Swiss Roll vs. HoHos: Differences & Which Is Better?

swiss roll vs hohos

Both are based on the same principle-whipped cream rolled into a layer of cake and chocolate; Swiss Roll and HoHos are two pretty similar but distinctive chocolate logs. Still, to the untrained eye and inexperienced palate, they might appear and taste the same. However, Swiss Roll and Hoho aren’t the same, so what are the differences between them, and which is better?

Swiss Roll is made by the Liddle Debbie brand, while HoHos is by the Hostess brand. HoHos is slightly larger and creamier. Swiss Roll is tighter and more symmetrical. HoHos has a ribbed surface, and Swiss Roll is smooth. Swiss Roll is stronger-tasting and more crumbly than HoHos. HoHos has a distinctive chocolate aroma. 

Swiss Roll and HoHos are undoubtedly similar and tasty, but since they have their differences, not everyone will like both equally. So to clear up the everlasting Swiss-Roll –or- HoHos dilemma, I will discuss the differences and similarities between them in the following paragraphs. 

Differences

Swiss Roll and HoHos are whipped cream-filled, chocolate-covered sponge cake rolls. The origin of the original recipe is unknown, but it is believed that this type of cake first appeared in Central Europe, most likely in Slovenia or Austria. Because Swiss Roll and HoHos share the same ancestry, they are pretty similar, but given that they are products of two different brands, they are also pretty different in more than one way. 

Appearance

While they share the basic shape, Swiss Roll and HoHos aren’t identical. They are both log-shaped with the same recognizable spiral interior and brown-white layering. 

However, Swiss Roll is more aesthetically pleasing if you like symmetry. The spiral looks sharper, and there’s a clear limit where the white part ends and the brown begins. The Swiss Roll surface is smooth overall with no ribs or bumps, so you will like it very much if you are a fan of clean-cut shapes.

The HoHos surface is ribbed but smooth nonetheless. The inside spiral is loose, not as tight and stable as with the Swiss Roll, and the white and brown parts sort of mash into each other. On the other hand, HoHos is a bit more playful and mildly messier than Swiss Roll. 

swiss roll vs hohos

Taste

Before starting with the taste, let it be known that both Swill Roll and HoHos are delicious. Their taste differences don’t make one of them better. They simply taste a bit differently and appeal to different people. 

HoHos smells very chocolaty but tastes milder. The chocolate flavor isn’t too expressed, as the accent is placed on the whipped cream filling and the cake layer. The HoHos filling and cake layers are thicker than the Swiss Roll, making HoHos slightly larger

HoHos is dryer than Swiss Roll and more stable, staying in one piece more easily. 

Although smaller in size, Swiss Roll also has a lot to offer. It has a more expressed chocolate taste than HoHos. The filling and cake layers are thinner but more intensively tasting in chocolate and sweetness

Swiss Roll is moister than HoHos, making it more crumbly and harder to cut. 

Nutrition

As they are both based on the same recipe, it is expected that Swiss Roll and HoHos are nutritionally similar. 

They both have almost the same amount of fat and calories. However, since Swiss Roll is 20 grams less than HoHos, Swiss Roll will be a bit fattier than HoHos if we compare them in identical amounts. 

Both Swiss Roll and HoHos don’t contain many micronutrients, such as vitamins or minerals. Nevertheless, they are not entirely poor. Swiss Roll contains protein and iron, and HoHos contains calcium and iron. 

Swiss Roll contains more cholesterol and fewer carbohydrates than HoHos, and HoHos contains less cholesterol but more carbohydrates than Swiss Roll. 

These nutritional values suggest that both HoHos and Swiss Roll aren’t to be consumed too frequently, but still, they are perfectly fine as sporadic treats. 

Popularity

Both popular and delicious, Swiss Roll and HoHos have become the recognizable markings of their respective brands. 

We cannot discuss which is more popular, because they both are. However, they both have their audiences and appeal to different customers. 

If you like a tidy, smooth, and clean appearance accompanied by an expressive chocolate taste and sweetness, then Swiss Roll is for you. 

On the other hand, if you are a fan of the playful softness combined with a nice, mild, cakey taste, then HoHos should be your choice. 

Are Swiss Roll and HoHos the Same?

Although they are made according to the same base recipe, HoHos and Swiss Roll aren’t the same. First of all, they belong to different brands. They both accentuate different parts resulting in different flavors, and they are different sizes appealing to different customers.

Is a Swiss Roll Swiss?

The original Swiss Roll is believed to have first originated in Central Europe, but not Switzerland. Although it isn’t entirely clear where it first appeared, the evidence indicates that either Austria or Slovenia is where they first created this dessert. 

There are some ideas that this is, in fact, an old English recipe from the 19th century, but to this day, the origin of the Swiss Roll remains foggy.

  • Laura is the owner of Julie's Cafe Bakery. She started this blog with her grandma Julie who introduced her to the amazing world of cooking. She likes to experiment with different flavors, and her favorite flavors combo is chicken with coconut milk, curry and peanuts!