QUICK REVIEW: Great Value Frosted Mystery Toaster Pastries

Great Value Frosted Mystery Toaster Pastries

What is it?

Walmart’s store brand Great Value brings some excitement to your morning by releasing a Frosted Mystery Flavored Toaster Pastry. It comes in a fun multicolored box complete with question marks and a magnifying glass. The pastries themselves have white frosting and crunchy white bits but most intriguing is its clear filling that doesn’t give off any clues to its real flavor.

How is it?

As mentioned above, the mystery aspect is well executed throughout both the product and packaging. So well done in that regard. These also had a nice doughy taste that was pleasantly surprising.

Great Value Frosted Mystery Toaster Pastries 2

However, if we go back to the mystery flavor aspect of it, it might’ve been taken a little too far as I can’t figure out for the life of me what it could be. I enjoyed eating them as the mixtures of textures between the crunchy bits, frosting, dough, and sticky filling were all very satisfying. The flavor, though? I HAVE NO FREAKING CLUE.

Great Value Frosted Mystery Toaster Pastries 3

I ate an entire box, dissected one to isolate the filling, and even asked friends for help, but all to no avail. They have a sweet, definitely fruity taste but not enough flavor to lead my taste buds to anything more specific. I couldn’t even narrow it down to some potentials.

Is there anything else I need to know?

The ingredients list does offer up a morsel of info in that white grape juice concentrate is one of the things listed. However, upon further thought, this is likely how they executed the clear filling because it also does say natural flavors too.

Since toaster pastries are meant to be, well, toasted, I thought this action would help me out and unearth its true flavor. Did it work? Absolutely not. I was still stumped eating the warmed-up concoction.

Conclusion:

This is a decent store brand Pop-Tart that’s kind of tasty and fun with its white/clear elements that beg you to investigate the mystery! However, anticipation and excitement soon leads to frustration as you realize the flavor isn’t nearly intense enough to guide you anywhere. What a bummer.

Purchased Price: $1.00
Size: 6-pack
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2 pastries) 390 calories, 9 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 250 milligrams of sodium, 74 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 40 grams of sugar and 3 grams of protein.

QUICK REVIEW: International Delight Limited Edition Oreo Iced Coffee

International Delight Limited Edition Oreo Iced Coffee a

What is it?

Since the coffee flavor triumvirate of Mocha, Vanilla, and Caramel has already been showcased, International Delight’s Iced Coffee has decided to expand their line with a limited-edition Oreo flavor. It comes in a nice hefty half gallon container and is made with real milk and cream. It’s basically a ready-to-drink cookies and cream iced coffee.

How is it?

I wasn’t sure how Oreo in coffee would translate exactly, but they pretty much nailed the flavor profile. Taking a few sips makes me think instantly of Oreo cookies as if someone had secretly crushed some up and mixed them into my drink just before I had taken a sip.

International Delight Limited Edition Oreo Iced Coffee 4

The cream part of the Oreo is hard to distinguish since most iced coffees usually always contain some creamy element. The cookie part, though, wow! It tastes exactly how I would expect it to, and even the smell is indistinguishable as a chocolatey wafer cookie. There is a nice coffee base flavor to it that still comes through and it’s not too rich or sweet that I find some ready to drink iced coffees to be. (I’m looking at you Frappuccinos!)

Is there anything else I need to know?

International Delight Limited Edition Oreo Iced Coffee 3

The coffee has a slightly darker tone than maybe a regular flavor, but otherwise, the appearance is not immediately visible to be related to an Oreo. It would have been nice if there were actual cookie bits throughout to add an interesting visual element but you can’t have it all.

International Delight Limited Edition Oreo Iced Coffee 3a

In addition, the carton has one side with a neat idea to freeze some up and add to your iced coffee in lieu of ice cubes. I highly recommend it as it does elevate the whole experience. Nobody likes watered down coffee. Nobody!

Conclusion:

This is a pretty delectable iced coffee, perfect as a creamy caffeinated treat during the hot summer months. If you’re tired of the same old coffee flavors and love Oreo cookies, then give this a try as you won’t be disappointed.

Purchased Price: $3.56
Size: Half gallon
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 cup) 120 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 240 milligrams of sodium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, 20 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein.

QUICK REVIEW: Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Mug Brownie Mix

Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Brownie Mix

What is it?

This is Ghirardelli’s entry into the single serve mug mix category that already has Duncan Hines, Betty Crocker, and Mrs. Butterworth’s as members. It’s a dark chocolate brownie mix that you make in the microwave with just four teaspoons of water.

Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Brownie Mix 2

Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Brownie Mix 3

Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Brownie Mix 4

Mix. Nuke. Done!

It doesn’t have a topping like the Betty Crocker ones but it does tout as being premium and made with REAL CHOCOLATE chips.

How is it?

For such a simple process and so few ingredients, this is a tasty dessert. It has a rich dark chocolate flavor that didn’t become too intense and I love that the chocolate chips were nearly liquified after cooking making them like ooey-gooey pockets of joy.

Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Premium Brownie Mix 5

The actual brownie part did seem to be a little dried out even though I followed the directions accordingly, but having the melted chips in there definitely offset the texture that I wished was a bit softer and more moist.

Is there anything else I need to know?

I’ve tried nearly all the other mug mixes and thought most of them were nauseating sugar bombs so I was definitely hesitant for this one. Even though the sugar content is similar to the others it doesn’t come across that way on your tongue.

Also, it doesn’t say it on the box but I tried replacing the water with milk and the results were much improved. The brownie part turned out a lot better with a more pillow-like texture. In addition, if dark chocolate isn’t your thing then there are three other versions at the moment to try – Double Chocolate, Salted Caramel, and Chocolate Peanut Butter.

Conclusion:

A quick, easy, and decadent mug brownie that I would choose over the other brands any day of the week. Just don’t over nuke it and maybe replace the water with milk. Otherwise, cheers!

Purchased Price: $2.50
Size: 2.3 oz single serve pouch (4 pack)
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 packet) 300 calories, 11 grams of fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 200 milligrams of sodium, 49 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, 32 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Sparkling Ice Mystery Fruit Flavor Sparkling Water

Sparkling Ice Mystery Fruit Flavor

Flavor innovation is all the rage recently. From mystery Peeps and Oreo to the ever-popular public vote or creation like Lay’s and again Oreo.

Now enter Sparkling Ice’s new Mystery Fruit Flavor Sparkling Water. With so many of the recent mystery entries being food it’s nice to see a beverage brand decide to follow this trend.

This mystery sparkling water has a cloudy-white appearance as to not offer any hints to the correct flavor. A trick color would have been pretty fun, though, as it would play with your mind as you wonder about its true purpose.

Upon opening the bottle, you get an immediate whiff of just citrus. It definitely smells like it could be lemon-lime like (how lame would that be or absolutely genius depending on how you look at it) but it also does have a little something extra as if maybe another fruit is thrown in there. While executing the sniff test, I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.

Before drinking I decided to examine the bottle for any clues to see if the mystery gods dropped any breadcrumbs for us. Look at the back, for example, the question mark graphic contains line art of different fruits.

Sparkling Ice Mystery Fruit Flavor 2

There’s a lemon or lime or orange, a strawberry, a blackberry or raspberry, some cherries and then one that looks to me like a tomato. Remember a tomato is a fruit, not a vegetable, so it totally counts! How clever!? However, I’m not holding my breath that’s the flavor.

The others are your most basic fruits. LAME. The ingredients list shows lemon juice and green tea extract but they are both trumped by natural flavors as an ingredient. So not much help there either.

Sparkling Ice Mystery Fruit Flavor 3

Taking my first sip I’m completely underwhelmed. It tastes like, umm, fruit? Again there are the citrusy undertones but it’s hard to pinpoint what else it actually is. I was initially thinking something kiwi but Sparkling Ice already has a kiwi strawberry flavor so it can’t be a recycled one.

Then it hit me.

What’s exotic and different but also kinda kiwi-like? A dragonfruit! As I kept drinking that’s all I thought of, and once I started thinking about it, that’s all I could taste. So that’s my guess.

Overall, it’s a nice tasting zero sugar sparkling water, but I was expecting something more captivating. Just be warned it definitely tastes diet-y as in you can make out the artificial sweeteners from a mile away, but nothing worse than a diet cola.

When the flavor is revealed, I hope it is something more trendy or out there like avocado toast. Just please don’t be lemon-lime coupled with generic fruit, unless it’s an official Sprite or Mist Twist partnership because we all know brand mashups are pretty hot right now. It would be neat and almost make up for the boring flavor.

Almost.

(Nutrition Facts – 8 fl. oz. – 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of sodium, 0 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: $1.00
Size: 17 fl. oz. bottle
Purchased at: Giant
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Liquid mystery item for once. No color trickery. Pretty good citrus fruity beverage.
Cons: Packaging and ingredients offer no help. Tomatoes and avocados are in fact fruits. TBD for when the flavor is revealed and it’s a huge let down.

REVIEW: Doritos Crunch Nuts (Nacho Cheese & Crunch Nuts)

Doritos Crunch Nuts  Nacho Cheese and Cool Ranch

Doritos has two new products — the Crunch Mix and Crunch Nuts. Not since Taco Bell’s Doritos Locos Tacos have I ever been so excited for a new Doritos-branded product to hit the market.

My fellow reviewer was pleased with the new Doritos Crunch Mixes, but how does the star items in those, the Crunch Nuts, stand on their own? A Doritos Locos Taco home run? Or a Doritos Loaded strikeout?

Regardless of how they are, they do have cool packaging. It’s futuristic looking with a unique shape that’s square at the bottom but then tapers to completely flat at the top. Its shape and design makes it perfect for snacking in the car.

Upon opening up each container I got blasted with a strong peanut aroma. I could tell right off the bat both flavors have a significant amount of seasoning. The Nacho Cheese is intensely orange, while the Cool Ranch is a lighter tan with a few dark speckles. Each Crunch Nut has an outer crunchy coating that’s covered with seasoning and then an inner portion that’s a full peanut.

Doritos Nacho Cheese Crunch Nuts

With both varieties, they nailed the Doritos flavor as each one tastes exactly their chip counterpart. Also, the name Crunch Nuts isn’t a misnomer as the crunch on them is epic as well. I found the best way to eat these is to soak up the seasoning a bit on your tongue so you get the full flavor and then swing for the fences with your teeth to get the crunch.

Doritos Cool Ranch Crunch Nuts

Once you get to the peanut part, though, it starts striking out. It completely overpowers the shell. It’s as if the Doritos essence vanished and never happened. I mean, I love peanuts as much as anybody, but the flavors together for these aren’t working. The Cool Ranch ones fare a little bit better as the flavor lasts longer and seems to meld better with the peanut, but with Nacho Cheese, not so much. The more I ate, the stronger the peanut flavor got and so I could only eat a few before it bored me.

Doritos Crunch Nuts are nowhere near a home run. They’re more of a line drive that looks like a double and you run past first base on your way to second but then have to quickly shuttle back to first as you realize your hit wasn’t as deep into the gap as you thought.

(Nutrition Facts – about 3 Tbsp – Nacho Cheese – 130 calories, 8 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 140 milligrams of sodium, 11 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, and 4 grams of protein. Cool Ranch – 130 calories, 8 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 140 milligrams of sodium, 12 grams of carbohydrates, 3 grams of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.)

Purchased Price: $1.99 each
Size: 3 oz.
Purchased at: 7-Eleven
Rating: 4 out of 10 (Nacho Cheese)
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Cool Ranch)
Pros: Futuristic packaging. Plentiful seasoning and great crunch. Baseball analogies.
Cons: Overpowering peanut flavor. Cheese flavor and peanuts not quite having a beautiful marriage. Not suited to be a solo act.