There was a time when sugar-free candies and chocolates were bound to be disappointing compared to their sugar-containing counterparts. But with growing consumer demand for healthier options and a push by manufacturers to fulfill it, the selection of sugar-free candies and chocolates is varied and delicious.
The increase in product demand for sugar-free alternatives comes with growing weight gain concerns among adults and children. According to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every five children is considered obese.
Since sugar is the main source of calories in food, consumer preference is shifting from high-calorie foods to healthier, low-calorie foods with more nutritional value and lower sugar content. By 2024, the candy market is set to grow above 3.5 percent, which in turn has enhanced the growth of the diet candy market. Better appearance, texture and flavors, including mint and chocolate, have further increased industry demand.
Many candy makers, including Hershey’s, actually produce sugar-free versions of their classic candies. Other brands are known exclusively for their sugar-free treats. Here are some of the best brands and candies to help fight sugar cravings while fulfilling a sweet tooth.
Russell Stover sugar-free candies are sweetened with all-natural stevia and come in an assortment of flavors including peanut butter cup, pecan delight and mint patties. The popular brand was the leading sugar-free chocolate candy producer in the US in 2018 with about $87.76 million in sales.
Reece’s has a healthier version of its classic Peanut Butter Cups that offers the famous taste of milk chocolate and peanut butter without the sugar and 20 percent fewer calories. The perfectly sized sugar free candy is also kosher and gluten free.
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Life should be fun and our food plays such a big part. An enjoyable, good for you, good for the community diet should be the goal. But too often diet culture pushes us to cut out the enjoyable part of the equation. And if you lose balance, how can you keep making progress!? . . We believe in eating mostly real, natural foods that we made or were grown and made locally. . . And we [try to] have very little [not zero, but very little] sweet candies or desserts. Let’s face it, highly refined carbs are awful for us. Even the better sweeteners have their drawbacks. But sweets bring so much joy. And joy should have its place in your diet 🙂 So eat a sweet once in a while. And really savor it. . . Better for you shouldn’t mean bad tasting. And enjoying a tasty bite shouldn’t be a stressful decision. . . Keep smiling, y’all! #guiltfreedessert #guiltfreetreats #lowcarbyum #ketodiet #ketosnacks #sugarfree #glutenfreesnack #tomandjennys
These sugar free soft caramels come in five flavors, including chocolate, coffee and spied rum, and are sweetened with Xylitol and Maltitol Syrup, two plant-derived alternatives to sugar. They are also made without gluten, corn syrup or nuts and each serving contains just 100 calories and under 12 grams of net carbs.
Like Reece’s, Life Savers offers a sugar-free version of their classic hard candies. Each bag consists of five flavors that have stood the test of time: cherry, raspberry, watermelon, orange and pineapple.
The iconic candy brand Werther’s Original offers hard candies that are sweet, creamy and delightfully sugar free. Werther’s lets the enjoyment carry to those that have sugar-intake limitations, anyone worrying about their calorie intake and anyone that has dietary restrictions.
With all the mint flavor and none of the sugar, these Altoids are the perfect treat to have throughout the day without any worry about sugar consumption. The mints are sweetened with sorbitol, a sugar alcohol found in fruits and plants.