Today I’m remembering treats I loved as a kid and wish they’d bring back.
The snacks baby boomers loved and are hoping for a resurrection!
Every kid who grew up in Canada in the sixties has fond memories of the Pep-Chew! I wish I could find a photo of a wrapper to share here, but alas, none exist anywhere online.
The Pep-Chew is a slab of mint flavored toffee that is coated in chocolate. It was about an inch or so wide and about four or five inches long. Maybe about a third of an inch in height. This candy bar lasted a long time. You could stretch it out. Hold onto one end in your mouth and use your other hand to stretch out the taffy as far as your arm would go. Of course, that hand would end up covered in melted chocolate.
The Pep-Chew cost 5¢ making it an amazing deal, because it lasted a long time and took longer to eat than other chocolate bars. This was back in the day when chocolate bars cost a dime and a half size version of most chocolate bars was available for a nickel.
When I was a kid I took swimming lessons at an outdoor pool in Langley, the next town over. I always got a Pep-Chew for the ride home. I have a lot of fond memories of this chewy chocolate bar.
The Pep-Chew was made by the Paulins factory in Winnipeg, Manitoba that closed in 1991. I’m unsure if Pep-Chews were still being made up until the factory closed their doors. I remember seeing Pep-Chews in the seventies, but no recall if they were around in the eighties.
Another chocolate bar made by Paulins was the Cuban Lunch. This chocolate bar is about half an inch of so in height, about two inches wide and maybe three inches long.
The Cuban Lunch was packed with peanuts. Delicious! And it kept me feeling full for a long time.
Seeing as how Paulins closed in 1991, I’m sure you’ve guessed the fate of the Cuban Lunch chocolate bar. 😢
The amazing part of this story is the Cuban Lunch chocolate bar made a comeback! But not by Paulins. An Albertan couple discovered the trademark was up for grabs, grabbed it, and started making the chocolate bars. Demand has been incredible. Watch the news story. Baby Boomers lining up for an hour to buy them!
I didn’t need to line up, but I spotted them in the Cloverdale London Drugs kind of tucked away in a little corner of the chocolate bar section. They cost $1.99 each or 3 for $5. A far cry from the dime I spent when I was a kid! I think the last time I bought a Cuban Lunch bar it cost 25¢. Inflation!
And what can I say? Even though it’s outrageously expensive, I bought one. Yeah! Baby Boomer nostalgia.
Now just bring back the Pep-Chew and us Baby Boomers will all be blissfully happy!
DIY Cuban Lunch chocolate bars
Around 20 years ago, I was going through the crockpot recipes on the Flylady web page and I came across a recipe for Crock Pot Candy. The recipe calls for vanilla bark. Good luck finding that in Canada! Even with the helpful advice of look for it in the chocolate chips aisle. But that’s where I found it at Walmart in the states. I bought a two pound slab of both the white chocolate (vanilla flavored) and the regular chocolate bark.
I adjusted the recipe a little bit, incorporating both the chocolate and vanilla bark, eliminating the white chocolate chips, and still using semi-sweet chocolate chips.
The taste test result was amazingly close to the Cuban Lunch chocolate bar! I took samples in to work and my co-workers agreed it tasted just like the Cuban Lunch chocolate bar.
After eating the Cuban Lunch I bought at London Drugs, I’ve decided the crock pot candy tastes better…
I liked all kinds of soft drinks when I was a kid. It was a real treat to drink pop so I’d take whatever I could get. My favorite was Tahiti Treat. A pink colored pop with palm trees decorating the can. Tropical. Exotic. Sweet stuff!
What did it taste like?
I have to go way back in my memory bank to describe how Tahiti Treat tastes. Imagine drinking the juice from a jar of maraschino cherries with the thinner consistency of soda pop. And make it way more sweeter than the juice from the maraschino cherry jar.
Yes. Sickeningly sweet. Too sweet. But oh so good! That is, if you were younger than a teenager…
Tahiti Treat disappeared from the grocery shelves around 1990.
It probably stopped producing in Canada when the government got involved trying to limit sugar amounts in food and beverages aimed at children.
I’d like to chug down a Tahiti Treat just for the memories. And then I’d be good. Forever.
All might not be lost. There’s a similar drink made in the eastern United States called Tahitian Treat.
Kind of looks the same, except the palm trees are in the opposite direction. I guess I’ll have to keep my eyes open when I take my next road trip in the states.
Who remembers when ice cream bars were sold in singles at corner stores and ice cream trucks for 10¢? Yup, you read that right. Back in the olden days when I was a kid, an ice cream treat cost a dime.
My favorite ice cream bar was the Sidewalk Malted.
The closest way to describe a sidewalk malted is it’s similar to a Fudgesicle that has been dipped in chocolate with crushed malted milk balls added to the chocolate coating.
I don’t remember exactly when the Sidewalk Malted disappeared from the ice cream treat line up, but I’d say around the mid 1970s.
Today there are a ton of gourmet ice cream bars available, all coming with hefty price tags, but I’d trade any of them in to get my hands on a Sidewalk Malted again.
Treats I Loved as a Kid and Wish they’d Bring Back
And there you have it – treats I loved as a kid and wish they’d bring back. It goes without saying there are lots of treats I loved as a kid and they’re still around today.
If I had to pick only one of the above to bring back to life – it’ll be my favorite Pep Chew every time!
Someone, please give the Pep Chew another chance to hit the candy aisles!
How about you? Do you have a favorite childhood snack that lost its way? What childhood treats would you like to see back on the shelves again?
Posted by Cheryl @ The Lifestyle Digs on June 22, 2022.