Does Nutella Cause Acne? (Hint: Yes But Find Out Why)

Acne will worsen if you consume Nutella. Nutella does not directly harm your skin, but the ingredients with which it is made can be harmful to your skin.

Many teenagers have reported getting acne after eating Nutella on a regular basis for several days.

Because Nutella can negatively impact the skin, I have decided to cover this topic in detail; let’s jump straight into it.

5 Reasons Why Nutella Causes Acne 

1: Sugar

Nutella is known for its chocolatey and sweet flavor. The sugar in your Nutella is the main cause of your acne. It causes acne by stimulating the two major causes of acne. 

It first causes inflammation, and then it disrupts the hormones. It makes no difference whether you consume white sugar or brown sugar; both have an effect on your skin. 

Sugar consumption through food raises blood glucose levels, causing the pancreas to release insulin in response

Extra insulin in the blood will activate the body’s oil-producing glands. For more in-depth information, I do cover how insulin spikes happen, strategies to solve acne from within, and more in my eBook Unmasking Acne.

One of the most favorable conditions for acne production is excess oil on the skin. In the same way, an inflamed body causes skin breakouts. Acne on the face is caused by dead skin and oil.

2: Cocoa 

Cocoa is what gives your Nutella a chocolate flavor. It’s also a reason you get acne after eating Nutella. 

Cocoa increases the severity and frequency of acne on your face by encouraging your immune system to react aggressively to the bacteria that causes acne. 

On one hand, it strengthens the immune system, but it also causes an aggressive fight between our body and the skin bacteria. 

Our skin will become more prone to infections and foreign body invasions as it becomes unhealthy and deteriorates. 

More dirt will be trapped in the pores, and pimples will appear on your face in no time.

3: Oleic Acid 

Nutella contains acids known as oleic acid and stearic acid, known to clog the skin’s pores when consumed. 

If you consume Nutella on a daily basis, you are consuming an excessive amount of oleic acid and stearic acid. It can further increase the body’s temperature, which causes sweating to occur. 

Skin that has been moistened from sweat and oil is unsightly and unhealthy. Pimples will appear as more bacteria and dirt colonize your skin, causing it to break out. 

4: Milk 

Acne is often blamed on dairy products. Milk is thought to be the primary acne-causing agent. Milk, as we all know, is high in fat unless you consume zero percent fat milk. 

Nutella contains a significant amount of milk. It’s impossible to find fat-free Nutella or dairy. These milk fats will make your skin very oily. 

Furthermore, milk contains a type of hormone that is similar to insulin. The hormone in question is IGF-1, which is well-known for causing skin breakouts. 

So as you can see, there are several reasons why milk causes acne.

5: Oils 

Oils, as well as milk fat, are a cause for concern. Oils are added to Nutella separately. Oil-producing glands, also known as sebaceous glands, are a layer that sits beneath your skin. 

When the body produces an excessive amount of oil, the sebum gland works to remove it through the skin. 

This oil clogs your pores when it combines with dead skin cells and dirt from the environment. 

Acne of any kind, including blackheads, pimples, and whiteheads, forms when your skin becomes clogged with oils and dead skin. Some people are born with oily skin. 

Increased oil consumption will aggravate the situation. It’s critical to wash your face on a regular basis to remove excess oil and protect your skin from acne. Personally, I recommend using Clearstem Skincare’s Vitamin Scrub. It’s filled with antioxidants and is great for oily skin. To be completely transparent this will not help your acne if you frequently eat Nutella and other sugary, processed foods. However, if you clean up your diet Clearstem’s vitamin scrub will help reduce oil and scarring more quickly.

3 Great Nutella Substitutes That Don’t Cause Acne 

Nutella is a sweetened hazelnut cocoa butter spread that is made from ground hazelnuts. Both adults and children love it.

You can savor it for breakfast with a slice of bread or mix it with milk to make a delicious shake. Cakes and brownies flavored with Nutella have also gained popularity.

However, there are better alternatives that do not contain acne-causing ingredients and can still bring you joy!

1: Best Ingredients – Organic Dairy-Free Nutella – Artisana Organics Hazelnut Cacao Spread

As the name implies, the substitute is exceptionally healthy. It’s organic, which means it contains no synthetic ingredients. 

The second word indicates dairy-free, meaning that you don’t have to worry about getting acne from milk fats. The third word is critical — it says Nutella on it. 

What you’re still craving is Nutella. So organic dairy-free Nutella is your go-to spread that you can eat guilt-free. This product also includes ingredients that help acne such as MCT Oil and organic hazelnuts.

Though it may appear unusual at first, this product has done dairy-sensitive Nutella fans a huge favor. 

This spread’s taste and texture have received mostly positive feedback, with only a few negative comments. What are you waiting for? Grab a jar of organic dairy-free Nutella. 

2: Best Reviews – Nocciolata 

Do you want more organic options? Choose Nocciolata. It’s a cocoa and hazelnut spread made from organic ingredients.

Yes, it contains cocoa, but pay attention to the word organic. Organic foods have little to no adverse effects on our health. It’s meticulously prepared using highly processed raw materials. 

The best part is that Nocciolata is gluten-free and free of artificial colors. Conversely, it contains no palm oil, hydrogenated fats, flavorings, or preservatives. 

Nevertheless, this spread is exceptionally tasty and a creamy treat for your taste buds. So, if you’re searching for a wholesome substitute for your Nutella cravings, don’t forget to give it a try. 

This is a well-known product and the reviews prove it! 4.8/5 stars from 700+ reviews!

3: Homemade Nutella

Here’s a great idea if you’re a crazy Nutella fan. You can make it at home by adjusting the ingredients. 

While the taste may not be the same, it will undoubtedly be a close and healthy treat. 

Firstly, if you’re allergic to nuts or believe they will aggravate your acne, please do not include them in the recipe. 

Then, substitute low-fat or fat-free dairy for high-fat milk. This will protect you from the troublesome IGF-1 protein. It will also reduce the amount of fat in the recipe from other oils. 

Reduce the sugar content and replace the cocoa powder with dark chocolate or an organic no-sugar cocoa powder. It’s relatively simple to whip up a fresh bowl of Nutella at home.


Unfortunately, one of the beloved chocolate spreads causes or triggers acne in many people. 

Nutella is made from chocolate/cocoa, milk, sugar, oils, and occasionally dry fruits. All of these ingredients can cause stubborn pimples by increasing oil production and inflaming the skin. 

As a result, your pores become clogged, making your face more prone to acne. If you’re worried about acne and can’t stop eating Nutella, I’ve listed three alternatives for you. 

You can choose from organic dairy-free Nutella or Nocciolata. You can also make delicious Nutella at home if you want.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Nutella cause acid reflux?

Nutella can cause acid reflux in some people. Ingesting cocoa releases serotonin which can cause the esophagus to relax. This process is called gastroesophageal reflux or (GER) and will cause stomach acid to rise into your throat.

Does Nutella make you break out?

Nutella contains high levels of vegetable oil and sugar, both of which are known to cause acne breakouts.

Originally Published: July 19, 2021

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I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their acne naturally. If you cannot easily find an answer to your question on the website, please reach out to me by email ([email protected]) or send me a message on Instagram or Twitter. I will reply within 24 hours.

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sam wood is GoodGlow's Chief Editor
Analyzed by Sam Wood
Hi I’m Sam Wood. I’m the chief editor, lead acne expert, and health coach behind GoodGlow. I’m also an author of one of the top selling acne books on Amazon, a husband, father of two, and a pretty good cook!

I’m so glad you found GoodGlow and hope the information I have spent the last 10 years cultivating will help you clear your skin and improve your overall health.

I began experiencing acne breakotus as a sophomore in high school, but unlike most of my friends, my acne actually got worse as I got into my 20s. I exercised regularly, ate healthy (or so I thought) and spent hundreds of dollars a month on high end skincare products and supplements to help clear my skin. Despite these measures my acne breakouts and scarring only got worse as the years wore on.

This greatly wore on my self confidence and mental health. Simple things like taking pictures or going out with a large group made me feel self conscious. So I avoided these situations whenever I could help it.

As a last ditch effort I decided to try an extremely restrictive diet recommended by a close friend with an autoimmune disease. After following this diet for about two months my skin started to clear for the first time in over 8 years. The good news is that this restrictive diet is not actually necessary for 99% of people to permanently clear their skin, and over the course of a few months I was able to add back about 90% of my “normal diet”.

After clearing my skin I spent the next 4 years self experimenting on myself with different diets, supplements, skincare products to try and find a pattern for what was triggering my acne breakouts. I even tried different meditation, ice baths, and accupuncture to try and isolate the root cause of the breakouts.

In the end I realized that an extremely restrictive diet was not necessary for clear skin. The most important thing to do is to avoid inflammatory foods in your diet. Some common examples of this are fried foods, alcohol, sugar, and dairy.

Most impoirtantly I stopped reading trendy websites for skincare advice and began reading medical journals authored by dermatologists and nutritionists. Although the information in the articles was great the information was not easily understandable to most readers (including me). I spent hours dissecting individual posts and looking up terms I did not understand. Over the next 6 months I gradually began to understand these journals and started self experiemting some of the research on myself.

After experiencing quite a bit of success personally, I started sharing my research on forums and with close friends struggling with acne. When I shared the research it was in easy to understand, plain English. Everyone I talked to loved what I had to say and kept asking more and more questions. So I decided to start a blog so I could just send someone a link when they asked a question instead of rewriting something I had sent 100 times before 😅

While the same directional principles apply to everyone, acne is very personal and should be treated on an individual basis. That’s ultimately why I created GoodGlow. To help everyone reverse engineer the root cause of their acne and clear their skin permanently.

To date I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their skin using a natural, holistic approach. If you are unable to find an answer to your question in any of the articles my team has written please reach out and I will do my best to guide you to the proper information and resources so you can make a thoughtful, informed decision. Read more of Sam's articles.

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