There are the Peeps diorama contests held annually by the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the Washington Post, and many others. There’s the director who’s optioned film and TV rights to Peeps. There’s the Peeps-flavored milk. But perhaps the surest sign that Peeps have become ingrained in our culture is that there are now multiple Peeps knockoffs: pastel-colored, sugar-crusted, animal-shaped marshmallows angling for space in your Easter basket.
I first noticed this confectionary genre while flipping through a Williams-Sonoma catalog, where I espied the upscale catalog’s elegant, restrained marshmallow ducks. Further research revealed the existence of handmade, “gourmet” marshmallow chicks and bunnies sold by Etsy vendor SoManySomethings, and of gelatin-free bunnies and chicks from vegan marshmallow shop Sweet and Sara.
Are any of these Peeps imitators worthy of your Easter candy stash? Or should you stick with the saccharine originals? I ordered these seasonal treats and invited Dan Pashman of the Sporkful food podcast to join me in a half-blind taste test. To find out the results, watch the video below.
Oh, and in case you were wondering: The blue marshmallows with the flavor we couldn’t place were supposed to taste like “mixed berry.”