Last updated: August 11, 2021

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Welcome to our big rock candy test 2021. Here we present all the types of rock candy that we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the internet.

In this way, we would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best rock candy for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should be aware of when buying rock candy.




Summary

  • Rock candy is mostly used to sweeten tea or other hot drinks. However, it has other uses, for example as a remedy in combination with onions or for making homemade liqueur.
  • You can roughly divide rock candy into the sub-types rock candy, rock candy stick and crumb rock candy. Depending on what you want to do with the rock candy, some types are more suitable than others.
  • Brown rock candy is heated slightly before it crystallises. This gives it its brown colour and caramel taste.

The Best Rock Candy: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying Rock Candy

What is rock candy made from?

You probably know rock candy mostly by its abbreviated form "rock candy". The term rock candy is derived from the Arabic word "quand" and means something like "cane sugar". But what is this extraordinary diamond sugar made of?

White rock candy is made from a saturated sugar solution. This crystallises into candy crystals for several days in a container under constant movement. (Image source: pixabay.com / ariesa66)

The production of rock candy takes some time, as rock candy is the only sugar that needs time to grow. Until the beginning of the 20th century, the production of rock candy was manual labour.

Nowadays, however, the production of rock candy is done industrially. Sugar crystals are drawn from supersaturated, highly concentrated sugar solutions in large crystallisation tanks.

What are the differences and similarities between rock candy and table sugar?

A striking difference between rock candy and household or caster sugar lies in how it is produced and how long it takes to produce it.

While the sugar beet only needs about 8 hours from delivery to the finished production of caster sugar, the duration of candy sugar varies up to 3 weeks.

A candy crystal about 4-5 millimetres in size is obtained after about 5 days. After 2 to 3 weeks in the crystallisation tank, it grows to a size of about 18 to 24 millimetres.

Size of crystal Time
4-5 millimetres 5 days
18-24 millimetres 2-3 weeks

Just like household sugar, candy is available in different colours - white and brown.

While simple, pure sugar solution is used to make white sugar and white rock candy, a caramelised sugar solution is used for brown sugar and brown rock candy.

What is rock candy used for?

There are many uses for rock candy. We have compiled an overview of what you can use your rock candy for:

  • Sweetening tea and other drinks
  • Making cough syrup
  • Making liqueur
  • For baking
  • As a sweet

Sweetening tea and other drinks

The most common use for rock candy is to sweeten tea. In many Arab countries, rock candy is part of the tea. In East Frisia, too, rock candy has established itself as a basic ingredient for the local tea culture.

According to surveys, most tea drinkers enjoy their black tea with white rock candy, whereas herbal and fruit teas are preferably sweetened with brown rock candy.

Making cough syrup

Another use for rock candy is in the production of cough syrup. According to grandma's tried and tested home recipe, it helps you against coughs and sore throats.

The onion juice has an expectorant effect so that it can be coughed up more easily.

For baking

Rock candy can also be used in baking. There are various ways to process rock candy.

One way is to boil the rock candy with water to make a sugar syrup. You can then easily use the sugar syrup in baked goods such as cakes or biscuits.

As a sweet

In the past, rock candy was often used as a substitute for lozenges. The sugar gave a lot of energy during physical exertion. In addition, brown rock candy has a great taste due to its caramel flavour.

In America, you often find rock candy in the form of "candy sticks" or "rock candy". Rock candy is actually nothing more than brightly coloured candy sticks that are sold at festivals and fairs there.

What are the advantages of rock candy?

Due to its shape and texture, rock candy offers several advantages over other types of sugar.

It is no coincidence that rock candy is popular in tea. Rock candy has the advantage that it melts just as slowly as it has grown.

While simple household sugar dissolves in hot tea in no time at all, you can even enjoy rock candy over several cups, depending on its size.

To make brewed rock candy, the sugar syrup is heated slightly before it is processed. This causes the mass to caramelise and turn a beautiful brown. (Image source: pixabay.com / torstenrempt)

Brown rock candy is great in tea. Because the sugar syrup is heated before it crystallises, brown rock candy has a great caramel aroma. This gives you the advantage of varying the taste of your tea.

Here we have summarised the advantages of rock candy again:

  • melts slowly
  • long enjoyment
  • great caramel flavour
  • easy to dose

What does rock candy cost?

The price of rock candy varies depending on the type and quantity sold. You can roughly differentiate between white and brown rock candy, rock candy sticks and flavoured rock candy sticks.

While white rock candy is on average the cheapest at about 5€ per kilogram, you can get brown rock candy for about 10€/kg. The higher the sales volume, the cheaper the price per kilogram.

You can usually buy sticks of rock candy in quantities. Like everywhere else, the larger the number of pieces, the lower the price.

Type Price
White rock candy 5€/kg
Brown rock candy 10€/kg
Kluntjes 9€/kg
Rock candy sticks 40€/100pcs.
Rock candy sticks with flavour 35€/60pcs.

What alternatives are there to rock candy?

All kinds of sugar (table sugar, sugar cubes, granulated sugar, ...) are an alternative to rock candy. However, if you want to be a little more careful about your sugar consumption, we have put together some alternatives for you.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), sugar should cover 5% to a maximum of 10% of your calorie needs per day. With a calorie requirement of 2000 kcal-2500kcal, this is a maximum of 25g to 50g.

Coconut blossom sugar

Coconut blossom sugar is made from the nectar of the coconut palm. It is also available in liquid form as coconut blossom syrup.

Coconut blossom sugar has a similar caramel flavour to brown candy, but has a lower glycaemic value, which means that the blood sugar level only rises half as much as with sugar from sugar beet or sugar cane.

Stevia

Stevia is extracted from the leaves of the stevia plant and contains 0 kcal. It has no effect on blood sugar levels or tooth decay.

However, stevia has a slightly bitter aftertaste that you have to like. Stevia is often used as an alternative to sweeteners and in drinks such as Cola life.

Honey

Honey is a well-known sweetener and a common alternative to sugar.

Although it has an antibacterial effect and a lot of minerals, it is almost on a par with normal sugar in terms of calories.

What Types of Rock Candy are there and which one is right for you?

If you would like to try candy sugar yourself, we have listed three alternatives for you to choose from:

  • Candy cubes
  • Candy sticks
  • Crumb candy

Depending on the form, use, taste and variation, we have summarised the advantages and disadvantages of these three alternatives in the next paragraph.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of candy cubes?

Cube candy is the type that is usually understood as "normal" rock candy. As we already explained in the guidebook section, production is nowadays completely industrial in a crystallisation tank.

The process in which the sugar crystals grow takes up to 3 weeks, depending on the desired size. The average cube candy is 1.4cm-1.8cm in size.

Advantages
  • Ideal for sweetening a pot of tea
  • Suitable for homemade liqueurs
  • Choice of white or brown rock candy
Disadvantages
  • Not suitable for baking

What are the characteristics of rock candy sticks and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

To obtain a typical candy stick, a wooden stick is held in the sugar solution during the crystallisation process.

The crystals stick to the stick and a candied stick is formed. The sticks are usually around 16cm long and weigh 8g of sugar.

Advantages
  • Ideal for a cup of tea
  • Different flavours available
  • Choice of white or brown candy sticks
Disadvantages
  • Not suitable for baking
  • Can only be dosed "per stick"

Like candy cubes, they are also available in white and brown. A special feature of candy sticks is that they also come in different flavours.

What distinguishes crumb candy and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Crumb candy, like the other types of candy, is obtained through the crystallisation process. After sugar crystals have formed, they are crushed and sieved.

Crumb candy is usually offered in the brown variety and is particularly suitable for baking. Especially waffles and gingerbread turn out particularly well with caraway candy and benefit from its caramel flavour.

Advantages
  • Ideal for baking
  • Good substitute for household sugar
Disadvantages
  • White crumb candy is rarely available

Buying Criteria: You can use these Factors to compare and evaluate Rock Candy

In the following, we would like to show you which factors you can use to compare and evaluate rock candy. This will make it easier for you to decide whether a particular rock candy is suitable for you or not.

In summary, these are:

Processing

The procedure for making rock candy is the same for all types. As already explained in the guidebook, a saturated sugar solution (usually from sugar beet) crystallises in so-called crystallisation tanks. These sugar crystals grow into rock candy over several days and weeks.

For the candy stick, wooden sticks are placed in the sugar solution so that the sugar crystals settle there. In comparison, fine sugar crystals are sieved out for the crumb candy.

For flavoured or coloured rock candy, herbs or spices as well as sugar couleur or food colouring are added to the sugar solution.

Use

Depending on the intended use, some types of rock candy are more suitable than others.

For example, if you like to have tea parties and appreciate a good cup of tea, candy sticks or large cube candy are suitable for you.

However, if you would rather use the rock candy for baking, we advise you to prefer crumb rock candy to the other types because of its fine properties.

If you are planning to distil your own liqueur for the next birthday, we advise you to use cube candy. Depending on the fruit you want to use, you can decide for yourself whether you prefer to try white or brown rock candy!

Flavours

Candy sticks, in particular, are available in different flavours. For example, online you can get sticks with saffron, cardamom, hibiscus, lemon or even mint.

The different flavours are suitable for different hot drinks and applications.

If you often suffer from stomach aches or menstrual cramps, you can use the candy stick as a lollipop and feel a pain-relieving effect from the spices in the candy.

Facts worth knowing about Rock Candy

How do I colour rock candy?

Ingredients:

  • 480ml water
  • 1350g sugar
  • Food colouring of your choice
  • tall glasses
  • Wooden sticks (preferably higher than your glasses)
  • some granulated sugar
  • something to hold the sticks in place (cardboard or clothes pegs)

Preparation:

  • Bring the water to the boil and add the sugar to the water in 4 steps. Note: Before you dissolve the next batch of sugar in the water, the previous one should have completely dissolved!
  • Pour the sugar syrup into the jars and colour as desired with the food colouring.
  • Leave the syrup to cool until the glasses are no longer hot. A kind of sugar skin should have formed on the surface by now.
  • Now you can put the wooden stick into the syrup and fix it in the middle. Make sure that the stick does not touch the bottom of the glass!
  • Now the waiting time begins. After 2-2.5 weeks, you can break the sugar crust on the surface. It is best to put the jar in hot water for a short time to loosen the sugar layer at the bottom.
  • Finally, hang the candy stick in a clean glass and let it dry for at least one more day.
  • Ta-da! Your homemade Rock Candy is ready!

Image source: 123rf.com / Thongtukit Artorn

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