Confectionery, or the making of confections, are food items that are rich in sugar and carbohydrates. Confectionery is the art of creating sugar-based dessert forms, or subtleties (subtlety or sotelty). 

Confections include sweet foods, sweetmeats, digestive aids that are sweet, elaborate creations, and something amusing and frivolous.


Finnish Pantteri (panther) sugar candy. image: Mysid/wikipedia

Confectionery is divided into two broad and somewhat overlapping categories:

  •  bakers' confections and 
  • sugar confections. 

Bakers' confectionery, also called flour confections, includes principally sweet pastries, cakes, and similar baked goods. 


A chikki assortment of baked style confectionary. image: wikipedia

Sugar confectionery includes sweets, candied nuts, chocolates, chewing gum, sweetmeats, pastillage, and other confections that are made primarily of sugar.

In some cases, chocolate confections (confections made of chocolate) are treated as a separate category, as are sugar-free versions of sugar confections.

The confectionery industry also includes specialized training schools and extensive historical records. Traditional confectionery goes back to ancient times, and continued to be eaten through the Middle Ages into the modern era.

Modern usage may include substances rich in artificial sweeteners as well. The words candy (US and Canada), sweets (UK and Ireland), and lollies (Australia and New Zealand) are also used for the extensive variety of sugar confectionery.