Saturday, August 13, 2011

Strange And Weakly Sugary, "Bubble Gum" Jelly Bellys Are Impossible To Want To Stock Up On!

Bubble Gum Jelly Belly Jelly Beans - 10 lbs bulk
Click to buy directly from Jelly Belly!

The Good: Environmentally responsible bulk
The Bad: No real nutritional value, Fast fading taste, Widely variable taste quality.
The Basics: One of the rare disappointments, even the environmental responsibility of their ten pound box will not allow me to recommend Bubble Gum Jelly Bellys.

For those who might not know, I love Jelly Belly jelly beans. In fact, on the very few occasions when I have had to pan a Jelly Belly jelly bean, I have felt terrible about it. After all, I applaud how creative the company is and often the executions of their creativity are overwhelmingly successful. That is, alas, not the case with the company's Bubble Gum flavored jelly bean. Yes, of all of the flavors, Bubble Gum is a Jelly Belly failure.

For those who might never have had Jelly Belly jelly beans, these are easily the best jelly beans on the planet, packing a lot of flavor into a very small size. Unlike most jelly beans which are only vaguely flavored and are more based on colors, Jelly Belly jelly beans have a wide variety of actual flavors, like Plum, Caramel Apple, Sunkist Tangerine or their signature flavor Buttered Popcorn.

Who needs ten pounds of Bubble Gum flavored Jelly Bellys? I suppose they are ideal for the people who would like to be able to chew that much bubble gum, but do not want the consequences of rippling jaw muscles. Anyone who might like Bubble Gum jelly beans will likely find that this is the best way to get them in bulk in an environmentally responsible way for the least amount of money.


Bubble Gum is a flavor of Jelly Belly jelly beans. Jelly Belly jelly beans are approximately one half inch long by one quarter inch wide and they are roughly bean-shaped. These little candies are marketed to taste precisely like Bubble Gum and very few of them actually succeed with that. In fact, most people looking to get a gum fix without the obnoxiousness of sticky bubble gum are liable to be disappointed.

Bubble Gum flavored Jelly Bellys are available in a wide array of quantities, but the largest quantity available is the ten pound bulk case. This is a decent-sized box with a plastic lining and while some might wonder why anyone would need a ten pound box, I say "Violet" and assume people have read Charlie And The Chocolate Factory. I suspect that for most people, a ten pound case is a year's supply of these jelly beans.

Bubble Gum flavored Jelly Bellys are a pain to differentiate from the Cotton Candy Jelly Bellys. Both are pink, though the Bubble Gum are light and opaque, the Cotton Candy are darker pink and translucent, which almost nets the same effect. They can be distinguished, but one needs to actually pay close attention if one wants to tell them apart.

Ease Of Preparation

These are jelly beans, not keeping a Little League team chewing a single pack of gum for an entire season! Preparing them is as easy as opening the box and popping one (or a handful) into your mouth. In the case of the ten pound box, one might want to put them in a candy dish of some form as opposed to always going into the box. Then again, taking them out of the box might offer the consumer a mild challenge that will keep them interested after the taste of these beans fade, so go ahead and pull them right from the box!


Bubble Gum has a pretty tough niche to fill into. Let's face it, sticks of bubble gum are essentially pressed sugar and getting that light pink flavor (because outside actually tasting like bubble gum, how would you define the taste?! It tastes pink!) more than the flavor of sugar is essential to getting the taste of bubble gum right. Unfortunately for Jelly Belly, the company gets the flavor of bubble gum much more consistently right with their Tutti-Fruitti flavor (reviewed here!).

Bubble Gum Jelly Bellys are one of the weakest and most inconsistent flavors of Jelly Belly jelly beans. On the plus side, the ones that get it right get it exactly right. They taste just like the taste of a new piece of bubble gum as one presses one's tongue through it to blow a bubble. It is pretty extraordinary and very real.

Unfortunately, those jelly beans are one in ten. I kid you not; the advantage of having the ten pound box is I am able to do crazy objective taste testing. I spent a portion of yesterday counting out groups of ten Bubble Gum Jelly Bellys and every hour, for ten hours, I would eat the beans in the group one by one and mark down how many of them tasted like bubble gum. As crazy as it sounds, this illustrated to me that only one in ten over the course of one hundred beans (10%) actually taste like bubble gum! The remainder taste generically sugary. They barely taste like jelly beans, even, they simply taste like sugar, sweet, but formed.


Again, these are jelly beans, so anyone looking to them for nutrition needs to recall that this is a candy, based upon another candy. Jelly beans, even Jelly Belly jelly beans, are not a legitimate source of nutrition. These are a snack food, a dessert, and are in no way an adequate substitute for a real meal. A serving is listed at thirty-five beans, with each Jelly Belly jelly bean having approximately four calories. This means that in a single serving, there are 140 calories, which is 12% of your daily recommended intake.

The thing is, Jelly Belly jelly beans are not as bad as they could be in the nutrition area. They have no fat and no protein, but for those who have ever dated a Vegan, these are Vegan compliant because they contain no gelatin! They have only one percent of the daily sodium with 15 mg and they are gluten free! The main ingredients are sugar, corn syrup and modified food starch, so it's not like this is an all-natural food, but they could be far, far worse.


Jelly Belly jelly beans have a shelf life of approximately one year and I have yet to run across a stale Jelly Belly (though that could have something to do with a package never surviving a year around me . . .). They remain freshest when they are kept in an airtight container (the bag in the bulk box is sufficient if it is kept closed) and they ought to be kept in a lukewarm environment. Storing them in hot places is likely to make the beans stick together and be gross. Kept in a cool, dry place, the beans retain their flavor perfectly.

As for cleanup, unless one allows the Jelly Belly to get hot to the point that the waxy coating on the bean melts, the dyes on these do not bleed or denature, so there is usually no cleanup necessary, not even washing one's hands after eating them (always wash your hands before eating Jelly Bellys, even if these aren't sticky like actual bubble gum). I've never had Bubble Gum Jelly Bellys stain anything.


Bubble Gum Jelly Belly jelly beans are a huge disappointment and the only thing that would keep me from rating this a zero would be the one in ten beans that actually tastes purely and completely like bubble gum.

For other Jelly Belly flavors reviewed by me, please check out:
Strawberry Cheesecake
Juicy Pear
Sunkist Pink Grapefruit


As I near the end of the stock of Jelly Belly jelly beans, be sure to check out my other Jelly Belly reviews by clicking here!

© 2011, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.

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