The History of Jelly Beans

By | April 18, 2019

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Easter Brunch. Jelly beans. (Photo by Anne Cusack/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

On Easter morning, children across the country will wake up to find an assortment of candy in their Easter baskets. Naturally, jelly beans will be included. In fact, jelly beans have become one of the candy treats most associated with the Easter holiday. Jelly beans have a long and interesting history that begins in the Middle East. Let’s trace back the history of these colorful, bite-sized Easter favorites. 

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Traditional Turkish Delight. Source: (

Turkish Delight

Most candy historians believe that jelly beans originated in the Middle East as a form of Turkish Delight, a regional sweet treat that has been around for centuries. The soft, chewy center of the jelly bean is akin to Turkish Delight, but the hard candy shell came about in the 17th century, almonds covered in a hard candy shell.