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About a month ago, I found out about all the artificial colorings they put in American products and it just made me nuts.

Dyes like Yellow 5 and Red 40 are in everything from candy to cereal to cough syrup to toothpaste and these dyes are made from PETROLEUM. These food colorings can cause temper tantrums, hyperactivity, aggressive behavior, nervousness, dizziness and inability to concentrate in children. Some lab studies have even shown a link to cancer.

It’s all pretty disgusting, especially when you find out that these companies use vegetables and fruits to color the very same products in countries like the UK. Because Brits are smart and actually banned artificial colorings.

And maybe you are thinking – but hey, aren’t they accidentally eating horse meat over there? Okay, I don’t want to eat Black Beauty either but you know what, it’s far healthier than eating PETROLEUM. I don’t know why I keep capitalizing that word. I told you this stuff makes me crazy.

Natural jelly beansEaster is coming up which is an adorable holiday because who doesn’t like bunnies, chicks and chocolate. I headed to my local pharmacy to check out the Easter offerings and I honestly could not find anything without Red 40 this or Blue 1 that.

Why more stores aren’t taking advantage of the fact that many of us are trying to put better, healthier stuff into our kids – I don’t know.

But luckily, there are Easter options without artificial food colorings….

1. Target: This mega chain carries Unreal Candy but you have to visit the store to purchase. Unreal Candy has no artificial flavors, no high fructose corn syrup and no preservatives. Apparently many CVS stores also carry this brand.

2. Natural Candy Store: Order away! Their candy has no artificial colors or dyes, no artificial flavors, no artificial sweeteners, no preservatives and no hydrogenated oils.

3. Stores that carry a lot of European products will have dye free candy and there might be one near you. For example, I’ve heard Fairway has a great selection of European candy.

4. Whole Foods: Although not cheap, this chain does carry candy without out all those nasty colorings. So save your money and head on over.

5. Trader Joe’s: They have some dye free options but check the label because I have stumbled upon products in the store (although not with the Trader Joe label) with the infamous red dye 40. GASP!ย  For instance, skip Darrell Lea Strawberry licorice. It’s super yummy but sadly contains Red dye 40. Check your labels!

Know of any other great places to buy candy without artificial dyes? The Easter Bunny wants to know.ย  Please share!

mama bird notes:

Have you LIKED The Mama Bird Diaries on Facebook? Become a fan. It’s like candy, only better!ย  Become a fan before you are heckled by your whole neighborhood. (It could happen. Don’t take the risk.) CLICK HERE.

28 Responses to easter candy without artificial dyes or colors

  • {sue} says:

    I’m so glad you wrote this! I didn’t even think about dyes in Easter candy and I’m usually shopping at the very last minute. I love Unreal candy. I was skeptical about how candy without all the junk would taste, but it is delicious.

  • {sue} says:

    I forgot to mention yummyearth.com which makes the best lollipops (and other things too). I have even found their stuff at Home Goods or Marshalls.

  • Michelle says:

    Thanks so much for writing about this now and your previous articles. I found dyes in my child’s toothpaste, vitamins and waffles. What a wake up call! Keep doing what your doing, making Moms laugh and helping keep our kids healthy too.

  • beachgirl says:

    I am going to check out unreal candy as I think I read that they sell it on amazon. I would love to know your recommendation for toothpaste as I switched over from the regular brands with they dyes to Toms strawberry and my kids are not so keen…doesn’t matter as thats all that they are getting right now but wondering if anyone has other recommendations for toothpaste? thanks for this post!

    • Kelcey says:

      I use Tom’s. Strawberry seems to be the best flavor. My daughter Dylan still misses her sparkly pink princess toothpaste but you know what, it’s toothpaste. The kid gets dessert every night so she’s doing just fine.

  • MichelleK75068 says:

    So glad you posted this! My munchkins are 2 1/2 (twins) & I had planned on doing alot of other egg fillings to minimize the dyes.. Mini cereal bars/treats made from scratch, a few small trinkets, etc.. Now I can go get candy without the worry! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Meg D says:

    Great post! I appreciate these links, too. I always love reading this blog to make me laugh (or cry) but a big THANK YOU for taking this topic on. You opened my eyes. Now to get my husband to switch his jelly bean brand…

  • I totally love you for this post and really admire that you’re taking this so seriously, when it’s a significant pain in the ass to work around in your everyday life.

    I will still feed my children their dye-laden food, but now I’m a little more aware that this is a real problem and can make better decisions at the store so we can reduce our dye-intake!

  • Sandrine says:

    Thanks so much for posting this. I will totally look for those dyes on the labels and avoid them. I just cut a story about TRICLOSAN which can be find in antibacterial soap and Colgate TOTAL, it’s a pesticide and beside being an hormone disruptor it makes your body resist to antibiotics when you need them so check those labels!!!

  • HonestMum says:

    Thanks for this, might have to do a similar UK friendly version. It’s shocking what goes into sweets and chocolates and we as parents have to deal with the crazy sugar crashes and tantrums along with all the internal damage we can’t see.

  • Paulina says:

    Thank you for posting this. I don’t have children, but my husband and I don’t want to eat the artificial crap either.

  • Angie says:

    Very informative, thank you Kelcey!! ๐Ÿ™‚ I will be on the lookout now, had NO idea it was linked to Petroleum, yuck!!!!

    • Kelcey says:

      Hmmm… There are lots of things that occur in nature that I’m not interested in putting in my body. Molten lava, snake venom, deadly viruses and the list goes on.

      • Sarah Gannon says:

        That’s exactly why I find the terms “all-natural” and “organic” to be completely unrelated to “healthy to ingest” and it’s one of my pet peeves, the way people use those terms to imply that a food is superior to another food. Didn’t these people ever take high school science? Arsenic is natural and organic. Decay is natural and organic. Death is natural and organic. OK, end of rant.

        • Kelcey says:

          I see your point. Never thought of this. Well, petroleum may be “all natural” but I’m definitely not interested in feeding it to my children. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Kelcey says:

      yes, great petition. So glad you signed it. I wish the FDA would just ban these artificial dyes instead of consumers having to go after each company one at a time to do the right thing.

  • Tracey says:

    I also avoid dyes, but I’m having a really hard time locating any Easter bunnies that don’t include the artificial flavoring for chocolate called Vanillin. I have pinpointed that artificial ingredient to cause the same issues as dyes in my kids. Only expensive chocolates exclude it and I have found no Easter bunnies without it. If those brands you mention don’t include it, I will definitely be looking to bye those! Thanks for posting.

  • Tim says:

    Just wanted to put it out there that I found M&M type candies without any artificial colors at Publix in the bulk candies the other day.
    Thanks for putting this out there. It’s awesome to see people who care.
    And another fYI the red dye is killing the hummingbirds as well.

  • Kathy says:

    I just wanted to add I found gummy worms at walmart…”Black Forrest” that doesn’t have any artificial colors. Not traditional Easter candy, but my kids love them for a special treat!

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kelcey kintner