What is Red Licorice? The Tasty Truth

Delicious as it is, there is actually no licorice in red licorice. Unlike its ebony namesake, red licorice neither contains nor tastes like licorice root. Red licorice is usually fruit flavored. That’s not a bad thing if you prefer red licorice because it lacks the strong black licorice taste.What is red licorice? Is red licorice really licorice?


Where does red licorice get its name? Looks can be deceiving, but sometimes there remains a telling family resemblance.

A brief history of red licoriceGirl eating red licorice. What is red licorice?

Red licorice was born at the start of Roaring Twenties. Its popularity, however, didn’t mature until 30 years later. Expanding its candy catalogue, the American Licorice Company introduced Raspberry Vines in 1920. When they changed their recipe and renamed the candy Red Vines in 1952, the raspberry relative to their original black licorice vines blossomed. The public started calling them red “licorice” because of its similarity in texture and shape to the American Licorice Company’s black licorice. Sales for red licorice now dwarf the black licorice market.

Fun facts about red licorice

  • Red licorice is the most eaten non-chocolate candy in the United States.
  • It is the most eaten candy in Utah. (People in Utah eat the most candy in the United States).
  • Bag of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Red LicoriceLong-distance runners often use red licorice as a quick source of energy.
  • During the 2016 nuclear negotiations with Iran, the American diplomatic team ate a combined 10 pounds of strawberry red licorice. (So stressed diplomats learned a lot from their college dorm diets.)


Celebrities who love red licorice

Taylor Swift loves red licorice. So does Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. Taylor Swift always keeps a bag of red licorice on her tour bus.

Red licorice packs a punch! Professional boxer Floyd Mayweather always ate red licorice before his fights.

Olympic gold medalist and soccer star Sydney Leroux admits red licorice is her guilty pleasure. (We don’t think she should feel guilty.)