REVIEW: Limited Edition Frosted Caramel Apple Pop-Tarts

Limited Edition Frosted Caramel Apple Pop-Tarts

Anyone else feel like their teeth are going to fall out when they eat a caramel apple?

The hardened caramel should seriously be considered on the list of dental no-no’s right up there next to chewing ice (I’m guilty). So, for the most part, I avoid caramel apples. But, Frosted Caramel Apple Pop-Tarts bring all the joy of Caramel Apples but in toaster pastry form.

Sort of.

Out of the trusty shiny packaging, a corner of the pale toaster pastry tumbled out typical Pop-Tart crumbliness. No immediate artificial/pungent odor tumbled out with the crumble though, which is always a good sign! I took a closer nose-pection of the goods. It smelled just like Tootsie’s Caramel Apple Pops.

Luckily, I have a pretty positive association with Apple Pops but it’s a little odd that a toast pastry smells like a candy. The Pop-Tart itself looks like a regular Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tart but with a neon green squiggle down the middle and neon is never a good color for food.

For a Pop-Tart, the flavor progression is surprisingly complex. The first bite was all apple flavoring. Think Hostess Apple Fruit Pie but with a better crust to filling ratio (aka the filling isn’t gooping everywhere). The apple flavoring was followed by a warm maple, caramel sweetness. This pushed it over the edge of sweetness for me, but right at that point a sour apple tartness emerged.

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After the first couple of bites, I looked more closely at the filling. It looked like half & half filling with a darker half and a lighter half so I tried each half as separately as I could. The lighter half was the apple part of the filling and tasted pretty standard. The darker half contributed the warmer maple, caramel flavor as well as the tartness. Kellogg’s R&D definitely tried to go above and beyond for this one.

Limited Edition Frosted Caramel Apple Pop-Tarts 2

Somewhat dissatisfied, I put these babies in the toaster oven for a quick toast. After warming it up, I found it odd that the edges weren’t a more golden brown color like other warmed pop-tarts. Typically, Pop-Tarts taste best warm, but not this flavor. While the apple, maple and tartness meshed a little better together, the sour apple after-taste became even more prominent and made it taste even more like the lollipop candy.

These should be renamed Caramel Apple Pops Pop-Tarts. I wouldn’t be disappointed if Kellogg’s did not bring this Limited Edition flavor back. Long live Pumpkin!

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pastry – 200 calories, 5 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 180 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: $2.50
Size: 12 pastries/box
Purchased at: Kroger
Rating: 4 out of 10
Pros: R&D put in work – tried to replicate a Caramel Apple as closely as possible.
Cons: Tastes just like Caramel Apple Tootsie Pops. Too sweet. Why doesn’t it toast?!

QUICK REVIEW: Kellogg’s Frosted Crush Orange Pop-Tarts

Kellogg's Frosted Crush Orange Pop-Tarts

Kellogg’s Frosted Crush Orange Pop-Tarts taste better than actual Crush Orange soda. There, I said it. Send your assassins after me, Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc.

In order to make that comparison, I had to buy a Crush Orange soda, which, like rock climbing and doing the Dab, is something I’ve never done before. Oh, I’ve consumed several bottles and cans over the years when it was the only choice in the cooler towards the end of a cookout. But I’ve never spent a dime on one until now.

Crush Orange tastes like generic orange tablet candy. Yes, those probably aren’t the most flattering words to describe it. I’m mean, it’s a serviceable beverage and I won’t hesitate to drink one if the only other options are bottled water and that swill known as Mist Twst.

These Pop-Tarts also have a generic orange candy flavor. But it doesn’t taste like the tablet candy you get from the junk trick-or-treat houses in your neighborhood. The filling also has a mild sourness that complements the sweet citrus flavor. Sadly, there isn’t any fruit in the filling. Instead, the flavor and sourness appears to come from orange oil and malic acid. Mmm, malic acid.

Kellogg's Frosted Crush Orange Pop-Tarts 2

I was worried about having hot soda flavor in my mouth due to my less than positive experience with hot Dr Pepper as a teenager, but these Pop-Tarts were great toasted, chilled, or straight out of the foil wrapper. Also, the crust and frosting didn’t dampen the filling’s flavor, which is what I experienced with the Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts.

Overall, I enjoyed Frosted Crush Orange Pop-Tarts. They have a nice sweet and tart flavor, the orange and white icing remind me of BB-8, and they, along with the root beer ones, make me look forward to other soda-inspired flavors. Maybe Dr Pepper and/or 7Up Pop-Tarts?

Disclosure: I received a free sample of these Pop-Tarts from Kellogg’s. Receiving the sample did not influence the review.

Purchased Price: FREE from Pop-Tarts
Size: 8-pack
Purchased at: N/A
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 pastry) 200 calories 45 calories from fat, 5 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 2 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 1 gram of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 170 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 15 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Kellogg’s Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts

Kellogg's Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts

I really expected to love these Kellogg’s Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts, write a review that just said “G.O.A.T.,” drop a mic, light my keyboard on fire, do a touchdown dance, buy a new keyboard to write a Buzzfeed article with the title “Pop-Tarts You Have To Pop Into Your Toaster and Then Pop Into Your Mouth Right Now”, light the new keyboard on fire, flip a baseball bat, salute, and then walk away with two thumbs up raised above my head.

But after trying them at room temperature, toasted, chilled, frozen, and with a goat on a boat, I have to say these new soda-inspired Pop-Tarts aren’t the Greatest of All Time.

But they are good.

I think my expectations were too high (ya think) because of all the great root beer float-flavored snacks that have made their way onto shelves over the past few years. There’s been the Nabisco Ice Cream Creations Root Beer Float Chips Ahoy Cookies (awesome), Betty Crocker’s A&W Root Beer Float Cookie Mix (awesome), and Limited Edition Root Beer Float Oreo Cookies (good).

What I loved about the Chips Ahoy and Betty Crocker cookies was how the root beer flavor stood out. But what prevented the Root Beer Float Oreo Cookies from reaching the pantheon the other cookies did was how the Golden Oreo wafers muted the creme’s flavor. Unfortunately, that’s similar to what’s going on with these Pop-Tarts.

Kellogg's Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts 2

I thought not having the “float” part in the toaster pastry would’ve made the root beer flavor stand out even more, but, sadly, the crust and frosting are the pillows that smother the root beer filling’s flavor. The crust, although dark in color which makes it appear it might be flavored, tastes like regular Pop-Tarts crust. The same can be said about frosting’s flavor. As for the brown, red, and orange crunchlets (yes, that’s what they’re officially called), they’re just decoration.

Kellogg's Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts 3

The filling has the sugar and spices one would taste in A&W Root Beer, and it’s good, but, again, I do wish it was stronger. I thought toasting would help, but it doesn’t. I thought that was strange because with most Pop-Tarts the flavor hits my taste buds harder when toasted.

There’s no optimum way to eat them. I enjoyed them equally at room temperature, toasted, chilled, and frozen. Also, it may have just my imagination but I might’ve felt a little bit of fizzing.

Of all the big root beer brands — Barq’s, Mug, and A&W — A&W is my favorite. I can’t specifically explain why I like it, but drinking unlimited A&W Root Beer from a tap at an A&W Restaurant is one of favorite food-related memories. Tasting these Frosted A&W Root Beer Pop-Tarts probably won’t break into my list of favorite food memories. They also don’t make me want to walk away with two thumbs up raised above my head. But I’ll give them one thumbs up.

Disclosure: I received this sample for free from the Kellogg Company. Being free didn’t affect this review in any way. If it did, the whole review probably would’ve been just “G.O.A.T.”

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pastry – 200 calories, 45 calories from fat, 5 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 2 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 1 gram of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 170 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 15 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: FREE from Kellogg
Size: 8 pack
Purchased at: N/A
Rating: 7 out of 10
Pros: Great idea. One thumbs up. Filling tastes like root beer. Fizzing? Enjoyable at room temperature, toasted, chilled, or frozen.
Cons: Not G.O.A.T. Crust and frosting hinder the root beer flavor. I wish root beer flavor was stronger. No Dr Pepper Pop-Tarts, yet.

REVIEW: Kellogg’s Limited Edition Frosted Maple Bacon Pop-Tarts

Kellogg's Limited Edition Frosted Maple Bacon Pop-Tarts

If I told a younger you that “bacon overkill” would become a thing, you’d probably cry and scream “Stranger Danger” because some old weirdo was talking to you about breakfast meats. Still, I can’t help but wonder if we’re getting too much bacon.

Too much bacon?! Surely, I jest.

Don’t get me wrong, bacon is amazing. But when did we all become the dog from the Beggin’ Strips commercials? Why does it seem like Big Bacon is trying to take over our lives?

I guess its bacon’s world and we’re all just living in it.

Mini rant aside, I was excited to try Frosted Maple Bacon Pop-Tarts. I knew I had to have them the second I saw them because I’m part of the problem.

After opening the pouch I was met with a welcome pancake smell. Each pastry has the standard white frosting with brown flecks that I assume are bacon flavored. I’ll get back to that in a moment. The filling itself has a nice maple scent and an appropriate light brown coloring.

I’m normally an “eat ’em right out of the pouch” kinda guy, but for the sake of this review, I did my due diligence and tried them toasted and untoasted. I opted against the “heat in the microwave for 3 seconds” option.

I set my rarely used toaster to medium heat and waited for what felt like an hour. A watched toaster never toasts.

The flavor was faint with the maple far outweighing the “bacon.” I’d go as far to say the toasted crust and (vanilla?) frosting were the most prominent flavors. There’s just not enough of a filling to crust ratio to really get a ton of the maple bacon flavor. That’s a universal Pop-Tart problem for me.

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I scraped a few of the brown flecks off the icing, and while they did have a salty flavor to them, they didn’t scream “bacon.” I’m really only assuming they were the bacon element. I even cut one of the Pop-Tarts open and scraped the filling out with a knife so I could taste it. No bacon, it just was salty.

While I don’t know how it would have worked, I definitely think these would have benefitted from having little pieces of real bacon instead of being “artificially flavored.”

Kellogg's Limited Edition Frosted Maple Bacon Pop-Tarts 3

The maple taste is the one that stands out, but even that should have been more powerful. It didn’t taste like I just ate a pancake with a big glob of maple syrup, it tasted like I ate one 20 minutes prior. They seem to have kept the maple intensity low so that the artificial phantom bacon could burst through, but it doesn’t.

I wish they swung for the fences more with this flavor. It could have been truly memorable. I definitely preferred them untoasted because there was a better balance, but, again, there wasn’t enough bacon flavor. Normally I’d tell you a wacky product like this is worth a try simply for the novelty of it, but I don’t think you even need to bother.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pastry – 210 calories, 60 calories from fat, 7 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 2.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 1.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 210 milligrams of sodium, 35 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 15 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)

Item: Kellogg’s Limited Edition Frosted Maple Bacon Pop-Tarts
Purchased Price: $1.98
Size: 8 pastries/box
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 4 out of 10
Pros: Decent Maple flavor. Not terrible untoasted, Ambitious idea. Beggin’ Strips Dog.
Cons: Gimmicky. No actual bacon. Mild bacon taste at best. Stranger Dangers. Pop-Tart microwave instructions.

REVIEW: Kellogg’s Limited Edition Frosted Chocolatey Strawberry Pop-Tarts

Kellogg's Limited Edition Frosted Chocolatey Strawberry Pop-Tarts

January.

The month of Gore-Tex.

The 31 sun-deprived days of fleece, down comforters, knee-length socks, and long underwear pulled up so high, not even Grandpa Joe could compete with your mid-weight, merino-wool-studded rump.

So it goes that, when in my apartment, I turn on as many other easy-to-use electronic devices to generate heat, and, because I can’t leave the door of my microwave open (radiation or something), I find as many excuses as possible to use my toaster (Toast! Bagels! Waffles! Uh…more toast? Yes! More toast!). It was in this state of mind that I picked up these toaster pastries.

And they suit my toaster just fine.

After toasting on medium, the crust is crisp and crackling, breaking with a respectable few crumbs post-toast. Nipping at a corner edge, the chocolate crust seems weaker than usual, tasting more of stale graham crackers and burnt charcoal than chocolate. Fortunately, the frosting, with its milk-chocolatey, candy-like crunch, does its best to pick up the pace a little, and… hey! Sprinkles!

Kellogg's Limited Edition Frosted Chocolatey Strawberry Pop-Tarts Chocolatey Strawberry sprinkles!!

Sprinkles have the unique ability to make me feel I can do anything. Truly. Nothing makes me want to go out and self-engineer a robotic crane without an engineering degree more than sprinkles.

But back to the taste. The inside jam is gooey, if a bit thin to my unrealistic, excess-demanding American brain. The strawberry flavor is pronounced, sugary and a bit flowery. It may be a little flat or sweet for those who like non-hypoglycemic-inducing jams, but, if taste is any indication, the pastries are delighted to have their hyper-sweet, summery strawberry bellies. Can you blame them? Strawberry bellies are the bomb.

Kellogg's Limited Edition Frosted Chocolatey Strawberry Pop-Tarts A moderately chocolatey duo

You know that scene in Back to the Future II where Doc dumps banana peels and beer into the DeLorean’s Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor before it rockets away? That’s what Pop-Tarts does. They take an amalgam of ingredients (some of which other companies might consider “trash”), combine those ingredients together, and voila. Something respectable, sometimes even downright brilliant, is born.

For me, these weren’t downright brilliant, but respectable? You bet. Sure, the crust may have tasted a little like burnt crackers and maybe the chocolate was weak, but they’ve got a decent amount of gooey strawberry filling, they provide a warm vehicle for an especially frigid January, and, friends, sprinkles.

Just. Sprinkles.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pastry – 190 calories, 35 calories from fat, 4 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 37 grams of carbohydrates, <1 gram of dietary fiber, 17 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.)

Item: Kellogg’s Limited Edition Frosted Chocolatey Strawberry Pop-Tarts
Purchased Price: $1.98
Size: 8 pastries/box
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Candy chocolatey shell. Sprinkles. Gooey insides. Strawberry bellies. Reasons to use your toaster. May inspire spontaneous engineering feats. The DeLorean.
Cons: Low chocolate levels. Thin-ish filling. Crust tastes a bit of stale cracker meal. Insides may be too sweet for some. All those layers of wool socks. Not having an engineering degree when you need one.