The four iconic Christmas chocolate tubs, ranked definitively from worst to best
If you want a fight over the Galaxy Caramel then I’ll see you outside
It’s actually quite bizarre to me that the big, clobber chocolate tubs are sold year round, because they are the most Christmas essential of all the Christmas essentials to me – and it would feel simply wrong to devour them at any other time in the calendar year. Whatever the polar opposite to the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse is, that is what Quality Street, Roses, Heroes and Celebrations are to the nation. In our house, my mum has this obnoxious snowman she keeps perched on the kitchen counter that has a huge, protruding kangaroo-esque pouch that she spends all of December filling up with chocolates from whichever tin she’s selected that year. I’m reasonably happy with any of the four, but let’s face it, there’s a hierarchy. The order of preference when it comes to these hallowed tins will vary person to person, but this definitive ranked list of the chocolate tubs is the correct one.
May I present to thee the only ranked list of the four iconic chocolate tubs that matters. If you find yourself disagreeing, there’s a vote at the end to make your chocolate gobbling voice be heard. Let us begin.
There’s something a bit smelly Grandma about a tub of Roses. It couldn’t be less cool, modern or chic if it tried – and maybe that is part of its charm, but I think Roses should try and move into the 1970s before the next decade is out. The highs of Roses are high. Make no mistake. Golden Barrel? A gooey taste sensation. All of the Roses chocolates that are either hazelnutty, toffee or caramelly are delicious. A timeless treat. But where it falls short is with the evil fruity cremes in the guise of orange and strawberry, and they drag this tin down to the depths of synthetic fruit hell. They’re actively gross. Pros include the fact that this is Cadbury’s chocolate, cons include the fact this has the least variety out of all the tins with only eight options on offer. They’re no enemy, but they are the worst.
3. Quality Street
Quality Street has that nan vibe that Roses has, but in a more self aware and fun way. If a tub of Roses is the funeral, a tub of Quality Street is the pissed up wake. Boasting an impressive 12 ( TWELVE!) different options in one tub, Quality Street has the most variety and I appreciate and respect that something-for-everyone approach. But quantity doesn’t always mean QUALITY, despite the fact they’ve named themselves after that particular adjective. There are some evil villains in Quality Street that hold it back being ranked higher than other chocolate tubs. Namely, the bloody strawberry creams, here titled Strawberry Delight even though perhaps Strawberry Terror might be more apt. Similarly demonic is the old foe Orange Creme, but the tub is flanked with a new nemesis in the form of the Coconut Eclair. I want no part of it.
The rest of the box is a rollercoaster of fun choices. The Purple One and The Green Triangle are iconic – like the pop megastars of chocolate tubs. So iconic they’ve ditched their old names and just go by their descriptions officially now, which is quite chic and down to earth. I like breaking my teeth, so I’m all on board for both Toffee Pennies and Fingers. Loved the modern twist addition of the Chocolate Caramel Brownie (take note, Grandma Roses) and the only variety that’s boring is the plain chocolate block. When your chocolate is Nestlé, you don’t earn the right to just have a plain choc block. Sorry. A worthy bronze medalist in this ranked chocolate tubs list, Quality Street aim for maximalist highs but prove that more is not always more.
Okay, let’s address the coconut shaped elephant in the room right off the bat. Bounty hatred is infamous. It’s a bit overdone tbh, it’s not like Bounty is doing anything badly. If you like coconut you’re going to have a ball, but if you don’t then they’re futile. Shaking around the tub like an unwanted child. For me, the Bounty is the only chocolate in Celebrations I won’t gorge myself on. The rest of the tub? We are wowing, baby. Sitting atop the throne is the Maltesers, taking the crown from the dead and buried Galaxy Truffle. RIP to the Galaxy Truffle. Let’s have a minute silence and reflect on its wonder. They need to bring it back as a matter of national urgency.
The elite luxury of Mars chocolate serves the box of Celebrations well. We all love a melt in the mouth Galaxy, don’t we girls! In all its forms. The thing that holds Celebrations off the top spot is the fact that whilst no one hates Milky Way and Mars, they’re just there. Doing not that much. Not offensive, but no one’s fave. I wish Celebrations would get an aesthetic overhaul too because their vibe is a bit crap. But the chocolate tastes mostly perfect, and that’s what matters!
Heroes is such a perfect jewel in the chocolate tubs canon that honestly, I’m not really sure why the other tubs even bother showing up. Easily sits atop the ranked list of chocolate tubs. There isn’t a single little bite sized piece of heaven that I would boot out of bed in the mix. The worst of the lot for me is a Dinky Decker, which is a slight waste of a mouthful and I resent it for having to acknowledge the word “dinky”. The highs in this tub, however, are stratospheric. Creme Egg Twisted I love more than my own mother. Cadbury Caramel the definition of sexy luxury. Crunchie Bits Bite a carnival of confectionary fun. Cadbury’s Eclair is the most joyous tooth breaker in the world. Little mini Twirls a crumbly wonder. Wispa a floaty cloud of goodness. WHO IS DOING IT LIKE HEROES?
My advent calendar is Heroes. I take this very seriously. Everything about this variety is a delight. Aesthetically pleasing, a lovely mix of modern and classic varieties and an untouchable level of flair and whimsy that make it impossible to beat. Only real ones will remember the heavenly years of 2013-2015 where they randomly put Toblerone in Heroes for Christmas? BRING THAT BACK. Bring that back and nothing will ever be wrong in this world again.