Fond memories of childhood at Easter call to mind excitement at the bunny’s visit and the gifting of chocolate eggs on a day when it was absolutely fine to eat sweets before breakfast.
But as a dairy-avoiding adult, that has all changed, and the bunny – and confectioners – somehow overlooked those of us who are milk-free.
That was until recent years, when the vegan foods market exploded, and an abundance of dairy-free chocs could be found on regular supermarket shelves.
This year, it feels as if chocolatiers have delivered more vegan Easter options than ever, and we are in for a chocolate breakfast once again.
Gone are the days when the only chocolate not made with cow’s milk was the bitterest of dark bars. Now, there are white and milk options, plus those in a variety of different flavours, with goodies such as truffles hidden inside.
Some are affordable, while others, such as handmade luxury options, are a little more on the pricey side, but there is still something for every budget and palate.
We went on a little pre-Easter egg hunt to discover a wide range of the best vegan and dairy-free gifts available right now. We found goodies that were traditional and others that were a bit more unusual, and we tried the lot (it’s a tough gig) to help our readers find the eggs they would like to see the bunny delivering to them and their loved ones this year.
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Nomo vegan and free-from fruit and crunch egg and bar
Nomo’s chocolate is among the most delicious free-from offering we have tasted, and we have long been fans of the brand’s affordable chocolate bars. It is fair to say we were just a bit excited to try this one.The egg itself is a good size, especially for the price, and the chocolate is as delectable as expected – creamy, smooth and generously dotted with satisfyingly sweet, juicy raisins and crispy puffed rice for a texture that thrills the taste buds. The fruit and crunch bar that comes with it also went down well thanks to a flavour that is superior to other fruit and nut bars, except this one is minus the nuts and safe for all to gobble.Besides the seriously great-tasting chocolate, the other brilliant thing about Nomo’s products is that they are suitable for people with other allergies because, as well as being dairy-free, they are also gluten-, egg- and nut-free.
Happi Easter eggs triple pack
Having just one egg to scoff on Easter morning will not do, so we tried a triple pack. We were delighted to come across Happi and to find its ethically sourced chocolate is made from oat milk. Given the creaminess of oat milk, we expected something magical here, and the eggs did not disappoint. Happi’s milk chocolate is among the creamiest, smoothest vegan chocolate we have tasted. The plain milk egg is fantastic, and the flavours of the salted caramel and orange versions are intense and delicious. We think the orange egg is the closest you are going to get to a vegan version of a Terry’s Chocolate Orange. The eggs come in recyclable cardboard boxes with fun designs and the inner film is suitable for home composting, so this is a sustainable option too.
Rococo Chocolates vegan milk chocolate egg
This was our first foray into the world of cashew milk chocolate, and we could well be converted into enthusiasts after tasting this handmade egg. Like cashews themselves, the chocolate is creamy, smooth and delicately nutty, not too sweet but just right. The egg is gorgeously thick and filled with whole roasted hazelnuts encased in a thick layer of cocoa powder.
As one would expect from a Rococo product, this egg is beautifully wrapped in green foil, tied in a bow and comes packaged in the brand’s signature style illustrated boxes.
Love Cocoa giant dark sea salt easter egg with vegan truffles
They’re not joking when they say giant. At half a kg, this egg is enormous, and definitely one for sharing. The 70 per cent dark Colombian chocolate is ever so rich, and its delightful flavour is enhanced by crunchy sea salt, while the accompanying flake-covered hazelnut gianduja truffles are luxuriously smooth and provide an even more powerful chocolate hit. So gloriously full-bodied are the 72 per cent dark Peruvian chocolate titbits that eating more than one at a time is a struggle, but one we were willing to face. Love Cocoa’s egg comes in an attractive green, white and gold cylindrical cardboard box and it is 100 per cent plastic-free.
Ananda Foods Easter marshmallow selection box
If chocolate is not really your thing, this alternative gift will be right up your street. Packaged in a colourful handled box is a selection of scrumptiously light and chewy marshmallows. There are sweet caramel, tangy lime-chocolate-drizzled lemon and smooth vanilla morsels to enjoy, either on their own, toasted or crowning a dairy-free hot chocolate. People with other food allergies and intolerances can also enjoy this egg, as Ananda Foods’s non-GMO marshmallows are made without gluten, egg, and nuts, while all the brand’s products are registered with The Vegan Society.
Moo Free dairy free choccy eggsplosion easter egg
The fact that this egg costs just £3.50 is mind-blowing. It is a tad smaller than some of the other more expensive options we tried, but it is the perfect sized Easter gift for the vegan in your life (or yourself). Parts of the egg were on the thinner side, but get to the bit at the front, which has melted white cocoa drops and vegan marshmallows, and you find a generously thick section of serious deliciousness. We finished this one in one go. The chocolate is tasty and even suitable for those who avoid palm oil, gluten and soya.
Melt strawberry Easter egg
An egg that thinks it is a piece of fruit, this showstopper from luxury chocolate company Melt brings a whole new meaning to following a plant-based diet. Appearances are not everything, but you can be sure that whoever is presented with this egg on Easter morning will be blown away by its ingenious design. The chocolate itself is deeply flavoured with strong cocoa and fresh strawberry notes, and the green passion fruit chocolate top is sublime. Not just a pretty egg.
Hames luxury vegan-friendly creamy mlk chocolate egg containing mlk chocolate honeycomb bunnies
Made from rice powder, like some of the other eggs we tested, the Lincolnshire chocolatier’s vegan offering is equally chocolatey, smooth and creamy, but has a slightly deeper cocoa flavour than some of its competitors. The egg itself is impressively thick and comes in two halves, maybe to try to pace us so we can’t gobble the whole thing in one go. Inside are adorable solid vegan milk chocolate bunnies that are a fair size – bite into them and you find they’re dotted with scrumptious honeycomb nuggets for that extra sweet hit.
Gåva Easter äggs flora vegan edition with vegan pick and mix
An Easter egg, but not as you know it. Gåva, a brand founded by three Swedish natives during lockdown, aims to bring the Scandi art of mindful and sustainable giving to the UK. Its Äggs are reusable egg-shaped tins designed to be used like Christmas stockings – to be refilled year after year with whatever Easter gift takes your fancy. They come in a range of colourful patterns, including one with a quail’s-egg print and those with Pelle Kanin – the Swedish name for Beatrix Potter’s Peter Rabbit – as well as a blank white egg on which you can create your own design for a truly personalised gift.
The company’s online shop allows you to buy an egg and fill it with vegan pick and mix sweets or vegan fruit gums, and there are options for non-vegans too. We tried the pick and mix in the Flora egg and found a delectable variety of fruit-flavoured gummy sweets that we were reluctant to share. The philosophy behind this gift is one we admire, and we can see the start of a tradition of bringing out the Äggs each Easter.
Buttermilk salted caramel crunch choccy Easter egg and soldier
Now non-vegans need not be the only ones tucking into egg and soldiers on Easter morning. You can’t quite dip the bar into the chocolate egg as you would one that is boiled, but this is an all the more enjoyable taste experience. Bite into the egg and you are hit with a palate-pleasing mix of sweet cocoa, caramel, vanilla and contrasting crunchy sea salt, which amplifies the flavours. The bar is just as brilliantly sweet and satisfying, and we also love that the quality egg is made with responsibly sourced ingredients and comes in plastic-free packaging.
Mummy Meagz the chuckie egg
Thought creme eggs were no longer on the menu when you turned vegan? Think again. Just like the original Cadbury treat, those from Mummy Meagz have a chocolate shell with a gooey white and yolk fondant centre, only they are milk free. The dark chocolate casing is smooth and definitely tastes more intense than its non-vegan equivalent, and the centre is as sweet and sticky as we have ever known. Each egg is handmade and wrapped in blue foil, and we see this as a serious contender in the clash of the creme eggs.
So Sweet Couture dairy-free hen and mini eggs
A most adorable Easter gift for anyone avoiding dairy, the hen and colourful individually foil-wrapped eggs nestled in a basket of paper straw look seriously cute. We were absolutely delighted to find both the hen and the mini eggs were solid vegan milk chocolate, as we had hoped rather than hollow shells. The cocoa butter and rice powder-based chocolate is creamy and smooth enough to easily fool any non-vegan into believing it is made with dairy. The hen itself is lovely and thick and just the right size for an indulgent treat.
The Verdict: Vegan and dairy-free Easter eggs
Despite taste-testing so many other types of chocolate for this roundup, Nomo’s remains a firm favourite, so its fruit and crunch egg is our top pick. We love that no one need be left out this Easter with this egg because it is vegan-friendly, and dairy-, gluten-, egg- and nut-free. And at a mere £6 it is a purse-friendly buy. A very close second is the Happi triple pack because the oat milk chocolate is superb in the three flavours and they come in environmentally friendly packaging.
Want to give soemthing other than sweets? We’ve found the best gifts non-chocolate Easter gifts for kids
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