Idaho Candy for the Weird


I recently returned from a trip to Boise, Idaho. Although born and (mostly) raised on the East Coast, I lived in Boise as a child and for a year after graduate school. My parents returned to Boise in 1996 and have been there ever since. I visit every few years and always make a stop at Idaho Candy.

Idaho Candy is one of the few remaining independent candy companies in the country, and you don’t get to stay independent making knockoff Snicker’s bars or pseudo Kit Kats. Their candy is different and kind of odd. I adore it.

The signature bar is a Spud, “a wonderful combination of a light cocoa flavored, soft marshmallow center drenched with a dark chocolate coating and then sprinkled with coconut (Sorry, no potato!)”. Coconuts are a little like mushrooms and olives, you either love them or hate them. I’m in the former camp for all. They also make candy coated peanuts and a huckleberry candy bar, the huckleberry being well known in the area.

The original factory still resides downtown, and you can buy candy and t-shirts in their small store front. It’s old-timey and delightful.

If you want to learn more about Idaho Candy, how candy is sold and made, and independent candy companies in the US, I’d recommend Candy Freak by Steve Almond. Almond is currently known as the co-host of Dear Sugars, a podcast with Cheryl Strayed. I’d recommend it as well.

Even the packaging on the candy is old timey. I wouldn’t want it updated. It will never compete with MM Mars or Hershey so why try.

 

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