The map above reveals the results of our latest candy research: the top 3 most popular Christmas candies in each state. Hover over your state (non-mobile only) to see the goods.
Christmas may not seem like it’s all about candy, because frankly there is so much more to Christmas. But there is also a lot of candy happening. Think about all the baking and decorating and making fun crafts with kids that happens in the weeks leading up to Christmas.
Do you hang candy canes from your tree? Maybe you make chocolate lollipops shaped like reindeer? Or decorate snowman cookies with sprinkles and peppermint candy? Ok well, a lot of people do, ya know. :) And it all adds up.
So which Christmas candy do people like the most? It varies by state.
As a distinguished online bulk candy store, we reached out to CandyStore.com customers to find that out. We got over 32,000 responses this year. We also checked in with our friendly major candy manufacturers and distributors to be sure our survey corresponded with their seasonal observations.
You might be surprised by the results, illustrated above in the interactive candy map.
Here are some key takeaways:
Reindeer Corn Continues Bull Run
Reindeer corn had another banner year in 2019, finishing in the top 3 in 19 different states – 6 more than last year. It had 8 first place finishes this year, compared to 5 last year. States like Michigan and Alabama have been on the reindeer corn train for several years now, but others seem to been catching on.
Candy Canes Gain Market Share
Candy canes are hugely popular (and sometimes, weirdly, reviled). It commands the most showings in the top 3 than any other candy – 28 vs it’s next closest rival reindeer corn’s 19. While the first place showings for candy canes actually dropped this year, it showed up in the top 3 three more times than last year, making it the biggest mover overall and extending its dominance.
Colorado saw a big jump in candy cane preference, jumping from #3 to #1.
Peppermint Barking Louder
Peppermint Bark picked up 3 new first place states this year, making it’s new total 8. There seems to be a regional preference emerging for peppermint bark that extends from Wisconsin south to Mississippi, hitting several states in the Midwest and South.
Starburst is the big loser this year. It had 3 fewer first place finishes as well as 3 fewer overall showings in the top 3 of any state. To be fair, Starburst doesn’t really have an inherent holiday vibe, so it’s maybe more surprising they are in the running at all.
The National Retail Federation has said that holiday sales will go up between 3.8 and 4.2% this year. That puts total holiday candy sales over $2 Billion, using the National Confectionary Association’s $1.93 Billion estimate from 2017.
With Thanksgiving on the latest possible day this year, there’s a smaller time frame between Black Friday and Christmas. Add in a consumer confidence level that, while high, is slightly lower than last year, and you’ve got a reason to believe that sales could be slightly down this year, but not significantly.
However, the National Retail Federation projects that the average consumer will spend about $110 on candy and food – slightly up from last year – which is about twice as much as they’ll spend on decorations, and 5 times what they’ll spend on flowers and potted plants. So, we’ll have to wait and see how it pans out.
Which Christmas holiday candy does your state loves the most? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
State By State
|State||Top Holiday Candy||2nd Place||3rd Place|
|AK||Hershey Kisses||Candy Canes||Reese's Pieces|
|AL||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes||Peppermint Bark|
|AR||Starburst||Candy Canes||Peppermint Bark|
|AZ||Reese's Cup Minis||Hershey Kisses||Skittles|
|CA||Reese's Cup Minis||Hershey Kisses||Peppermint Bark|
|CO||Candy Canes||Hershey Kisses||Reese's Pieces|
|CT||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes||Hershey Kisses|
|DE||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes||Hershey Kisses|
|GA||Reindeer Corn||Snickers||Candy Canes|
|HI||Hershey Kisses||Starburst||Reindeer Corn|
|IA||Peppermint Bark||Reese's Cup Minis||M&M's|
|ID||M&M's||Hershey Kisses||Chocolate Santas|
|IL||Reese's Cup Minis||Hershey Kisses||M&M's|
|IN||Reese's Cup Minis||Hershey Kisses||Candy Canes|
|KS||Peppermint Bark||Hershey Kisses||Candy Canes|
|KY||Peppermint Bark||M&M's||Candy Canes|
|LA||Pez||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes|
|MA||Candy Canes||Hershey Kisses||Reese's Cup Minis|
|MD||Reese's Cup Minis||Candy Canes||Reese's Pieces|
|ME||Candy Canes||Hershey Kisses||Chocolate Santas|
|MI||Reindeer Corn||Reese's Cup Minis||Peppermint Bark|
|MN||Reese's Cup Minis||Hershey Kisses||Peppermint Bark|
|MO||Hershey Kisses||Peppermint Bark||Starburst|
|MS||Peppermint Bark||Candy Canes||Reindeer Corn|
|MT||Reese's Pieces||Reese's Cup Minis||Reindeer Corn|
|ND||Reese's Cup Minis||Reindeer Corn||Chocolate Santas|
|NE||Hershey Kisses||M&M's||Peppermint Bark|
|NH||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes||Reese's Cup Minis|
|NJ||Reese's Cup Minis||Skittles||Pez|
|NM||Pez||Chocolate Santas||Candy Canes|
|NV||Peppermint Bark||Candy Canes||Starburst|
|NY||Snickers||Candy Canes||Reese's Cup Minis|
|OH||Hershey Kisses||Pez||Peppermint Bark|
|OK||Candy Canes||Reindeer Corn||Skittles|
|OR||Reese's Cup Minis||Candy Canes||Snickers|
|PA||Reese's Cup Minis||Candy Canes||Reindeer Corn|
|RI||Reindeer Corn||Peppermint Bark||M&M's|
|SD||Chocolate Santas||Hershey Kisses||Reese's Cup Minis|
|TN||Peppermint Bark||Candy Canes||Starburst|
|TX||Reese's Cup Minis||Peppermint Bark||Candy Canes|
|UT||Hershey Kisses||Reindeer Corn||M&M's|
|VA||Reindeer Corn||Candy Canes||M&M's|
|VT||Candy Canes||Snickers||Reindeer Corn|
|WA||Reese's Cup Minis||Candy Canes||Skittles|
|WI||Peppermint Bark||Reindeer Corn||Starburst|
|WV||Peppermint Bark||Pez||Jolly Rancher|
|WY||Chocolate Santas||M&M's||Reese's Cup Minis|
Does the list above match with what you like or your loved ones would like to receive as a gift?
If you get the wrong thing, just remember that – really – the holiday season is about family and friends. It’s the thought that counts, the gesture that matters. Unless you give me reindeer corn, in which case we are no longer friends.
Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts!
For more info or press inquiries contact Ben at: firstname.lastname@example.org