Taco Bell (in)famously reconfigures the same few ingredients into “brand new” menu items quite often. If they ever wanted to offer actual new products and services, there are a few obvious candidates.
They could sell single servings of Pepto-Bismol, hand out business cards for good local plumbers, or provide complementary euphemisms for gastrointestinal unrest when the explanation, “I drunkenly ate a Taco Bell Party Pack at 2 a.m.” just won’t do. Investing in a new line of bakery goods wasn’t an obvious choice, but that’s the direction Taco Bell went with their new Cookie Sandwich and Churro.
On the Friday night after Thanksgiving, while you were likely getting ready for your high school reunion or engaging in the cherished annual tradition of contemplating how you could murder that one annoying cousin and make it look like an accident, I decided to venture out to the Taco Bell in my hometown. After downing a couple Doritos Locos Tacos (the fake Brad Pitt ad is really effective marketing), I tried out these new dessert offerings.
At first glance, the cookie sandwich looked almost like a toy, as though three layers of Play-Doh had been hastily pushed through a miniature pie mold. My tactile first impression was also quite negative, since the cookie sandwich was cold, hard, and clearly just removed from a storage fridge.
Taste-wise, the item performed a bit better, but not by much. The cookies were fine – appropriately sweet and chewy, and with a decent number of chocolate chips. After 10 seconds in the microwave, I imagine they could’ve resembled a poor man’s Mrs. Fields chocolate chip cookie.
The frosting, however, was awful. It was much too sweet, much too rich, and much too much, as the excessive frosting quickly made eating the cookie sandwich a very messy experience.
For my tastes, the churro fared significantly better. It came out as warm as the cookie sandwich was cold, with a noticeable and pleasant scent from the exterior dusting of cinnamon sugar.
The shell was nice and crispy, and provided a great contrast to the soft, moist innards (which was just barely on the good side of the line between moist and mushy). I actually thought this product could’ve used a little more sugar, and I wished there had been a dipping sauce on the side. But for 99 cents, the churro provided solid value.
While I’ve written a mixed review, I do like that the folks at Taco Bell, between these items and the Cantina offerings, are making real strides in adding to their menu, and I definitely enjoyed my churro. Next time you drop in for your Doritos Locos Tacos fix, make sure to pick up a couple churros, too.
And if you happen to be a plumber, maybe consider leaving some business cards there. You never know how else Taco Bell might be trying to improve the business.
(Nutrition Facts – Cookie Sandwich – 390 calories, 160 calories from fat, 17 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 56 grams of carbohydrates, 44 grams of sugar, 2 grams of fiber, and 3 grams of protein. Churro – 190 calories, 80 calories from fat, 8 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, 230 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of sugar, 1 gram of fiber, and 2 grams of protein.)
Item: Taco Bell Cookie Sandwich and Churro
Purchased Price: $1.29 (Cookie Sandwich)
Purchased Price: 99 cents (Churro)
Purchased at: Taco Bell
Rating: 3 out of 10 (Cookie Sandwich)
Rating: 8 out of 10 (Churro)
Pros: Cookies were appropriately sweet and chewy with decent number of chocolate chips. Churro was warm and smelled great. Churro’s crispy shell and moist inside contrasted nicely. Taco Bell offering actual new items. SNL Brad Pitt ads. Seeing high school friends over Thanksgiving break. 2 a.m. Taco Bell runs.
Cons: Cookie sandwich was cold and looked toy-like. Frosting was awful. Churro could’ve used more sugar or a dipping sauce. Your annoying cousin. 2 a.m. Taco Bell runs.