If baking this makes my kitchen smell like a Cinnabon store, it’ll truly be EPIC in my eyes, I mean, nose, I mean, up my nose. (Spotted by Robbie at H-E-B.)
If you’re out shopping and see new products, snap a picture of them, and send them in via an email ([email protected]) with where you found them and “Spotted” in the subject line. Also, if you want to send in photos and are wondering if we’ve already covered something or if they’re new, don’t worry about it. Let us worry about it.
Successfully purchasing Dairy Queen’s new Churro Dipped Cone involved facing my two biggest fast food fears. On my first attempt, Dairy Queen had run completely out of what I’d come all the way there to get. On my second, I endured several awkward moments of blank stares from an employee who’d never heard of what I was ordering and had to confirm its existence through a lengthy chat with his manager. Fortunately, I was ultimately able to claim my prize, a big (seriously, am I the only one who didn’t realize just HOW large Dairy Queen’s “large” size is?), beautiful, rust-colored confection.
After all that hubbub, the Churro Dipped Cone — Dairy Queen’s classically curvaceous vanilla soft serve outfitted with a new churro-flavored shell — tasted like victory. It also tasted like, well, a churro. Sort of? It was certainly sweet and cinnamon-y (an apple cider donut was actually the first baked good it reminded me of, though maybe it’s just because I’ve had one recently), with a particularly zesty aftertaste thanks to the smattering of actual cinnamon sugar that coats the coating. But since it’s just churro-inspired without featuring any actual churro pieces, the classic crunchy texture is lacking. Though that’s not to suggest that the churro coating doesn’t have a lovely texture of its own! It was so thick that each time I bit off a flake, I was rewarded with an audible THUNK, and the ensuing experience of chomping into each hefty shard and savoring the sweetness and hint of spice as it melted in my mouth was wonderful.
Aesthetics-wise, I also appreciate that my cone didn’t look too uncannily perfect. The method behind DQ’s dipping madness involves dunking a naked vanilla cone into a vat of liquid which then solidifies around it into the iconic crisp coating. That means that each Churro Dipped Cone is unique, like the snowflakes that were fittingly falling around me as I sampled my seasonally inappropriate dessert. Mine certainly didn’t have the most even application, alternating between visibly thicker layers and bald patches with no coating at all. Those had the side effect of making it particularly messy to eat since, as the ice cream melted, droplets started gushing out through the gaps and all over my hands. I’m thankful the Dairy Queen employee had way more foresight than I did and provided me with a large bundle of napkins, all of which got used!
Prying off a bit of churro shell or lapping up some stray ice cream dribbles is all well and good, but my biggest gripe is what happened when I ambitiously tried to capture both elements in the same mouthful. The coldness of the ice cream immediately overpowered the mild flavor of the coating, suddenly rendering the subtle churro notes more or less tasteless. Dairy Queen’s vanilla ice cream is top-notch – rich, sweet, and creamy. It hits all the notes you’d expect and about as well as you could expect it to, but it wasn’t what I intended or expected to be the star of the churro show.
All in all, this tasty treat is as good an excuse to make a Dairy Queen run as any, but I’m not sure it will satisfy any actual churro cravings.
Purchased Price: $4.08 Size: Large Rating: 6 out of 10 Nutrition Facts: 630 calories, 28 grams of fat, 22 grams of saturated fat, 45 milligrams of cholesterol, 220 milligrams of sodium, 682 grams of carbohydrates (EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the number on the DQ website, the medium has 40 grams so it’s probably 68 grams), 62 gram of sugar, and 12 grams of protein.
Does this toothpaste have abrasives that feel like a Peeps exterior? I’m pretty sure it doesn’t. But I could go for an adult Peeps-flavored toothpaste with gritty abrasives. (Spotted by Robbie at Walmart.)
Haagen-Dazs was a staple in my household growing up, but I was always dismayed that it was Rum Raisin. But that’s what Mom liked, so that’s what we got!
Fast forward decades later, I usually have Haagen-Dazs’ Vanilla Milk Chocolate Almond Ice Cream Bars stocked in my freezer. It reminds me of a Drumstick, but fancy and without the cone. I share my journey with Haagen-Dazs as it entirely influences what I thought of its new Butter Cookie Cones.
This frozen novelty foray is commendable, especially since Haagen-Dazs launched not one, not two, but four flavors out the gate. But at $8.99 for a box of four, it won’t replace my usual bars.
Which four flavors, you ask? My 8-year-old self was very pleased that there was no Rum Raisin version. The “Butter Cookie Cone Collection” (Haagen-Dazs’ fancy website words, not mine) consists of the following:
Chocolate: Chocolate ice cream and chocolate fudge sauce, topped with chocolate curls and cookie pieces.
Strawberry: Strawberry ice cream and a tangy raspberry sauce, topped with white chocolate curls and cookie pieces.
Coffee: Coffee ice cream and espresso fudge sauce, topped with roasted almonds and cookie pieces.
Vanilla: Vanilla ice cream and a caramel sauce, topped with chocolate curls and cookie pieces.
Biting into the fancy curls and pieces actually reminded me of how much I enjoy eating Talenti Gelato Layers. Like Layers, the rich and creamy ice cream was a nice backdrop for all the pops of texture and added flavors from the toppings and cones.
Speaking of the fancy cone, it had the pasty look of an untoasted Pop-Tarts pastry than a golden butter cookie. Unlike Pop-Tarts, though, it was much thicker and didn’t have that same crumbly nature. It had more of a shortbread snap to it. I could bite into it easily, but I found it plain tasting. Most of its flavor came from the chocolate lining that went down into the bottom of the cone, probably to help prevent sogginess, like a Drumstick. Even though the cone was a bit plain, the most delightful bite of all the flavors ended up being the chocolatey tip/end of the cone.
I was also pleasantly surprised that the sauces were piped into the middle. So, halfway through the ice cream biting, I got either chocolate fudge, raspberry sauce, espresso fudge, or caramel sauce, which added another layer to the eating experience.
The vanilla flavor was like eating a Drumstick with a glow up. It was far from boring with the caramel sauce in the middle and cookie pieces! I usually order vanilla from ice cream shops because you can’t hide behind inclusions, and if a place has good vanilla ice cream, you know it’s legit! So, while I couldn’t confirm with my taste buds that this was made with Madagascar vanilla, it was smooth and luxurious, thus signaling high quality to me!
I experienced this same quality with the milk chocolate ice cream. Also, while the chocolate-lined cone had a chocolate base with chocolate fudge sauce and chocolate curls, they were varying degrees of cacao, so it didn’t taste one-note. The different depths of chocolate and the textures from the toppings kept things interesting.
My favorite was the strawberry one. The tanginess of the raspberry sauce and the sweet strawberry ice cream really mimicked a fresh red berry. With the cookie butter cone added into the mix, it was almost like eating a strawberry shortcake (with a touch of milk chocolate from the cone).
I had the coffee one last because I didn’t want it to take over my taste buds and cause the other flavors to taste muted. But it was more latte-like with cream and sugar rather than straight coffee, so my initial concern was not an issue. This was the only flavor with nuts, but while they were clearly almonds, they ate more like peanuts because they were a bit less crunchy than I expected. The espresso fudge was a lovely decadent touch and brought out more coffee flavor.
The back of their packages read, “Deliciousness unlike anything you ever tasted before.” They were indeed elevated, but worth $8.99 a box? The jury is out on that one, but it definitely piqued my interest. If Haagen-Dazs sold some single serve cones out in the wild, I’d get another, but I don’t want these boxes taking up precious ice cream bar space in my freezer!
Purchased Price: $8.99 per box Size: 14.8 oz (four cones per box) Rating: 7 out of 10 (Vanilla), 7 out of 10 (Chocolate), 8 out of 10 (Strawberry), 7 out 10 (Coffee) Nutrition Facts: (1 cone) Vanilla – 280 calories, 16 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 120 milligrams of sodium, 31 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 22 grams of total sugars (14 grams of added sugar), and 4 grams of protein. Chocolate – 300 calories, 17 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 100 milligrams of sodium, 33 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 22 grams of total sugars (14 grams of added sugar), and 4 grams of protein. Strawberry – 270 calories, 15 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 100 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 21 grams of total sugars (11 grams of added sugar), and 4 grams of protein. Coffee – 280 calories, 16 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 100 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 19 grams of total sugars (15 grams of added sugar), and 4 grams of protein.