HOME > Chowhound > Ontario (inc. Toronto) >


Uniquely Canadian snacks

  • r

I am travelling to the UK in the summer and am going to visit some Canadian ex-pats. I would love to surprise them with some goodies that are not available to them over in the UK. Any ideas/suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Nanaimo Bars and Coffee Crisp are two things that are usually listed right away.

    3 Replies
    1. re: TexSquared

      Canadian Maple Syrup /Maple Syrup Candies (the ones in the shape of a Maple Leaf) . Do yourself a favour while visiting them..buy yourself some of the 'British' Cadbury Chocolate Bars to bring home!

      1. re: TexSquared

        My mother-in-law swears by Tim Horton coffee.
        How about cured/smoked salmon.
        Maple products (syrup/candy/etc).
        Molson Ex.
        Niagara ice wine.
        Red rose tea (available only in Canada? Pity...).
        Poutine kit (curd cheese/ St. Hubert poutine gravy mix...I know purists are already rolling their eyes).
        Laura Secord chocolates.
        Humpty Dumpty bacon and Hickory chips (now called Old Dutch...).
        Clamato juice to fire up some caesars.
        May West and a can of pepsi (ok they probably already have the pepsi).
        Hostess hickory sticks.
        Habitant pea soup (the large tin).
        Salt Cod (I'm gussing they have this as well...).
        Smoked Meat in cryovac, boil and serve.
        Pickled whelks.
        Canadian Bacon (whatever that is...).

          1. Fudgie-Os (from the maker of Oreo). Not available out side of Canada. Also, Ketchup chips, Dill Pickle chips, and pretty much and Old Dutch or Dutch Crunch potato chips. In terms of baked goods: butter tarts and Montreal-style bagels. Oh! and President's Choice Decadent Chocolate Chip cookies.

            1 Reply
              1. While you can get a version of the original Caramilk in the UK, I don't know if some of the new variants (thick, cappucino, dark, etc.) are available.

                Definitely second the ice-wine recommendation. If you want to save a few dollars, visit the Magnotta outlets.

                6 Replies
                1. re: KevinB

                  maple butter (and other maple products)
                  moose droppings
                  candied smoked salmon

                  not sure if these are 100% canadian but i travel to the states (vermont as well) a lot and haven't seen them...

                  1. re: chrisfernando100

                    Candied smoked salmon? delish! where would I find this product?

                    1. re: sugarcube

                      It's often called Indian Candy - you can probably find it at St. Lawrence market, either upstairs at one of the fish sections or downstairs at the stand that sells caviar. You could also look for Salmon Jerky but I don't often seen that except on the West coast.

                      1. re: sugarcube

                        I've seen them at Whole Foods and Highland Farms - not cheap though at either location.

                        1. re: Pizza Lover

                          Thanks for the info Cat123 and Pizza Lover. I'll be sure to stop by SLM and Whole Foods next time I'm in the area.

                    2. re: KevinB

                      I haven't seen the Caramilk maple variation for at least a year, wonder if it's still available.

                    3. My British friends were impressed when I brought over Cheez Whiz. Well, more in a 'that's so bizarre' kind of way.

                      1. when my british cousins came to toronto for a visit, they stocked up on oreos. they get them in london but they're quite expensive and they don't get all the different varieties.

                        they also stocked up on goldfish crackers (apparently a hit with little kids) and big red gum.

                        1. Vachon "Limited Edition" Maple Ah!! Caramels.

                          1. My Uncle just returned to France with copious bags of Hawkins Cheesies.

                            1. I don't know about across the pond but, and since it's the season for it, you can't get Canadian style (Half box chocolate, half box vanilla) Girl Guide cookies in the US. They have different (inferior IMHO) ones.


                              1. Most of the things mentioned above which are uniquely Canadian have their equivalents in the UK. Maybe not precisely the same, but similar. The candy, chip (crisps) and biscuit selection there is larger. However they do not do as good a job with things like chocolate chip cookies.

                                In reply to some suggestions...Scottish smoked salmon is famous world over. There are more varieties of Pekoe tea there than here. Laura Secord chocs are laura Seconds. UK has more varieties and types of tinned soups, bacon, whelky things, smoked meats, wines, spirits, jams and so on. They may not be available in all supermarkets and all areas. (cf. Yellowknife).

                                Where you do have the edge is in ethnic or immigrant food. So if you take things which are Korean, Vietnamese, Ethiopian, South American, even Chinese, then there is a greater chance that you will surprise your friends with something. It depends if you consider these things to be uniquely Canadian. But as a British ex-pat I know the things I miss.

                                My suggestion is to remove the word surprise for at least one of them.

                                Ask him-her what they miss. As sure as Cadbury`s eggs is eggs they will be missing something you haven`t thought of.

                                1. Maple flavoured cookies by Dare (I think they are called Maples)....my pals in NYC also take home Crispy Crunch's with their Coffee Crisps - but I believe you can get them in UK.

                                  2 Replies
                                    1. re: middydd

                                      So are Nativa (Shoppers Drug Mart's organic house brand) maple cookies. Actually, all of the Nativa products I've tried are excellent.


                                  1. How about things like pickled fiddleheads, ox-eye daisy capers, and the like from Forbes Wild Foods. They have stands at both Dufferin Grove and the Green Barn farmers' markets (both open year-round).

                                    These aren't exactly snack foods, mind you, and must be wrapped well and packed in your checked luggage.