Sweets Beginning with A

Life is short... so make it sweet!

At the Sweet Hamper Company, we’re proud of being candy connoisseurs. There’s not much we don’t know about the sweet stuff and we’ve packed our sweet hampers, sweet boxes, sweet bouquets and all our other sweet gifts with all sorts of taste bud tingling delights.

With that in mind, we got to thinking about how we could share our love of sweeties. So, we decided to bring you the ultimate guide to sweets and candy with the Sweet Hamper Company’s Encyclopaedia of Sweets!

Each blog post we’ll bring you the low down on sweets starting with different letters of the alphabet – the complete A-Z of candy. First up… the letter A!

Chocolate, sweets and candy beginning with A

Aniseed Sweets

Aniseed balls

Liquorice lovers rejoice! If that unique aniseed/liquorice flavour floats your boat, you've got to try these old fashioned favourites.
With a shiny outer shell and solid texture that's similar to gobstoppers, aniseed balls make for a delicious long-lasting sweet. Don't try crunching these up in one go... you'll risk losing a tooth!
Aniseed balls are made using aniseed oil, sugar, dextrose, maize starch and other ingredients. They were popular in the early 20th century and were even used during WW2 – underwater agents would wedge them into the detonator of limpet mines, and they would dissolve after 30 minutes, giving the agents enough time to get clear. Talk about an explosive candy!

Acid Drops

The clue’s in the name. Acid Drops pack a powerful sour punch thanks to being coated in sour sanding, otherwise known as sour sugar. Often flavoured with citrus fruits, the classic Acid Drops tangy taste tends to be bitter lemon – a mouth watering, tongue tingling delight!

These sweets are hard boiled, with a rock solid texture that gives way to a sweet tangy softness as it melts in your mouth. It's said that Acid Drops – sometimes known as fruit drops or sugar plums – were first made at the beginning of the 19th century.

Acid Drops are another retro sweet or traditional pick ‘n’ mix flavour that can be found in the Sweet Hamper Company’s range of retro sweet hampers, sweet boxes and other sweet gifts.

After Eight

The perfect treat for those with a sweet tooth and a love of mint chocolate. Practically a British institution, After Eight mints are delicious after dinner treat! Very popular at Christmas time, although irresistible all year round, After Eights are wafer thin dark chocolate squares with a creamy mint fondant centre.

Originally made by Rowntree's in the 1960s, After Eights are now produced by Nestle. They've added extra versions of the little chocolate cream minty marvel, with milk chocolate and chocolate orange special editions occasionally available.

Known for their iconic clock logo, showing the time at just past 8 o’clock, as well as the long box packaging and being wrapped individually, After Eights were marketed with the idea of bringing a touch of luxury to the ordinary family after dinner snack.

It certainly worked – After Eight min chocolates remain a firm U.K. favourite. Nowadays, there's even an ice cream flavour!


A delicious aerated chocolate bar, Aeros are a staple sweet of U.K. confectionary and have been enjoyed by kids and adults since the 1930s. Known for its bubbly texture and melt in your mouth texture, Aeros come in a variety of flavours, most notably milk chocolate and mint (the mint version is very popular).

These little lovely bubbly beauties are made by heating chocolate and then aerating it to create small bubbles. The air-filled chocolate is then poured into moulds and, as it cools, the bubbles expand inside the bar of chocolate.

This gives it a unique taste and texture – it tastes very light in the mouth but still extremely satisfying.


Another luscious liquorice retro sweet, Allsorts have a strong aniseed flavour with a hint of coconut and a soft, doughy consistency. It's this rich aniseed flavour, doughy consistency and super strong molasses taste that's made them a favourite sweet in the U.K. for the best part of 100 years.

Yes, that's right... this confectionary classic goes all the way back to 1899. In fact, their origin story is like something straight out of a film!

The story goes that a Bassett's sales rep dropped a tray of sweet treats during a client meeting. The jumbled up assortment intrigued the clients and his bosses, saving the clumsy rep's job and propelling Bassett's Allsorts into the sweet stratosphere. Over 100 years later and they're still going strong!


These colourful little candied chocolate balls with a biscuit centre were popular in the U.K. in the 90s. While they were discontinued in the U.K. and throughout Europe a decade or so ago, they're still sold in South Africa.

Army & Navy sweets

Take a sweet trip down memory lane with these old fashioned favourites! Lozenge-shaped and black in colour, with a strong aniseed flavour and hard boiled texture, Army & Navy sweets got their name due to their popularity with soldiers during WW1. Apparently, at that time, they were made from liquorice, herbs and even opium. Yikes!

Thankfully, nowadays, they only contain liquorice, herbs and sugar, for a perfectly harmless, tasty sweet treat.


These classic mints go way back! Originally made in 1780 as a digestive aid, Altoids come in five flavours – classic peppermint, wintergreen, cinnamon, strawberry and spearmint.

Sold in distinctive metal tins, these super strong mints were originally created by London based Smith & Company in the 1780s. They eventually made their way across the pond, arriving in the U.S. in 1918.

Packing quite a minty punch, Altoids might not be hugely popular with sweet toothed candy fans, but as a classic after dinner mint they are right up there with the best of them.

American Hard Gums

American Hard Gums

American Hard Gums, otherwise known as ‘Gum Drops’ have been a staple of pick ‘n’ mix stores for decades. As expected, these sweets originate from the USA but little is known about their origins. Today, American Hard Gums come in a rainbow of different fruity flavours, from strawberry and cherry to vanilla and coconut. However, when they first appeared they were traditionally flavoured with spices.

American Hard Gums have a unique consistency – they’re not chewy, they’re not jelly and they’re certainly not ‘hard’ in the sense of a boiled sweet.

They’re somewhere in the middle, straddling a certain sweet spot when it comes to texture and consistency, which is why they’re one of our favourite gummies to feature in our retro sweet hampers and vintage sweets box.

Conjuring up days of old, these fun nostalgic sweets certainly have a classic feel to them. Perhaps that's why they’ve been enjoyed for generations and continue to be popular with sweet lovers nowadays!

Almond Joy

Another one of those classic American candy bars made by the Hershey Company, Almond Joy bars are made from chopped nuts (namely almonds) and sweetened shredded coconut, covered in a dark chocolate coating.

Originating in 1946, this nutty retro favourite is quite similar to the English Bounty – both in terms of ingredients, taste and shape of the actual chocolate bar.

Apple Belts

Apple Belts

With their bright green colour and fizzy, tangy coating, Apple Belts provide flavours that pop in your mouth.

Deliciously sour and tangy, Apple Belts are another favourite which can be found in our sweet hamper collection.


Sweet meets sour for a perfect combination of the two with these juicy fruity candy bars. Airheads come in long coloured strips, with a variety of flavours that include cherry, raspberry, grape, apple, strawberry and raspberry.

Alphabet Letters

The letter ‘A’ in our sweet encyclopaedia wouldn’t be complete without Alphabet Letters. These pastel coloured candy are a familiar face in sweet shops and come in all sorts of different fruity flavours. We love playing a spot of countdown when we have a bag of Alphabet Letters… why not challenge yourself and see how many words you can create?

More sweet treats that begin with A

Here are some more chocolate and candy names that begin with the letter A:

  • Amarula chocolate
  • Andes mints
  • Abba zabba
  • Applehead

Check out our retro sweet hampers, sweet subscription boxes and sweet cones, where you'll find most of these sweets and more!