Have you heard of Candy Hearts grapes? These amazing grapes are sure to delight you with their sweet flavor and excellent crunch. Candy Hearts are a fairly new grape variety that is already gaining popularity.You don’t have to wait for Valentine’s Day to learn about this unique kind of grape.
Keep reading to learn all about Candy Hearts grapes including where they came from, how to eat them, and where you can get some of your own.
History of Candy Hearts Grapes
Candy Hearts grapes were developed by a company called International Fruit Genetics or IFG. The organization is becoming well known for creating unique and delicious new cultivars of grapes. IFG has developed many other popular varieties that you may have heard of in recent years including Cotton Candy Ggapes, Sweet Sunshine, and Sweet Romance.
The first Candy Hearts were planted on just 5 acres in California in 2014. It takes a few years after planting to get a harvest so the grapes were not available to purchase until 2017. Since then many more vines have been planted all over the world so we can enjoy these flavorful grapes year round.
Characteristics of Candy Hearts Grapes
Candy Hearts grapes are a red variety with a touch of green near the stem. They often have a powdery white color on the skin known as bloom. This is perfectly natural and safe to eat. Bloom is one way the plant protects grapes from damage as they grow.
Candy Hearts grapes grow in loose clusters on the vine. They’re medium to large in size with a rounded oval shape. The skin is thin and crisp while the flesh is juicy and soft. They’re seedless, though it’s possible to find some seeds, especially if the grapes have been left on the vine for a long time.
Eating Candy Hearts Grapes
What Do They Taste Like
Candy Hearts grapes have a very sweet flavor, which is exactly what you would expect with the word candy in their name. They have a little bit of acidity that balances the sweetness so it’s not overly sweet like Cotton Candy Grapes can sometimes be.
The flavor is similar to the aromatic flavor of Concord grape juice with some floral and fruity notes. When sampling Candy Hearts you may taste a hint of vanilla, raspberry, strawberry or lychee.
What Do They Go With
Candy Hearts grapes pair very well with savory flavors like cheese and nuts. There’s a reason you see cheese, nuts, and grapes on a platter together often. The sweet grape flavor balances out savory flavors making this a classic pairing that is always delicious and good for you as well.
You don’t have to stick to the basic pairings though. There are many ways to enjoy these grapes from eating them raw by the handful to incorporating them in recipes.
How to Use Them in Cooking
One of the most obvious ways to cook grapes is to make jelly or jam. The sweet flavor of Candy Hearts grapes makes for delicious and rich jellies and jams.
Roasting grapes is another way to enjoy them cooked. Roasted grapes make a great topping for meats like pork chops and chicken. You can roast them separately and add as a finishing touch when serving, or roast the grapes along with your meat to let it soak up more of the sweet flavor. Roasted grapes are also delicious on bruschetta, or as a topping on ice cream for dessert.
Grapes are perfect for snacking. Fresh fruit like grapes are a healthy and delicious way to enjoy a sweet snack that will make you feel good inside and out.
You can eat Candy Hearts grapes with a protein and fat for a balanced snack that will keep you feeling full and satisfied. Try adding them to yogurt with granola. The combination of fiber, protein, and fat packs a powerful punch of nutrition while the sweet flavor of the grapes can satisfy a sweet craving.
Kids often love grapes because they are so sweet and delicious. Since they have many health benefits, grapes are a sweet snack you can feel good about serving your kids.
Frozen grapes make a delicious and nutritious treat for kids of all ages. Freezing grapes brings out their sweetness even more. Why not try freezing some grapes on a skewer to make a healthy and delicious popsicle that kids and grown ups will both enjoy!
Health Benefits of Candy Hearts Grapes
Grapes have many health benefits including increasing cognitive function, boosting immunity, improving heart health and much more. Candy Hearts grapes have a similar nutritional profile to other types of grapes though they do contain a bit more sugar than some other varieties.
Here’s an article all about the health benefits of grapes if you’d like to learn more about what grapes can do for your body.
Growing Your Own Grapes
Unfortunately, it’s not possible to grow your own Candy Hearts grapes at this point. The vines currently grown are developed and patented by IFG and are not available for sale. Candy Hearts grapes are a fairly new variety, perhaps in the future it will be possible to purchase plants or cuttings.
You may be wondering if you can take seeds from store bought grapes to start your own plant, but since Candy Hearts are a seedless grape variety you won’t be able to use seeds from the grapes to grow your own plant. New Candy Hearts grape vines aren’t grown from seeds, they’re propagated from cuttings.
If you want to grow your own grapes at home there are many delicious varieties you can grow right now such as Concord, Catawba, and Summit. To help you get started we have an article all about how to grow grapes as well as other helpful articles to keep your vines growing strong like how to prune grapes.
When and Where to Get Candy Heart sGrapes
Even if you can’t grow them yourself there are still many opportunities to enjoy these sweet and tasty grapes!
Candy Hearts grapes are grown in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres so they’re available year round. You can usually find Candy Hearts grapes that are grown in the United States from July-December. At other times of the year Candy Hearts come from places such as Brazil, Peru, and Chile.
Many popular grocery stores carry Candy Hearts grapes including Sam’s club, Costco, and Publix. Check with your local store to see if they carry them.
Candy Hearts Grape FAQs
Are Candy Hearts Grapes genetically modified?
No. Candy Hearts grapes were developed using natural cross breeding practices to develop the new variety. They are non-GMO!
Are Candy Hearts Grapes Natural?
Yes! There are no artificial flavors or sweeteners added. The grapes are cultivated to be sweet in natural ways and they are 100% natural.
Time to Eat Some Candy Hearts Grapes
Give these delicious grapes a try, they may become your new favorite! If you’ve already tried Candy Hearts grapes, let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear what you think about this variety.
To learn about some other interesting grape varieties, check out more of our grape blog posts.