Extremely sugary fruit flavoured snacks made by Betty Crocker. They are colourful, chewy, sticky goo in flat squares about 15x15cm, rolled up in cellophane so as not to stick to itself. They do contain actual fruit, but the flavour bears no particular resemblance to real fruit - they're mostly sugar. They come in a variety of colours and flavours, and often have various shapes punched in to them to encourage children to play with their food. They come 8 to a package, though from time to time Betty Crocker throws in a 9th one or a coupon as a promotional gimmick.

An interesting property of fruit roll-ups is that they are vegan - unlike the vast majority of fruit snacks on the market, they use pectin, a plant product, as a binding agent, rather than gelatin, an animal product. Vegan candy is hard to find other than licorice and dark chocolate, so this got me pretty excited.

They are addictive. I can go through a whole box in a 20 minutes if I'm not careful. The day I am diagnosed with diabetes, I will know the cause.

You can make your own (somewhat healthier) fruit roll-ups by blending up some fruit (mangos work best, yum, yum, yum) with a bit of sugar (or not, to taste. mangos and pears work okay with no sugar, apples and strawberries generally don't.), then spreading it with a spatula on a (lightly greased) cookie sheet, as thin as you can, and bake it at low low heat (250 or 200 ° Fahrenheit or so) until it stiffens up a bit. It might curl up - if it does, hot diggity, it's done - take it out, unroll up, and let cool.

Fruit roll-ups are not a medical treatment. When I was 5 I found out I was about to get a booster shot. Oh no! Craftily, I asked where the shot was going to be, and my aunt pointed at a spot on my arm. I covered it up with a fruit roll-up. "haha!" I thought. "now they can't get me!" But alas, no, they saw through my little kindergarten ruse and I got the vaccination after all.

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