Are actual Dippin’ Dots still a thing anymore?
I used to beg my mom to buy it for me all the time when I was a kid, but I can’t even remember the last time I saw a Dippin’ Dots kiosk. For something that used to tout itself as being the “Ice Cream of the Future,” it sure seems like it hasn’t aged well. Perhaps a reason for its lack of success was that the ice cream had to be stored in ultra-cold super-freezers, which prevented people from buying and eating them at home.
Thankfully for those of us who don’t have freezers that can hold ice cream at -40° F, the kind people over at General Mills lent their breakfast-making prowess to Dippin’ Dots to recreate two of its most popular flavors into a much more easily distributable cereal form.
The Cookies ‘n Cream flavor features tan and brown cereal puffs mixed with clusters of milk chocolate-coated cookie bits. Opening the bag, there was an aroma that reminded me more of Corn Pops mixed with a few crushed Oreo wafers than it did of ice cream.
The corn-heavy smell of the cereal foreshadowed its flavor, which didn’t taste like Cookies ‘n Cream at all. I had hoped the brown and tan puffs would emulate both flavors respectively, but they instead had that generic “corn-y” taste shared by most cereal puffs.
The chocolate cookie clusters were the only element that actually tasted like how they were supposed to, but there weren’t nearly enough of them to go around, and I found they had a tendency to sink to the bottom of my bowl once I added milk.
Banana Split is constructed like the Cookies ‘n Cream version, but the quality here is a different story. I was hesitant to try it at first since banana is a flavor that often oversteps into the territory of being overly artificial. But it turns out it was what this cereal needed to overcome the flavor coming from the corn flour in the puffs.
Every bite I took tasted like authentic, sweet bananas and the banana-flavored white chocolate crunchies brought that creamy element of vanilla that really let this cereal hone in on being an ice cream-inspired flavor.
While I’m on the topic of those crunchies, they’re the best part of the cereal. Dippin’ Dots should consider boxing them up and selling them as candy. But there seemed to be way more of them in my box of Banana Split than in my box of Cookies ‘n Cream.
Both flavors got soggy quickly in milk, but the Banana Split flavor was able to use this to its advantage by getting the dairy to work alongside the white chocolate crunchies to produce a flavor reminiscent of a melting banana split. Cookies ‘n Cream didn’t fare as well. It sopped up the milk and tasted like mushy Corn Pops that had jarring chunks of chocolate coated sandwich cookies in it.
So, has Dippin’ Dots created the Cereal of the Future? Probably not, but it sure is fun to be able to say that you’ve just had a bowl of Dippin’ Dots for breakfast.
(Nutrition Facts – 1 cup – Cookies ‘n Cream – 120 calories, 15 calories from fat, 1.5 grams of total fat, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 125 milligrams of sodium, 65 milligrams of potassium, 27 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 10 grams of sugars, 15 grams of other carbohydrates, and 2 grams of protein. Banana Split – 130 calories, 20 calories from fat, 2.5 grams of total fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 115 milligrams of sodium, 55 milligrams of potassium, 27 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 11 grams of sugars, 15 grams of other carbohydrates, and 2 grams of protein.)
Purchased Price: $3.64 each
Size: 18 oz. box
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 3 out of 10 (Cookies ‘n Cream)
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Banana Split)
Pros: Not needing a super-freezer. Great flavor in the Banana Split version. Awesome crunchies in both flavors! Getting to tell people that you’ve just had Dippin’ Dots for breakfast.
Cons: Not enough flavor in the Cookies ‘n Cream variety. Neither one holds up well in milk. Crunchy bits are not available in stand-alone candy form.