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Trader Joe’s Mango Taffy

taffy
Sure – I love mango. Maybe I’m crazy for it. Maybe I’m on the record as saying that I wish my diet was pretty much mango and nothing else. I may have even made a tag for all mango themed products I’ve reviewed called “MANGO!”. For these reasons, and more, I am really not sure what to do with myself right now. Folks, I don’t know how else to say it, but we are in the FIRST EVER TRADER JOE’S MANGO MADNESS SEASON.

MANGO MADNESS! MANGO MADNESS! MANGO MADNESS!

Ranking: 3 stars 3 star ranking

What it is: Nice taffy that tastes like mango.
Price: $3.99 for a 12 oz. tub
Worth it: Yes, if you like mango and taffy.

Pumpkin Madness? That I can handle. Over time I’ve started to come to terms with Trader Joe’s annual pumpkin deluge – the October tradition of stocking the store so full of pumpkin derived products that they spill from the shelves and choke the doors.

What I was absolutely not prepared for is my favorite fruit in the entire world, getting the same treatment. My hands are quivering, I’m still breathing hard – and I went in the Trader Joe’s YESTERDAY. Guys, every aisle – every nook and cranny – is absolutely bursting with mango products, each item more outlandish than the last.

I should be thrilled – swinging from the lamp posts – but instead I find a strange uneasy churning in my stomach.

First, I’m not sure my grocery budget can take the strain of purchasing every new Mango product. But even more nervous-making, I’m worried for the mango itself.

Pumpkin is one thing. Pumpkin is the dependable, workman-like squash of the vegetable world. You can do anything to pumpkin and it won’t complain – mash it, roast it, puree it, spice it, candy it, press it for oil – whatever. It’s a mellow gourd with an unassuming, laid-back taste.

Mango, on the other hand, is a diva. Bright, brilliant, succulent and oh so deliciously sweet, mango can only be done two ways – perfectly, or perfectly awful. A poorly devised pumpkin product might leave you non-plussed –  but when someone does mango wrong, you end up with a repugnant horror. This is what I fear – that Trader Joe’s will abuse mango so horribly that they actually ruin my favorite fruit for me. Each new item I pick up is like another spin at Russian Roulette. I’m sure most of these will be great, but at some point I’m bound to find something lethal. Or will the sheer quantity of new products include enough duds that I swear off mango forever.

So which side of the line does Trader Joe’s Mango Taffy fall on?

I’m happy to say that this Mango infused candy is delicious. Taffy is rarely ever truly good or truly bad – most of the time it’s just that sweet, chewy sugar-dough you stick in your mouth when you’re on vacation somewhere rustic. The body of this taffy is just fine – a nice consistency, but unexcpetion. Not too hard, not too soft – malleable and almost yielding to the tongue. The mango flavor is pleasantly flavorful and strong. Taffy makers are fond of claiming they have all manner of flavors – a veritable encyclopedia of tastes encompassing every fruit and confection under the sun – but tend to deliver only about 3 or 4 distinctly different tastes among a sea of sweetness.

Trader Joe sidesteps this pitfall – delivering a mango taffy actually tastes like mango. Close your eyes and concentrate and you can nearly taste the juiciness of a nice bite of ripened, succulent mango flesh. It’s not quite there, obviously, but it’s a fair simulacra, and certainly deserving of the mango name.

The price is reasonable, to boot. If you’re looking for a confection that will really blow your socks off, you could do better in the magical candy aisles of Trader Joe’s, but if your a mango fan or a taffy fan, you’ll not go wrong picking this up.


The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: Sure – this is pretty good taffy.

Would I Buy It Again: Yeah, I guess so.

Lives Up To The Name “Mango”: Yup – real mango flavor in these taffies.

Final Synopsis: Good mango taffy.

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10 Comments on “Trader Joe’s Mango Taffy”

  1. Mara says:

    Only because you’re mentioning mangoes, I’d like to proffer this little PSA: the stem end of a mango has a sap that contains the exact same irritant as poison ivy – urushiol – that will make many a mouth bubble and blister if not keenly avoided. I kind of tend to eat a mango the way I imagine our ancestors did, barely peeling away the skin to get to every sweet bite as quickly as possible, and I ended up with a mouth that looked like a really bad collagen job. Those of us who are allergic will generally be fine with just the fruit as long as it’s fully separated from the peel. Just something I wish I’d known a few weeks ago.

  2. Cordula says:

    I’m glad you mentioned this. I’m also excited about it as well, but I notice it’s hit and miss. I’ve been getting the Just Mango Slices for a while (they’re an existing product) and when they’re soft and fresh they’re heaven, but sometimes they’re rock hard and too dry. The candle is also amazing and I’m trying the body butter too.

  3. Ttrockwood says:

    The mango situation at trader joe’s right now is out.of.control!! I really liked the mango slaw salad, looovvvee the mango mango mochi, and the frozen mango salsa is great. I always buy the regular frozen mango chunks- i eat them semi frozen with some fresh mint or basil for a snack or on plain greek yogurt.

  4. Love what you’re doing, it really helps me make decisions when I choose TJ products LOL.
    Quick question: I’m a writer at Spoon University (spoonuniversity.com) and I’m currently doing an article on Trader Joe’s foods. Is it okay if I use one of your photos for the article? I would give you guys photo credits of course, linking back to your site.

  5. Super Fan says:

    Are you alive? It’s been a long time since you posted! I’m worried!

  6. Cliff says:

    Really enjoy your blog and really appreciated this post! I liked the mango flavor a lot but was a little disappointed in the texture. I thought it was a little less substantial than most taffy. Maybe because it is “whipped”? Look forward to reading more – curious about your thoughts on their Mango-O’s!

  7. R says:

    did u die

  8. Anonymous says:

    Miss you too!


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