REVIEW: Hostess Limited Edition White Fudge Marshmallow Twinkies

Hostess Limited Edition White Fudge Marshmallow Twinkies

Ever since I was young, I’ve been a sucker for ghost jokes.

For example:

Where do ghosts buy their junk food?

At the ghost-ery store.

What’s a ghost’s favorite fruit?

Boo-berries.

What does a ghost barista offer its customers?

Scream and sugar.

Okay, those weren’t funny at all. No wonder none of my classmates laughed at my jokes throughout school. What the hell was I thinking for all of those years? Is this why I went to prom alone two years in a row? What am I going to find out next, that I DIDN’T look totally cool sipping on my Ecto Cooler juice box while all of the upperclassmen were drinking out of flasks?!

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Luckily, Ghostbusters is back in theaters to grace the world with the ghoul-related humor we so desperately need, and I clearly cannot provide. To celebrate the new movie, Hostess has introduced Limited Edition White Fudge Marshmallow Twinkies (there’s also a Key Lime Slime flavor). Wouldn’t you know it, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man himself adorns the face of the box, and each rotund white Twinkie pays homage to him, too. The colorful packaging describes this Twinkie variety as a “white fudge covered sponge cake with marshmallow topping and creamy filling.” Now, if THAT doesn’t make you want to buy these Twinkies then…well, then you probably don’t look like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Good for you.

Biting through the firm-yet-forgiving outer shell of frosting, I was instantly met with a heavy white chocolate flavor. It’s more than just “sugar” and clearly distinguishable from milk or even dark chocolate, but its exaggerated sweetness is almost unpleasant. If anything stands out over the taste of the white fudge, it’s the sponge cake itself. It’s the classic Twinkie cake: buttery and very sweet. There’s very little saltiness or other flavor to distinguish it from the rest of the Twinkie.

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The filling, which is the same standard Twinkie cream filling — not marshmallow flavored — was barely noticeable. This was disappointing, because it’s the only ingredient that stood a chance to provide some balance in flavor. There is also an unexpectedly thick marshmallow layer between the sponge cake and the white fudge frosting, which seemed to provide a certain creaminess among the saccharine frenzy going on here. Still, it was hard to tell because all of the ingredients are basically just sugar.

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The real distinction of the marshmallow layer is its texture: it’s chewy, stretchy, and almost tough. This stuck out as an unpleasant surprise for what is usually a very soft, fluffy cake. Between the firm white fudge coating, the leathery marshmallow topping, the cushiony cake and the wispy filling, the texture of this Twinkie was a truly repugnant experience. For a junk food reviewer, that’s saying something.

What’s odd is that these White Fudge Marshmallow Twinkies actually do achieve what they advertise, and for that Hostess deserves some credit. These are Twinkies, draped in a flavorful white fudge coating, and featuring an obvious marshmallow layer. The problem is that all of those ingredients combine to form a sugary monster not even Peter Venkman could vanquish. And that’s something to be afraid of.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 cake – 190 calories, 80 calories from fat, 9 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of carbohydrates, 23 grams of sugar, 1 gram of protein.)

Purchased Price: $2.50
Size: 15.55 oz box (9 cakes)
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Hefty marshmallow layer and decent white fudge taste. Familiar Twinkie goodness. Ecto Cooler. Bill Murray.
Cons: Sweetness of white fudge, marshmallow, and sponge cake is overwhelming. Textural nightmare. Eating Twinkies until you look like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Terrible ghost jokes.

REVIEW: Hostess Brownies made with Milky Way

Hostess Brownies made with Milky Way

Do you remember the first time you had your heart broken?

I do. It all started when I found out that Ariel from The Little Mermaid wasn’t a real person that I could marry someday. I’ll admit, I was young and naive. I thought that maybe, despite her relationship with that stooge Prince Eric, if I told her how much I loved her, I might have a chance. Eventually, I realized there was a reason all of my letters to 123 Unda Da Sea Boulevard kept coming back marked “Return to Sender.”

But that was yesterday, and today is a new day. I’m ready to love again! And it’s perfect timing too, because I’ve got my eye on these gorgeous new Hostess Brownies made with Milky Way. They combine two of my favorite things — brownies and candy — so they’ve got to be the total package. I can already feel the love in the air. Or maybe that’s just my high cholesterol.

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When I unwrapped the brownie, I couldn’t help but feel like I was on an episode of the MTV show Catfish. This brownie didn’t look anything like the perfectly lighted, Myspace-angled photo from the outer packaging. It was far less attractive, as though it had been frantically thrown together on the production line. The icing was an unsettling shade of tan, far from the rich caramel depicted in the photo on the box.

The brownie itself has a deep fudgy flavor. On its own, it’s decently moist and tastes strongly of cocoa. The problem is that those elements are only apparent when eaten separately from the icing. The icing, which is very sugary (and slightly chocolatey) but doesn’t carry any distinct caramel flavor whatsoever, dominates the brownie’s flavor and texture. Its sweetness overpowers the complexity of the fudge brownie, and the granularity of the icing results in an odd drying sensation when chewing the brownie altogether.

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If all of that wasn’t disappointing enough, the Milky Way pieces add virtually nothing to the brownie. They don’t add the nougat-y, caramel-y flavor one usually associates with their namesake candy bars, and the pieces themselves aren’t substantial enough to be noticed against the larger brownie. The Milky Way candy pieces essentially blend in with the icing in each bite, in terms of both taste and texture.

So, consider this heartbreak number two. I was expecting a brownie doused in caramel and chunks of candy bars, but basically got a frosted chocolate cake. I enjoyed these to the extent that I enjoy chocolate cake, but I definitely wouldn’t use the word “love.”

(Nutrition Facts – 1 brownie – 170 calories, 60 calories from fat, 6 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 80 milligrams of sodium, 27 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 20 grams of sugar, 2 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: $3.99
Size: 9.1 oz box (6 brownies)
Purchased at: Hy-Vee
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Moist brownie. Rich, fudge flavor. Romantic relationships with cartoon characters and junk food. Sexy Myspace angles on snack cake packaging.
Cons: Lack of caramel flavor. Milky Way pieces are basically just there for decoration. Brownie feels dry when eaten with icing. Being told by the mailman that Unda Da Sea Boulevard is not a real place.

REVIEW: Burger King Angriest Whopper

Burger King Angriest Whopper

It was a Saturday, just like any other Saturday. I woke up, brushed my teeth, and got ready for the day. I read the newspaper and had a cup of coffee. I went for a morning run.

Eventually, I grew hungry for lunch. I got in my car, drove to the nearest restaurant, and placed my order. I paid the cashier and waited while my food was prepared. The cashier handed me a bag and I was on my way.

Once home, I sat down at my dinner table, bowed my head, and said a prayer.

“Dear almighty (Burger) King, please don’t let me end up in a Yahoo! article for whatever color this bright red bun turns my poo.”

Okay. Maybe it wasn’t just like any other Saturday.

In the Burger King family tree, the Angriest Whopper is the livid sibling of 2009’s Angry Whopper, and the extremely sunburned cousin of last year’s A.1. Halloween Whopper (which made headlines last year after customers reported that its black bun turned their poop green).

Burger King Angriest Whopper I Survived

As I unveiled the burger, I was greeted by an ominous proclamation: “I SURVIVED THE ANGRIEST WHOPPER.” So there’s a chance I might not survive this thing? Were my last words really going to be a prayer about the effects a fast food cheeseburger might have on my bowels? I will admit, as gimmicky as this burger seemed, I was intrigued to see whether it would live up to its spicy billing.

Burger King Angriest Whopper In Its Glory

The Angriest Whopper’s bun is very squishy. I certainly wouldn’t think of it as a “premium” bun used in similarly-priced burgers at other restaurants. The textures of the various ingredients are mostly similar, with some decent crunch from the lettuce and bacon. Having said that, the produce is what you would expect from Burger King—more functional (to provide some color and hold the components together) than attractive.

The tamer ingredients in the Angriest Whopper are decent. The bacon is crispy and provides a good meaty flavor. The patty itself has Burger King’s strong charbroiled taste, but it is relatively thin for its menu price and not at all juicy. The other two standard ingredients, the mayonnaise and American cheese, struck me as odd choices for this burger. The mayo adds little and actually seems to dull the other flavors. The American cheese is similarly underwhelming. I think Burger King missed a chance to use pepper jack cheese to add some heat.

Burger King Angriest Whopper Is Scary

Now, the “spicy” ingredients. If this Whopper is Burger King’s definition of “Angriest,” I’d like to point them to my mother’s reaction when I stuffed a bag of Ritz Bitz in our VCR as a child. The only real heat comes from the four jalapeño slices, which are spicy and somewhat sour. I tried the bun separately, and if there is hot sauce baked in, I definitely couldn’t taste it. The angry onion petals are soggy and limp, but actually quite tasty. They reminded me of a slightly spicier version of Burger King’s onion rings. The angry sauce is undetectable for the most part. It seemed to have mixed with the mayo, and the little taste I could pick up was more sweet (almost like barbecue sauce) than spicy.

The Angriest Whopper is a decently flavorful sandwich, with a good amount of heat coming mostly from the jalapeños. But at $5.49 for just the burger, you’re basically paying for the novelty of the blindingly red bun. At a lower price and with a few recipe tweaks, however, this burger could be a heavy-hitter as one of Burger King’s regular offerings.

(Nutrition Facts – 830 calories, 51 grams of fat, 17 grams of saturated fat, 2 grams of trans fat, 115 milligrams of cholesterol, 1530 milligrams of sodium, 59 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 17 grams of sugar, 34 grams of protein..)

Purchased Price: $5.49
Size: N/A
Purchased at: Burger King
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Innovative ingredients. Onion petals and bacon provide great flavor. Decent heat from jalapeño slices. Managed to survive eating a fast food cheeseburger.
Cons: Lacks heat. Bun contains no flavor whatsoever. High price for one sandwich. Getting yelled at by your mom. Bathroom prayers.

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Ben

Hey everyone! My name is Ben and I am the newest member of The Impulsive Buy’s review team. I hail from the great state of Minnesota and I keep a running Oreo Power Rankings list on my phone at all times. Show me someone who says Original is not #1, and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

I’m a licensed attorney by day, and I enjoy fitness and working out in my free time. I offset that hobby by stashing all of the new Ben & Jerry’s varieties in my freezer whenever I can find them. There are seven unopened pints in my freezer right now. Seriously guys, I’m going to end up on one of those hoarding shows if I don’t stop soon. Please, send help. I don’t want a cleanup crew to find my dog buried under a heaping pile of Chunky Monkey.

I am probably the only person on Earth who prays at least once a week that Burger King will smarten up and bring back Cini-minis, also known as the greatest fast food breakfast item ever created. I’m borderline obsessed with cookies of all kinds, ice cream, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, and Pop Tarts. I also write about snacks and junk food at my own blog, Snack Cellar.

I’m really honored and excited to be writing for The Impulsive Buy. I’ll do my best to adhere to the honest, informative, and entertaining reviews you’ve all come to expect from this great site. I’m looking forward to interacting with all of you–unless you tell me your favorite Oreo is Berry Burst. Then you’re just a dirty liar.