Cocoa husk is considered a waste product after cocoa processing and creates environmental issues. These waste products are rich in polyphenols, methylxanthine, dietary fibers, and phytosterols, which can be extracted and utilized in various food and health products. Cocoa beans represent only 32-34% of fruit weight. Various extraction methods were implemented for the preparation of extracts and/or the recovery of bioactive compounds. Besides conventional extraction methods, various studies have been conducted using advanced extraction methods, including microwave-assisted extraction (MAE), ultrasonic-assisted extraction (UAE), subcritical water extraction (SWE), supercritical fluid extraction (SFE), and pressurized liquid extraction (PLE). To include cocoa husk waste products or extracts in different food products, various functional foods such as bakery products, jam, chocolate, beverage, and sausage were prepared. This review mainly focused on the composition and functional characteristics of cocoa husk waste products and their utilization in different food products. Moreover, recommendations were made for the complete utilization of these waste products and their involvement in the circular economy.
Keywords: bioactive compounds; circular economy; cocoa husk; extraction and analytical methods; functional foods.