Get Ready for a Sugar Rush, Because We Found the 12 Best Candy Bars

No two days are the same when you’re a professional food taster. Sometimes, the job entails downing spoonfuls of dijon mustard or sampling hot sauces spicy enough to make you barf (true story). Other days, you’re eating your way through a heap of more than two dozen candy bars like Augustus Friggin’ Gloop. And while our inner mothers may have been politely suggesting we “save some room for later,” we had an important task at hand: finding the absolute best candy bars you can buy. We take this work seriously. Sometimes it just happens to be seriously fun. 

Each Sporked staffer came into this tasting with a preconceived idea of what their favorite candy bar is, but everyone tasted something they hadn’t tried before and formed fresh opinions on a lot of things they’d previously assumed they wouldn’t like. Our pick for the best of the best candy bar was a surprise to everyone. And, really, who thought we’d genuinely like a Zero, of all things? 

For this taste test we were joined by Mythical people and culture coordinator Jasmine Williams, a red-blooded candy bar fan like the rest of us. Whether you’re smuggling something sweet into the movies or treating yourself to a no-fuss dessert or snack (or, hell, dinner), these are the best candy bars you can buy. 

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whatchamacallit

Best of the Best

Whatchamacallit

I was only five years old in 1987, but I distinctly remember the commercial for this candy bar. Even with the line “Chewy, chocolatey, crunchy, Hersheeeeeys” periodically running through my head for 30-plus years, I don’t know that I ever picked up one of these guys from the grocery store checkout. What a dipshit! This bar really has it all: a thin, delicate coating of chocolate; a slightly salty, peanut buttery flavor; a little bit of a crisp-rice crunch; and chew from the luscious caramel within. I also really liked the shape—it’s kind of flat and wide rather than tall like a Snickers, if that makes sense. I don’t think anyone expected to like this sleeper hit as much as they did. Stop resisting the call of the Whatchamacallit! 

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

10/10

Sporks

reese's take 5

Best from Reese’s

Reese’s Take 5

We tried three Reese’s candy bars during our taste test: Reese’s Fast Break, Reese’s Outrageous!, and Reese’e Take 5. We thought that both the Outrageous! (that’s the one with Reese’s Pieces inside) and the Fast Break lacked crunch, but the Take 5 is just about as close as you can get to perfect without taking our top spot. There’s magic in the titular five ingredients: chocolate, pretzels, Reese’s signature peanut butter, peanuts, and caramel. “You can’t go wrong!” Sporked editor-in-chief Justine Sterling said after taking a bite. “It’s so good!” If you’re in the mood for Reese’s peanut butter in a different format than a cup, this is the way to go.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

9.5/10

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butterfinger

Best Ice Cream Mix-In

Butterfinger

I’ve spent the bulk of my life avoiding Butterfingers because the crunchy peanut butter-flavored candy that makes up the bar’s interior is terribly prone to lodging itself deep in your molars once you get to chewing. I usually swear by anything and everything Bart Simpson promotes to me (skateboarding, juvenile delinquency, etc.), but this candy bar was an exception. Well, two bits of good news: the teeth problem isn’t as pronounced as I remember and this candy bar is just so delicious it kind of doesn’t matter anyway. “It’s got a really crunchy, almost caramelly vibe to it, but it’s its own thing,” said Sporked staff writer Danny Palumbo, who said Butterfingers have long been his favorite Blizzard mix-in. And, man, is a Butterfinger good with some vanilla ice cream. It’s also great for people like Jasmine, who like the flavor of peanut butter but don’t really like the paste-like consistency.

Credit: Merc / Butterfinger

Rating:

9/10

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twix

Best Cookie Bar

Twix

Twix is a crunchy classic that totally holds up. Their recent left bar vs. right bar marketing campaign is totally lost on me, but I’m incapable of resisting the combination of a crisp cookie and chewy caramel. “Their cookie is light enough that you don’t feel like you’re eating a whole cookie, but it’s also there enough that you feel like you’re eating a whole cookie,” Jasmine said of the bar’s allure. “It’s a good, good time.” We also liked the chocolate coating-to-cookie ratio. Even though I’ll admit I typically prefer a soft-baked cookie, in this format, a crunchy cookie is just right. And left.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

9/10

Sporks

kit kat

Best Wafer Bar

Kit Kat

Justine has a very specific way of eating a Kit Kat bar: you nibble the ends, then eat the chocolate around the edges, and then disassemble it wafer by wafer with your teeth. As she wrote in a recent essay, “It prolongs the process, allowing me to savor each bite and continue eating a Kit Kat for much longer than someone who simply crunches down each stick in two bites flat.” Kit Kat is certainly good enough to savor. To me, it’s one of those candies that has such a distinct flavor that if you presented its chocolatey coating in a totally different way, it would still be recognizable as Kit Kat chocolate. I also find it extremely amazing and appealing that there’s more chocolatey sweet stuff between the layers of wafer, but that the bars still aren’t indelibly cloying. “Kit Kat is my drug of choice,” Jasmine said. “It’s so good. I’m a nougat girl, I’m a toffee girl, I’m also a wafer girl. If it’s a wafer, I’m eating it.” This candy bar is good as hell—no matter how you decide to eat it.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

9/10

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mounds

Best Coconut

Mounds

Name a more iconic candy duo than Mounds and Almond Joy. We’ll wait. (Just kidding, I’m not really waiting.) Both of these beloved bars are filled with a sweet, yummy coconut slime, but Almond Joy has a couple of whole almonds beneath its milk chocolate coating, while Mounds forgoes nuts and is just straight-up coconut drenched in dark chocolate. As the commercial once said, sometimes you feel like a nut and sometimes you don’t. Can I tell you what I really feel like? A mashup! Please, please, please give me either a Mounds with almonds or a dark chocolate Almond Joy—whichever makes Mars feel best. Until this perfect candy bar materializes, we decided Mounds was the superior product because the dark chocolate just goes so much better with the sweet, sticky coconut filling.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

8.5/10

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skor

Best Toffee

Skor

We put two toffee bars to the test—Skor and Heath—and while both were extremely delicious, we decided that Skor comes out on top thanks to its deeper toffee flavor. Heath but a little crisper, but I personally detected a slightly weird flavor I didn’t love, while Skor—one of the more serious-looking candy bars in the candy aisle—absolutely nailed that sugary, buttery, molasses-y taste. I’m sorry that I keep using this article as an opportunity to create new candy bar mashups, but if someone made a bar with Skor’s flavor and Heath’s texture, we’d be in heaven.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

8.5/10

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kinder bueno

Best Creamy

Kinder Bueno

This is another bar I’d absolutely snoozed on, but now I see the error in my ways. This delicate confection from Kinder has an excellent crispy crunch along with a smooth, creamy hazelnut filling. It’s delicious. “It’s so light and it’s the perfect amount of hazelnut,” said Sporked staff writer Jordan Myrick. “I also like that you can break it into little pieces” (it’s segmented). The Bueno has been around since 1990, and I’m honestly embarrassed I’ve neglected it for this long.

Credit: Merc / Walmart

Rating:

8/10

Sporks

crunch

Best Crispy

Crunch

We omitted straight-up plain chocolate bars from this tasting (honestly, does a Hershey bar stand a chance against a candy bar filled with caramel, peanut butter, etc.?), but Crunch was as close as we got to a basic bar. There’s something incredibly iconic about the taste of a Crunch bar, and the crispy, rice-y bite is still addictive after all these years. “It’s so simple, so wonderful, so retro,” said Justine. “It’s just a very subtle, very lovely candy bar.” Hard agree.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

8/10

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bubulubu

Best Fruity

Bubu Lubu

Do you remember those raspberry jelly rings made by the same company that makes halva and tahini and whatnot? Okay, even if you don’t, you’re in for a pleasant surprise with this soft, jammy, tangy bar. Hailing from Mexico, Bubu Lubu combines a layer of fruity jelly and a layer of squishy marshmallow beneath a thin, crisp dark chocolatey coating. It’s quite sweet, but sweet is fun and so is this bar’s squiggly shape. I also love how cheap these are—Amazon has a 24 pack for less than nine bucks.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

7.5/10

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zero

Best White Chocolate

Zero

Sporked editorial assistant Naajia Shukri might be the only person I know who thinks white chocolate is superior to regular chocolate, so I think the entire room may have been dubious when she endorsed this oddball bar in the silvery wrapper. “Maybe this is controversial, but I feel like a zero bar is everything a Snickers bar should be,” Naajia said, adding that wrapping it in white chocolate is a “power move.” Honestly, this combo of nutty nougat and white fudge is surprisingly delicious and so much less one-note than tried-and-true chocolate bars it beat out, like Snickers and Milky Way. Would it be better with chocolate? Maybe, but I think we’re better off embracing Zero for how totally unique it is.

Credit: Merc / Instacart

Rating:

7.5/10

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payday bar

Best if You Hate Chocolate

PayDay

Ooh baby, were we dubious of this weird, naked candy bar. Where’s the chocolate, dudes? Well, if you’re sensitive to or just plain dislike chocolate, PayDay is a surprisingly delicious and satisfying option. Composed of lightly salted peanuts pressed into a sugary, chewy caramel core, this thing has the Depression Era written all over it. But classics stick around for a reason, even the unlikely ones.

Rating:

7.5/10

Sporks

The rest of what we tasted: Idaho Spud, Fruity Pebbles Candy Bar, 100 Grand, Three Musketeers, Baby Ruth, Reese’s Outrageous, Reese’s Fast Break, Milky Way, Milky Way Midnight, Snickers, Charleston Chew, Heath, Toblerone, Mr. Goodbar

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About the Author

Gwynedd Stuart

Gwynedd Stuart, Sporked’s managing editor, is an L.A.-based writer and editor who spends way, way too much time at the grocery store. She’s never met an Old El Paso taco or mozzarella stick she didn’t like.

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  • Ok Lindt white chocolate bar is farrrrrr superior to the zero. I do love whatchamacallit but 5th Avenue is sooo highly underrated. I love Charleston Chew frozen so yummy.

    Reply
    • We left out bars that were JUST chocolate, so that’s why Lindt wasn’t part of the tasting—but agree that their white chocolate is super good!

      Reply
  • I’m so triggered right now lol

    Reply
    • Oop!

      Reply
  • Butterfingers aren’t even coated in REAL chocolate. Try a Clark bar.

    Reply
  • I take exception to your placement of the Kit Kat at number 5. It easily outclasses trash candy bars like Butterfinger and Twix. In any case, I like to eat mine chilled, right out of the fridge. I snap each mini-bar off and eat it whole as God intended, making sure that the heat of my hands does not take the chill off the chocolate. I like my Kit Kat with a little snap to it.

    Reply
  • whatchamacallit did not have the caramel originally. it was just the peanut butter crisped rice with chocolate. i feel it was a better bar then. the caramel was an addition i’d say around early-mid 90s

    Reply
  • I feel so seen!! Whatchamacallit was my go-to candy bar for years, my DQ Blizzards were always Butterfinger, and I just recently discovered the deliciousness that is a Take 5. It hurts to say this but I think your rankings are an improvement over the candy taste tests on Good Mythical Morning! (Sorry, Rhett & Link! Still love you!)

    Reply
  • Where Feastables?

    Reply
  • This list sucks, SeaSalt MilkyWay, SeaSalt Twix, Strawberry KitKat, White Reeses & White Snickers should have all made the list. White Snickers should have been #1 they are sooooo good that I have gained 5 pounds since I first had one 6 months ago! Geez, people from So-Cal…

    Reply
  • I was in Germany once and bought a jar of Hazelnut cream, it was the Kinder Bueno filling… I never had such a wonderful spread on my bread!

    Reply
  • Kit Kat and Crunch bars will always rain supreme for me. Even the little Krackel bars that came in the Hershey’s Halloween mix bag were pretty great. I love a simple bar with some bonus crunchy factor!

    Reply