I don’t generally eat a lot of candy (I prefer baked goods), but liquorice is an exception. I’ve always loved it, but for some reason I stopped eating it as much when I went vegan. I guess most varieties that I used to eat had gelatine or other animal products in them. However, I recently discovered all kinds of vegan liquorice that are very similar to the ones I had back then!
I went shopping for liquorice and found five kinds that I’d like to highlight in this post. Some of them weren’t exactly my favourite sort of candy, but that is really just my personal taste – I much prefer salty liquorice over the sweet variety. However, I found at least two kinds of liquorice that I love and some others that are okay, too.
I’ll start off with Panda liquorice. I think this is a fairly well known brand and it seems to be widely available – at least at the health food stores that I go to (I got them at De Tuinen this time). There’s a variety of products to choose from, although not all of them are vegan. I decided to pick up two different kinds: the liquorice comfits (above) and the liquorice bears (below).
The comfits are definitely one of my favourites. I used to eat these sometimes before I went vegan, and although those came in more different colours, they tasted just the same. The sugary coating makes them very sweet, but the coating also has an anise flavour that I really like. These are very addictive, and pretty too (even without all the artificial food colouring).
The bears, on the other hand, were my least favourite of them all. They look cute, but I don’t like the texture at all – it’s sort of soft, but not very chewy… and the sweet flavour doesn’t make up for that. My Mum did say she likes them, though, so if you’re a fan of sweet liquorice, these might be for you.
I didn’t buy these pieces myself, but I got them from our neighbours. The brand is Terra Sana and this is one of their sweet liquorice ropes. The name and the picture on the website suggest that the liquorice is supposed to be one long rope, but mine was divided into a couple of pieces. In any case, I didn’t really love this. I liked it a little better than Panda’s sweet liquorice, but honestly I think sweet liquorice just isn’t my thing. I’d love to try other flavours of Terra Sana candy, because it looks like they’ve got quite a variety of products.
The other brand I bought is Candy Tree. They make all kinds of candy, not just liquorice, and most of them are vegan.
These are Candy Tree’s “liquorice toffees”. When I read that on the package I got excited, because I really liked those when I was younger, but I have to say that these are nothing like the ones I remember. They’re different in taste, appearance and texture. The liquorice flavour is actually very faint, and even though I can’t remember exactly what the other ones tasted like, they definitely had a more prominent, saltier liquorice flavour. They had a different colour, too, but I think that was just an added food colouring in the non-vegan ones, so I don’t miss that. The texture of the Candy Tree toffees is a little less soft, too, but that’s not really a problem because they get soft when you eat them. So yeah – I think these are tasty in their own way, but only if you don’t think of them of liquorice toffees (or if you never had liquorice toffees before).
Unlike the toffees, these liquorice bites were exactly what I expected when I bought them – salty liquorice with perfect flavour and texture! I’d had the liquorice vines before and I think the two are almost the same. The bites just have a slightly softer texture and, obiously, a different shape. I prefer the smaller pieces of liquorice because the size makes them a little more convenient, but they’re both quite tasty. Candy Tree makes a few other types of salty liquorice, and I’m sure I’d love those too!
The last two brands (so Terra Sana and Candy Tree) are both organic, but I don’t think Panda liquorice is (I couldn’t find anything, so I assume it isn’t). As far as prices go, I think they all cost around €2,00?
Anyway, I’m glad I found a couple of tasty liquorice brands. Here they are together in one jar. Yay!
I will probably not cook or bake enough interesting things to post about for VeganMoFo, so expect more product reviews in the future! I hope that’s OK.