Thursday, December 8, 2011

VeganSweets - Gourmet Caramels

I'm a bit of a caramel fanatic and am excited to see so many companies making vegan caramels now!  VeganSweets, the house-brand of the vegan shop, Pangea, just came out with their own version of gourmet caramels and I got ahold of some!

The first thing I noticed was their somewhat generic-looking packaging. All of their items are packaged in this way and I think it probably hurts their sales. If only they had a good graphic designer and marketing guru, I think their products would look so much better.  But, oh well, all that really matters is the taste, right?  I've had their chocolates before, which I reviewed here, and loved them so I had high hopes for the caramels.

Unfortunately, I was disappointed. These caramels started off okay as they are firm yet tender the way a caramel should be, but once you bit in, they changed dramatically. Under that firm shell was a chewy center, but not in a good way. It tasted like crystallized sugar and corn syrup, which is exactly what it is made of.  Considering it is a confection, the ingredients were pretty typical: beet sugar, soymilk, corn syrup, non-hydrogenated expeller-pressed natural oil blend, filtered water, pure salt, natural flavor derived from corn, soy protein, soy lecithin, lactic acid (non-dairy), beta-carotene, natural vanilla, molasses, and salt.  The corn syrup scared me at first, but then I realized it was not high-fructose, which is the type that is processed in an unnatural way. Corn syrup is actually quite common in confections and is okay in moderation.

These caramels aren't bad, but I think there are better products out there like Allison's Gourmet, JJ's Sweets Cocomels, and Chocolate Inspirations to name a few.

No comments: