One of the first things that come to mind when reminiscing about Chunky candy bars is the old saying, “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.” Sure, it is still a tasty confection that can be readily found on store shelves. But in its glory days, Chunky wasn’t just your typical chocolate bar; it was truly something special.

The Chunky bar was introduced in the late 30s by Philip Silvershein and remains one of the oldest candy bars on the market. In its original grandeur, it contained milk chocolate, cashews, raisins and Brazilian nuts, and was just one big hunk of uniquely-shaped chocolate.

Legend has it that the original shape of the candy was a pyramid, which left the manufacturers with a packaging problem, one that was eventually solved by chopping the top off, giving Chunky its unique trapezoidal shape.

To the dismay of purists, the ingredients have changed throughout the years, more than likely to cut the costs associated with the use of more exotic nuts, and we currently find Chunky (now owned by Nestle) made from milk chocolate, peanuts and raisins. If raisins just aren’t your cup of tea, Chunky has also offered other variations throughout the years, including one that was simply pure chocolate.

In the 60’s, actor Arnold Stang (voice of Hanna Barbera’s Top Cat,) pitched the candy on television and you may recall his catch phrase: “Chunky, what a chunk of chocolate!” Eventually however, that big chunk o’ chocolate became subdivided into four smaller breakaway squares. It still retains the same overall shape for the most part, but it is a bit easier to share with friends (or ration, if you aren’t much interested in sharing your chocolate with others.)

It can be hard to explain to younger generations that not everything improves over time. A side-by-side comparison of new vs. old Chunky should be all the convincing that one needs, however. Yes, Chunky is still a great candy bar and, yes, it still has a loyal following of fans, but some things just cannot be improved upon and Chunky was one of them.

If you have fond memories of this candy bar, especially if you remember the pre-Nestle era, we’d love to hear your recollections in our comments section, as we tip our hats to one of the oldest candy bars around.

9 Responses to “Chunky”

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  1. SesameSquirrel says:

    Chunky had an advertising slogan in the 70s that proclaimed “It’s thickerer” (sic). One commercial had a father and son watching TV on a sofa. All we heard from the TV was Western sounds with an occasional Cavalry Charge. Father suddenly says to boy “Want a Chunky?” Boy: You bet it’s my favorite! Father: How come (as he hands the boy a Chunky from a bowl filled with them on the adjacent end table) Boy: “It’s thickerer” Father: “Thicker” They debate, but when the father tries one as well, he concedes that “Thickerer” is the apt term.

  2. SesameSquirrel says:

    Another Chunky commercial had the slogan ‘You don’t have to see it to find it”. The commercial had a man casing the interior of some kitchen cupboards, but only by feeling, not by looking. We see the guy’s hand passing over all manner of dishes until he encounters a bowl filled with Chunkys. He takes one, and unwraps and eats it. Then an off-camera woman’s voice calls out “Harry(*), is that you?” The man nervously trots out of the kitchen, closing a door behind him.

  3. Emily says:

    Were Chunky bars really that popular? Most kids I know don’t like raisins or other fruit in their chocolate. I always liked Glossette raisins (and peanuts and almonds too; I wasn’t picky), but I was a strange kid.

  4. they were feaured on seinfeld,where newman was eating them. i haven’t seen them in a while.

  5. Peggy says:

    Oh my, Chunky, was my favorite candy growing up. I absolutely loved it. Its hard to find now. My other favorite was 5th Avevnue. None of the old candy bars are made the same anymore. They do something to them thats a little different. Could you send me a Chunky. LOL I am 72 so you know I really remember them. Yummy!!!!

  6. I remember “Chunky”also,but in my childhood,it was mostly Hershey’s milk chocolate or Mounds bars(While I am at it,I have my diaries age 9-12 -late 1930’s–any idea as to where I could get them published?)

  7. Lexi says:

    There was an all chocolate version of Chunky in the 70’s. I was totally addicted to them.

  8. Em says:

    I’m sitting here eating one now. Such a difference! You can taste the difference and I had to drive 50 miles to get one!! I just happened to be going that way. I wouldn’t have looked so hard but I promised someone who never had one, that I would try to bring one to her. I’m just sorry it can’t be like the one I had when I was young.
    They ‘claim” these are the giant sized….and I’m guessing that’s the way they decided to pull the wool over our eyes when they charged this new exorbitant price. It now has six half size piece instead of the four big squares, so they are smaller than the originals I used to have and they cost me $2.00 each! Unreal and truly sad.

  9. Janette Ransom says:

    I haven’t had a Chunky bar in a long, long time. Lately I kept having a strong urge to have a Chunky bar so I bought one and tried it tonight. What a HUGE disappointment! I remember a WONDERFUL tasting big, squat and square candy bar and couldn’t wait to eat it. The Chunky bar I had tonight was none of those things. I will never buy one again.

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