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Unreal Candy That Tastes Real Good

Is it too early in the month to already start talking about candy?

I think not.

Especially when it’s candy that’s made with better, more healthful ingredients.

Unreal Brands candy is the brainchild of 15-year-old Nicky Bronner, who got so peeved one year that his parents had confiscated his Halloween loot that he decided to come up with new versions of his favorite candies that his parents would approve of.

Of course, it helps that his father is Boston entrepreneur Michael Bronner who founded Digitas, a digital direct marketing company, and Unpromise, which reinvented the loyalty program model. It also didn’t hurt that his father is friends with the likes of Tom Brady, Giselle Bundchen and Matt Damon, all of whom are now Unreal brand ambassadors.

After all, what’s not to like when the candies are made without the usual hydrogenated fat, corn syrup, artificial flavors and synthetic¬† colors. Instead, Unreal uses dairy from pasture-raised cows in New Zealand and California without antibiotics or added hormones. The organic palm kernel oil comes from a sustainable, organic plantation in Brazil. Cacao beans are sourced from farms in Ghana and Ecuador. Only natural colors are used, such as red from beets and blue from purple cabbage.

It took Nicky Bronner and Adam Melonas, an Australian chef who worked at a Michelin-starred Madrid restaurant, two years to perfect their first five candies, which mimic popular ones already on the market. There are dead-ringers for candy-coated chocolates (think M&Ms) with or without peanuts, chocolate caramel peanuts nougat bar (think Snickers), chocolate caramel nougat bar, and peanut butter cups (Reese’s, anyone?).

The first thing you’ll notice about the candy-coated chocolates are the colors. They are not as glossy and in more muted shades. The candy shells have nice crunch and the chocolate flavor is quite evident, more so than real M&Ms, which are sweeter tasting.

The peanut nougat bar is every bit as satisfying as a Snicker’s with sticky caramel and plenty of peanuts — just less cloying.

The peanut butter cups come sans paper wrappers. Again, they are less sweet, allowing a more roasty-toasty flavor of peanuts to come out.

Indeed, the candies on average have 30 percent less sugar, 60 percent more protein and 250 percent more fiber than their counterparts in the market.

Per serving, the candy coated chocolates have 190 calories; the candy coated chocolates with peanuts 200 calories; the chocolate caramel nougat bar 170 calories; the chocolate caramel peanuts nougat bar 200 calories; and the peanut butter cups 190 calories.

The Unreal candies, priced from 89 cents to $1.29 for individual packages, are available at CVS, Walgreens and other retailers nationwide.

More Better-For-You Candy: Natural Vines

And: Newman’s Own Organics Sour Licorice

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