REVIEW: Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats

What are Betty Crocker Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats?

Betty Crocker has added a limited-edition pumpkin cake to its (her?) lineup of Mug Treats. The box contains four packages of cake mix and four pouches of cream cheese icing.

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Mix

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Mixed

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Cooked

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Icing

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Icing Neat

Mix the batter with water or milk (I cooked it both ways) in a mug, microwave it for a little over a minute, then top with the frosting. It’s super easy. (If you want it to look pretty, tear a small hole in the icing pouch; if you want to move on with your life, make a big tear and squeeze it out in globs. It tastes the same.)

How are they?

As the cake was cooking, it smelled delightful. Unfortunately, the cake itself is perfectly mediocre. I didn’t think it was much more flavorful than a pancake. There are prominently visible spice clusters, but the spice flavor is subdued, and overall it’s bland.

Betty Crocker Limited Edition Pumpkin Spice Cake Mug Treats Eaten

The cream cheese frosting is just OK as well. It certainly isn’t bad (and it adds some needed sweetness to the cake), but it’s unremarkable.

Is there anything else you need to know?

As I ate this Betty Crocker pumpkin item, I couldn’t help but think of a similar item: Kodiak Cakes Pumpkin Dark Chocolate Muffin Cup. That treat is more expensive, but it tastes better, and it’s better for you. Go with that one instead.

Conclusion:

These Mug Treats are essentially seventy-five-cent cupcakes. When you think of it that way, they’re fine. But mostly they’re not worth the calories.

Purchased Price: $2.99
Size: 12.5 oz. box/4 pouches
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 5 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 pouch mix + 1 pouch icing, 89 grams) 340 calories, 7 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 240 milligrams of sodium, 69 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 55 grams of sugar (including 54 grams of added sugar), and 2 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Kool-Aid Ghoul-Aid Scary Berry Popping Candy

Kool Aid Ghoul Aid Scary Berry Popping Candy

What is Kool-Aid Ghoul-Aid Scary Berry Popping Candy?

Kool-Aid has added to the list of popping candies with its new “Scary Berry” candy, just in time for Halloween. (Wait, what?)

How is it?

Kool Aid Ghoul Aid Scary Berry Popping Candy Packet

When I opened the pack, I was surprised to see three different colors and textures. The big, aquamarine pieces are standard popping candy, and that’s all I was expecting. The pop factor is comparable to Pop Rocks.

But there are also blue pieces. It’s been a long time since I’ve made Kool-Aid, but I think the blue bits are just Kool-Aid powder, or something close to it. They provide most of the flavoring, a typical, artificial blue raspberry flavor.

Kool Aid Ghoul Aid Scary Berry Popping Candy Closeup

And then there are pure sugar crystals, presumably to balance the tartness of the powder. Or maybe it’s to resemble the actual ingredients of Kool-Aid, with the popping candy taking the place of water.

Together, it’s a somewhat tart popping candy. Popping candy usually has little flavor, so I’m glad they added the raspberry powder. But overall, it just feels like chemicals in my mouth.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Outside of the packaging and the name, I cannot possibly figure out what this candy has to do with Halloween. I associate popping candy with the Fourth of July, raspberry is likewise a summer flavor, and the greenish-blue color evokes images of mermaids, not vampires.

Conclusion:

If you want popping candy, this is as good as any. But it’s also not much better than any of the others.

Purchased Price: $1.00
Size: 3-pack (7 grams each)
Purchased at: Dollar Tree
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (3 bags/21 grams) 80 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 14 grams of sugar (including 14 grams of added sugar), and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Zombie Skittles

Zombie Skittles

What are Zombie Skittles?

This year’s new Halloween Skittles mix includes five fruit flavors: petrifying citrus punch (orange), mummified melon (green), chilling black cherry (purple), boogeyman blackberry (blue), and blood red berry (red). But lurking among all these colors is a “rotten zombie” flavor, so you can eat a zombie before it eats you. It’s like Russian roulette for your taste buds.

How are they?

Zombie Skittles Closeup

All the fruit flavors are lovely. Melon might be my new favorite Skittles flavor; black cherry is a nice alternative to typical cherry flavors; citrus, red berry, and blackberry are what you would expect.

But I know you came here for the zombie flavor.

It’s truly repulsive.

It starts out tasting like rotting fruit, and then it transitions to a somewhat meaty flavor, which is horrifying when you think about it. This flavor stops me in my tracks, and I almost want to laugh because it’s so bad.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Zombie Skittles Spoons

It’s easy enough to power through the zombie flavor (or spit it out), so it doesn’t entirely spoil the candy-eating experience. My educated estimate for the ratio of zombie to fruit is approximately 1:9, so most of them are safe.

That said, there is genuine relief when you get a fruity one.

Conclusion:

I probably will not buy these, nor will I be sad if they don’t come back next year. But they do exactly what they mean to do, and they’re a weirdly fun novelty candy. They would be great at a Halloween party.

DISCLOSURE: I received a free sample of the product. Doing so did not influence my review in any way.

Purchased Price: Free
Size: 3.6 oz. bag
Purchased at: Received from Mars
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 oz/28 g/27 pieces) 110 calories, 1 gram of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 5 milligrams of sodium, 26 grams of carbohydrates, 21 grams of total sugar, 21 grams of added sugar, and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Creepy Cocoa Crisp M&M’s

Creepy Cocoa Crisp M M s

What are Creepy Cocoa Crisp M&M’s?

The Target-exclusive Halloween M&M’s for 2019 are dark chocolate with a cocoa crispy center, in festive colors of brown, red, and orange.

How are they?

Creepy Cocoa Crisp M M s Innards

I was underwhelmed by the Target-exclusive Cookies & Screeem of yesteryear, but these Creepy Cocoa Crisp are a decided improvement. I like dark chocolate M&M’s, but they’re even better with the crispy texture! My family members who don’t much care for the Crispy variety enjoyed these.

My only disappointment is that it’s hard to taste the cocoa element in the crisp part (which is the same color as the chocolate). The dark chocolate overpowers it. But that’s a minor quibble, because they’re still wonderful. This is a simple concept, but it works very well.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Creepy Cocoa Crisp M M s Red M Mcula

With the package portraying the Red M&M holding a bowl of chocolate cereal while wearing a vampire costume, it seems obvious Mars is channeling Count Chocula. But that cereal is made of corn, whereas the M&M crispy parts are made of rice flour. I appreciate the creativity —- it’s not predictable, but it still has a seasonal connection.

Conclusion:

The colors, flavor, and texture combine to make this limited-edition flavor a winner. Since Red is dressed as a vampire, I imagine repurposing a line from The Munsters to tell him how I feel about this candy:

Me: “I really dig you!”

Red: “And someday I’ll return the favor!”

Purchased Price: $3.19
Size: 8 oz. bag
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts:: (1 oz./28 grams/30 pieces) 140 calories, 5 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 25 milligrams of sodium, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 16 grams of sugar (includes 16 grams of added sugars), and 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: Limited Edition Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies

Limited Edition Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies

What are Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies?

In honor of the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing in July 1969, Oreo has launched (pun unintended) a cookie with chocolate wafers and purple, marshmallow-flavored creme.

Limited Edition Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies Designs

There are also three separate images on the wafers: a crescent moon with stars, a rocket (Apollo 11?), and an astronaut on a moon with a flag. (It can’t be Neil Armstrong or Buzz Aldrin on our moon, because the image appears to have Saturn or another ringed planet in the background. Really, Nabisco?)

How are they?

The marshmallow creme does taste different from the standard creme, but it’s a pretty nondescript flavor. It’s reminiscent of all the Peeps-flavored products that come out in the spring. In fact, the filling might just be leftover Peeps creme, but without the sugar grains. The flavor is a bit boring, but we’re talking about Oreo cookies here. They’re pretty close to the regular Oreo, which means they’re delightful. Like standard Oreos, they’re better with milk.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Limited Edition Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies Stickers

The fun of this product doesn’t stop with the cookies. The packaging glows in the dark (but it says “Marshmallow M N”), and there are stickers on the back, if you’re into that kind of thing.

Two cookies contain six percent of your daily recommended iron. I hoped for a higher iron content so it would be more like lunar maria, the dark, iron-rich volcanic patches on the moon’s surface.

Conclusion:

Limited Edition Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies Phases

Marshmallow Moon Oreo Cookies are nothing earth-shattering (pun unintended again), but they’re good enough. And in this summer of Game of Thrones and Stranger Things food products, it’s refreshing to have a factual, scientific, historic event get its due.

Purchased Price: $1.99
?Size: 10.7 oz.
?Purchased at: Walgreens
?Rating: 7 out of 10
?Nutrition Facts:: (2 cookies) 140 calories, 7 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 85 milligrams of sodium, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 13 grams of sugar, and less than 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: Kellogg’s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal

Kellogg s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal

What is Kellogg’s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal?

Forget winter. It’s a marshmallow world in the springtime, and Kellogg’s has joined the trend of Peep-ifying everything by creating Peeps Cereal. It consists of yellow, pink, and blue marshmallow-flavored rings and small marshmallows.

How is it?

Kellogg s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal Dry

When I first opened the box, I got a strong whiff of generic sweetness. It reminded me of Sugar Cookie Pop Tarts. The rings look exactly like Froot Loops or Apple Jacks, just with different colors, and the marshmallows are small, white pieces.

Kellogg s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal Wet

When I eat the cereal, there’s not really a flavor to it. I can’t say it tastes like marshmallows, but then again, I can’t say that marshmallows really taste like anything. It’s sweet enough that I enjoy eating it, but there’s nothing groundbreaking here. I can totally see them swapping the pink and blue rings for red and green and calling it Sugar Cookie Cereal for Christmastime.

Kellogg s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal Swimming Peep

The flavor is mostly identical whether it’s dry or in milk, so enjoy it however you prefer cereal. The milk at the bottom of the bowl is enjoyable, but again, I don’t think of Peeps. I do appreciate that the marshmallows aren’t too crunchy compared to the cereal, which is sometimes a problem with other cereals.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Kellogg s Limited Edition Peeps Cereal Box Back

I absolutely love the cheerful packaging: the spring colors, the iconic chick and bunny, the flowers made of the cereal. On the back of the box is a Candy Land knockoff, called Peeps Land (what else?). Instead of drawing a card from a pile to determine how many spaces to move, you draw a cereal piece. See, it’s better than Candy Land, because you actually get something out of it.

Conclusion:

As a cereal, it’s OK. As a seasonal novelty product, it’s simply adorable.

Purchased Price: $3.79
Size: 18.7 oz. box
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 cup) 110 calories, 5 calories from fat, 0.5 grams of total fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 0 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 120 milligrams of sodium, 35 milligrams of potassium, 26 grams of total carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 13 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of protein.