom sugar or date sugar**.
  • will require no added sugar other than what occurs naturally in the fruit or nut.
  • may be based on fruits and nuts in combination with chocolate. There is no specific requirement for the chocolate itself - participants can use any chocolate they normally use in their work.

**Due to the difference in technological properties of sweeteners, we will not be exploring the substitution of sugar for sugar alcohols (such as erythritol or Xylitol), natural sweeteners (such as stevia or monk fruit) or or artificial sweeteners (such as sucralose) as these ingredients do not have the same capabilities for caramelization and sweetening needed in fruit purees, pate de fruit, nut pastes, and pralines. The recipes provided will be appropriate for vegan, non-dairy and plant-based dietary choices but may not suitable for purely keto dietary choices.

Some experience in general bonbon fillings such as ganache, caramel, and nut pastes.

Supplies you will need include: fruit and fruit purees, nuts, chocolate.

Master Chocolatier Program certificate:

Students completing the Masterclass with a 70% or more on assignments will receive a digital Ecole Chocolat Master Chocolatier Certificate of Achievement.

Making successful nut based chocolates

What our graduates have to say

"Oh, yes. most definitely. As every other EC course I've taken, this one delivered more than I expected. Yes. I"ll need to review the notes and go back and re-read some of the lessons to solidify some of the finer points. But this has already helped me introduce new products (marshmallow and pate du fruit), both of which have become hits in our shop. Now that we're past Valentines, I plan to review the material and use it to create some new items (vegan truffles) and improve some of the nut products we make. Rachel knows her stuff. She's also a good lecturer. Goes not too slow or too fast. Listens well and responds with helpful suggestions."
David, 2024 Program

"Yes, my expectations were met and exceeded. The curriculum was well-organized. The instructor Rachel is very knowledgeable and kind. It was nice to meet the other students as well. The course had a good pace to it and the right amount of subject matter. It was above and beyond to do the one-on-one sessions, thank you so much. 5 Thank you, excellent course!"
Kristina, 2024 Program

"Yes! Knowing the theory behind ingredients and their interactions has boosted my confidence as I experiment with new combinations. Rachel is a terrific and thorough teacher - and very generous with her time both in class and one on one. 5 - I highly recommend this course and Rachel as an instructor!"
Laura, 2024 Program

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Cancellation policy

You can cancel from the Masterclass: Making Chocolates with Fruits and Nuts up to five days before the registration deadline. A refund of your registration fee, minus a 10% administration fee, may take approximately 10 working days to process. Because our programs are usually full, and in order to make sure all students are committed, on the start date of your program your registration fee becomes non-refundable and non-transferable to another session (except in extraordinary circumstances).

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Photography by Jessica Washburn, Bliss Chocolatier and Ecole Chocolat

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