Starburst Jelly Beans: Sour

Starburst Jelly Beans: Sour packaging
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And we come back to the Starburst family, the first brand to reach three varieties with published reviews on this site. Today we review the sour variety of Starburst Jelly Beans.

Size and shape

There won’t be a lot of surprises in these first three subcategories, as these beans very much reflect the template laid out in the original Starburst Jelly Beans when it comes to physical characteristics, so I won’t dwell on those too much.

As previously reported, these beans are very consistent in size and shape. Minor negatives are lack of dimple and slightly undersized average size.

4 out of 5 beans


This will mark the third perfect score in this subcategory for Starburst. To highlight one thing I haven’t talked about in previous Starburst reviews, sometimes one of these beans has an extra-crunchy shell, and biting into one of those is delightful.

5 out of 5 beans


Something I’m now noticing about Starburst Jelly Beans is that while I really appreciate the smoothness of the shell, I find that it gets a bit too grainy when it breaks up. I’m afraid I’ll have to lower this sub-rating by a bean.

3 out of 5 beans

Taste and flavor


  • :cherries: Cherry
  • :tangerine: Tangerine
  • :watermelon: Watermelon
  • :lemon: Lemon
  • :green_apple: Green Apple
  • :blue_heart: Blue Raspberry

The concept of "sour watermelon" is strange to me. All of the other flavors are either inherently sour or have sour variants in nature.

As I was writing the early sections of this review and snacking on a bean here and there, I noticed that I had forgotten the fact that these are supposed to be sour beans. The flavors are noticeably more tart than classic Starburst Jelly Beans, but as I discussed with respect to Sour Patch and WarHeads, if it says “sour” on the package, I want them to really be sour!

It’s a little puzzling to me that they subbed out the classic Starburst flavors of Strawberry and Orange for the never-sour Watermelon and the basically-the-same Tangerine.

The flavors are still very good, overall, and relatively accurate. Starburst didn’t get rise to such prominence in the fruity candy universe without knowing a little somethin’ about flavor.

7 out of 10 beans

The one-of-each test

Perhaps the ultimate test of a bag of jelly beans is how enjoyable it is to take one of each flavor and eat them all at the same time.1

The sour Starburst beans suffer the same fate as the originals: before you can finish chewing, everything melds together in a fashion that resembles a mouthful of slightly-easier-to-chew Skittles.

That initial hit of tart flavor is pretty great, though.

7 out of 10 beans


Starburst Sour Jelly Beans end up scoring very close to their original flavors. Despite the generally good score, I feel compelled to reiterate my dissatisfaction with the level of sourness in these jelly beans. I suppose I would recommend them for folks who like flavors that are just mildly tart and want a high-quality jelly bean.

Category Score
Size and shape 4/5 beans
Chewability 5/5 beans
Texture 3/5 beans
Taste and flavor 7/10 beans
One-of-each test 7/10 beans
Total 26/35 beans

  1. This test is specific to fruit flavors only. While non-fruit flavors like licorice or buttered popcorn may be welcome, they are exempt from this test. Because that’s just nasty.