REVIEW: Wendy’s Caramel Frosty Shake and Wendy’s Chocolate Frosty Shake

Wendy's Caramel Frosty Shake

Wendy’s and I have an interesting relationship with each other.  I don’t mean to sound like an old man, but when I was growing up, there wasn’t a Wendy’s to be found in New Jersey, lending it a mystique not found in your more prevalent chains like McDonald’s or Burger King.  I remember the only one I knew of was on the way to Snowvania, which is what they called Vermont in those days.  We would go there on our annual ski trip.  You couldn’t get real skis because of the war, so we had to buy two snowboards and tie them to our feet. 

Now, we’d stop at the Wendy’s on our way every year or so, and my sister and I would each get a Frosty, or as we called them in those days, thickshakes.  “Give me five thickshakes for a dollar!” you’d say, and a smiling Ella Fitzgerald would bring them out to your motor car.  Oh, did she have gams, that Ella!  Anyway, once we finished our thickshakes, my sister and I would hollow out the bottoms and wear them on our ears, which was the style at the time.

But the point is, I’ve always liked Wendy’s, partially because of their scarcity when I was a kid, and partially because they actually make their burgers plain in the first place instead of what McDonald’s used to do; i.e., making them with the works and then just scraping that shit off when you dare to ask for a plain burger.  Like that’s the same thing, jerks.  Anyway, Frosties have always held a special place in my heart due to my childhood memories, so when I heard they were rolling out new Frosty Shakes, I was all over that like reality show stars on professional athletes.

But then I learned something that tempered my enthusiasm: Frosty Shakes were actually replacing my beloved Twisted Frosties, where they would blend M&Ms or Butterfingers in.  I have mixed feelings about that, because those things were seriously damn good, yet are also the reason I can no longer comfortably fit into 28-inch waist jeans without my Strippercize DVD.  But it does create some pressure on the Frosty Shake, because if you’re not as good as what you’re replacing, well, SOMEONE is in for a few curse words muttered into my dashboard and a scathing blog review.  I’m just saying.

Wendy's Caramel Frosty Shake 2

This isn’t the first time Wendy’s has offered Frosty Shakes, but they have added two new flavors — in addition to the original chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry, you can now get your fill of caramel and wild berry.  As always, I will be reviewing the one that doesn’t even play at being healthy.  It does, however, aspire to a higher class of caramel by name-dropping the Ghirardelli brand.  I sort of question the wisdom of that — you don’t go to Wendy’s expecting kobe beef and watercress on your burger, so are you really going to care that the caramel in your two-bucks-and-change shake is associated with the finest chocolatiers in the world?  I’m not sure it was worth shelling out for the brand name, but that’s the ghost of Dave Thomas’ business, not mine.

For starters, I have to give Wendy’s credit for sheer visual appeal.  You know how fast food always looks great in the ads and then like a lump of reheated turds when you pull it out of the bag?  Well, I’ll be damned if this shake didn’t look nearly as good in real life as it does on TV, which is impressive.  This probably varies by the server, but the whipped cream on mine was plentiful and even had criss-crosses of caramel covering it, a nice touch.  (Mind you, it’s summer, so that’s going to last about 3 minutes before it melts into a blob of goo.)  But taste is what really matters, and this… this tastes good.

It’s thick enough that I initially had trouble getting some through the straw, though this would likely be substantially less difficult for groupies, congressional aides, and certain Jersey Shore cast members.  But once I did, I was impressed by how vivid the flavor was.  This isn’t watered down in the slightest — that’s pure caramel. 

Wendy's Chocolate Frosty Shake

It’s almost a little overwhelming, and I can see people who are just kind of “enh” about caramel thinking it might even be a bit too strong, but I really dug it.  It’s rich, very sweet, and lingers on your tongue like a dog who won’t go away after you feed him scraps, but it’s okay because he’s pretty cute and doesn’t look rabid.  Also, the whipped cream melts into the shake and dilutes things a bit while lending an extra little creaminess to the whole thing.  I would’ve ordered another if not for the fact that it’s so filling, and also because there’s a warning label cautioning that two will cause instant cardiac arrest.

Though the caramel Frosty Shake is the main attraction, I also sampled the chocolate variety just so I could give you a broader accounting of the overall line.  I know, I really spoil you guys.  Though not quite as impressive, it’s still pretty good.  It’s nearly as thick as the caramel variety and has copious whipped cream with chocolate sauce drizzled over it.  Also very creamy, but while it’s not quite as sweet as the caramel, it tastes very distinctly of chocolate syrup.  Maybe that’s why I didn’t like it quite as much — familiarity breeds contempt and all that, and it’s almost like someone just emptied half a bottle of Hershey’s syrup into a vanilla milkshake.

I don’t know that I’ll ever stop mourning the loss of my Twisted Frosties (you could mix M&Ms into a chocolate Frosty!), but the shakes go a long way toward healing that rift.  It’s convenient to be able to expand the size of your ass without having to burn all those precious calories lifting a plastic spoon to your mouth again and again.  Assuming you’ve got belt notches to spare, pick one up with your next plain cheeseburger — I don’t think you’ll regret it.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 small shake – Caramel – 680 calories, 15 grams of total fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 50 milligrams of cholesterol, 330 milligrams of sodium, 126 grams of total carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 102 grams of sugar, 11 grams of protein.  Chocolate – 610 calories, 14 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 45 milligrams of cholesterol, 260 milligrams of sodium, 109 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 98 grams of sugar, 12 grams of protein.)

Other Wendy’s Caramel Frosty Shake reviews:
On Second Scoop

Item: Wendy’s Caramel Frosty Shake and Wendy’s Chocolate Frosty Shake
Price: $2.39
Size: 12 oz.
Purchased at: Wendy’s
Rating: 8 out of 10 (Caramel)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Chocolate)
Pros: Five different flavors.  Ella Fitzgerald’s gams.  Fast food places that make your burger plain.  Visually-appealing whipped cream.  A milkshake that brings me to the yard.  Copious quantities of caramel.  Rich chocolate syrup.
Cons: The war.  Sacrificing Twisted Frosties.  Pointless corporate name dropping.  Difficult to get any through the straw unless you work in the entertainment industry.  Ridonkulously unhealthy.

9 thoughts on “REVIEW: Wendy’s Caramel Frosty Shake and Wendy’s Chocolate Frosty Shake

  1. What the!! No more Coffee Toffee Twisted Frosty!!?? They purposely waited until I left the country and couldn’t do anything about this. (Side info from an American spending the summer in England: Wendy’s does not exist here. Your fast food options are McDonald’s, Subway and KFC. Gross. Also, the root beer here tastes like Bengay smells.)

  2. ooooh, the caramel one sounds so gooodddd! But 102 grams of sugar?!?! I have a headache just thinking about it. However, that will not stop me from taking a sip (or several sips) from one of my friends if they order it. And they will, once I told them a legit source online (you) told them it was good. So, THANKS!! 🙂

  3. I tried the caramel one today….it didn’t look as pretty as yours, but I agree it tasted awesome. The caramel just tasted to be of a high quality. Very very rich and creamy.

  4. oh god the caramel one looks/sounds so delicious!! i want it. and your memories of bygone days is heartwarming. what a terrible war that was. thank goodness there was still a sense of respect for fashion at the time.

  5. I tried Wendy’s shakes in the past before and got sick everytime. Compared to Chik-Fil-A vanilla shakes, those blow Wendy’s out of the water. Don’t what it is about Wendy’s: the poor conditions of the kitchen or the bacteria in the stupid milkshake or what.

  6. I dropped into a Wendy’s for a chocolate Frosty (which I crave once in a while). Somehow, I talked myself into ordering a chocolate Frosty Shake. Big mistake! Why do they feel the need to put so much chocolate syrup in with the Frosty, which is already chocolate? All I could taste was the syrupy chocolate taste. I’ve had two glasses of water since I finished it, and I still can’t get the taste out of my mouth. What a waste of good Frosty!

  7. Mary, its Vanilla Frosty with Chocolate syrup but they put too much syrup in… I used to work on a Wendy’s, what you must do is, ask for a Chocolate Shake and say “please don’t fill the syrup all the way to the red line just a little below” or just say “please add less syrup” Trust me it will taste great.

  8. I lost control and let my daughter and her friend split one last week. Afterwards we got into an argument as to whether a can of Coke or said Caramel Frosty had more sugar and calories.

    So, I looked them up. The Coke is WAY less lethal.

    A standard can of Coke has 140 calories and 39 grams of sugar. The Caramel Frosty has 650 calories (equal to about 4 and a half cans of Coke!) and grams of sugar (equal to 2.3 cans of Coke). The frosty also has 14 grams of fat to zero in the Coke and 320 mg. of sodium, vs. none in the Coke.

    These are stunning numbers even in the world of fast food. But the Frosty tastes good, like a pureed birthday cake. Civilization marches on …

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