No matter how old you are, that feeling of being a kid in a candy shop never goes away. Walking into these 11 candy stores in Iowa is like entering Willie Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, or Candyland. Suddenly you’re a child again, but this time is even better, because now you actually have money to buy all that candy you dreamed of!
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Main Street Sweets, Cedar Falls
Main Street Sweets is a family owned business in the cultural district of downtown Cedar Falls. Their gourmet chocolates and truffles come from Lagomarcino’s in Davenport – a family owned and operated business for over 100 years.Their delicious sea salt caramels and amazing truffles will keep you coming back for more, and their melt in your mouth sugar cookies come from Olde Towne Bakery (family owned and operated) in Moline, IL and are baked fresh daily at Main Street Sweets. They always have a variety of newly designed candy bouquets in stock, and they do customized bouquets as well.
2. Goodies Handmade Candies, Spirit Lake
Goodies Handmade Candies is a small family-run business located in Spirit Lake. Goodies is famous for their handmade candies, ice cream, coffee, and gifts. Each batch of candy is made with fresh quality ingredients and no added preservatives.
3. The Chocolate Season, Algona
The Chocolate Season makes everything fresh, from their delicious berry bark to their delectable, yet healthy, chocolate dipped granola bar bites. Along with their chocolates, they also offer cookies, brownies, cheesecake, caramels and fudge. They also have a website where you can order your choice of chocolate, then either have it shipped to your home or you can pick it up at the shop.
4. Chocolate Storybook, West Des Moines
Founded in 1985, the Chocolate Storybook is West Des Moines' go-to destination for delicious handmade chocolates and unique gifts. From lavish gift baskets to simple boxed chocolate, the Chocolate Storybook is sure to satisfy. Their chocolates are made without additives, and they use only the finest ingredients like country fresh cream, real butter, real chocolate and choice fruits and nuts.
5. The Chocolate Haus, Amana
At the Chocolate Haus, they use century-old recipes, made by hand to ensure a chocolate experience that's as rich in flavor as it is in history. Located in the German village of Amana, the Chocolate Haus is the perfect place to grab a coffee and some sweets before you take a stroll through the village.
6. The Chocolate Shop, Marion
The Chocolate Shop is a new, but great spot to go for a sugar fix while you're in Marion. Their toffees, caramels, truffles, nut clusters and creams are made from a three decade old, tried-and-true recipe.
7. Nan's Nummies Cookie Shoppe, West Des Moines
Nan's Nummies will take you back to those days in grandma’s kitchen, to the pure joy you felt from licking the frosting off the spoon. Check out Nan's for their luscious cupcakes, fantastic dutch letters, cookies, bars, fudge, chocolates, taffy, and bulk candy.
8. Divine Decadents Candy & Catering, Shellsburg
Divine Decadents is a candy, confections and catering company located in Shellsburg. They create candy from barks and brittles to truffles and wedding mints. All their candy is pure chocolate made with no preservatives for an unforgettable taste.
9. Palmer's Olde Tyme Candy Shoppe, Sioux City
Palmer's Old Tyme Candy Shoppe offers everything from homemade brittle, to gourmet truffles, to roasted nuts, to chocolate snorkels, to La Fama chocolates and, of course, their famous Twin Bings. The shoppe also houses a small museum with retired candy making equipment, vintage photos and other fun historical items.
10. Sweet Joy Shoppe, Atlantic
Sweet Joy Shoppe in Atlantic is truly a hidden gem. They offer amazing gelato, delicious paninis, delightful chocolates, strong coffee, rich espresso and hearty soups that will be sure to leave you pining for more.
11. Sweets and Treats, Iowa City
Established in 1983, Sweets and Treats is located in the Old Capitol Mall in Iowa City. They carry many delicious local candies and chocolate, as well as many favorites like Jelly Belly, Toblerone, and more. They also recently started an online store where you can have your treats delivered to your home, or you pick them up at Heartland Inn in Coralville.
If I could just eat candy all day everyday, I probably would. But, wouldn’t we all?