19 Discontinued Hostess Snacks We Desperately Want Back

When it comes to snacks, cakes, pies, and other delectable desserts, polished off morning, noon, or night, there is no company that can boastess more mostess than Hostess. The bakery's rise can be traced back to 1849, and through several parent companies in the 20th century, they would introduce some of the greatest baked things since sliced bread. Names like Twinkies, Donettes, SnoBalls, Ding Dongs, HoHos, and Zingers were once novel, and have since become guilty pleasure staples of Americana, available at corner stores, vending machines, and supermarkets everywhere.

Always looking to innovate and be on the cutting edge of crumbles, Hostess began to expand its offerings in the 1980s, 1990s, and beyond in hopes of expanding their bottom line. Some of these treats remain on shelves today, others were only released as a limited edition, while most have been relegated to the eternal dustbin of has-beens — no thanks to Hostess' bankruptcy in 2012.

For a brand with a heart in its logo, Hostess has broken quite a lot of them over the years for removing certain beloved items from their line-up. Some of the discontinued items have caused complete uproars, while others have been cared for and cried about in smaller numbers, hoping for a return one day. Let's champion some of these lost causes and look at the 19 discontinued Hostess snacks we desperately want back.

Bakery Petites

Hostess has proven time and (some) time again that large awesomeness can come in small sizes, ever since they launched Donettes in 1940, and then unleashed Mini Muffins and Brownie Bites back in the 1990s. It would be almost two decades later before they issued another new miniature treat of note, and Bakery Petites turned out to be well worth the wait.

There were several Delights to be had, shared, and enjoyed by all, including Crispi Thins (fudge blondies or chocolate brownies), Brownie Delights (chocolate chunk or chocolate raspberry), and Cake Delights (white vanilla fudge, double chocolate, strawberries & crème, salted caramel, or lemon buttercream). Things got off to a great start with the Double Chocolate Cake Delights winning "Best in Show" at the 2018 Sweet & Snacks Expo and the new line boosting Hostess' market share with the help of a lot of new consumers.

By the fall of 2019, Hostess had admitted it didn't really push the product very hard upon its initial release, and while it was still on shelves then, it faced an uncertain future. Hostess President and CEO Andrew P. Callahan said at an investor day conference, "We just haven't overinvested in it to grow. We thought the best thing to do was learn from it and then incorporate those learnings into the next platform" (via Baking Business).

It's uncertain if that next platform was their line of Cr!spy Minis, but they most certainly are not the Bakery Petites. Maybe push these soft guys a little harder next time?

Baseball CupCakes

At one point in time, there was nothing more American than baseball, so it was an MVP move by another such icon, Hostess, to remake their CupCakes to look like a baseball. These yellow cake, white iced, and red stitched beauties were safe at home just in time for the 1993 season, but apparently not sweet enough on players and management to prevent the catastrophic strike the following year.

One big draw of the Baseball CupCakes was the inclusion of free baseball cards. Trading cards were nothing new for Hostess, who put them on the back of boxes between 1975-1979 (with some sets including as many as 150 cards). Giveaways for the 1993 version reached kids at card shows and parks, and Hostess account executive Jerry Dicken told The Atlanta Constitution, "We're trying to get kids interested so they'll start trading the cards," adding, "We're hoping they'll go back and buy more because that's the name of the game."

The Baseball CupCakes would come and go over the years, and in 2018, they added a creative curve with the addition of limited edition "Night Game" chocolate cake ones to contrast the "Day" standard kind. These future Hall of Famers are both currently off the roster, but baseball fans will be ready for them to "batter" up if and when they return, and hopefully with trading cards too.

Brownies made with candy bars

Candy makes anything better, even brownies, and Hostess was finally game to give the double pleasure a try in 2016. In a press release, Hostess Chief Marketing Officer Burke Raine said, "Intensely rich brownies will satisfy most chocolate lovers, but pair them with two of America's most beloved chocolate candy brands — M&M's and Milky Way — and you've got a truly irresistible treat." A year after their joint venture with Mars candies, Hostess partnered with Nestlé to mash up Butterfingers on brownies, in what Raine called "bringing two powerhouses together."

What could go wrong? Well, the Milky Way ones seem to have lost their way in translation, with the perfect picture on the box hardly resembling the contents within, as The Impulsive Buy felt like they were on an episode of MTV's "Catfish." Junk Banter wasn't laughing when they said that the "Butterfinger-iness is a complete joke" of the Nestlé one. The Impulsive Buy was happier with the results of the M&M's brownie, noting that using the Minis provides "bombshell bursts of milky sweetness in an otherwise fudge-dominated world."

Brownies of any kind aren't even listed on Hostess' website, so hopefully, they're back in the lab retooling them for a future release. Since the crumbles of Milky Way and Butterfinger didn't seem to work, maybe stick with the shell game and bring back brownies with various M&M's or Reese's Pieces — or go even crazier and break out some Skittles.

CupCake Cookies

One of the most beautiful designs of any Hostess treat ever created has got to be the seven curly squiggles that decorate every single one of their CupCakes. The CupCake was first introduced in 1919, but it would take until 1947 for them to be filled with crème and have that curvy decoration added to the top. The genius idea was hatched by employee D.R. 'Doc' Rice, who later told UPI, "It needed something that would catch the eye and let the buyer know it was quality."

For those who love the sight of the curls, and just the bite of them, Hostess finally introduced their own take on what bakers have long been making — CupCake Cookies. Released in 2017 under their Bake Shop sub-label, the swirly CupCake Cookies came in chocolate, strawberry, and lemon, and were accompanied in stores alongside Decorated Twinkies and Triple Fudge Ding Dongs. Ellen Copaken, vice president of marketing at Hostess Brands, told BusinessWire, "Our inspired roster of premium Hostess Bake Shop treats is like nothing you've ever seen from Hostess before, while still retaining aspects of the classic snacks generations of consumers have come to love."

Soon, they were like nothing anyone was seeing, period, as Hostess seemingly closed the doors on its Bake Shop. Besides making them from scratch, the closest you can get to them is to slice off the top of a normal CupCake, let it sit out and harden, and voilà, you (sorta) have a CupCake Cookie.

Choco Bliss

When Hostess launched Choco Bliss, they laid the chocolate on mightily thick, both figuratively and physically. In their catchy TV ads, one warned chocolate lovers to "Watch out!" for the "ecstasy" contained within, while another, which looked like it was filmed at The Max from "Saved by the Bell," was totally "awesome." Try not to pity actress Anne Howard, who had to eat 60 of them in the course of filming over two days.

The "chocolate lover's dream" hit stores in early 1986 and was Hostess' very first all-chocolate treat, which was layered with devil's food cake, chocolate créme, and icing. A year later, a mint version was given a trial run but didn't seem to catch on. Choco Bliss was a best seller by 1988 and seemed to be a product built to last, but was Choco-dismissed sometime in the early 1990s.

Long gone, but Choco Bliss has never been forgotten. Pop culture expert blogger Dinosaur Dracula (aka Matt Caracapp) wrote in The News Journal that their sudden disappearance has led to their "mystique" over time, adding, "Perhaps the most championed of the truly lost Hostess snacks are the wildly-indulgent Choco-Bliss cakes. You wouldn't believe how many people still speak of these things, most typically while salivating or chewing furniture." Oddly, there was a Choco Bliss product on the market recently, but it was by Kosher snack maker Paskesz.

Deep Fried Twinkies

The Deep Fried Twinkie was born at the dawn of the 21st century by British ex-pat Christopher Sell at his Chip Shop in Brooklyn. Soon after, the dessert bathed in oil caught on at state fairs, and it was love at first bite for eaters. It was only a matter of time before Hostess took advantage of the fad, and the company toyed with the idea before finally partnering with Walmart to deliver the goods ... in a frozen format (a first for the cake maker). Hostess' vice president of marketing, Ellen Copaken, told the AP that they had a "retro cool factor," adding, "It plays into the comfort food trend. And it's fun."

Flash-fried before being frozen, the Fried Twinkies were ready to be eaten in under 10 minutes by way of the oven or even quicker by air fryer. They proved to be an immediate success, with one eater telling the Tampa Bay Times, "They taste like a day at the fair." By the end of that year, a graham cracker breaded one filled with banana crème, paying homage to Twinkies' original flavor, joined the others in the freezer aisle.

Once they left shelves for good, fans felt freezer burned by it all, and they had no choice but to leave their houses and return to the fair or local chip shop for a bite. However, if one wanted to stay home, follow the Deep-Fried Bacon-Wrapped recipe in the "Twinkies Cookbook," and just hold the bacon.

Ding Dong Ice Cream Sandwich

A Ding Dong Ice Cream Sandwich sounds like a dream junk food home run, and in 2015, it became a creamy reality thanks to the fine folks at Carl's Jr. This wasn't their first vanilla ice cream collaboration, as they had previously made whirls of sandwiches out of OREOs in 2011, Strawberry Pop-Tarts in 2013, and Snickerdoodles in 2014.

Brad Haley, chief marketing officer of Carl's Jr, told QSR, "Hostess' iconic Ding Dongs, with their chocolate-coated, cream-filled cakes, made the most delicious 'carrier' for our latest ice cream sandwich," adding, "The result is a creamy, cool new spin on a classic American treat." The concoctions were made in-store daily, retailed for a slim $1.49, and were a hit with critics, like Ken Hoffman of the Houston Chronicle ("I'll tell you what it is ... it's delicious,") and sweet-toothed Instagrammers ("Whoever created this was a genius and a devil at the same time!").

Available starting in May of 2015, its run under the smiling star of Carl's Jr. ended sometime that September, and for some provided summer loving that was a blast, yet happened too fast. Two years later, Hostess must have liked the idea enough to partner with Nestlé to release a similar treat — frozen Ding Dong sandwiches, which looked more like room-temperature Ding Dongs. If and when it ever returns, why not throw some chocolate chips on the sides, and try to outdo the champ — the Chipwich.

Fruit Pies

Hostess' beloved line of Fruit Pies was introduced around 1964, and right off the bat came in numerous flavors, wrapped in beautiful and colorful packaging. Things got even more beautiful less than a decade later when the great Fruit Pie the Magician was added as the spokespie, appearing in ads designed by animator Don Duga and making personal appearances in costume alongside Twinkie the Kid and Captain CupCake. Fruit Pie the Magician cast his spell in an encrusted form, with fillings that ran the fruit gamut from apple, cherry, lemon, French apple, peach, blueberry, blackberry, pineapple, strawberry to plain old berry.

A lot of those flavors survived into the next century, but when Hostess fell apart in 2012, and came roaring back in 2013, there was no doubt Fruit Pies were going to be a part of the return. However, when they did, the public was only offered apple, cherry, and lemon. By 2019, Hostess soured on lemon, and left the world with just two pies to choose from, both in uninspired boxes.

A magician never reveals their secrets, but secrets must now be spilled. How could anyone let the greatest disappearing act in snackdom gobble up Fruit Pie the Magician and all his wonderful flavors? If there was ever a time for a throwback to hit the shelves, now is the time to bring back all the flavors, wrapped in that classic packaging. That would be pure magic.

Grizzly Chomps

By the 1990s, tastes were changing, and people were looking to gorge less on desserts and reach out for something a bit more healthy. Hostess sensed this tide coming and countered in 1991 with a noble and nifty idea ... one that would eventually land with a spot reserved in The Museum of Failure, alongside Coke II and Colgate Lasagna.

Grizzly Chomps was a fat- and cholesterol-free item launched as a "revolutionary wholesome treat" that was "personally 'taste tested'" by Hostess' new hip spokesbear Grizzly B (via Frostysjunkpile). What that actually meant was that each Chomp had a piece missing, to look like a bite, and as Grizzly B boasted in the TV ad, "I start 'em, you can finish them."

The cakes with missing cake didn't come at a discount, and as one human taste tester told the Deseret News, "Psychologically it bothered me to eat something that has a bite already taken out. If I want a cupcake, I want a whole one." The gimmick was a grand experiment that may have been ahead of its time, and yet, after only two years of existence, the Grizzly Chomps were forced to hibernate in a dark cave for all eternity. Maybe it's time for a new generation to decide if Grizzly Chomps and their bites bite or don't. Plus, there's enough room in this world for Cardi B AND Grizzly B to coexist, and perhaps even make sweet music together.

Hostess O's

Hostess didn't invent the donut, but they have been selling them like hotcakes in some shape or form since the 1920s. In 1973, they made jellies their jam by doing "the impossible" and introducing Hostess O's — "the donut with filling in every bite." These new donuts were filled with raspberry, grape, or cinnamon apple, and were sold in six packs with the suggested retail price of 75¢, and even made a cameo appearance in 1982's "Fast Times at Ridgemont High."

Sixteen years later, the popular raspberry-filled ones came covered in chocolate frosting, and by the '90s, they stopped being called Hostess O's. Going forward, the powdered wonders were packaged as Raspberry Filled Donuts or Hostess Donuts — Raspberry Filled but joined many other favorites that ended their run in 2012 with Hostess' collapse. For blogger The Retro Dad, the donuts were more than nourishment, but the lone bright spot on a disastrous childhood fishing trip. He said, "I so wish I could track down a reasonable simile to the Hostess Raspberry Filled Donut."


After earning their stripes producing Tiger Tails, consumers "spotted" Hostess Leopards in the wild starting in the fall of 1999. Essentially, they were Twinkies with soft chocolate chips dotting the yellow cake, and as Mr. Tidbit in the Star Tribune pointed out, they had more weight, calories, fat, and sugar than Hostess' famous snack.

Leopards started life in Hostess' research and development lab as cupcakes with crumbled cookies within, and when their delivery mechanism was switched to the body of a Twinkie, a special machine was built to ensure the chocolate chips wouldn't get smashed in the embedding process. The new product was geared toward the kid market, and the Drive-thru Gourmet noted that they were the first of that kind to be introduced since Ding Dongs and Ho Hos came forward in 1967 (via The Tampa Tribune).

After going extinct, Hostess hasn't even attempted another take on treats with chocolate chips outside of their Mini Muffins and Muff'n Stix. It's a complete shame, and junk food historian Jason Liebig speaks for all snackers when he said, "[Leopards] should be revived," adding, "Who wouldn't want a chocolate chip Twinkie?"

Munster Pack

Just in time for Halloween 1992, Hostess came through with a low-cost alternative for costuming in a 13-ounce box that only cost $2.19 – the Munster Pack. Inside were their typical cupcakes, with orange frosting and brown sprinkles, but the real draw was what was on the back of the box — "free" masks based on "The Munsters." The series was a short-lived and long-loved TV show from 1964-1966, was revived in 1988-1991 in "The Munsters Today," and featured a freakishly funny family full of monsters.

Hostess co-opted the likenesses of Herman, his wife Lily, and Grandpa, so trick-or-treaters could become classic characters with the help of these masks. "Munsters Today" makeup artist David Abbott was a spokesperson for the Munster Packs, and even offered inspiring additional tips using everyday household items, noting, "Master makeup artists all learned their craft by improvising with whatever makeup kits they had available" (via The Jackson Sun).

The Munster Pack came back the following Halloween, but by 1994, the TV icons were sent back to their coffins and replaced by Monster Cakes, which were sold for five years, and later dressed up as Scary Cakes and other spooky offerings. The Monster Cakes' boxes included shapes to make Jack-o'-lantern faces, but they weren't nearly as fun, awesome, or playful as their forerunners. Both the Munsters and these masks are now relics of the past, and like most beloved treasures of yesteryear, they can be had for an inflated cost on eBay.

Peanut Butter & Pickle Sandwich Twinkies

April Fools jokes outside of the day and month are not uncommon, but they can be cruel to the recipient who is forced to confront them any time of the year. The fine folks behind Hostess' Twitter feed and whatever maestros they have working on Photoshop designs have been invoking shock with their #FakeProduct takes. They kicked things off in August 2019 with mustard-filled Twinkies, which were followed by other atypical cream substitutes like aliens, Thanksgiving stuffing, Shirley Temple, guacamole, champagne, and in 2021, sprinkles. (Guess they took a pass on "Weird" Al Yankovich's Twinkie wiener sandwich).

The one that caused the biggest raucous of them dropped in September 2019 to an unsuspecting world ... peanut butter & pickle sandwich Twinkies. Problem is, there was no #FakeProduct tag on the tweet in sight, and the shocking idea went viral. The media also gobbled up the yarn, before reps of Hostess had to clarify, "This is just some social media levity from Hostess. We regularly feature fun, fictional products on our social media, and this is one of those" (via Today).

As a non-existent product of such interest, good or mainly bad, it begs the question: what if? Since this item was never discontinued, as it was never created to begin with, why not let it be real? That hasn't stopped curious eaters from making the concoction themselves. After YouTuber Trippy Food whipped up his own batch, he commented, "It's not horrific, but it's just your mouth is telling you there's stuff in there that doesn't belong together."

Peanut Butter Totally Nutty!

Little Debbie and her Nutty Buddy bars have set the standard for wafers loaded up with peanut butter and chocolate since 1964. Can't blame Hostess for trying to one-up their rival with their own way-fair spin ... 54 years later. Better late than never, and the company's president and CEO Andrew P. Callahan had high hopes, saying in 2018, "We are working to expand the Hostess brand to new consumer segments to drive incremental growth like we are doing with Hostess Totally Nutty peanut butter wafer bars." (via Food Business News)

This product was not messing around, even making its mark with an exclamation point at the end of its name — Peanut Butter Totally Nutty! What made these stand out, physically at least, from Little Debbie's was that they were larger bars, and ones covered in fudge that are patterned in a groovy zebra-type way. Comparisons between them naturally followed upon release, with reviewers noting that Hostess' version was a bit saltier tasting and just a hair below Little Debbie's forerunning product.

For an item that was close enough in nutty-ness, why would Hostess so quickly cast aside its new buddy boy after only a couple of years? Maybe if they come back around, they should aim even higher and come out with their own take on Hershey's Whatchamacallit or even a Kit-Kat.

Pecan Rollers CinnaMinis

Like with the Totally Nutty! peanut butter bars, Hostess was entering well-covered territory when they came out with their own pecan rolls — Pecan Rollers, which were around at least as far back as 2009. The breakfast-friendly items that had their taste enhanced when heated also came out in a smaller version as CiniMinis. The Pecan Roller CiniMins were in an 8-pack, with each being only a guilt-free 100 calories. The problem with pecan rolls is it's hard to have just one, so polishing off all eight of these small treats wouldn't be out of the question for a hungry snacker.

Sadly, Pecan Rollers and their CiniMinis died a quiet death when Hostess went out of business in 2012. In some cases, at the very end, they were the last items left on the shelf, but one salvager said they were still tasty beyond their expiration date. There doesn't seem to be any plans to resurrect the simple treat by Hostess, as the "Pecan Roller" trademark was canceled in 2016. There doesn't even appear to be another major brand selling pecan rolls in miniature form, so perhaps the name and the dream can live on with another brand as a steward, one who wants to say, "yes, I pecan!"

Pudding Pies

In 1986, Pudding Pies were added to the Hostess line-up, as company public relations manager Cathy Dunkin told The Miami Herald, "We keep coming up with new ideas because people tell us that's what they are interested in." The chocolate-iced pies differed from their line of Fruit Pies, as the innards were filled with either chocolate or vanilla pudding. The advertising launched with lip-smacking print ads and playful TV spots, like the sibling rivalry one touting that "Hostess makes real pudding taste really special," starring a young Joey Lawrence and Stacey Glick.

Newsday conducted a taste test with 6th graders, and the results showed that the new Pudding Pies were as desirable a lunchtime dessert as Hunt's Snack Packs were. They were even a hit with high schoolers too, with Minnesotan football standout Rob Phenix telling the Star Tribune, "I've had 13 Pudding Pies at one sitting before," adding, "Oh, I felt good."

The Pudding Pies reached their apex when they partnered with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for green-coated pies filled with vanilla "mutagen goo," which were delivered "fresh from the sewers." Recently, the Ninja Turtle Pudding Pie was thrust back into the limelight, as pop culture blogger Dinosaur Dracula pointed out on Twitter that Brendan Fraser is "the only Oscar winner in history who shared a scene with" one. Dinosaur Dracula's true self, Matt Carracappa, said years earlier words that still ring true about all the Pudding Pies that have all been retired — "they live on in infamy through our memories" (via The News Journal).

Sweet Rolls

Hostess has been rolling out Sweet Rolls as far back as the 1940s and eventually offered up their sticky white-coated delicious treats in flavors including cinnamon, fruit centers with apple, cherry, or raspberry, and even ones in the shapes of butterflies. In the 21st century, it was just reduced to just cinnamon and cherry, with the rare sighting of raspberry.

Hostess also owns sister brand Dolly Madison, and in the same factory produces similar Sweet Rolls. Baking Business mouthwatering describes the process in which they are made — "Two sets of reduction rollers sheet the yeast-raised dough to its proper depth before a depositor lays down the fillings. Torpedo rollers curl up the flat dough sheet into rolls, which pass through a guillotine knife operating at 274 cuts per minute. Sweet rolls drop into waiting paper trays and move to the tray proofer and Baker Perkins tunnel oven."

With the impending doom of Hostess' collapse in 2012, one eater took to Facebook to prophetically admit that these "could be the last Hostess cinnamon sweet rolls I ever see!!!!" Once a "delicious warm" staple for breakfast or last night munchies, the next day they were gone, perhaps forever. Its consumers have been questioning why ever since, with Hostess having to apologize over and over on social media, but finally admitting by 2017 on Twitter that they were indeed discontinued. In a dark place, where iced Jumbo Honey Buns won't cut it, the only path forward is humor, and luckily the Facebook group Hostess Sweet Rolls BRING THEM BACK means business through the help of memes.

Suzy Q's

Out of all the Hostess snacks put out to pasture, Suzy Q's have the highest chance of returning to shelves in the future. The Whoopie Pie-like treat, with foamy chocolate (and sometimes banana) cake and cream filling, was first introduced in 1961, named after Continental Baking Company (Hostess' parent company) vice president Cliff Isaacson's daughter. It is unclear if they were inspired by the hit Dale Hawkins song from 1957, "Oh! Suzy-Q" (later a hit cover by Creedence Clearwater Revival).

There were some bumps along the road for Suzy Q's, like some filled with needles and staples (yet thankfully not asbestos), but the beloved, homey treat was good enough to make a cake cottage house out of them. When Hostess filed for bankruptcy in 2012, fans reflected on their forever favorites, and somehow a poll conducted by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram ranked Suzy Q's last. When Hostess bounced back a year later, their website promised that Suzy Q's were "coming soon." When "soon" didn't happen soon enough, the uproar reached an Internet fever pitch.

Suzy Q's finally rejoined her big brother Twinkies and co. in 2015, but something wasn't quite right — starting with ditching its rounded cake for a straighter edge. The wait was over, but the anger bubbled up all over again. They were discontinued, retooled, and reborn in 2018 with 50% more cake and creme, and got their rounded edges back. And then they were gone ... yet again. All that remains are the joke of coal-flavored ones (via Twitter), and Hostess calling out fans on Twitter for constantly clamoring for yet another resurrection as clowns.

Tiger Tales

While the tale of Hostess' Tiger Tails remains mostly untold, there was at least one version first introduced back in 1966, and only cost 29¢. The name didn't seem to reappear until 1986, when these Twinkies with coconut toppings, raspberry jelly stripes, and that cool name hit shelves again, and lived on well into the next century.

After the success of Netflix's docuseries "Tiger King" in March 2020, Hostess reopened the cage to Tiger Tails that summer in a limited run at Walmart. Unfortunately, they were only Tiger Tails in name, as they were orange crème filled, and contained neither coconut nor raspberry stripes (the tiger stripes on the plastic wrapping didn't make up for this missed opportunity).

While Tiger Tails have been put to sleep in America by Hostess, an Egyptian snack company called Edita licensed the ability to let them roar in the Middle East since at least 2009, in all their artificially flavored glory. Originally packaged to look similar to their Twinkie line of products, Edita has since given them a makeover with a non-Hostess branded look. So if one is truly jonesing for Tiger Tails and don't want to wait on Hostess, they are just a plane ride away.

Static Media owns and operates Daily Meal and Mashed.