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I just made a batch of chocolates that taste great, but have bloom.  I am suspecting the problem is the molds were not properly cleaned as there was no bloom on the chocolate on the bottom of the chocolates.  I have had similiar problems before.

Does anybody have a suggestion for how to clean the molds really well by hand (I don't have a dishwasher), or is there a good cleaning solution to use?




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Hi William,

i think that all of us have have started or still use dish washing and hot water. The point was to find something  that clean/degrease and no need to polish product.

If you have to deal with ca 200+ molds to clean, the scrubbing and the polishing (cotton wool i hate you!) is not real fun.

I have tried the Sodium Hydroxide and you should have seen the excitement on my employee's face  seeing that with almost no work the mold where clean! After a  quick rinse (i think we put too much SO in it.)  the drying happened overnight and finished off with with a air-gun ( air compressor).

No Bloom, no marks on the chocolate. Now when i ask to have the molds clean, no ones run away!




Glad I could be of help!




Glade I read this thread as I have some new molds to look after and will try Sodium Hydroxide as well.

I take it is the same stuff you would clean the heads of a coffee machine with and sock your plates to make them look white again. 

I would wear gloves when using sodium hydroxide and rinse very well.


just a question: once dry do the molds feel "squeky?"

and is anyone that knows what could be the risk/effect if  the S.O. is not rinsed properly?

Rochelle, just make sure that you buy the right product, it comes in 2 format: liquid in a dilution  of 40%  or pure in crystal form.

Do not confuse with ammonium hydroxide or bleach or anything else cause it could be harmful. We,all, are still Chocolatiers and not chemical engineers, so please do your research!

As soon as my friend (chemical engineer)  is back in town, i will discuss with her what really is S.H. and the risk/benefit. I think that is good if we post some words from a Chemical Engineer....

The sodium hydroxide solution we use comes already bottled and somewhat diluted.  I purchase ours from a commercial food service company, and the bottle states that it's safe for use in food establishments on food equipment for degreasing purposes.

Also, yes, the molds will be "squeaky" clean once washed.  You will also find that it makes the water slippery, and the molds hard to hold on to when cleaning.

We have been using it for 3 years now, are regularly inspected by the Canada Food Inspection Agency, AND our local Health Inspectors, and all is just fine.



Thank Brad,

we buy it directly from a Chemical Company, and we are still trying to figure out how much

S.H.  per  liter of water.

we started with about 100 ml for ca 25 liter of water , and it works as quick degreaser but the molds have a thin layer of fat still on.

next we are going to try with 250ml and see what happen...

do you mean the products one uses to clean grease and fats from ovens ? it is apretty strong stuff and i am a little puzzled if it is this stuff are you sure it doesn't shorten the moulds' life i am afraid to use it and then to see that something happens to all the moulds!

We've been using it weekly on the same polycarbonate molds for 4 years.  If it hasn't broken down the mold by now, it never will.

Hi Brad,

I can't find anything like this from any of our commercial vendors. I did find it at a local Chemical Supply company, but it's what they call "Technical Grade".

Do you know if this would be safe for molds?

The lab guy there said - off the record - that he thought it would be fine if rinsed well.

Would you share the brand name for the product you're using?

Thanks a lot,


Sorry - should have done a little  more research before posting.

The FDA said essentially the same thing as the lab guy.

Chemical Resistance - Polycarbonate

so what they are saying S/O is ok at 20% on polycarbonate

if you use too much you could release bisphenol A

Great Rochelle,

so if we put a cup (200ml) 40% S.H (sodium hydroxide) in about 40 liter of water we have a solution of a pretty safe cleaning product? 


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