There’s a reason why so many holidays revolve around candy. Candy is a delicious indulgence that is great to give and even better to snack on, from Valentine’s Day to Halloween. But it’s no secret that sugar isn’t exactly good for you. Of course, no one will mind if you indulge once a year around the holidays. However, if you’re trying to reduce your sugar intake while still satisfying your sweet tooth for the rest of the year, you might be wondering if there are any healthy candies you can eat.
Chocoholics will be relieved to learn that chocolate is frequently mentioned as one of the healthiest candy options. Chocolate has numerous health benefits, ranging from antioxidants to lowering the risk of heart disease. Of course, not all chocolate is created equal — dark chocolate contains the most antioxidants, whereas milk chocolate is frequently overly sugary. If you prefer fruit-flavored candies that are naturally flavored and low in sugar, there are plenty of options. It’s not just niche brands either.
While looking for the best healthy candy, you may be wondering what the least healthy candy is. However, it is good to note that even “healthy” candy isn’t a substitute for a well-balanced diet. That is why moderation remains the key. However, if you’re craving a sweet treat in the middle of the day, these are the best healthy candy brands to choose from.
1. Justin’s Super Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Justin’s is well-known for its nut butter, and its spruced-up nut-butter cups have become a household favorite. These go a step further in terms of health by using super-dark chocolate (80 percent cacao). Consequently, there will be more antioxidants. We could do without the palm oil, but everything else is fine, and these dark chocolate cups are fantastic.
2. CBDfx Gummies with Turmeric and Spirulina
Cannabidiol (CBD) is the cannabis plant’s second most abundant cannabinoid. However, unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it is nonintoxicating and legal in the United States. Furthermore, research indicates that it has a variety of health benefits, like pain relief, anxiety and depression suppressants, etc.
These antioxidant gummies are made with turmeric and spirulina for a superfood boost and have a CBD potency of 5 mg per gummy and a gummy count of 60 gummies per package. They are vegan and completely natural, with no artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup, GMOs, or filler ingredients.
While the taste of spirulina can take some getting used to, reviewers say these CBDfx gummies are delicious. They have received over 450 five-star ratings.
3. Hu Kitchen Gems
Hu Kitchen’s Gems are super-delicious chocolate bites that can be eaten as candy or used in baking, and they are a firm favorite for all things chocolate on our list. They’re also vegan and organic, containing only three ingredients: cacao, coconut sugar, and cocoa butter.
4. Alter Eco Assorted Truffles
If you like a little variety in your chocolate, this pack of assorted truffles from Alter Eco includes classic dark chocolate, sea salt chocolate, and salted caramel truffles. All of them are made from organic ingredients, and the wraps are compostable.
5. UNREAL 6 Bags Variety Pack
We’re not sure why a company that uses natural and non-GMO ingredients calls itself Unreal, but the brand offers tasty, healthier alternatives to some of the most popular candies. This assortment includes Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, Crispy Quinoa Peanut Butter Cups, Almond Butter Cups, Peanut Gems, Crispy Quinoa Gems, and Coconut Bars, which can satisfy fans of Mounds, M&Ms, and Reese’s Cups. They contain less sugar and no artificial sweeteners.
6. Snickers (FUN size)
Those TV commercials in which a notoriously cranky celebrity transforms into a regular person after eating a Snickers bar are clever, but there is some truth to the Hangry campaign. Snickers, which are packed with nougat and peanuts, have more protein than many other common candies, and while it’s quite sugary, it has less trans fat than some common drugstore favorites. That means you can satisfy your sweet tooth while also getting some protein by eating just one or two of the fun-size bars.
Okay, so it’s not exactly a healthy candy, but if you’re on a post-New Year’s diet and have a chocolate craving, a small Snickers bar isn’t such a bad snack.
7. Endangered Species Dark Chocolate Bites
These chocolates are low in sugar and contain 3 grams (g) of fiber in two squares. This is because the high cocoa content (88%) means the sugar content is lower. And there’s more. Eating a small amount of dark chocolate on a regular basis may benefit heart health by lowering the risk of heart disease and stroke, according to research. But, once again, enjoy in moderation, as these treats contain saturated fat, which, according to the American Heart Association, can be harmful to your heart if consumed in excess. The organization recommends limiting saturated fat intake to no more than 13g per day.
Eating healthy does not have to mean giving up favorite foods; rather, it should mean figuring out how to enjoy them in a more health-conscious manner. To be sure, candy is still candy, no matter how it’s marketed—so, as with any sweets, moderation is advised (hello, blood sugar maintenance). Choosing options with the best ingredients is also beneficial, as you can enjoy a tasty treat (or two) knowing it isn’t loaded with processed sugars and artificial flavors.