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A definitive ranking of America’s most popular Halloween candies

I realize this is an extremely hot take, but I’m not a huge fan of Halloween.

I don’t like anything scary or spooky, dressing up stresses me out and it just isn’t my vibe in general.

The one thing I’ve always loved about the holiday, though, is the candy.

A website called (seems legit, I guess) recently conducted a survey to determine the most popular Halloween candies in the United States. The results were:

  1. Reese’s Cups

  2. Skittles

  3. M&Ms

  4. Starburst

  5. Hot Tamales

  6. Sour Patch Kids

  7. Hershey Kisses

  8. Snickers

  9. Tootsie Pops

  10. Candy corn

This list is fine, I guess. But, because I love a good ranking, I’ll be rearranging this list in the order I think it belongs.

10. Hot Tamales

Why are these number five on the list? I have yet to meet anyone who willingly chooses to eat Hot Tamales. Sorry if you’re one of those people, but I don’t understand you.

9. Tootsie Pops

Tootsie Pops aren’t ranked this low because I don’t like them – in fact, I like them quite a bit. 

But my parents always bought a giant bag of them on their weekly shopping trips, so I grew up eating them nearly every day. For that reason, they’re not very exciting to me.

8. Hershey Kisses

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I’m not a huge fan of solid chocolate in general – I prefer either fruity candy or chocolate with other ingredients in it. Hershey Kisses are cute, and I’ll eat them, but they’re pretty “meh.”

7. Reese’s Cups

I have a lot of controversial opinions, but the one that I receive the most backlash for is not liking peanut butter. I’ve always thought I might be slightly allergic to it because my throat always burns when I eat it, but that’s not the point of this column.

It’s hard to enjoy Reese’s Cups when you don’t like peanut butter, so that explains why they’re ranked this low. I still think they’re objectively better than the candies I ranked below them, though.

6. Snickers

I’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon: ask someone what their favorite chocolate candy is, and you’ll probably get a variety of answers (Twix, Kit Kats, Reese’s Cups, etc.)

Nobody ever says Snickers. I’m sure some Snickers-enthusiast out there is shaking their fist at me right now, but I’ve just never met one.

5. M&Ms

M&Ms are good! If I’m offered a fun-sized packet of them, I will gladly take it.

That said, they’re boring. They don’t excite me. That’s why they’re ranked squarely in the middle.

4. Skittles

Skittles are complicated for me – I think they’re really good, but they seem to have more potential for staleness than other candies. And there’s nothing more painful than biting a rock-hard Skittle.

3. Candy corn

I will take no dissenting opinions on this: candy corn is delicious, and people that hate on it are simply uncultured.

That said, only the OG candy corn is worth eating. I’m not sure why, but those pumpkin things make me nauseous (sorry, Lukas).

2. Starburst

Starburst came very, very close to topping my list. They have great flavor and texture, and they’re one of the few candies I actively seek out.

My one beef with Starburst (and I’ll admit, it’s a stupid beef) is that they’re individually-wrapped. I can’t stand having a huge pile of wrappers after eating a pack of Starburst, and that small detail separates number two from number one.

1. Sour Patch Kids

God, I love Sour Patch Kids. They aren’t excessively sour, they have great texture and they come in a wide variety of types and flavors (the watermelon ones? Elite.)

As a kid, I felt blessed every time someone tossed a packet of Kids into my pillowcase. As an adult, I spend questionable amounts of declining dollars on them at Emporium.

They are the best Halloween candy, and they’re also the most popular Halloween candy in my home state of Illinois. Coincidence? I think not.