REVIEW: Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015)

Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015)

All over the Internet there are posts that lament and list discontinued snacks. Here are two examples:

44 Beloved Snacks You’ll Never Be Able To Eat Again

25 Foods You’ll Never Be Able To Eat Again

There are two issues with these lists. One, several products on them have come back (oops). Two, Hydrox cookies were not on either list. 

There are some of you out there pounding your desks and yelling, “Blasphemy! How dare they forget Hydrox!” But, to be fair, the people who wrote those lists might be too young to remember what Hydrox are.

For those young folks who have written a listicle with an inaccurate title, before Oreo there was Hydrox. They’re both chocolate sandwich cookies, but Hydrox made its debut four year earlier in 1908. Or, if you’re a hardcore Hydrox fan, let me rewrite that to say, Oreo totally ripped off the idea of Hydrox in 1912.

Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015) 2

But Hydrox cookies are back, thanks to Leaf Brands and trademark law. You can listen to all about what happened in this NPR story. But if the soothing voices of NPR personalities make you fall asleep, here’s a short version of what happened. Kellogg’s owned the Hydrox trademark, but admitted they weren’t using it and had no plans to use it. According to trademark law, if that’s the case, someone can swipe up that trademark. And Leaf Brands did that.

Unfortunately, that trademark didn’t come with the Hydrox recipe. So like the Six Million Dollar Man, a reference those listicle writers also won’t get, it had to be rebuilt. So this new version might taste different than the original. But, to be honest, I don’t remember what it tastes like. I believe the lard in the original Oreo cookies I ate as a kid have blocked most of my memories of Hydrox.

Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015) 3

To be honest, Hydrox and I had a rough first date. I didn’t like them at first. I thought the creme was bland and the wafers had bursts of saltiness. Also, it appeared my package was missing a cookie or two. But then we went on a second date, then a third, and then we were living together because I admitted to Hydrox that I love them. I’m going to chalk up my unfavorable first impressions to my taste buds being so used to Oreo cookies.

They’re less sweet than Oreo. I mean, they’re still sweet, but they demonstrate how hypersweet Oreo cookies are. And that hypersweetness comes from the Oreo creme. The difference between the two cremes are dramatic. The Hydrox creme is mellow like reggae and the Oreo creme is whatever noise kids are listening to these days. Get off my lawn, Oreo! 

The less sweet creme gives Hydrox a better balance with the chocolate wafers. As for the chocolate wafers, I think the Hydrox ones have a darker chocolate flavor and a lighter crunch than Oreo’s. They’re not necessarily better, just different.

But as a whole, I enjoyed Hydrox more than regular Oreo cookies. Their balanced flavor and moderate sweetness remind me a lot of Oreo Thins, which I prefer over regular Oreo cookies. Because with Oreo cookies I can eat two and have no desire to eat more. But with Hydrox and Oreo Thins, I just want to chain eat them.

(Nutrition Facts – 2 cookies – 130 calories, 50 calories from fat, 6 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 19 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 12 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of protein.)

Item: Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015)
Purchased Price: $6.10
Size: 13 ounces
Purchased at: Amazon
Rating: 9 out of 10
Pros: I want to chain eat them. Not as hypersweet as Oreo cookies. With creme being less sweet there a better balance of flavors between the creme and chocolate wafers. No high fructose corn syrup.
Cons: Not widely available yet (Available on Amazon and a few retailers). Some (or many) eaters might think it tastes bland compared to Oreo. My first impressions. My package looked like it was missing a cookie or two. Pricey if you’re buying it from Amazon.

17 thoughts on “REVIEW: Leaf Hydrox Cookies (2015)

  1. I remember eating Hydrox cookies because my parents were to cheap to spring for Oreos. They weren’t as sweet. In fact, I kind of remember the chocolate wafers on Hydrox as bland with only a hint of sweetness.

  2. I am one of the least picky eaters around. I did not like the original Hydrox. I could barely eat them.

    Good to hear they are back with a different recipe.

  3. Your description at least meshes with how I remember Hydrox, thus averting blind fandroid rage at not having the original recipe.

    I wonder how hard it’s be to make an imitation at home, thereby hipstering them up.

  4. Every package that I’ve opened from Amazon seems like there are two cookies missing from each row. I thought it was one package at first but all of them were the same.

  5. When I was a kid, I preferred Hydrox to Oreo because they weren’t as sweet. I’m interested to see what I think of them now. I just need to get some.

  6. Well you definitely made me want to try them, but I don’t think it’s fair to declare a favorite until we’ve tried Pumpkin Spice Hydrox, Red Velvet Hydrox, and Deep Fried Hydrox (at a minimum).

  7. The Facebook page for the cookies (run by Leaf, it seems) has been actively discussing the distribution and production kinks they’re still working on. For example, the issue with the “rows missing cookies” covered. You’re not getting shorted; the package weighs what it says on the label. But the cookies are too heavy by the each, so when the scale goes “package is full”, there’s still space. So the machines are getting tweaked to put thinner patches of cream (where the majority of the weight of the cookie is) into the sandwich, which will result in the scale letting more cookies go into the tray before “package is full”.

  8. I did grow up eating Hydrox cookies. In fact I always liked them better than Oreos. I am NOT pleased with this new recipe. In my opinion this cookie does not taste anything like the original one. This cookie may have more natural ingredients but the taste is so lacking & so different from what I remember. Will not buy them again. I’ll probably give the rest of the bag away. Waited a long time to see the return but this is a real disappointment.

    1. Was I ever excited to see that Hydrox was back! I always loved these and preferred them to Oreos. I bought a bag and found them pretty good. However, I agree with some of the comments that these don’t taste quite like the original Hydrox. I remember the original Hydrox as denser and moister than Oreos, not crunchy as these are. The filling was basically sugar and water. This Hydrox filling is more like Oreos.

      Iinteresting to read that a company can buy a trademark, but not necessarily the original recipe. Leaf needs to do some digging and come up with the REAL one.

  9. I did grow up eating Hydrox cookies. In fact I always liked them better than Oreos. I am NOT pleased with this new recipe. In my opinion this cookie does not taste anything like the original one. This cookie may have more natural ingredients but the taste is so lacking & so different from what I remember. Will not buy them again. I’ll probably give the rest of the bag away. Waited a long time to see the return but this is a real disappointment.

  10. I did not think the new Hydrox were as good as the old cookies from the 1980’s. I believe Sunshine changed the recipe in the early 1980’s because they were not selling very well. Hydrox did taste and sell better after this change. Perhaps the new Hydrox is using that pre 1980’s recipe?

  11. i remember Hydrox cookies having a slightly salty taste, dark chocolate and not a lot of filling. I do not tase the saltiness with the new ones, they are too much like Oreo, with too much filling.. Maybe they took out something that was” unhealthy” from the original recipe, but the original recipe was much better. Let’s keep trying for the “original” Hydrox flaxor.

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