About two years ago, Free2b made the transition into a fully dairy-free company, which meant a reformulation of the Free2b chocolate cups. It took a little time to get the recipe just right, to push the old inventory through, and to make sure their lines were indeed dairy free. But they nailed all of it, and now their dedicated facility is reportedly free of the “top 12” allergens. This means that peanuts, tree nuts, dairy, soy, gluten, egg, fish, shellfish, corn, sesame, coconut and mustard are never allowed in production.
When I first wrote this review, they still had a “may contain” dairy disclaimer, and we hadn’t sampled the Mint Cups. Since they’re now “safely” dairy free, we finally found those Mint Cups, AND they now have Minis, I thought it was time for a Free2b Chocolate Cups update. I’ve also added ingredients, availability, and a few more details.
Tasting Notes for Free2b Chocolate Cups
We finally had the chance to taste test their whole line-up when I spotted all of the chocolate cup varieties at Sprouts. This included their Caramel Cups (also dairy free), but I’m not seeing them on their website anymore. They might be discontinued. Nonetheless, I’ve included the review – just in case!
You could call this the “Milk” Chocolate variety, but Free2b simply calls them Rice Chocolate to avoid dairy milk misconceptions. The outer shall has a smooth, sweet, milky flavor that beckons to beloved candy bar coatings. The inside isn’t really comparable to a peanut butter cup, but has its own sweet seedy charms. It’s quite soft, perfectly sweet, and indulgent. If you like sunflower seed butter, I’m pretty sure you will love these. But even if you don’t, they might win you over. As mentioned, Tony liked these and he doesn’t typically enjoy chocolate desserts that use Sun Butter.
To note, we both thought these were less sweet than traditional peanut butter cups, and indeed, they have 25% less sugar than Reese’s. In our opinion, that extra sugar is unwarranted as we thought these Free2b Chocolate Cups were very well balanced.
Ingredients – rice chocolate (cocoa butter*, cane sugar, organic rice syrup powder, unsweetened chocolate*), sunflower seed, organic powdered sugar (evaporated cane juice, tapioca starch), organic cocoa butter*, organic palm fruit oil**, sea salt. (*) = fair trade certified™ (**) = sustainably sourced palm fruit oil.
These have the same soft, creamy sunflower seed filling as the Chocolate but with a notably bittersweet thick chocolate coating. I would call these the “grown-up” Sun Cups. Tony liked both, and was hard-pressed to choose a favorite. I really liked how the distinctive deep chocolate coating and sweeter filling played off of one another, and could really detect contrasting bursts of sea salt in this flavor. I would probably reach for these when I was craving something that tasted less sweet and a little more complex. However, the Chocolate Sun Cups would be my go-to for a straight-up dessert hit.
And did you notice that I said “tasted less sweet”? Interestingly enough both the Chocolate and Dark Chocolate have 6 grams of sugar per chocolate cup. So you need not feel guilty if your sweet tooth craves the milkier chocolate.
Ingredients – dark chocolate (unsweetened chocolate*, sugar*, cocoa butter*), sunflower seeds, organic powdered sugar (evaporated cane juice*, tapioca starch), cocoa butter*, organic palm fruit oil**, sea salt. (*) = fair trade certified™ (**) = sustainably sourced palm fruit oil.
These cool cups could give York a run for their money! The rick dark chocolate coating plays off the pure peppermint filling for a true after dinner treat. The chocolate is more intense than the other chocolate cup flavors, and has a little bit of bitterness in the aftertaste. But the darker cacao seems to play nicely with the refreshing center. The filling is soft, and a little sugary in texture, but not at all gooey.
Although this flavor tastes less sweet than the others, it is a smidgen higher in sugars than the Sun Cups. Each cup has about 7.5 grams of sugar, which is still far less sugar than your average peppermint patty.
Ingredients – dark chocolate (unsweetened chocolate*, sugar, cocoa butter*), organic sugar, organic unsweetened rice beverage (organic rice base (filtered water, organic rice), organic rice syrup solids, organic expeller pressed canola oil and.or sunflower oil), organic tapioca starch, tricalcium phosphate, organic vanilla flavor, sea salt, xantham gum, vitamin palmitate, vitamin d2, vitamin b12), cocoa butter*, organic peppermint oil, organic powdered sugar (evaporated cane juice, tapioca starch.) (*) = fair trade certified™
Chocolate Caramel Cups (Currently Unavailable)
Based on the package picture, I expected a gooey filling. I wasn’t disappointed, just surprised by the relatively firm center. It was definitely less messy and still had a nice sugary caramel flavor. I wouldn’t call it traditional caramel, but I would definitely call it delicious! The milky chocolate coating was the perfect complement, melding harmoniously for a “this is dairy-free?!” type of treat.
This flavor is not surprisingly a little bit higher in sugar than the rest. It has about 8.5 grams of sugar per cup. I did recently buy this package at the store, but unfortunately, I’m not see the Caramel Cups on the Free2B website at this time.
Free2B Sun Cups Minis
The milky Rice Chocolate and Dark Chocolate Sun Cups are also available as Minis! They come in 4.2-ounce resealable bags with 12 mini cups. The littler cups have a slightly higher chocolate to sun butter filling ratio, but otherwise taste the same as their larger predecessors. And they have the same ingredients as the full-size noted above.
During the holiday season, Free2B usually brings out Mini Mint Cups, too!
The Facts on Free2b Chocolate Cups
Availability: Free2b Chocolate Cups are sold in natural food grocers throughout the United States. We believe they are available in Canada, too (and can be found online in Canada), but are not sure about other countries. They can be purchased online, direct from the company, and from a number of online retailers, like Amazon.
Certifications: Free2b Chocolate Cups are Certified Kosher Pareve, Certified Gluten Free, Non-GMO Verified, and Rain Forest Alliance Certified.
Dietary Notes: By ingredients, Free2b Chocolate Cups are dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian. Nonetheless, read the label and check with the company on their manufacturing processes before consumption if potential allergen cross-contamination is an issue for you. Processes and labeling are subject to change at any time for any company / product.
For More Product Information: Visit the Free2b website at www.free2bfoods.com.