I was strolling through the local Kroger (early early in the morning to avoid the Christmas rush) and came across something very exciting…Hersheyettes.
So, what are Hersheyettes? Well, as you can guess, it is made by Hershey’s and is a candy coated chocolate that highly resembles an m&m. The only packaging I have found them in is a plastic candy cane tube with a red handle. And when I checked with Hershey’s the rep said they were peanut, nut, and gluten free. :)
Hershey’s customer service was impeccable. My customer representative was endlessly patient and very well versed in food allergies. He explained to me that Hershey’s has a strict labeling procedure that will include allergens such as nuts and peanuts in the ingredient listing or if there is concern of contamination will include a “may contain traces of” statement. If only all companies would do this…
My son is peanut and nut free and I am gluten free, so you can imagine my delight at sharing these with my son who has never tasted a real m&m. I couldn’t wait to share them with him. The smile on his face when he saw what I came home from the grocery store with completely warmed my heart. He was tickled to be eating a “fake” m&m!
The only downside of my call with Hershey’s was that the customer representative said Hersheyettes are only produced during the Christmas season. HUGE bummer. I highly encouraged him to let the powers that be know how much a product like Hersheyettes means to the food allergy community and how welcome year-round sales would be. I also followed up with an email. Please take a few minutes to email them commend them on this product and encourage them to make it year-round.
Since Hersheyettes are sold for a limited time only, I went back and cleaned them out the best I could so my son could enjoy these candy covered chocolates even after Christmas. I let my son eat a few and then decided it would be fun to use the candies to make “fake m&m cookies.”
Here is the recipe:
Hersheyettes Holiday Cookies (yields about 24 cookies)
- 2/3 cup of brown sugar
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup Crisco shortening
- 1 whole egg
- 1 egg white
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups flour (I use King Arthur GF Baking Mix to make GF)
- dash of salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 cup of Hersheyettes candies – divided
Cream sugar and shortening together. Add eggs and vanilla extract until thoroughly mixed. Add flour, salt, and baking soda and mix thoroughly. Stir in 1/2 cup of Hersheyettes. Drop by tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheet.
Press a couple of Hersheyettes onto the top of each cookie. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
These are fabulous and were a HUGE hit for me and my son! What a wonderful Christmas treat. I just bet Santa will love them too!
P.S. For those of you wondering, I’ve contacted Mars Candies (makes m&ms) several times about their product not being food allergy friendly and have not had so much as a reply. :( Hershey totally has them beat with customer service and superior products.