The Best Way to Remove Chocolate Stains from Clothes and Couch

While delicious, the combination of cocoa powder and oils in most chocolate can result in stains on your clothes and furniture. To remove chocolate stains, you need a degreaser and cold water.

The Best Way to Remove Chocolate Stains

Whether you’ve smudged chocolate into your favorite white shirt or your kid has dropped it all over the couch, here’s how to get it out.

How to Remove Chocolate Stains from Clothes

If you’re wondering, “does chocolate stain?” It does. The tannins in chocolate bars and syrups can leave clothing with dark spots. But, if you act fast, removing the stains is not difficult.

Supplies to remove chocolate stains from clothes:

  • Butter knife
  • Dish soap
  • Laundry stain pre-treater

Step 1: Scrape Excess Chocolate

As soon as you notice the stain, remove the piece of clothing and use a butter knife to scrape off as much chocolate as possible.

Step 2: Treat with Dish Soap and Cold Water

Rinse the stain in cold water and then add a drop of dish soap to the chocolate spot. Scrub with your hands and then rinse again in cold water.

Tip: Avoid using hot water to treat the stain. Since chocolate contains some protein, running it under hot water can cook the pigment into your garment.

Step 3: Spray with a Stain Remover and Wash in Cold Water

If the chocolate spot is still visible after cleaning with dish soap, spray the area with a laundry stain pre-treater and let it sit for five minutes. Then wash the item in your washing machine using cold water. After the wash cycle is complete, inspect the item – if the stain is gone, dry it as usual. If the stain is still present, apply more stain remover and wash again.

Some of our favorite chocolate stain removers include the Carbona Stain Devils for chocolate, ketchup, and mustard and Shout Wipe & Go Instant Stain Remover. However, most stain removers are effective on chocolate, so use what you have.

How to Remove Set in Chocolate Stains on Clothes

If your chocolate-stained clothes have made it through the washer and dryer, removing the stain will be more challenging. But not all hope is lost. 

Here’s what to do:

Fill a sink or basin with cold water and add a scoop of OxiClean. Soak the item in this mixture for several hours and then wash it as usual. The Oxygen bleach can help remove set-in stains from all colors and most types of clothing.

How to Remove Chocolate Stains from a Couch

If someone has dropped chocolate on your couch, act fast before the stain can settle in the fibers. 

Step 1: Scrape Excess Chocolate with Your Butter Knife

Use your butter knife to scrape as much chocolate off the couch as possible. Wipe the blade on a paper towel after each swipe to prevent embedding the stain.

Step 2: Wash with Dish Soap and Cold Water

If your couch is water-safe (most are), you can remove the chocolate with dish soap and water. To check, find the care tag on your sofa and look at the label. You’ll see one of these symbols:

  • “W” means water safe, and you can treat the couch with any water-based upholstery cleaner
  • “S/W” means you can clean with a solvent or water-based product
  • “S” means clean with a dry cleaning solvent only.
  • “X” means vacuum only – you can’t use a solvent or water-based cleaner

So, if your sofa care tag has a “W” or “S/W,” add cold water and a drop of dish soap to a sponge or microfiber cloth and work in your hands until it gets sudsy. Then wipe the chocolate stain and blot it with a white cloth. Repeat this process until the stain is removed. Then allow the area to dry.

You can also use dish soap and water to remove chocolate stains from fabric seats and upholstered car seats.

Tip: Always use white cloths when treating stains on your sofa. The pigment from colored cloths sometimes transfers onto the couch when cleaning.

Hydrogen Peroxide to Remove Chocolate Stains

If dish soap doesn’t work for you, use hydrogen peroxide to lift the stains. Remember that hydrogen peroxide can bleach fabrics, so it’s best for white clothes or upholstery. If using it on darker colors, do a spot test first.

  • Dampen a cloth with 3% hydrogen peroxide and blot the stain repeatedly until it disappears.

If you’re treating clothing, launder it as usual.

  • If you’re treating upholstery, wipe with a cloth dampened in water to rinse the peroxide.

If your stain is stubborn, you can mix dish soap and peroxide for a degreasing boost. Add one teaspoon of dish soap to a bowl, followed by three teaspoons of peroxide, and mix. Dip a white cloth into the mix and dab the stain until gone. Rinse with water or launder the item afterward.

Using Vinegar to Remove Chocolate Stains

While you can use white distilled vinegar to remove chocolate stains from your clothing, it’s not as effective as dish soap, stain pre-treaters, or hydrogen peroxide. But if it’s all you have on hand, it’s worth a try.

For fresh stains, scrape off the chocolate and dab the trouble spot with white distilled vinegar. Allow to set for five minutes, rinse under cold water, and then launder in cold water as usual.

For set-in stains, fill a tub with half white distilled vinegar and half water. Submerge the piece of clothing, allow it to soak for 15 minutes, and then launder in cold water.