The AMERICAN HERITAGE® Chocolate Story

AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is the result of a unique combination of Mars Wrigley chocolate-making expertise and historical knowledge. Made with all-natural ingredients, AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is an authentic historic recipe from the 18th century containing spices and ingredients such as vanilla and cinnamon. Used in baking and cooking—from sweet to savory—AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate gives any dish or baked item a richer, fuller taste. With its origins in the Americas over 3,500 years ago, chocolate has been woven throughout the fabric of society for millennia and has a timeless story spanning cultures, peoples, rituals and experiences. AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate hopes to be a part of your family traditions—both old and new!

Take a bite out of chocolate history.

AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate has an impressive historic pedigree. Developed by a team of historians, and the legendary advocate of American history and chocolate’s unique story in the Americas, Forrest E. Mars, Jr., in 2006, AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is the result of years of research by more than 115 global experts. In addition to conducting educational presentations and chocolate-making demonstrations at our site partner locations, along with Mars we have authored several books to help further the cause of chocolate education.

These books include “CHOCOLATE: History, Culture, and Heritage,” “Great Moments in Chocolate History,” and “Great Moments in World History: Global Stories Where Chocolate Sparked Discovery, Innovation, and Imagination!”  Learn more about each of these publications.


Apply for a Grant from AMERICAN HERITAGE® Chocolate

Forrest E. Mars, Jr. Chocolate History Research Grant

At Mars, we believe that chocolate has played an intrinsic role in our collective global heritage and culture. The Forrest E. Mars, Jr. Chocolate History Research Grant was created to support institutions dedicated to revealing these stories, sharing them with the public, and preserving them for future generations.

Launched in 2013, the Forrest E. Mars, Jr. Chocolate History Research Grant, named after the company’s owner and advocate of the history of the Americas, has a special emphasis on uncovering and sharing chocolate’s role in global history as well as its influence on heritage and culture. Grant funds will be awarded for project(s) that investigate and/or educate the public on the history of chocolate and/or the chocolate making process from a cultural, historic and/or scientific perspective(s). The scholarship process is competitive, and the awards will be made based on merit as judged by a panel of experts. Educational impact will be at the forefront of this decision process.

A minimum of $50,000 in grants funds will be awarded. The winners of the Forrest E. Mars, Jr. Chocolate History Research Grant will be announced at the Annual Meeting of the Heritage Chocolate Society, to be held early in 2023 at a site to be determined. Feedback on grant applications will be provided when the selection process is completed.

For more information and to apply for a grant, please visit our Grants page.

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Experience Chocolate History

Explore our chocolate history timeline from the Pre-Columbian Era to today.

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Free Educational Resources

Enjoy family-friendly education resources including virtual tours of our historic site partners, coloring pages, free downloads, and more.

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When I eat AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate, I taste many different spices. What exact spices are in the recipe?

Spices and variety of ingredients have been common in chocolate for centuries. AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is based on historic recipes which included spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, red pepper, and anise. The level of each spice in the recipe was critical in creating a balanced and desirable flavor.

Are AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate products Kosher?

AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is Kosher Dairy Certified.

Are there allergens associated with AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate?

While AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate is not made with milk, soy, egg, peanuts, or tree nuts, it is manufactured in a facility that contains these allergens. AMERICAN HERITAGE Gourmet Hot Cocoa is made with milk.

Where are AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate products made?

The chocolates are made in small batches at the Mars Wrigley Confectionery facility in Henderson, Nevada.

Where did the recipe for AMERICAN HERITAGE come from?

Recipes of early America often consisted of just a listing of each ingredient. The specific type or concentration of the spices were not identified. For example, a listing of cinnamon did not indicate the type of cinnamon or the form of cinnamon (finely ground, coarse, etc.). The AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate recipe was inspired by chocolate recipes from Hannah Glass, John Nott, and others from the 18th century. Many versions of these recipes were tested, tasted and evaluated in order to develop the flavor and texture of AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate.

Are there plans for other varieties of AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate?

Our historians and chocolatiers are working together to bring you new varieties of historic chocolate. Stay tuned!

Where can I buy AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate?

AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate products are sold in Museums and living history sites as well as fine gift shops across North America and on Amazon.

Can orders be shipped to U.S. territories and international destinations?

In most instances, we are able to ship your order to U.S. territories and international destinations. For further information and assistance in placing an order for international delivery please contact customer service at 1-800-438-4356.

Who is the parent company of AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate?

Mars Wrigley Confectionery, LLC

How/Why was AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate started?

AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate was developed by MARS so that we could share the delicious transformation of chocolate’s flavor, texture and format through the ages.

How do the proceeds support the mission of education?

All profits from the sale of AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate sold at living history sites and museums go back to the sites where they are sold. Profits from our book, Great Moments In Chocolate History, are used to fund an annual grant that is available to educational institutions, individuals and historic sites looking to explore further chocolate’s unique role in history and culture. Through educational presentations and hands-on demonstrations using AMERICAN HERITAGE Chocolate, an authentic historic chocolate made by Mars Wrigley Confectionery, we work together with our partners to educate consumers on the history of the Americas through the unique lens of chocolate.

I’d like to sell your product in my store. Where can I get more information?

Thank you for your interest! Please fill out our wholesale form, and one of our associates will be in touch with you.