The Impulsive Buy

REVIEW: Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria Light Ice Cream

Update: If you’re looking for reviews of the new Moo-phoria flavors — P.B. Marshmallow Swirl, Cherry Garcia with a Twist, Chocolate Cookie EnlightenMint, and Mocha Fudge Brownie — click here to read our reviews.

Eating an entire pint of ice cream in one sitting is a thing that, if I rationalize it, will create an balanced pros and cons list. 

Pros: It’s yummy. It makes me feel good. There will be more room in my freezer.

Cons: Consuming a lot of fat and sugar. I’ll feel guilty about eating an entire pint later. I’ll have a stomachache soon.

There’s been an influx of light ice cream brands that take away the guilt of eating an entire container, like Halo Top, Enlightened, and Breyers Delights. They’re advertised as having around 300 calories, not a lot of sugar, and a decent amount of protein PER PINT. Ben & Jerry’s decided to jump into the not quite creamy river of light ice creams with its new Moo-phoria line.

There are three flavors:

While Moo-phoria is a light ice cream, it’s done differently than its competition. It doesn’t use ingredients other brands use, like sugar alcohols (which can cause stomach issues) and sugar substitutes (which can cause taste issues). But those do allow Halo Top and its ilk to take “light” to a whole different level. Per pint, they have fewer calories, fat, and sugar than Ben & Jerry’s offering. Plus, they shove in stuff to give them more protein and fiber.

But Moo-phoria is more like regular ice cream than its competition. If you scan the ingredients, it reads like normal ice cream. There’s milk, cream, egg yolks, love, sugar, and a bunch of normal Ben & Jerry’s ice cream looking ingredients. There’s no out of place vegetable glycerin or soluble corn fiber.

However, in my mouth is where the differences become clear.

Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Milk & Cookies Moo-phoria Light Ice Cream

The textures of the chocolate and vanilla ice cream bases are not as creamy as regular ice cream, so when they melt, they do so cleaner and quicker. As for their flavor, the chocolate one tastes like full-fat Ben & Jerry’s chocolate ice cream, but not with the same punch. The vanilla one is somewhat lacking in flavor. It tastes closer to something you’d get from Breyers instead of Ben & Jerry’s. And, yes, that’s an insult, Breyers. But not having strong flavors shouldn’t be surprising since they’re light ice creams.

Ben & Jerry’s Caramel Cookie Fix Moo-phoria Light Ice Cream

But what I didn’t expect was how mild in flavor some mix-ins were. The shortbread and chocolate chip cookies in their respective pints blend in with the ice cream and don’t stand out. I imagine they also had to be lightened in order to bring down the calories and fat. With the mix-ins you’d find in regular Ben & Jerry’s pints, such as fudge chunks, brownies, and cake pieces, it’s easy to determine what they are because their flavors pop. But with the cookies in their respective Moo-phoria pints, if you didn’t read the labels, it would be hard to tell what they are because of their flavor and chewy textures that are more like cookie dough or swirls than cookies.

Speaking of cookie dough, the chocolate chip peanut butter gobs in P.B. Dough didn’t have the same issues. They have a strong peanut butter flavor and a texture that’s similar to the cookie dough in other Ben & Jerry’s pints.

Ben & Jerry’s P.B. Dough Moo-phoria Light Ice Cream

If I had to choose a favorite, I’d pick P.B. Dough because the chocolate ice cream and cookie dough have more flavor. Also, my container had a lot of mix-ins. If my pint was a minefield and the cookie dough gobs were mines, I’d be dead many times over. As for the other two, the use of light flavored vanilla ice cream and mix-ins don’t excite my taste buds. Not even the salted caramel swirl could fix Caramel Cookie Fix.

But here I am comparing it to regular Ben & Jerry’s. I’m sure some of you are wondering if it’s better than light ice cream juggernaut Halo Top. I definitely think it is. But, to be honest, I don’t have a strong positive opinion of Halo Top. The stevia messes with the flavor and the texture is odd. Every one I’ve tried has been okay, but I also feel they’re an unsatisfactory attempt at something that should be pleasurable. Don’t @ me.

But with that said, the best way I can describe Moo-phoria is to say it’s Ben & Jerry’s ice cream but without a soul. I don’t feel a lot of joy or excitement when I shove a spoonful into my mouth, although there’s slightly more with P.B. Dough. These lack what most standard Ben & Jerry’s varieties have, which is some kind of strong willpower casting aside ability that can ruin diets, New Year’s resolutions, and calorie counter limits.

With pints like those I have to force myself to stop or else I’ll eat the entire container in one sitting. But with Moo-phoria I don’t have to force myself to stop because I don’t have the desire to eat the entire container in one sitting, even though I can.

Disclosure: Ben & Jerry’s sent me free Moo-phoria pints to sample. Receiving them for free did not influence my review.

(Nutrition Facts – 1/2 cup – P.B. Dough – 160 calories, 5 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 35 milligrams of cholesterol, 45 milligrams of sodium, 25 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 16 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein. Caramel Cookie Fix – 150 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 90 milligrams of sodium, 25 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein. Chocolate Milk & Cookies – 140 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 35 milligrams of cholesterol, 70 milligrams of sodium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber 15 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 1 pint each
Purchased at: N/A
Rating: 6 out of 10 (P.B. Dough)
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Chocolate Milk & Cookies)
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Caramel Cookie Fix)
Pros: Doesn’t make me want to eat the entire pint in one sitting. The light chocolate ice cream. P.B. Dough flavor. More like regular ice cream than other light ice creams. Doesn’t use sugar alcohols or sugar substitutes.
Cons: Doesn’t make me want to eat the entire pint in one sitting. The shortbread cookies and chocolate chip cookies. The light vanilla ice cream. Not as light as other light ice creams.