Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Trader Joe’s Milk Chocolate Malted Milk Eggs (Plus a Bonus)

Trader Joe's Milk Chocolate Malted Milk EggsA good malted milk ball is hard to find. Even worse, the good ones are hard to get. I don’t know why I expect to get some tasty malted milk at my nearest drug store or grocery, perhaps it’s because so many other quality candies are available these days.

But the mass-produced malted milk balls have been getting worse and worse while the gourmet styles seem to have branched out into novelty flavor combinations to the point that the classic is hardly available. There is a season for malted milk balls and it’s Easter.

Trader Joe’s has a milk carton package of Milk Chocolate Malted Milk Eggs that gave me hope. I also loved the price: $2.49 for 10 ounces of real chocolate malt balls.

Trader Joe's Milk Chocolate Malted Milk Eggs

The carton is cute, it’s the same base dimensions as a half gallon, but obviously shorter (I’m guessing it’d hold a quart). It’s 10 ounces of beefy malted milk eggs made with real milk chocolate. They lack the outer candy coating that most Easter varieties have, but that’s not the end of the world. It’s the center and the chocolate that count.

These eggs are large, about the size of a shelled pecan. They’re glossy and consistent. When I stick my nose into the spout of the carton they certainly smell like a sweet chocolate malt.

Trader Joe's Milk Chocolate Malted Milk Eggs

I think they have the perfect ratio of malt center to chocolate coating, so that’s a good start. The chocolate is soft but not gummy and though there’s a glaze on the outside (to keep them from sticking together) it doesn’t make the chocolate waxy.

But then there’s the center. The center is a good density - not too dense so that it feels like I’m eating styrofoam insulation and not too flaky so it feels like I’m eating yeast sprinkles. It’s crisp and has a mild malty and milky flavor ... but it also tastes like smoke to me. It’s as if all the air bubbles have some sort of burning plastic smoke trapped in them. Maybe I got a bad batch, but I just can’t get over it. I’ve tried, and I figure the fact that I’ve had these for about 10 days and haven’t finished them is a sign.

I might pick them up again (or have you tried them?) but since they’re seasonal I might just let it go. No sense falling in love with something that’s not going to be around.

Nuts Online Naked Malted Milk BallsBonus Review: Naked Malted Milk Ball Centers

I’ve often lamented the fact that I can’t just eat the center of the malted milk balls. After all, I don’t need the chocolate, that’s not what attracts me to them. So after years of looking I found a place online (via some helpful readers) that sells the uncoated malted milk ball centers.

I ordered two one pound bags from Nuts Online. (The shipping got a little screwed up and I had to wait ten days to get them, apparently there was some sort of snow storm back on the Eastern Seaboard in February, they really should have said something in the papers about it.)

Naked Malted Milk Balls

These are quite lovely. They’re crispy and dissolve quickly on the tongue. The malt flavors are intense and well rounded with a bit of a yeasty note and a little salt. I went through a one pound bag in the matter of a week. I still have a second bag that I’m hanging onto for those severe cravings that come after Easter.

They’re probably great for baking or desserts. They’re definitely good for munching. I can see them as a great movie treat because they’re not too sweet. Like most crispy candies you have to be very careful not to leave them out in humid conditions, they deflate and get tacky (I think we’ve all gotten the malted milk ball that’s just a gooey puddle inside.)

Related Candies

  1. Jelly Belly Deluxe Easter Mix
  2. Naked Chocolate Maltballs
  3. Fairway NYC
  4. Mighty Malts
  5. Malted Crisped Rice Squares
  6. Jelly Belly Chocolate Malt Balls
  7. Mars Maltesers
  8. Bulk Balls
  9. Cocoa Pete’s Maltimus Maximus
Name: Milk Chocolate Malted Milk Eggs
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 4 BENIGN
Brand: Trader Joe's
Place Purchased: Trader Joe's (Laguna Woods)
Price: $2.49
Size: 10 ounces
Calories per ounce: 135
Categories: Chocolate, Malt, United States, Trader Joe's, Easter, Kosher, All Natural

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:40 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

  1. I don’t know if you have The Fresh Market out there, but they have fantastic dark chocolate covered malted milk balls. They also have the milk chocolate covered ones that are good as well. But I can’t say enough about the dark chocolate ones.

    I agree with you on most commercial choices today. I can’t even stomach a whopper.

    Comment by Kristin on 3/24/10 at 10:53 am #
  2. I love Nuts Online!!  They even ship stuff to me in Germany & it comes nice and fresh.  The chocolate covered toffee bars are amazing.

    Comment by Stacey on 3/24/10 at 10:53 am #
  3. Oh yes, we had some major storms out here on the East coast in February, between a massive week of snow followed a couple of weeks later by ten inches of rain in a lot of places.

    Comment by Yurei on 3/24/10 at 11:17 am #
  4. Have you tried the unfortunately named Horlick’s Malt Tablets? My mom used to buy rolls of these at the drugstore. At this point they have to be imported from Germany (I think). I am a huge malt fan and I love these things. I think you can get them from the Vermont Trading Company.

    Comment by nerdycellist on 3/24/10 at 12:33 pm #
  5. I am so used to the Maltesers we get in this country, I bet a real high quality chocolate covered malt ball would be a real eye opener to how crap they really are.

    Comment by Jim on 3/25/10 at 1:34 am #
  6. Man, those naked malt balls look awesome and Nuts Online has all sorts of cool stuff, but their shipping is kinda expensive.  I’ll have to save up and do a bulk purchase!

    Comment by Ruffy on 3/25/10 at 12:17 pm #
  7. Cybele's avatar

    Ruffy - I admit the shipping is prohibitive. I ended up buying some Smooth n Melty Mints, Sour Gummi Bears plus two pounds of these to make it worth my while.

    Jim - do they not have a variety of malted milk balls in the UK? It seems like a staple here in the bulk bins (or at least it used to be).

    nerdycellist - I like the flavor of the Horlicks tablets, but not the texture. I prefer the jar of the powder and eat it by the messy spoonful.

    Yurei - I timed my purchase poorly. While it was cold and rainy here I put in the order, but by the time it made it to Los Angeles it was 80 degrees and one of my items melted. (Nuts Online replaced at no cost though.)

    Stacey - I didn’t even look at the toffee! Thanks for the recommendation.

    Kristin - I’m probably a strange purist and prefer the milk chocolate version. (Don’t get me wrong, I’ll eat dark ones, but there’s something about the milk combinations that please me.)

    Comment by Cybele on 3/25/10 at 12:21 pm #
  8. Nope we have no other alternatives to Maltesers. The UK is a monopoly when it comes to chocolate covered malt balls.

    I can’t even think of any smaller companies that make such a thing.

    Comment by Jim on 3/25/10 at 1:55 pm #
  9. oh man I LOVED these TJ’s eggs. I think I have a bias towards a) cute packaging and b) egg-shaped candies, though.

    After reading your review I got them again (having hoovered up the first batch) and I definitely see what you mean about the smokey taste. It doesn’t bother too much though.

    Have you tried the malted milk balls made i think by Koppers with the dark, milk and finally gorgeous swirly white chocolate layers? Those are my favorite favorite.  Maybe that’s what you meant by branching out into weird gourmet flavors though.

    Comment by ferneyg on 3/25/10 at 7:01 pm #
  10. I’m Canadian and have never seen other types of malted milk balls except chocolate covered (and at Easter, chocolate covered and then candy shelled, shaped like eggs). Whoppers are definitely the dominating brand, and even bulk stores don’t have other flavors.

    I just ordered 2 pounds of the malted centers from Nuts Online, and threw in some Turkish delight and pumpkin pie spice malted milk balls for good measure. Yay!

    Comment by chops on 3/26/10 at 2:59 pm #
  11. I la-la-looove Nuts Online.
    Definitely going to order these, thanks for the post!

    Comment by Yvonne on 3/29/10 at 4:24 am #
  12. The TJ malts are really pretty good.  Does anyone know if there’s some Earthly way to get these during non-Easter seasons?  I don’t bloody care what shape they are…

    Brach’s Choc Malt Balls were just fine.  Then they disappeared.

    Comment by sk on 3/30/10 at 7:49 pm #
  13. I went to Trader Joes today and they were out of the Eggs! Sadness. I was informed that they went out of stock shortly after being released. I settled for their new jelly beans.

    Comment by Heather on 4/02/10 at 6:24 pm #
  14. I would like to know hope to order the malted milk eggs, please let me know how I can order some

    Comment by Earlrick on 4/04/14 at 2:44 pm #
  15. Want to know how to order the chocolate malted milk eggs

    Comment by Earlrick on 4/04/14 at 3:26 pm #
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