Novelty candy is an important part of Easter – mini eggs, pastel candy corn, and chocolate bunny moulds are icons of festive fun. If you don’t want to sacrifice the nostalgic imagery of commercial Easter candy, but want stuff that actually tastes good and isn’t full of radioactive ingredients or has sat on a shelf for a year, check out some of these local spots for handmade alternatives!

CREME EGGS: If you’re vegan and thought you’d never be able to scarf one of these again, Bunner’s Bake Shop (3054 Dundas St. W.) has answered your prayers. Made with dairy free chocolate and vegan crème filling, they’re $4 each, but bigger than the Cadbury ones. Only available till Easter!

HOMEMADE MARSHMALLOWS: Rahier Patisserie (1586 Bayview Ave.) makes bite sized vanilla marshmallows coated in coconut or pistachios.

OH HENRY BARS: The new refined-sugar-free vegan bakery, Tori’s Bakeshop (2188 Queen St. E) offers mini Oh Henry bars for $2 each.

MARSHMALLOW ICE CREAM CONES: Remember those tiny ice cream cones with the sparkly marshmallow on top? A Little Chocolate Magic (573 Eglinton Ave. West.) makes a white chocolate covered ‘mallow cone that will really take you back.

CRUNCHIE BARS: The Chocolateria’s (361 Roncesvalles Ave) sponge toffee nuggets put a dark chocolate spin on the Cadbury bar.

CHOCOLATE DIPPED PEEPS: Peeps might be creepy, but we’ll happily make a tasty diorama with these quality chocolate dipped ones. MoRoCo (99 Yorkville Ave.) does milk or dark chocolate dipped ones.

TURTLES: Sweets from the Earth (43 Mulock Ave.) makes a chocolate pecan caramel bar so good, you won’t even remember that monocle-wearing reptile. La Chocolateria also makes killer Turtles – each the size of your palm, a pack of four is $6.50.

PEANUT BUTTER CUPS: Sjaak’s Organic Chocolates makes peanut butter, almond butter, caramel, mint, and raspberry cups. They’re from the States, but they’re fair trade and tasty as heck. You can find them at the Big Carrot (348 Danforth Ave.) Sjaak’s also makes foil wrapped chocolate eggs like the traditional ones, available on their site.

~ Kait Fowlie