Tootsie Rolls and Tootsie Pops usually bring back fond memories of childhood. But just because you're all grown up, it doesn't mean you have to let go of these sweet-flavored treats. With a variety of fruity and other flavorings, the Tootsie Roll company has a candy for everyone.
The original Tootsie Roll, with its mix of chocolate and caramel flavoring, was first sold and marketed in 1908. For a treat to have 115 years of staying power, it has to be doing something right. The company originally produced just five lollipop flavors — chocolate, cherry, orange, grape, and raspberry — but now, between seasonal and new flavors of Tootsie Pops, as well as new fruit-flavored Tootsie Rolls known as Fruit Rolls, the company has dozens of candies you can buy. That makes it hard to even know what to pick in the first place.
To help you, we tried and tested some of the most popular Tootsie Pop and Roll flavors, then ranked each of them based on their taste, from worst to best. Of course, some people will disagree with our rankings — we know there are furious online discussions, for example, about whether the Chocolate Tootsie Pop is the best or worst flavor ever made — but here is our take on things.
Read more: 25 Chocolate Brands, Ranked Worst To Best
Lime Tootsie Roll
In 1971, the Tootsie Roll company produced a line of rolls known as Flavor Rolls, likely made to compete with popular Starburst candy at the time. Today, they have been renamed Fruit Rolls or Fruit Chews and come in a handful of flavors. However, they haven't quite reached the level of popularity of a lot of the Tootsie Pops. The flavor of the Lime Tootsie Roll, for example, is so immediately overpowering in a bad way that it puts the candy right at the bottom of our list. Instead of a fresh lime flavor, this roll has a vague chemical note that hits the tongue in all the wrong ways, making it hard to even taste, let alone finish.
Fruit Punch Tootsie Pop
This particular flavor took us a while to locate, as it's not sold in that many places. If all else fails, you can get it directly from the Tootsie Roll website. However, you probably won't be in a hurry to order some any time soon, as the taste isn't all that great. The flavor is reminiscent of a very artificial version of fruit punch without any actual alcohol. There's probably a reason this Tootsie Pop is harder to find and not very well known; the mixture of a slight apple flavor, a medicinal flavor, and a truly unplaceable mix of other tastes makes the Fruit Punch Tootsie Pop seem more fake than fruity.
Lemon Tootsie Pop
Somehow too subtle, too sour, and too artificial at the same time, this is a Tootsie Pop flavor you don't want to lick more than a couple of times after first tasting it. Instead of packing the punch, flavor, and sourness of a lemon drop, the Lemon Tootsie Pop feels like a pale imitation of lemon flavor, without much else added in to balance it out. Lastly, when you finally get to the center of the Tootsie Pop and hit the caramel and chocolate-flavored roll, the taste clashes strongly with the surrounding lemon lollipop.
Lemon Tootsie Roll
The Lemon Tootsie Roll is inoffensive enough but also just bland. It will take a real stretch of the imagination to find the lemon flavor in here, so it mostly just feels like biting on a slightly sweet, chewy nothing. Because of the strange particular texture of a Tootsie Roll, having to chew something repeatedly that is so relatively hard without feeling a ton of flavor released in each bite is disappointing. Overall, it must be said that the Tootsie Roll Fruit Chews aren't very popular or successful for a reason, so most of them will be ranked somewhere between the middle and the bottom of this list.
Mango Tootsie Pop
The first taste you get of the Mango Tootsie Pop is very subtle and delicate; you will barely be able to tell what flavor you're actually tasting until you roll it around in your mouth a little bit. At that point, you will definitely get a taste of mango, but perhaps not exactly what you're expecting. There's a reason why mango is a delicious fruit but not that popular a candy flavor; without the freshness and juiciness, an actual mango fruit delivers, the taste alone can feel kind of ... off. You won't find any sourness in this lollipop, but not much of a delicious flavor either.
Grape Tootsie Pop
This may be a controversial choice, as not only is the Grape Tootsie Pop one of the original five flavors, but a fair amount of Tootsie Pop fans seem to like it. Even though there is definitely a light, juicy grape flavor in the lollipop, there is another strong flavor mixed in that's more akin to the taste of cough medicine than anything resembling the fresh taste of a grape. However, there's no denying that plenty of people love them, so this just might be one of the rare polarizing Tootsie Pop flavors. You will either love it or hate it.
Cherry Tootsie Roll
Subtler than the Cherry Tootsie Pop, the Cherry Tootsie Roll has a sweet quality but, unfortunately, still gets overpowered by medicinal artificial cherry flavors. In fact, because it has a milder fruity taste, the medicinal notes are even more prominent than in the lollipop. The end result is a somewhat bland candy reminiscent of cherry but with a slight chemical taste that keeps cropping up as you chew it, which is why the Cherry Tootsie Roll ranks lower than the Cherry Tootsie Pop on this list. That being said, it's still one of the better Fruit Chews you can buy in stores.
Banana Tootsie Pop
This lollipop has the faint taste of a good old fruity banana. Unfortunately, though all Tootsie Pops are flavored artificially, the overt artificiality of this flavor is, once again, a little too evident in the taste of this lollipop. Slightly sweet, without the sourness or tartness of other Pops, the Banana Tootsie Pop has a subtle enough flavor that you can easily suck on for a while without being overpowered by it, but it's not much to write home about. Also, when we say "subtle," we mean it; if you were given this lollipop in a blind taste test, it's unlikely you'd be able to guess the flavor correctly.
Vanilla Tootsie Roll
This roll is a little strange because you almost get a hint of chocolate in what is supposed to be a Vanilla Tootsie Roll, but it definitely has a lot of vanilla packed in there as well. The roll has a subtle flavor you will barely notice at first until you keep chewing, and the creamy nature of the candy becomes more apparent.
If you can imagine how the smell of an ice cream shop would taste in candy form, you will get an idea of the Vanilla Tootsie Roll flavor, but only if you think about the byproducts the ice cream-making process gives off, not the actual delicious gelato itself. Overall, it's an average Tootsie Roll; not great, not terrible, and without any incredibly distinct flavors.
Green Apple Tootsie Pop
Though it tastes fresh and crisp upon first lick, the Green Apple Tootsie Pop then leaves a strange, flavorless, yet sour feeling on your tongue that sticks around for a while. Not to mention, we know that apples have subtle flavors to begin with, but you really have to try hard to locate the apple taste of this Tootsie Pop. However, it's still an overall palate-cleansing, clean-feeling taste, so if you prefer crispness to sweetness in your candy, the Green Apple Tootsie Pop may be the one for you. It's not very easy to find in stores, so try your luck at your local supermarkets and candy shops, but if you can't find it, you can always order it from the Tootsie Roll website.
Chocolate Tootsie Pop
One of the most polarizing flavors on this list, people seem to either love or hate this Chocolate Tootsie Pop. It has a slightly sweet taste with some chocolate notes (though not very strong ones) that complement the Tootsie Roll at the center of the lollipop quite well, but it won't really satisfy most chocolate lovers' sweet tooth. If you're expecting something that calls to mind the richness or deep flavor of real chocolate, you may be disappointed, as that luxurious mouthfeel is replaced by the artificial sweetness of manufactured candy. However, it's still a good enough lollipop overall, and when you lick to the center of this Tootsie Pop, the change in flavor won't be too noticeable.
Original Tootsie Roll
The Original Tootsie Roll has been around for over 100 years, yet it is rarely considered one of the best of the bunch. In fact, many people who haven't had one for a while make the mistake of remembering the flavor as pure chocolate when it's more of a combination of caramel, chocolate, and taffy flavors. Though the candy has enough sticky, chocolaty, and caramel goodness to enable it to melt in your mouth in a delicious way — after a lot of chewing, thanks to the harder texture of the rolls — the presentation creates expectations of richer chocolate that never materialize when you're actually eating it, leaving those who taste it a little disappointed.
Orange Tootsie Roll
Take a bite of this tart, slightly sour, orange-flavored roll, and enjoy the best of the Tootsie Roll Fruit Rolls by far, in our opinion. The Orange Tootsie Roll is the only fruity roll whose flavor complements the aggressive chewing you have to do in order to access the roll's taste. Bright, tangy, and succulent, the Orange Tootsie Roll's flavor lasts relatively long as you make your way through it until it's almost completely melted in your mouth at the very end. However, even the best Fruit Chew ranks well below the best Tootsie Pop flavors, so this list still has a long way to go.
Blue Raspberry Tootsie Pop
Considering most people don't know what a blue raspberry should taste like, as it's not a naturally occurring fruit, this lollipop doesn't have many specific expectations to live up to for the most part. The deep turquoise blue color and flavor are somewhat reminiscent of a sports drink; it's similarly loaded with sweetness and a sugary yet artificial taste you can't quite place. However, it's not a bad flavor; it's just somewhat artificial. The Blue Raspberry Tootsie Pop isn't all that common, so you may have to search a little harder to find it. Make sure you wash off the bright blue streak from your tongue right after you're done eating it.
Cherry Tootsie Pop
You will immediately taste a really fruity flavor when you first lick a Cherry Tootsie Pop, as opposed to some of the overly fake-tasting flavors of other pops on the list. The cherry taste is on the milder side, not overly sour or sweet, and quite well-balanced. That being said, there is still a slight medicinal quality to this pop that, unfortunately, seems to affect most cherry-flavored candy. So, while this lollipop is, indeed, delicious, and many Tootsie Pop comparison lists tend to rank it as one of their favorites, it ranks a little lower down on this particular list because of its subtle cough syrup tinge.
Blackberry Tootsie Pop
Bearing a mild, fruity flavor, the Blackberry Tootsie Pop definitely calls to mind a general berry taste. It doesn't quite have the overt tartness and sweetness of an actual blackberry, nor any of that fruit's earthier tones, but the lollipop also doesn't feel like its overloading you on sugar. The Blackberry Tootsie Pop has a generally fine flavor that's pretty balanced, not overwhelmingly sour or sweet; tasty, but not delicious enough to merit top ranking. This lollipop is a little harder than most to track down in stores, so you may have to order it online or get another similar flavor — Wild Black Berry Tootsie Pop.
Orange Tootsie Pop
The Orange Tootsie Pop is fruity, citrusy, slightly tart and sweet, and definitely bursting with orange flavor, though the taste, as with most Tootsie Pops and lollipops in general, is a little on the artificial side. However, if the slightly fake flavor doesn't bother you, it's a delicious lollipop in addition to being one of the original five flavors and frequently named a customer favorite online. Best of all, this is one of the few lollipops that really does work well with the chocolate and caramel flavored center, as orange complements the inner chocolaty Tootsie Roll quite well.
Watermelon Tootsie Pop
Some Tootsie Pops seem almost like a mixture of others, or the halfway point between them, at least. Combining the subtle sweetness of the Strawberry Tootsie Pop with the crisp flavor of a Green Apple lollipop, the Watermelon Tootsie Pop has a sweet, tart, fresh flavor that will feel delicious and clean in your mouth. The Watermelon lollipop also has an interesting aftertaste that hangs around in your mouth, delivering a little fruity sour note after the initial sweet lick. This combination of opposing flavors creates a great taste in your mouth, which ends up being less fruit-focused and more refreshing overall.
Raspberry Tootsie Pop
Many people have a preference for any and all red-colored Tootsie Pops, and the Raspberry Tootsie Pop definitely lives up to this reputation with a smooth, balanced taste that is equal parts sweet and tart. It's somehow reminiscent of a cross between the Cherry and Strawberry Tootsie Pops, featuring bolder flavors than the strawberry without the slight medicinal aftertaste of the cherry. Now, some people may be incensed that we ranked the Raspberry Pop higher than the Cherry Pop in the first place, but these rankings are, of course, subjective to some degree, so we welcome differing opinions.
With a bit more tartness and, of course, kiwi flavor mixed in than the regular mildly sweet Strawberry Tootsie Pop, this particular lollipop flavor may make your mouth pucker a bit, but it's still pretty tasty. The two fruit flavorings of the Strawberry Kiwi Tootsie Pop complement each other quite nicely, though surprisingly, the kiwi can overpower the sweetness of the strawberry at times. This may not be expected in a comparison of the two actual fruits, but the strawberry flavor is a lot subtler in candy than it would be in a real strawberry. Overall, this is the best combination Tootsie Pop we've tried.
Tangerine Tootsie Pop
The Tangerine Tootsie Pop is one of the most flavorful lollipops on this list, as it replicates the citrusy and slightly sour taste of tangerine very well, though, as usual, the artificiality of the taste is also prominent. The taste may be a little overpowering at first, but the more you suck on this lollipop, the more easily the flavor settles in your mouth. If you love tangerines, this is one of the most accurately flavored Tootsie Pops, so you'll be sure to enjoy it. Since it is not one of the original five flavors, you may have to try a little harder to find this lollipop on its own, but it's included in a lot of packs with mixed Tootsie Pops.
Pomegranate Tootsie Pop
The Pomegranate Tootsie Pop is one of the rare non-original Tootsie Pop flavors that has as many fans as flavors like Orange and Cherry. It has a rich, not overly sour or sweet flavor that provides a perfect balance of pomegranate taste you can keep licking for a while. The candy also leaves a nice aftertaste of the fruit on the tongue and perhaps a little bit of a red stain, but it's worth it for one of the best Tootsie Pop flavors out there. No wonder so many candy lovers online are obsessed with this pomegranate treat.
Strawberry Tootsie Pop
The subtly flavored Strawberry Tootsie Pop is one of the best available lollipops, so we put it right at the top of this list. The lollipop consistently delivers a mild, sweet, and delicious strawberry taste into your mouth with every lick. More reminiscent of strawberry-flavored gum than the actual fruit, it nevertheless is one of the most popular flavors available in stores. As opposed to other more tangy or fruity Tootsie Pops, you can lick the Strawberry Tootsie Pop forever without feeling too much sourness, overly artificial flavor, or overpowering tastes that take away from your enjoyment of this treat.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.