Chocolate covered pretzels are a crack food for me. Up there with peanut butter and popcorn they’re one of those foods I feel like I could eat forever, spiraling into a blissful abyss of sweet and salty crunch that stays texturally and tastefully fun forever. In honor of the holiday season these cocoa dunked wonders are more abundant than ever, and, much to Santa’s approval, also laced with peppermint. Among a slurry of festive options I decided to try two very different iterations to see how they compared to each other. This battle of joy pits Snack Factory’s Dark Chocolate and Peppermint Pretzel Crisps against Rold Gold’s Peppermint Dipped Snowflakes.
Snack Factory’s version of a peppermint present takes their already delicious pretzel crisp and dunks them in a decently thick coating of dark chocolate, adorned with pieces of crushed up candy canes. The shape of the pretzel already mimics that of a bow, so the festive vibes are instantly in tow when opening the package. The aroma from the pretzels is pure dark chocolate, with a bittersweet edge giving no signs of peppermint. Visually the pretzels don’t look as neat and pretty as the package would imply, with a lot less candy cane pieces than I was expecting. The dark chocolate is rich and only slightly sweet, playing off of the salty crunch of the pretzel nicely.
Unfortunately, due to the sporadic nature of the candy cane pieces, not every bite has the peppermint smooch the product promises and overall fails to nail that perfect minty/chocolate balance that I’m looking for. They definitely don’t overdo the mint, which is always a major cause for concern with this kind of flavor, but on roughly half the bites I was missing out on that peppermint rush. On the pieces that have more candy canes there’s not only more mint but a bit more sweetness as well and the pretzels achieve the right balance, despite the thinner crisp shape not giving as much salt and crunch as a traditional pretzel.
Up next, Rold Gold’s snowflakes float from their cheery red bag with the light scent of peppermint promise. The first thing I notice with these pretzels is they are noticeably sweeter, which is exactly what I would expect with a white chocolate base. The extra sweetness here helps highlight the peppermint and the salt, and despite the still slightly mellow mint taste these bad boys really swing.
Although many of the pretzels are individually coated, there are a number of flakes that are stuck together, which makes me think Rold Gold really went to town with the fudge like a snowstorm. Beneath the white coating are ample red specks that bring an even and balanced peppermint flavor that is present but not too dominant. There’s something about the combination of white “fudge” and pretzels that is an automatic win for me, and a flavor I simply can’t get sick of. While the mint definitely takes a backseat to the chocolate, they nailed the tricky task of getting mint in every bite without tasting like toothpaste. At first I thought I still wanted more mint but it’s such a fine line to walk on I think these snowflakes have truly struck December gold.