Candy is more than just sugar in a pretty package and making a name for yourself in the candy world comes down to more than just taste. So here is the low down on the Top 10 Candy Ranked Worst to Best.
10. Life Savers
Dating back over a hundred years, Life Savers were created by Clarence Crane in July of 1912 specifically for summertime enjoyment. Its purpose was to be better suited for the season than chocolate which would melt very quickly. It has been said that the name originated from its resemblance to the old fashion style life preservers. Popularity began to rise when Life Savers started to be found by the cash registers in stores, enticing buyers with their unique packaging and 5 cent cost. Lifesavers began as only one flavor – Pep-O-Mint. Since then, they have introduced over 40 different flavors from mint to butterscotch, and from tropical to their newest edition ‘Collisions’ which their website says were created “for those who can’t decide on just one flavor.” Collisions feature the flavors of Raspberry Lemonade, Cherry Watermelon, and Pineapple Punch. Not only has Life Savers expanded their flavors, but they expanded the texture of the candy as well. Introducing chewy gummy Life Savers in 1992 with three varieties: grape, 5 flavor and mixed berry. As for their popularity these days, it seems they fall short, with not even a social media page to be found and a very under stimulating website. Whomp Whomp!
9. Laffy Taffy
Laffy Taffy made its debut in the 1970’s as “Breich’s Caramels”. Looking to expand their flavor variety, creator Breich’s Candy of Illinois experimented with the taffy. Later came the idea of a spin off flavor from cherry cough drops. After updating their machinery and mastering their idea, they had tried out 42 different combinations before the taste was up to satisfaction. The result of this efforts was a sour cherry flavored taffy delight. Although taffy itself had existed for years before, Laffy Taffy made a name for itself by wrapping the candy in packaging with jokes written on the inside. These jokes were written for kids, by kids, which was a huge hit. The creators found a unique way to gain popularity and become memorable. You can find Laffy Taffy in flavors such as Banana, Grape, Blue Raspberry and other fruity tastes. There have also been flavors that seem more dessert oriented such as apple crisp and strawberries & cream. As of late, Laffy Taffy has teamed up with the dreamworks hit film Trolls, writing Troll related jokes inside. In addition to this marketing move, they have developed a new version of the candies called Laff Bites which are described on their website as having an “extra flavor drop inside, wrapped in a hard, candy shell”. Although these colorful chewy rectangles have many cute and yummy tastes to choose from, they still have a ways to go to reach the pinnacle of candy success.
A candy line originally introduced by The Willy Wonka Candy factory, this company actually launched soon before the cinematic release of the hit film Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory. Although Nerds were not pictured in the film, they became a nostalgic treat and stood out with their unique shape. These tiny candy nuggets were born in 1983 and were recognized as Candy of the Year in 1985. Not to be judged by their size, Nerds candy packs a huge taste with a sour tang. Oddly enough, very few know the actual process that is behind how Nerds get their little crumbly shapes; as it is Top Secret. Another thing about nerds that sets them apart is that they come in one box with two compartments separating the flavors. As popular as Nerds are however, they were not enough to beat out other Wonka products in a popularity contest. After finding that consumers were more interested in different candy products, The Willy Wonka Candy Factory later sold Nerds to Nestle. The new owners had a new vision and took Nerds to another level. Nestle introduced packaging sizes ranging from big to small and even extra small sized packs – which are commonly distributed on Halloween. To switch things up and drive more interest, Nerds recently introduced a few new versions of the classic candy. Nerds ropes which are chewy candy sticks covered in Nerds, and Sour Big Chewy Nerds, tasty balls of chewy candy covered in crunched up nerd pieces. With creativity like this its no wonder they are in the top 10 on many peoples candy list. But wait…. Here is something we bet you didn’t know about this famous candy. The coolest thing about nerds is that each color is supposed to represent a thought. Pink is curiosity, purple is deep thinking, yellow is logic, red is creativity, green is humor and orange is spontaneity. You can even read the Story of the Nerds on the Nerdscandy website!
7. Haribo Gummies
These long-time gummies were started in the inventor’s kitchen. In 1920, Hans Riegel, with true entrepreneurial spirit, took to work with a rolling pin and pot in his home in Germany. Gum Arabic was found listed in the original recipe and there are theories that the term “gummy” is related to this ingredient. Hans, a fan of the street festivals he would visit in Europe, developed “The Dancing Bears”. This was a flavorful bear shaped gummy inspired by the trained bears he would see on his travels. Haribo Gummies remained a German treat until their international expansion in 1960. It is not until 20 years later that they entered the American Market. Haribo Gummies are now available in over 100 countries worldwide. The Haribo Gummies line produces over 100 million gummy candies per day. From gummy bears, to chewy cherries, to cola flavor candies, this company celebrates its 100 years of experience with many different products under their belt; and they do not plan to stop there! They have just announced that they are creating a North American facility to help meet the demands from consumers for their Goldbears, Twin Snakes, and Starmix candies. One of the most intriguing facts about Haribo is that Hans managed to keep his exact formula a secret.
This tangy fruit flavored taffy was created by Steve Bruner in 1985. The original candy looked much like the Airheads of today, however it came placed in the middle of two pieces of rice paper. Steve quickly found out that the rice paper was not favored by consumers. After a lot of deliberation and many different ideas for packaging, AirHeads as we know them today were born. Interestingly enough, the name was suggested by Steve’s sons. He asked them what they would call a friend if they said something silly. Among many names that the children had thought up, the one that stood out the most to Steve was airhead. Steve drew up a quick sketch of a balloon face, sent it off to the marketing team and the rest as they say is history. The balloon face remains on the packaging to this day. Their tagline “Out of Control” is fitting as this candy seems to know no limits. At one time, Airheads offered a white and mysterious version of the taffy. The company prompted consumers to guess the flavor in advertisements and putting question marks on the white packaging. Steve himself, said that when they launched Airheads the packaging and candy was red. They did not name the flavor cherry or strawberry. Instead, they wanted consumers to decide what the “red flavor” was for themselves. As of late, they Airheads antics have consisted of launching new products like Airhead filled ropes and snow cones which are sure to keep the kiddos (and big kids at heart!) happy and wanting more.
5. Jolly Ranchers
Formerly owned by the Jolly Rancher Company and later turned over to Hershey, these fruit flavored candies have been a hit for ages. From their start in 1949, the company tempted consumers with multiple products, selling candy, chocolate and ice cream. Unfortunately, they soon learned that ice cream was difficult to sell year-round. On the other hand, the candy was not. The company shifted focus to the candy and did not regret it. The original hard candy flavors were watermelon, apple, and fire stix. Which were followed by cherry, orange tangerine, lemon, grape, peach and sour apple and at some point lemon was replaced by blue raspberry. Today, the flavors include cherry, blue raspberry, grape, green apple, and watermelon. Jolly Ranchers also offers sour, smoothie, and cinnamon varities. Since the beginning, Jolly Ranchers have branched out into many different products such as gummies, jellybeans, lollipops, gum and soft drinks. Known for their long lasting and intense flavors, Jolly Ranchers were named to give the impression of a “friendly western candy” due to it being developed in the Colorado area. One reviewer jokingly referred to them using the alternative name; “Happy Farmers”. On their website they offer recipes to fans with Jolly Rancher flare. Find snacks, such as candy apples, cookies and more to try out the Jolly Rancher way. With the most delicious flavors such as watermelon, cherry, and blue raspberry to the more unique hot and spicy specialty flavors, Jolly ranchers are sure to spark interest and remain relevant in the ever-changing world of candy!
Twizzlers were first produced in 1929 by one of the oldest confectionary firms in the US – the Young & Smylie Company. Despite being created in the 20s, Twizzlers did not become popular until the 1960s. The Young & Smylie Company, now know as Y&S Candies, later sold Twizzlers to Hershey Foods. It was at Hershey’s where Twizzlers became “The twist you cant resist”. The fact that this licorice type candy does not actually contain any licorice extract, does not stop consumers from calling it their favorite licorice! Many different versions of the product have come to be over the years such as Pull & Peels, Nibs, sweet & sour filled and of course, the original twists. Even better than multiple versions, is multiple flavors! The Pull & Peels are known for their colorful appearance and jam packed flavors. Twizzlers dropped a bomb on the world this past year, when they revealed a brand new limited time offer: “Izzlers – untwisted for a limited time”. This product became surprisingly popular for a version that goes against their usual slogan. The highly anticipated untwisted twists became available in April and they did not disappoint. Twizzlers poses this question on their website, “Are they still Twizzlers twists without the twists?” You be the judge!
These soft taffy squares were first called Opal Fruits in The United Kingdom where they originated in 1960. The name did not change to Starburst until traveling to the US market in 1967. The “Unexplainably Juicy” treats offer fruity flavors like many of the other candy on our list. However, they stand amongst the few candies with individual wrappings. One reviewer commented that Starburst wrappers were edible. Do not get too excited folks! Although the paper type wrapping is nontoxic, we still should not consume the wrappers. Wax paper does not digest well! From 1960 to 2020, Starbursts have held their popularity. One reviewer suggests this may be due to the younger fans. The reviewer says that they are popular for kids due to being easily chewed, brightly colored and having a long stick shaped package that looks like it has a lot in it. Starbursts just teamed up with fruit by the foot which is debatably one of the most unlikely food collabs of all time but equally as intriguing. The TikTok fruit roll up race challenge just became tastier! Starburst continues to be at the top of the best sellers list when it comes to candy – and for good reason.
When we hear the slogan “Taste The Rainbow”, we know this refers to, none other than; Skittles. Hard candy coating on the outside, fruity chewy goodness on the inside, all wrapped in a colorful package. This oh-so-delicious candy was first produced in 1974 by a British company and came to the US in the early 80s. The popular slogan we know and love was introduced in 1994, bringing with it a slew of unique marketing material highlighting consumers love for the goodies. From their crazy commercials to their very active social media accounts, Skittles knows how to stay relevant and wanted. This candy’s popularity was and still is undeniable. The internet praises skittles for keeping up with the times, meaning their advertisements and marketing have been on point. From Super Bowl campaigns, to stripping their packaging of their signatures rainbow colors in support of Pride Week, skittles knows how to keep us engaged and coming back for more. Just recently, Skittle released a huge new Skittles Rainbow Celebration cake. This unique and colored sponge cake is topped with frosting and covered in skittles. Hand decorated and made with all the skittles love and joy you know only they could offer. Judging by their social media and website activity, Skittles takes pride in being connected to their consumers and fans. Whether trying to make us laugh with the jokes on their website, posting uplifting tweets or pictures made out of the colorful candies themselves, it’s safe to say, Skittles has a special connection with their fan base.
1. Sour Patch Kids
In the late 1960s, Cadbury and a Swedish Licorice company combined forces and produced what was known then as “Mars Men”. They were renamed Sour Patch Kids in 1985 and have only continued gaining popularity. A favorite amongst Halloween candy bags and movie theatre concession stands, Sour Patch Kids are well known for their sweet and sour taste. The slogan “Sweet. Sour. Gone” says it all. The green, red, yellow, orange, and blue candys are covered in sweet and sour sugar with a powerfully sweet center. This candy ranks number one for a reason. Not only do they have an unreal zing to them, but they have many different mouth water versions. From Tropical, to Watermelons, to Crush Pop flavor packages, Sour Patch Kids are always coming out with something new and exciting. Right now on their website you can personalize your very own pack of your favorite Sour Patch Kids flavors. Everyone has a favorite color, right? Well the Sour Patch Kids website has changed the game by allowing you to “make your own mix”. In an easy 3 step process you can get your favorite colors only! First, you chose your flavors. Next, you choose what size package you’d like to buy. Sizes range from party favor tins to 2 pound bags to 5 pound bags. The icing on the cake, you personalize your Sour Patch Kids with your name on the packaging! Now how cool is that! THere’s a reason Sour Patch Kids are at the top.