7 Ways To Taste The Rainbow Outside Of The Skittles Flagship Candy

We may receive a commission on purchases made from links.

While there's been talk of banning Skittles in California and Skittles are already banned in some other countries, more than 70 billion of the tiny rainbow candies are churned out each year, so it's safe to say they're still pretty popular. There's nothing revolutionary about the five flavors you'll find in every classic bag — strawberry, orange, lemon, grape, and green apple — but that hasn't stopped a couple of generations from developing such fierce brand loyalty that the Skittles name and flavors have been licensed to plenty of products beyond the original flagship candy.

Despite confusingly popular theories that all Skittles are actually the same flavor with different dyes and scents to trick your brain, the company says there really is more than one flavor of Skittles. But what's more interesting than how many flavors there are is how many varieties there are, and we're not just talking about different flavor packages like Tropical and Wild Berry. There are plenty of other edible goodies using the Skittles name to bring you an entire array of rainbow delights from powdered and liquid to frozen and even freeze-fried. There are also Skittles-scented candles, there have been Skittles-flavored lip glosses, and there is even a bed that dispenses Skittles that was manufactured for one lucky owner, but we're focusing strictly on those products you can safely eat. In no particular order, here are seven other ways to taste the rainbow outside of the Skittles flagship candy.

Skittles Freezer Pops

There's nothing quite like the simple pleasure of a freezer pop on a hot afternoon. After all, they're basically just juice, soft frozen into a quick-melting ice stick for cool flavor with no fuss. What's not to love? Since there's really nothing to this treat, freezer pops are typically quite inexpensive, sold by the hundred for under ten bucks. Skittles is in on the freezer pop game, too, but the story is a little different with these premium pops. The ones come in the same five flavors as Original Skittles but, though they're shorter and slimmer than most freezer pops, they still cost about four times more than alternatives like Fla-Vor-Ice pops (and those come with more flavors, too).

While purple Skittles taste different in the UK and Sweden than they do elsewhere, it turns out that a purple freezer pop is a purple freezer pop, and there's nothing especially Skittles about it. Or any of the flavors, really. They all essentially taste like generic freeze pops. The most fun you'll find with Skittles freezer pops is through the familiar, colorful packaging, but you'll need to toss that right away. If you try freezing Skittles freezer pops in the red box, against the product's recommendation, they won't freeze. Yes, we've been there.

Skittles Gummies

It's hard to mess up gummy candy and don't worry—Skittles hasn't. In fact, Skittles Gummies are one of the best Skittles alternatives you'll find on the market today, at least in our humble opinion. Perhaps that's because they're made directly by the brand itself instead of a licensing agreement or adaptation. While some of the flavored products on this list taste little like actual Skittles, Skittles Gummies do. The change in texture is a fun variation for all, but especially welcome for those who don't love the classic candy's tough-chew texture. Even better, as far as gummy textures go, Skittles Gummies are a nice middle ground between too firm and too mushy, offering just the right resistance for easy snacking.

Skittles Gummies come in the five class flavors of Original Skittles candies, and the resealable pouch is a helpful addition. At 12 ounces, it's a considerably larger package than a packet of classic Skittles, so you won't want to finish these all in one sitting (or maybe you do . . . we're not judging). While we think Haribo is still home to the best gummy flavors, Skittles makes a surprisingly strong effort with their contribution.

Freeze-dried Skittles

If you've been anywhere near culinary TikTok lately, you already know this, but freeze-drying candy is all the rage right now, and Skittles seem to be everyone's favorite candidate for this curious new craze. If you want to try this yourself at home, you're going to need to spring for a freeze-drying machine, and you aren't likely to find one for less than a few thousand dollars, but a quick Amazon search reveals a couple of newer companies specializing in the freeze-dried candy niche. And that includes Skittles, of course.

While you won't find Skittles specifically mentioned in the product name in most cases, presumably for legal reasons, a glance at the ingredients list reveals that real Skittles are used for these products, and you'll notice the signature S on each piece, too. The draw here seems to be the crunch reaped from each bite, and we admit it is quite satisfying. Freezing some foods can zap a lot of their inherent flavor (we're looking at you, fresh fruit), but freeze-dried Skittles retain enough of their flavor to remain noticeably Skittles. After digging into a bag, we totally understand TikTok's obsession, and we highly recommend these.

Skittles Liquid Water Enhancer

In an effort to drink more water and keep your body hydrated, you may have turned to liquid water enhancers already. If you're not yet familiar, those are the little squeeze bottles of flavor drops you add to your glass or water bottle to make plain water more appealing. And guess what — you can flavor your water to taste like Skittles, too. Somewhat.

Skittles Liquid Water Enhancer comes in three varieties you'll recognize from classic Skittles candy packages: Original (the red one), Tropical (the blue one), and Wild Berry (the purple one). As for which of the five flavors from each themed bag makes its way into its corresponding water enhancer bottle — that remains a mystery. Each 1.62-ounce bottle claims to contain enough for 24 glasses of water (8 ounces each), but the directions simply state to add one squeeze per glass. How much is in a squeeze is another mystery, so we're a little dubious of this directive to begin with. Finding the right squeeze for you will be a matter of trial and error, and may waste the entire bottle before you get there. Worse, we don't find the resulting flavored water very appealing from any of the three varieties. Less sweet and flavorful than candy, and too sweet and strangely flavored for water, we're not sure why this exists. It's certainly not refreshing.

Skittles Singles To Go

Continuing with the water enhancement market, powder packets are equally popular options for a quick upgrade, especially for a bottle of water. While the idea isn't new—plenty of drinks from Kool-Aid to iced teas and lemonades have been made from powders for decades—the single serving is a more recent phenomenon ideal for water bottles, travel, and time-crunched lifestyles in general. We're happy to report that Skittles Singles To Go is an improvement over Skittles Liquid Water Enhancer, but we're still not quite in love.

While there's significantly more flavor in Singles To Go, and it's far easier to regulate your serving size, the flavor in these is perhaps too strong. Then again, if you're in love with Skittles enough to be adding it to your water, that may be just perfect for you. And, though the resulting water tastes extraordinarily sweet, it's a zero-sugar product. One aspect we do find strange here, though, is that the Original variety contains packets with only four of the five Original Skittles flavors. There's no lemon powder packet. As most other Skittles spin-offs tend to offer all five flavors, we're confused why lemon got the shaft here. Similarly, the Wild Berry Singles To Go are also missing a flavor: Wild Cherry.

Skittles cotton candy

Before we get into this one, allow us to assure you we are cotton candy lovers, and we are also Skittles lovers. That said, Skittles Cotton Candy lovers we are most certainly not. Cotton candy is so easy to produce that you can do it yourself at home with the simple purchase of one of the best cotton candy makers, and you've seen plenty of vendors spinning this simple sugar concoction at street fairs, on boardwalks, and just about anywhere festive street snacks are sold. There's nothing to the process and there's not all that much you can do to the flavor, though color is easily manipulated. Still, Skittles has managed to ruin cotton candy with this one.

To begin, there's absolutely nothing Skittles about the flavor of this cotton candy (see a moment ago, where mentioned there's not much you can do with cotton candy flavor). The color is more vibrant than traditionally airy pink cotton candy, and that certainly lends a visual element of candy intrigue, but we guarantee you wouldn't say "Skittles" if we were blind-tasting this too-dense product. Worse, it leaves a bizarrely bitter aftertaste that smacks more of chemical than confection.

Skittles Candy Canes

Yes, candy canes are a seasonal treat typically found only around the Christmas holiday, but those who are willing to shell out more than usual can find them available online year-round, including specialty varieties. Skittles Candy Canes are one of those specialty varieties, and we love them. Of course, savvy shoppers will stock up while they're in season, but we find these well worth a splurge any time of year.

While you might expect a box to contain a couple canes each of the five Original Skittles flavors, you'll be pleasantly surprised to find every cane containing all five flavors in one. Beyond the taste appeal, this also makes Skittles Candy Canes among the most beautiful varieties on the market, and certainly adds to the appeal for those who find traditional peppermint canes a bit boring. At 9 grams of sugar each, you're looking at 18% of your daily recommended sugar intake in a single cane so we encourage you to go slow with these, but that's not unique to Skittles Candy Canes. In fact, traditional candy canes are typically worse, so give yourself a pat on the back for choosing Skittles and taste the rainbow with a clear conscience.