It’s almost Easter time, and here in a still mostly wintry New England an influx of pastels has rained down upon us. Yes, it’s Easter candy, the stuff cavities and baskets are made out of. You’ve got the usual standbys of chocolate rabbits, Peeps (chicks AND bunnies), jelly beans, marshmallow eggs, cream eggs… the list goes on.
I have one weakness when it comes to Easter candy these days, and it’s SweetTarts jellybeans. These things are like crack. I know some people don’t like them, but I don’t care. It’s a good thing I can only get them for about one month a year. I had bounced about from various “branded” jellybeans. I’d wager about ten years ago these things started to get hot. Before that, you just had Brach’s, Jelly Belly, and your store’s jellybeans. Then we started seeing Smucker’s, Welch’s, Starburst, Life Savers, all of your normal candy favorites had jellybean versions. I’ve tried them all – some are OK, some are not. Starburst beans, for instance, are excellent both in normal and sour varieties. Smucker’s… eh. Welch’s? Another eh. Life Savers didn’t impress. But when I hit on the SweetTarts ones, bam. I was hooked.
I think what sets them apart is that they basically recreate the flavor and tartness in a jellybean form instead of being yet another take on the traditional fruit combinations. That’s really what I’m looking for, and it’s also why the Starburst ones are winners even though they are a fruit medley. They capture the quintessential Starburst flavors. There’s also not very many sour jellybeans out there. Starburst just introduced a Sour medley, but for a long time SweetTarts flavor was your only option.
The one downside is that the shell of the jellybean is like that powdery SweetTart stuff, just a little softer. Some might interpret it as chalky. If you don’t like it, that’s fair, check out the Sour Starburst ones instead. Both are very good sour jellybeans.
The best part? There’s no licorice jellybeans. Am I racist against licorice jellybeans? Maybe. I just don’t like the taste of them. Kinda like the white pineapple Life Savers. Hate em unequivocally. I’ll never willingly eat them.