I love Easter!

I really do love Easter. Bunnies, Chocolate, Spring, Daffodils, it’s near my birthday, Sun, Lighter & Longer Days. New Season meaning new life, new hope, new beginning. Plus Lents almost over so whatever you’ve given up you can scoff again. With that in mind I have done many of my scoffing before hand for this Easter Egg/Bunny review. I hope you enjoy this just as much as I enjoyed eating the chocoies & writing this. I’m now off to the gym to try & help my waste line.

 

Moo Free Chocolate – Easter Bunnycomb Egg

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So everyone knows I’m a fan of Moo Free Chocolate – why because I’m such a fan of Rice Milk & the hit the mail on the head with their recipes. Their website states ‘Hammy Hamster and her fellow Moo Free friends wanted a tasty alternative to milk chocolate, while the cows wanted to be set free to do their own thing. So they joined forces to create some scrummy dairy free chocolate made from rice milk for a smooth, creamy taste that anyone can enjoy.’ I really like their little characters. The representative for the Easter Bunnycomb Egg is Rosie Rabbit, she is a cutie! Their products are designed for children, but I still love them & I think most adults would too. When I turned Vegan I thought I would never have honeycomb again. I was wrong. The honeycomb is super tasty, there is loads of it in the egg & to make it even better the egg is good quality & thickness. Something that some Easter Eggs lack & you can feel hard done by. The Rice Milk as always is creamy, smooth, sweet but not sickly. Just right & the crunchy honeycomb gives the chocolate a great texture. These can be purchased Waitrose, Sainsburys, Morrisons, Holland & Barretts, or I purchase their Cheeky Monkey Orange Egg for my boyfriend on Vegan Town for £3.49 which isn’t too bad for an Easter Egg in my opinion. I would highly recommend this Easter Purchase. Perfect for kids or adults with a sweet tooth & especially if you want something different to a plain dark chocolate egg.

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Ingredients:  Cocoa solids* [42%] (cocoa butter, cocoa mass), sugar* [32%], rice powder* [18%], honeycomb toffee [10%] (sugar, glucose syrup, sodium bicarbonate), emulsifier (sunflower lecithin) & natural flavouring. *Organic ingredients. 90% of the agricultural ingredients are produced in accordance with the rules of organic production.

 

Plamil

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I have tried a different Plamil bars before. Their Dairy Free Mint Chocolate, the Organic Ginger Chocolate, their Organic Fairtrade Chocolate with Coconut Blossom Sugar Snack Bar (which is my favourite!) & Lots of This None of That Bar. Strangly enough I have never tried their Plamil plain milk chocolate bars before. So needless to say I was looking forward to something new again.

You can tell by what they say on their website that they are a great passionate company; ‘We passionately believe in producing food that is made to the highest standards possible. We are more than a ‘brand’, as we actually make products in our own factory, giving us control over every aspect of production resulting in tasty food for all… We think our customers should be able to enjoy food, knowing that every care is taken whilst in production, but also have complete assurance about both the purity of ingredients that goes in to making a product, as well as assurance that no other ingredient is present as well. Our products are made to the highest Vegan standards…’

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Plamil – Organic Dairy Free Milk Chocolate Alternative Bunny

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First let’s discuss the packaging of the Dairy Free Bunny Bars as they are both similar. The bunnies are cute, the packageing is bright & colourful. Great for catching the eye of kids & bunny lovers like me. I like the lamb too. He looks like he’s really shocked that the bar tastes so good maybe? When I opened the package of the Dairy Free Bunny Bar it smelt chocolatey, which is always a good sign, however it didn’t smell as sweet as other bars I have opened recently. I liked the chocolate bunny; he looks a little bit like a bunny soldier who would guard the bunny queen outside on Bounceingham Palace. I snapped his head off… Not very vegan I know. The snap was good & clean which I like with plain milk chocolate. To say it didn’t smell sweet I was really pleasantly surprise when I took a bite. I love rice milk as everyone knows. This was perfect, I normally find normal milk chocolate a little boring, in fact I would go as far as to say it’s possible my favourite plain Vegan Chocolate I have had. It was really tasty. Creamy, smooth, didn’t taste artificial, sweet but not too sweet. It was just right – not sickly at all… Which meant I could also the Sugar Free Dairy Bunny Bar too.

Ingredients: Cane Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Rice Powder (rice syrup powder, rice starch, rice flour) Cocoa Mass, Emulsifier-Sunflower Lecithin.

Plamil – No Added Sugar Expressions Alt. To Milk Chocolate Bunny Bar

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I really like how Plamil do a No Added Sugar range, a lot of people can no longer have sugar in their diets or are more aware of their high intake of sugar & are now switching to lower sugar diets. So this should be just like the above bar, but no added sugar – instead it is sweetened with xylitol. However before even trying this I have had sugar free versions of products before that this isn’t always the case. Sometimes they’re better & sometimes they’re worse. Nevertheless we have to go into these things with an open mind. On opening the bar it looks exactly the same & the smell was the same, chocolatey but with no hard sweet aroma. It still has a good snap when you break his little head off. So far so good. Tastewise the bar was good, not as good as his sugary friend however. It was still just as creamy, smooth, no artificial after taste & even though it was sweet it wasn’t as perfect as the above bar. In my opinion, for a No Added Sugar bar, it’s the best I’ve tasted. It’s not powdery & crumbly like you tend to get, it is tasty & I think if it was a flavoured bar (which I know they do) you wouldn’t even realise it’s no added sugar. These two bars are a steal at £1.25 & I’ll certainly be buying the Organic Dairy Free Milk Chocolate Alternative Bunny & if they’ve out of stock I wouldn’t grumble if I had to pick up a No Added Sugar friend instead.

Plamil – Lots of This None of That Bunny Bar

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Another one of Plamil Bunny Bars. Now I won’t lie to you guys. You know that. I have tried the unbunnyshapred version of this bar before, & I’m a fan. When you look at the packaging you wouldn’t realise straight away this was a Plamil bar, however flip it over & you can see their little logo. I love the packaging. He’s not as cute as he’s friend above, he’s a chocolate bunny living in a phycadelic hippie land. He’s cool. When I opened the packaging & took a sniff I think he smells more chocolatey than his Solider friends, he also looks less solider & more fun, easy going, like a hippie… Stereotyping big style here. This bar has reduced sugar. From researching I found out that they’ve reduced the sugar content to 23%, but not replaced it with sweetener. I’m not usually a fan of products that use sweeteners; I tend to find they have an odd after taste. However I have no horrible after taste when eating this bar, I think it is because they have reduced their sugar & not replaced it full with the sweetener. It works really well as I’m a big fan of this bar. I think this tastes just like ‘normal’ milk chocolate, from what I can remember anyway. It is creamy & very similar to the above to bars, however I would suggest it is more chocolatey. I have bought this bar before & I will carry on buying & recommending them especially for little vegans that may be missing their chocolate fix.

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Overall my favourite Plamil bar is a tossup between the Organic Dairy Free Milk Chocolate Alternative Bunny & the Lots of This None of That Bunny Bar. From never having the Organic Dairy Free Milk Chocolate I was really pleasantly surprised & the Lots of This None of That Bunny Bar is a favourite of mine over this past year. So I would suggest just buying both. At only £1.25 each it saves the headache & you get double yumminess.

 

Choices Dairy Free Confectionery

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Choices Dairy Free Confectionery – Chocolate Caramel Flavoured Truffles

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I cannot find the website for Choices Dairy Free Confectionery, so if anyone has any idea please let me know. The packaging these guys use is pretty straightforward on these eggs. I would suggest because they are designed more for adults. I opened the packaging & the smell of chocolate was strong. Firstly I cracked the egg. Realising the egg was really thin, like paper thin. I little taken back I took a bit the chocolate tasted really good, sweet & smooth but with it being so thin it lacked texture. However as I go to the bottom of the egg the chocolate was much satisfactory. The chocolate where the egg was sat was at least a cm thick. Making it tougher to break up but much more enjoyable. If the egg was even throughout I think it would have been perfect. The egg also comes with three Caramel Flavoured Truffles. When I unwrapped them I could really smell the caramel, it was so strong. I hope it would be tasty & not artificial… It was so tasty! It was hard to then only eat one & save the others, including one for my boyfriend. So I ate another one. Caramel is sweet & mouth-wateringly moreish. This was just that & it’s a luxury to have a good tasting caramel when you are Vegan. This was just that. I have since found out you can but these truffles all year round & I know I’ll be buying them again. The egg is £3.50. I purchased mine from Vegan Town, however they are available in Sainsbury’s.

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Ingredients (Easter Egg): Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Rice Syrup, Inulin, Coconut Oil, Rice Flour, Flavourings, Emulsifier (Soya Lecithin), Egg contains Cocoa Solids 38% minimum

Ingredients (Caramel Flavoured Choices)

Sugar, Fondant (Sugar, Glucose Syrup, Water), Cocoa Butter, Invert Syrup, Cocoa Mass, Rice Syrup, Inulin, Water, Coconut Oil, Rice Flour, Flavourings, Emulsifier (Soya Lecithin), Caramel Flavoured Choices contains Cocoa Solids 30% minimum

Choices Dairy Free Confectionery – Milk Chocolate Bunny

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Looking at the packaging for the Milk & While Chocolate bunnies I have come to the conclusion that Choices are just a little old fashioned with their packaging. However they are still really cute, in fact I would say there products are a little more traditional looking rather than old fashioned. Unwrapping the bunny again the smell of chocolate was delicious. I think out of all the bunny shapped chocolate this one has to be my favourite. He is by far the cutest & friendliest looking. I snapped his head off & the noise & feel was satisfying. A chocolate needs a good snap. Taste was really good, I would suggest it is the same recipe as they make the egg & this a more constant thicken made the bar much more enjoyable. However I think as far as plain milk chocolate is concerned I much prefer the taste of the Plamil Chocolate Bunny or the Lots of this None of That Bunny. However for £1.25 these are still a really good price, and I have had a lot of horrible Vegan Chocolate & this is so so much better. Just not my favourite.

Ingredients: Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Rice Syrup, Inulin, Coconut Oil, Rice Flour, Natural Flavourings, Emulsifier (Soya Lecithin), Cocoa Solids 38% minimum

Choices Dairy Free Confectionery – White Chocolate Bunny

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So you know me, I don’t lie. I had this White Chocolate Bunny last year; I also had the Santa version for Christmas. I’m not even that much of a fan of white chocolate. So why do I keep coming back to this bar… Because it’s amazing. On opening the smell of sweetness is so strong. It looks like good white chocolate. There is speckled of black dots within it. Which I assume is vanilla flavourings. The taste is amazing. By far the best white chocolate for Vegans out there, or at least the best white chocolate I have tried so far. It reminds me of the proper authentic white chocolate bars they used to sell when I worked at Thorntons, however those ones I always found quite sickly (obviously before I turned Vegan) this one I find moreish. I think it’s because I can just about taste the coconut & I love coconut. It’s such a soft luxury taste. I have no idea how they did it but they really knocked it out the park with this adorable bunny & for £1.25 I think it’s a steal for Easter Treats for lunch boxes over the Easter Period.

Ingredients: Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Inulin, Maltodextrin, Maize Flour, Coconut Oil, Emulsifier: (Soya Lecithin), Flavourings, Cocoa Solids 30% minimum

 

Sweet William – Easter Bunny Rice Crackle Chocolate

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So I had never heard of Sweet William before. However after discovering their bunny shaped bar on Vegan Town I knew I needed to try it. The reason why I have never heard of them before is probably because they are an Australian based company. Their website states ‘In 1999 the Soy Chocolate Company trading as ‘Sweet William’ purchased a 70 year-old Sydney-based confectionery manufacturer. The new Sweet William chocolate business decided to concentrate on the production of dairy free and soy chocolate to meet the growing consumer interest in soy products and the trend towards healthier products’IMG_9593

The chocolate bar itself – well just look at it, the packaging is adorable. The bunny is cute & it’s all very Eastery & shiny. I love the little bunny on the back saying he’s inside too. When you open the package he is very cute. He is also huge. I would suggest eating the bar in two sittings if you can resist. The chocolate is smooth & tasty, however because it is soy based it’s not quite sweet & creamy as I normally like my Milk Chocolate. The Rice Crackle is great – by far the best bit of the bar. It’s kind of like having a Rice Crispy Cake, but there is more chocolate than Crispy, which is not a bad thing at all. I liked this bar, it’s not up there with my favourites however I would certainly eat it again. However the likelihood of me having this again is slim, which makes me sad. I have not seen it on sale in the UK, I ordered it from Vegan Town & for the 75g bar it cost me £3.49, which I think is quite expensive, I’m assuming it’s because it comes all the way from Australia. Nonetheless if you ever come across it I suggest you try it. It’s made for kids but it’s perfect for all ages in my opinion… I mean only crazy people don’t like Rice Crispy Cakes right?

Ingredients: Raw Cane Sugar, Cocoa Butter (19%), Soy Flour, Cocoa Mass (11%), Maltodextrin (Maize), Puffed Rice (5%), Inulin, Emulsifiers (Sunflower Lecithin, 476), Natural

 

Sainsburys – Freefrom White Chocolate Egg

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As most of you may or may not know the Supermarkets have caught on to this Free From ‘Trend’ or for me, my free from way of life. My favourite has to be Morrisons new Free From Bay. They have gone from the worst selection of Free From Goodies to in my opinion the best. My wonderful boyfriend treated me to the Sainsburys Freefrom White Chocolate Egg. Which he picked up at one of the smaller ‘local’ Sainsburys stores, I’m really glad to see not only the Free From ranges expanding but getting in more, including smaller stores.

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The packaging is cute, very fresh looking & definitely aimed at kids. When I opened the egg the Coconut sweet smell was strong & as we all know I am a big fan of Coconut White Chocolate. Inside you get a wonderful traditional looking egg & white chocolate buttons – it kind of reminds me of the Cadburys Button Eggs I used to get when I was younger. The chocolate egg had a good snap & thickness, very even throughout. The taste was also just as pleasant. Really yummy, with the sweetness from the Coconut but not much of the coconut flavour; which is what you want from a white bar, very sweet chocolate. It was very sickly when I had eaten half of the little egg & split it with my friends who also enjoyed it. I personally don’t think it’s as good as the Choices Dairy Free Confectionery – White Chocolate Bunny & the egg is priced at £2.50 for just 65g, which in my opinion is very expensive. However Sainsbury does consider itself a luxury Supermarket & this gives me the impression the product is good quality.

Ingredients: Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Inulin, Maltodextrin, Maize Flour, Coconut Oil, Soya lecithin, Flavourings.

 

Lindt – Dark Chocolate Bunny

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Everyone know Lindt, we see the adverts at Christmas & Easter, they claim their Chocolatiers are truly the masters of Chocolate. The thing I know them for the most is there range of Easter Chocolate Bunnies, the ones with the bells. I remember my Gran buying me one about five years ago before I turned Vegan. It was only one of the little ones, but I remember it being tasty, however not tasty enough to make me buy any other Lindt chocolate since. I knew they did Dark Chocolate that was suitable for Vegans, as someone bought one for me once. However I did not know they did Dark Chocolate Bunnies, so when I saw a bunny with a brown bow instead of the traditional red bow I scampered over. I was chuffed & purchased the little bun straight away. At £3.50 for 200g they aren’t cheap; however I would not say it was overly costly, it’s a popular named brand after all.

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The wrapping & the bell is gorgeous & traditional in every sense of the word. The chocolate bunny itself it lovely & reminds me of my own little Velveteen Black Rex. The chocolate had a good smell, snap & thickness. The chocolate was deviously rich, smooth & morish. Not at all bitter which can happen with dark chocolate. This is definitely an Easter Treat for Adults with a taste for rich chocolate. I love it. Maybe one day the Lindt Chocolatiers could give dairy free milk chocolate a go. I think they’d do a fantastic job.

Ingredients: Cocoa Mass, Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Emulsifier (Soya Lecithin), Flavouring (Vanillin), Cocoa Solids: 60% min.

 

Aldi – Dark Chocolate Bunny

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We’ve all seen the advert ‘I like this one, but I also like this one’… However the second one the kid likes is one third of the price. Aldi are masters at this, and I am an Aldi shopper & I think what they do pricewise is great! So when I was doing my weekly shop & saw that they had their own version of the Lindt Chocolate Bunny, I prayed that they’d have a Vegan dark Chocolate one so I could compare. They did! The Vegan Gods have been listening to me. For 99p it was a total steal. The packaging may not be as traditional & classy as the Lindt Bunny, but it is still really nice, slightly more cartoony. Instead of the bell there is a little charm instead. All very cute.

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The Chocolate Bunny may not look like my little Rex, however it is still really nice. The smell is chocolatey, sweeter than the Lindt Bunny, however the snap, texture & thickness is perfect. I really wanted the taste to be as good, unfortunately it wasn’t. It wasn’t bad at all. It wasn’t as rich, which is something that a dark chocolate needs to have. It was smooth & creamy, & I still managed to eat the whole thing. For 99p it’s a great bargin & I would recommend it, however don’t be fooled by the packaging, it is similar to Lindt, just not as good.

 

Zero Zebra – Spring Fever

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I have never heard of Zero Zebra before. However I did my research & they are well known on the Vegan scene. I love a Vegan brand. Don’t get me wrong, its great to find an ‘accidental vegan find’ but you just have to love a company with good Vegan ethics & Zero-Zebra tick that box massively. Looking on their website I found the below, whoch made me love them before even trying their chocolate.

Some people can choose their food based on presentation, packaging design and their budget. Increasingly more people have to restrict their food choices because of food allergy or intolerance, for example being a diagnosed celiac severly impacts your food choices (avoiding gluten). Some people also base their food choices on a lifestyle preference, for example following a vegan-only-based diet.

Fortunately we are all increasingly better informed about where our foods actually come from and how the environment, other people, animals and plants are impacted by our mass-producing and mass-consuming society. This leads to conscious choices like a preference for fairtrade and/or organic products.

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Anyway let’s discuss the chocolates. The outside packaging looks pretty cool, all jazzy & fun. When you open up the packaging what you see isn’t as fun, it’s black plastic containing the animal shapes. However after I thought about it, I don’t think there is any other way around packaging these little beauties without them breaking. I popped out all the little animals & honestly was so pleasantly surprised about the wonder detail & how pretty they all looked. I shared the box with a couple of my friends. I love rice milk chocolate. However this is made from Rice Syrup rather then Powder. We all agreed the chocolate was tasty. However it’s not my favourite, I found it was lacking something & it kind of reminded me of Christmas Advent Calendar chocolate. However my one friend adored it, & when I made my comment said she loved Advent chocolate so it made sense. I have found out the Zero Zebra do flavoured bars & I think they would be perfect as they might be the thing I thought was missing. Overall they look gorgeous & I think they would look great on a Easter Cake or Dessert. I’m going to keep a look out for their other bars too. I can’t wait to try them.

Ingredients: raw cane sugar, cocoa butter, rice syrup (17%), cocoa mass and real vanilla.

 

Schakalode – Chocolate Bunny

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So I can not find anything about Schakalode anywhere. If anyone know anything I would really appreciate it. I am assuming by their name that they are German & when I say it out loud I hope I’m pronouncing it correctly. I have found an online website that sells a lot of their products & they look like they are a pretty big European Vegan Chocolate Company. When I go to Berlin late this year I am going to keep an eye out for them.

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The box the Bunny came in was very much just safe packaging in my opinion. I think that the clear cellophane wrap would be how it is displayed on the shelves. Very plain & simple, which I think is perfect because the chocolate bunny inside it is adorable, well detailed & speaks for itself. It looks amazing. By far my favourite looking bunny I have seen this year. I love his adorable big ears. The chocolate didn’t smell really choclatey, however it did smell sweet. The snap, consistence & thickness of the bunny was spot on. The chocolate itself isn’t my favourite. It tastes a little too childlike, I would prefer a stronger, maybe little darker taste of chocolate. Which makes me think this is aimed directly for children. Not to say it tasted bad. I ate the whole thing in one sitting, it melted lovely in my mouth & was really smooth, it just lacked a little richness. However this would be something that I would buy for little Vegans.  Schakalode also do other flavoured bars, including white chocolate. I’m looking forward to getting my hands on these.

 

Words of Wisdom

So that is my Easter review – I ate a lot of chocolate & I loved every second of it! I don’t think their is a clear winner, I like some more than others as you can tell & none tasted bad. The one’s that weren’t my favourite would be a top hitter for others. I think the winner is choice. Being Vegan we need to have just as much choice as everyone else, slowly but surely, manufactures, Supermarkets, the World are catching on. So the winner is choice.

Discourse: Some of the above companies sent me samples of their products to try, I only write about companies I like & these are always my own opinions. I would like to thank anyone who sends me samples to try, it’s another great way to spread the Vegan word.

 

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