The Untold Truth Of Sour Patch Kids

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In grocery stores all across the world, if you make it to the candy aisle, you'll be met with an almost unlimited choices of treats such as chocolate, hard candies, and fruity, fun gummies. However, you don't always want something that's just sweet. Sometimes, you want something with a surprising kick to it, and one of the candies that does this better than the rest is Sour Patch Kids. While this chewy candy looks like it's covered in sugar, biting into it will leave you with puckered lips ... until that sweetness kicks in and the flavor experience completely transforms. 

Sour Patch Kids somehow manages to strike that perfect balance between sweet and sour, something that many other candies have attempted to replicate, such as the rainbow Airheads strips you'll find at movie theaters, but can't quite surpass. There is so much behind these small, smiling sour candies — and not just it's sweet interior. So, lets dive into the untold truth of Sour Patch Kids.

Sour Patch started out in Canada

Many popular candies have a long and storied history behind them. Hershey's has been around since 1886, while several other well-known old-school candies also go back decades. Sour Patch Kids, on the other hand, is a relatively new candy concoction, debuting in Canada in the 1970s (via Bulk Candy Store). According to CBS New York, the friendly shaped sour candy was created by Frank Galatolie for the candy company Jaret International. (Galatolie passed away on October 21, 2016 at the age of 74.). Bulk Candy Store notes that Sour Patch Kids didn't make their way down to the United States until 1985. 

Currently, Sour Patch Kids is one of many food brands under the Mondelez International umbrella (the American snack company owns everything from Ritz crackers and Philadelphia cream cheese to Chips Ahoy and Oreo cookies). As of 2021, per Chicago-based research firm IRI, its the top selling jelly candy in the nation (via Candy Industry). The success of Sour Patch Kids proves that you don't need the longest, richest history to be an iconic snack or treat. 

Sour Patch Kids was originally called Mars Men

While the candy we now know as Sour Patch Kids dates back to the 1970s, its current name wasn't coined until the following decade. When it was first produced, the sugary, sour candy was called "Mars Men." This isn't because of any relation the brand had to the Mars Confectionary. Instead, it was due to the fact that the candy was originally branded as tiny aliens, specifically Martians. According to, Mars Men were produced in the shape of Martians in order to build off of the fascination that many people had with space at the time of its creation.

However, when Cabbage Patch Kids became a toy sensation in the early-'80s, the sour candy rebranded itself in a more friendly, human shape. The brand also used the original creator's son, Scott Galatolie, as the mascot, with a cartoonish rendition of the boy with bold blond hair, and a shocked expression on his face, as if he just tasted something sour. Despite only being around for only a few decades, the mascot has changed several times, including the addition of a young girl around 1992 (via Snack History). The current mascot, a cartoon version of the actual candy, took the reigns in 2010.  

This is what makes the candy sour

If you've ever popped a handful of Sour Patch Kids into your mouth, then you've experienced the same mouth-puckering flavor that you'll find in tart citrus and other sour fruits. This is because what makes sour candy sour is a combination of acids that provide that tangy taste we know and love. According to the candy's website, Sour Patch Kids contains both tartaric and citric acids. While many people are familiar with citric acids from eating oranges or enjoying a spritz of lemon, tartaric acid naturally occurs in a variety of fruits including grapes, cherries, and peaches (via Science Direct).

So how exactly does the magic happen? A pastry chef enlisted by Bon Appétit tried to recreate Sour Patch Kids by boiling water, sugar, and corn syrup, and separately blooming gelatin mix and fruit juice. Then, she stirs in pectin before adding this second mixture into the previous syrup. After this, she adds citric acid and flavoring before she chills her candy, molds it, soaks the candies, lets them chill again, then covers them in an outer layer of a citric acid and fruit flavored powder. While we don't know if this is exactly how the original Sour Patch candies are made, this method gives you a general idea of the process.  

You can eat Sour Patch Kids for breakfast

When you wake up in the morning, one of the quickest, simplest, and most filling things to have is a nice hearty bowl of granola or cereal.  Whether it's something healthier like Honey Nut Cheerios, or something a bit more colorful and sugary, there's a cereal out there for everyone, no matter how old you are.

Not all cereals are created equal, however, and some options like Reese's Puffs, seem better suited for dessert than breakfast. Sour Patch Kids Breakfast Cereal, courtesy of Post, falls into this category. The design on the box resembles the candy's vibrant packaging, while the cereal itself is the same colors as the candy, and almost in the same "kid" shape. This cereal isn't the most well-reviewed of choices (perhaps not surprisingly), earning a lackluster 3.8 rating on Amazon. One reviewer, who deems the cereal "just okay" sums it up as a "Weird gimmick cereal that I had to try. It's essentially sour Fruit Loops." While we wouldn't generally have this sour, sugary, and absolutely wild cereal for breakfast, we could definitely see ourselves pouring out a bowl after a long night out or as a dare.

Sour Patch Kids can be found in the freezer aisle

One of the greatest things about a bowl of ice cream is the infinite ways that you're able to customize it. Whether you want chocolate, vanilla, or pistachio, you can top your favorite flavor with anything, from a chocolate fudge drizzle, whipped cream, and, of course, candy. Putting a handful of Sour Patch Kids on an ice cream sundae is nothing new. Many people find that the sour kick of the candy pairs wonderfully with the consistent sweetness of the dairy dessert. While it's also great to put on the frozen dessert, Sour Patch also has created several frozen products under their name, and with their candy in the products.

Sour Patch Kids have been associated with multiple frozen treats, including ice pops, dessert bars, and our personal favorite, Sour Patch Kids Light Ice Cream and Sorbet. The pint consists of a light vanilla ice cream, a fresh lemon sorbet, a "redberry swirl," and, of course, bits of the sour candy embedded throughout. The ice cream itself looks extremely similar to a birthday cake flavor. If you like Sour Patch Kids with your ice cream, then this dessert is super convenient.

Sour Patch Kids teamed with Chips Ahoy on a cookie collaboration

When you think of popular store bought cookies, the first two brands that come to mind are most likely Oreos and Chips Ahoy. Of these two, the traditional Chips Ahoy might strike some as the more classic cookie of the pair, being a sweet, decadent, and crumbly chocolate chip cookie. Like Oreo, however, there are many different flavors of Chips Ahoy to choose from, such as more chewy variants, or flavors with candy, such as Reese's Peanut Butter and, you guessed it, a Sour Patch Kids Chips Ahoy Cookie.

The limited edition cookies are made with colorful chocolate chips as well as small bits of the Sour Patch Kids candy. These baked goods are perfect for anyone who loves both sour candy and cookies. In January 2022, the Sour Patch Kids Twitter account hinted at a possible future collaboration with Oreo, and while the image of the proposed cookie fusion includes a disclaimer, "This pack is not real," we hope that one day it will be. (As we mentioned earlier, Sour Patch Kids, Chips Ahoy, and Oreo are all owned by Mondalez International.) Here's to hoping that the two brands come together and make something delicious soon.

There is even a Sour Patch Kids Pizza

At this point, it's almost as if you could throw Sour Patch Kids on top of everything, and it would make it better. Even more surprising than their cereal or ice cream is a Sour Patch Pizza courtesy of Chuck E. Cheese. According to FastFoodPress, the pizza, which was introduced over the summer of 2021, thankfully falls into the dessert category (this is not a pineapple on pizza situation). It is small, probably enough for one person to eat whole, and topped with a sugary glaze icing, strawberry frosting, and bits of Sour Patch Kids candy on top. 

While isn't as atrocious as sticking the sour candies on top of a cheese pizza, it isn't the first thing we'd think of when deciding how to elevate our Sour Patch Kids experience. Surprisingly, some Redditors claim that if given the chance, they'd try this pizza, and wouldn't object to the fact that it would be really sugary and sour. 

Sour Patch Kids offers a selection of beauty and bath products

While we often have crumbs or sugar on our faces after finishing a box or pack of candy, we generally wouldn't parade ourselves around with the remains of our snacks on our faces like makeup, not even as some sort of crazy fashion statement. Most food-related brands have merchandise they sell along with their products, such as Jolly Ranchers pillows and scented candles, or more often than not, apparel, like a sweatshirt or a pair of pants. Sour Patch Kids also has some scented candles and cute plushies (shaped like the candy), but they surprisingly also have a bunch of beauty and bath products for sale on their website.

Not only do they offer brightly colored beauty sponges, but Sour Patch Kids also has a bunch of lip balms and glosses. Some of the surprising items you can purchase are a watermelon-scented Continuous Setting Mist (part of their collaboration with the beauty brand Morphe) and watermelon-scented bath bombs. While we'd certainly expect a brand to get their name out their through food collaborations and merchandise, we did not see this candy inspired make-up and bath accessory line as something that would happen, though we wouldn't mind trying to relax in a sudsy tub with the sweet aroma of watermelon Sour Patch Kids.

Sour Patch Kids partnered with Olivia Rodrigo

Unlike Sour Patch Kids candy, there's nothing sour about the music of Olivia Rodrigo. Her songs such as "drivers license" and "good 4 u" are played on repeat by her fans all around the world, and despite being relatively new to the scene, Rodrigo's name is already known by millions of music lovers.

Considering the title of her 2021 debut album — "Sour" — a collaboration with Sour Patch Kids seemed inevitable. According to Distractify, in conjunction with the album's release, Sour Patch Kids Twitter announced a contest to win a limited edition Rodrigo custom mix that featured purple Sour Patch Kids (a nod to the color of her album cover). They were also exclusively sold at the flagship Sour Patch Kids store in New York. Fans lucky enough to grab a box were able to kick back and listen to the singer's album while popping the purple, lip-puckering candy into their mouths.

One music collaboration went particularly sour

Sour Patch has made a lot of noise in the past — and not just the good kind of noise. Back in 2015, Sour Patch Kids bought a house in Austin, Texas for an entire year (via KXAN). This building on Waller Street wasn't just any normal house, though: It was a "Patch House," in which musicians could stay while traveling, as long as they posted on social media about the house and the Sour Patch Kids brand. While this seemed like a great deal for the musicians, the residents of the Waller Street area weren't so sweet on the idea.

According to Austin Culture, several neighbors complained about the noise coming from the Patch House and the disruption that it caused to the community. Many residents felt as though the set up would be better suited for a busier part of town, while one local threatened legal action, arguing that in the Eastern Austin area, "Per the current short-term rental ordinance, you're required to pay city and state hotel taxes for any rentals less than 30 days" (via KXAN). The neighbors seemed to be friendlier when the first Patch House opened in Brooklyn a year earlier (via Billboard).

Sour Patch Kids might have some beef with Markiplier

If you're familiar with YouTube culture, then you've likely heard the name Markiplier before. Born Mark Edward Fischbach he is an internet celebrity, and one of the most loved YouTubers on the planet, with millions of subscribers to his channel. While he's most well known for his gaming videos, particularly his "Five Nights at Freddy's" playthroughs, he also provides a wide variety of different content, from podcasts to food reviews, including videos centered around none other than Sour Patch Kids products.

The YouTube series "Sour Patch Saga" consists of seven videos where Markiplier reviews, discusses, and even disses Sour Patch Kids candy and other related products, like their ice cream and cereal. According to Markiplier, he adores sour things, and though he accidentally calls the candy "Cabbage Patch Kids" a lot, it's clear that he enjoys the candy (particularly the blue raspberry flavor), and that the brand enjoys poking fun at Markiplier's witty remarks about the "sourness" of the candy (As seen throughout the "Sour Patch Saga.") While he "cuts off his relationship" with the brand by the end of the series, we're sure that even Markiplier still enjoys a pack of Sour Patch Kids from time to time.

Be careful of drug-laced candies that look like Sour Patch Kids

One of the biggest concerns parents have when they take their kids trick-or-treating is unfortunately not the amount of sugar their kids are getting, or what they should take as a parent tax without their youngest noticing. Instead, the primary worry is whether or not the sugary sweets have been tampered with. This isn't something that people only have to worry about on Halloween, however, and kids should be warned about the dangers of taking candy from not only strangers, but even peers they run into at school. There are various methods that are used to entice people into consuming certain drugs, and Sour Patch Kids has unfortunately become associated with this. Some unsavory folks have from taking advantage of the brand's popularity and memorable look. 

According to WFLA, in 2015, officials found a drug similar to Flakka in a candy that looked eerily like the Sour Patch Kids candy, a likely intentional move to persuade young people to try the "candy," get hooked on the drug, and come back for more. So while the Sour Patch Kids official candy wasn't directly involved, it might be wise to be wary about the next random pack you come across.

Sour Patch Kids came to life in video game

Another area you might not expect the Sour Patch Kids brand to cover is video games. Released in 2011, "World Gone Sour" allows a player to control living, moving Sour Patch Kids who inhabit a human-sized world. The trailer for the game shows the Sour Patch Kids dodging giant angry pumpkins, and swinging across moving fans. This game allowed for Sour Patch Kids to work with more musical artists as well.

One of these prominent figures was Method Man, a rapper and actor who has also appeared on numerous shows, including "Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party." While this might not be as well known as Snoop Dogg's numerous antics, Method Man actually created a "World Gone Sour" song for the game, which has the Wu-Tang Clan member rapping about the crazy antics of the Sour Patch Kids. In the video itself, miniature Sour Patch Kids come to life and dance and mess around with the artist and backup dancers, until they are finally eaten.