Coffee Candy, Ranked

[This is not a post about dresses, so if you only want to read about dresses, please either scroll down or wait until I post something else, thanks!]

A few weeks ago I was in SF’s Japantown and found that the grocery there (Nijiya Market) sells my favorite coffee-flavored candy, coffeebeat. (I love this stuff and hadn’t been able to find it for ages, so this made me very happy!)

Also, it has the BEST packaging:
Coffeebeat

Coffee candy is odd, in that it melds something that is considered ‘for grownups’ (coffee) with something that’s for kids (candy). This narrow audience of immature adults and/or precocious children means that there isn’t a ton of coffee-flavored candy out there. (I’m deliberately leaving out high-end fancy chocolate that includes coffee.)

“Erin,” you might be saying (and are saying for the purposes of me setting up this blog post) “If coffeebeat is your favorite coffee candy, how do all the other available coffee candies rank against it?” I’m so glad you asked, imaginary blog interlocutor! Here, I will rank all the best coffee-flavored candies for you!

NB: I don’t actually like to DRINK coffee (other than cold brew) so none of these candies are ranked by how well they replicate the experience of drinking a hot cup of coffee.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    1. coffeebeat

I know we covered this above, but coffeebeat’s particular blend of coffee, chocolate, and a crunchy candy shell, plus the adorable packaging, puts coffeebeat at the top of the coffee-candy list.

2. Coffee Crisp

Does what it says on the package: is coffee-flavored, is crisp. (In the small print you will also find that this is Canadian.) These are addictive and my son knows that if he brings me back one of these when he returns home from college I will do all his laundry without complaint, which makes this a pretty powerful candy bar.

3. Coffee Nips

These are delicious, but terrifyingly sticky and the sworn enemy of dental work. You can lose a filling just opening the box. (I imagine unscrupulous dentists keeping bowls of these in their waiting rooms.) Nips come in other flavors, including Butter Rum, which is what you buy when you think Werther’s are for whippersnappers.

4. Coffee Rio

 

Coffee Rio is a kinder, gentler Coffee Nip (at least, texture-wise) which comes in more coffee flavors (although I’ve never seen anyone eat the Raspberry Mochas, and I would be slightly weirded out if you told me those were your favorite, but de gustibus, whatever). These are easier to find, being carried by most Trader Joe’s, and come in sugar-free versions, too.

5. Hopjes

Hopjes taste a little more on the bitter side to me, but they have the best typography (after coffeebeat, of course) so that’s a definite plus. They’re also usually available at bulk or penny-candy shops (for grandma? I don’t know, several of the Amazon reviews for Hopjes mention grandmas) which makes them more accessible.

6. Sperlari-Lavazza

These are a hard candy that have a soft center, but not a liquid one (this is an important distinction). Sperlari candies are also classy, because they’re Italian, but the best Sperlari candies are the anise ones.

7. Bali’s Best Coffee

The espresso and latte flavors have fillings that can be a little grainy (and disconcerting if you weren’t expecting them) but the plain coffee flavor is delightful and not too strong.

8. Kopiko

Kopiko is a fine (and caffeinated) coffee candy that comes individually wrapped. Kopiko is great for when you have a sore throat but still want to maintain the pretense that you are a working person doing work things like a worker (but should really just be zonked out on the couch with those lozenges that make you think of yodeling).

9. CoffeeGo

CoffeeGo’s schtick is that they replace coffee. They do not. They also do not replace candy. I’m not sure what they replace.

10. Pocket Coffee

You might think it’s called “Pocket Coffee” because it’s convenient to keep in your pocket, but I suspect (from the taste) that the coffee in Pocket Coffee is actually brewed from pocket lint. If you are old enough to remember liquid-center chewing gum, and are thinking “huh, I’d like to experience that again, only with cold espresso,” then maybe this is for you.

 

I haven’t tried the coffee Werther’s, this Brazilian coffee candy, these suspiciously-unreviewed Coffee Drops, or these Woogie Fine Drops (the sellers describe eating them as “sinking into an abyss of rich and succulent coffee flavor”, so be warned).

I may have tried these French hard candies in junior high school (they look familiar and are supposedly available at Epcot (!) which makes them exactly the kind of thing I would have purchased at 13) and these Simpkins coffee “travel sweets”, but I have no firm recollection of either, just that at one point I had a nice round tin with coffee candy in it, which I later used to hold my D&D dice.

If you have a favorite coffee candy, feel free to rave about it in the comments!

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10 thoughts on “Coffee Candy, Ranked

  1. wow coffee M&M’s sounds like a revelation and I must seek them out. Great post, love your writing! a good read along with my morning coffee. by the way are you also a coffee ice cream aficionado? my favorite flavor by far. But I like coffee in most any form (except cold and/or Starbucks)

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  2. agree, I LOOOVE the coffee nut M&Ms but they’re almost impossible to find now (only in big bags, which is both good and bad). And I was just in Canada and had to buy a box of halloween “Coffin Crisp” to bring back with me, I don’t understand why they don’t sell it here! I am now curious about coffee beat!

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  3. I suddenly have a craving for coffee ice cream, and I’ll keep a lookout for Coffee Beat and Coffee Crisp. I don’t drink coffee either, but l like coffee flavored things too

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