REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cookie Butter Cold Brew

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Whole

Did you know that cookie butter has been around since 2007? It was first pitched on a Belgium TV competition show (similar to Shark Tank) and caught the attention of Lotus Biscoff. The sweet, spiced spread is a unique blend of flavors that I wasn’t sure Dunkin’ could capture in its newest holiday offering — the Cookie Butter Cold Brew.

Starting with the slow-steeped cold brew coffee, the drink is then sweetened with a brown sugar cookie flavor, topped with cookie butter cold foam, and finished with cookie butter crumbles. Being a cold brew fan, I was happy that the newest holiday drink wasn’t a hot beverage. Don’t get me wrong, I will absolutely enjoy a hot peppermint mocha the week of Christmas, even when the weather is still in the 80s, but I like to stick with cold drinks most of the time.

I was happy to see it look fairly close to the promotional materials. The first sip was mostly a mouthful of the crunchy cookie butter crumble, but once the cold brew broke through, I got a better sense of the overall drink. Unlike a majority of Dunkin’ coffee beverages I’ve tried, the sweetness level was much more measured. The balance of the spice from the cookie butter crumbles and cold foam cuts down on the cloyingly sweet nature of most Dunkin’ drinks.

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Foam

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Top

The cookie butter cold foam was delicious from the bit I could taste. Unfortunately, on the 10-minute ride home, it had all but dissolved into the beverage. While it was no longer as strong, it blended well by adding a creaminess to the strong cold brew. The brown sugar cookie flavor wasn’t as noticeable, but when competing with a very loud taste like cookie butter, that’s not a shock. I can’t speak on its comparison to the much missed Starbucks Gingerbread Latte, but the strong cookie butter flavor certainly invokes a gingerbread-like taste.

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Dissolve

While the cold foam blended in well as it melted, the cookie butter crumbles didn’t fare so well. By the time I got home, half sat at the top like cereal floating on the cold brew, and the other half had sunk to the bottom. Mixing just made them smaller and created a weird mouth feel to the sips that were like wet sand.

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Bottom

Dunkin Cookie Butter Cold Brew Topping

Dunkin’s Cookie Butter Cold Brew is a unique offering that, with those initial sips, brings a fun flavor to the chain’s holiday lineup. Unfortunately, if you are a slow drinker like myself, you risk it melting into a less pleasant drinking experience, texturally speaking. The overall flavor is wonderful, but not good enough for me to ignore the gritty crumble that settled to the bottom of my cup.

Purchased Price: $5.09
Size: Large
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 390 calories, 19 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 50 milligrams of cholesterol, 160 milligrams of sodium, 56 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 53 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Limited Edition Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew

Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew Can

What is it?

Starbucks’ new Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew is a new way to get your pumpkin spice fix! This limited edition can of seasonally spiced caffeine combines nitrogen-infused cold brew with milk and natural flavors.

How is it?

Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew Pour

The can states to “gently shake once, pop open and pour hard into a cold glass for maximum enjoyment,” and I did just that; PLUS, I used a spooky bat cup to really bring the autumn energy.

Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew Holding

Trying to imitate Starbucks’ excellent Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is tough, and my initial reaction is that visually I didn’t get nearly as much creamy head as I would like. There’s a small, lighter colored creamy layer sitting atop the cold brew, and on my first sip, I’m getting big time Yoo-hoo vibes. You know that “chocolate flavored beverage” that popped up right before the Great Depression? That’s the kind of texture we’re working with here, a watery viscosity. It’s kind of milky but not notably creamy, and as someone who usually takes his coffee black, it’s unimpressive but totally fine by me.

The flavor is interesting. The most prominent spice that pops out is nutmeg, followed by what I think is cloves. There isn’t much of a cinnamon presence, which is odd because a lot of times companies will get lazy and use only cinnamon in lieu of a true spice blend. I kind of miss the cinnamon, but also respect the intensity from the lesser-loved spices. The coffee flavor is smooth, present, and pleasant, rounded out with just a touch of sweetness that keeps this beverage coffee-focused, unlike its latte and Frappuccino counterparts.

Anything else you need to know?

Nearly a decade ago, I swore off non-alcohol liquid calories, and 97% of the time I drink my coffee without cream or sugar. One exception to this rule, which used to be the Pumpkin Spice Latte, is now the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew. I have a soft spot for the sauce created by Starbucks in 2003 and love how the cold brew version is a modernized take that lets the coffee shine.


Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew Bat Glass

This canned Pumpkin Cream Canned Nitro Cold Brew won’t fool anyone into thinking it came from the hands of an actual barista, but it certainly does a nice job of scratching that autumn itch if you’re unable to make it to a cafe. I was mega excited when this can was announced, and while it’s not going to pull me away frequently from my cup of hot black, it’s a beverage that interests me. There is no mistaking that this is a pumpkin spice-flavored drink, and while I wish it was just a touch creamier, that’s pretty easy to fix with an extra dash of milk at home.

Purchased Price: $3.00
Size: 9.6 ounces
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 can) 80 calories, 1 gram of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 35 milligrams of sodium, 14 grams of carbohydrates,1 gram of fiber, 9 grams of sugar, 3 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Nutty Pumpkin Coffee

Dunkin Nutty Pumpkin Coffee Cup

Fall’s kick-off has (unofficially) become August 1st as the product boxes slowly shift towards the warm orange/red/yellows of the season. My inbox becomes a flurry of messages from stores letting me know what date they will start offering their various pumpkin-flavored items. After last year’s strong showing, I was looking forward to this year’s Dunkin’ pumpkin menu. The Nutty Pumpkin Coffee immediately caught my attention.

Starting with Dunkin’s Original Blend coffee, they add in a pumpkin spice swirl and hazelnut flavoring with a cream of your choice; you also can get it hot or iced. I was intrigued by the drink’s simplicity, especially compared to its cousin, the Pumpkin Spice Signature Latte. I generally dislike the pure pumpkin spice drinks as I find them thickly sweet. I like the flavor, but the sweetness is too much after about half.

Using the mobile ordering, I went for the iced version and oatmilk as my “cream.” Immediately, I was pleasantly surprised to not see that ring of flavoring that sometimes sinks to the bottom of Dunkin’ drinks. I still gave it a quick stir to make sure the components were mixed. With my first sip, I was greeted by a very smooth and delicious drink.

Dunkin Nutty Pumpkin Coffee Top

The blend of the coffee, pumpkin spice swirl, hazelnut flavor, and oatmilk offered the balanced fall beverage I had hoped for. During my mobile ordering, I noticed that the hazelnut is an unsweetened flavor, and I think that makes all the difference. The hazelnut added that nutty, earthy component I feel is often missing in pumpkin spice drinks. In this iteration, the pumpkin spice swirl still brought sweetness to the drink but didn’t overwhelm. The Original Blend Dunkin’ coffee adds the perfect amount of richness to the drink. The oatmilk also played a part in bringing down the overall sugariness, and it added that creamy deliciousness I look for in an iced coffee.

For me, Dunkin’ tends to be a bit of a wild card when it comes to its offerings, so having this drink being such an enjoyable experience was awesome. The Nutty Pumpkin Coffee was a pleasant surprise and a great kick-off to pumpkin spice season. It hits all the fall notes and gives me that autumn-in-a-cup experience that I enjoy while still wearing flip-flops and tank tops in 95-degree heat.

Purchased Price: $2.89
Size: Medium
Rating: 10 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 260 calories, 9 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 39 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 38 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer

Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer Bottle

I haven’t watched any of the nine films from the Fast & Furious movie franchise. But I have now tried all three coffee creamers from the Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Cookie Creamer franchise. The latest release is the Nestle Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer. Oh, that name rolls off the tongue and keeps rolling like a bottle of Coffee mate on a hill.

I’m pretty sure I’ve eaten multiple foods with brown butter in or on them, but I didn’t know what it actually was until now. At the time, I was more concerned with eating those foods than knowing what brown butter was. Hunger can cause that sometimes. Pardon my ignorance, foodies.

But now I’m a few credits shy of a BA in brown butter. It turns out it’s simple to make (melt butter slowly over low heat, wait for it to foam, and then let that white foam turn brown).

Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer Closeup

When I added the creamer to my usual daily caffeine vehicle cold brew coffee, I noticed some of the same chocolate flavors in Coffee mate’s Nestle Toll House Cookies’ N Cocoa, the second in the series. However, the similarities end there because this creamer has a noticeable brown sugar cookie flavor, which the previous one lacked. I don’t know if the brown butter flavors are the cause, but I’m happy they’re there. Also, this creamer smells so delightful that I want a candle with its aroma.

But here’s the thing, I remember the original Coffee mate Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer, which was the catalyst for my daily coffee consumption, had a delightful cookie flavor too. So it makes me wonder if this one differs from the original, which came out in 2014.

Overall, Coffee mate’s Nestle Toll House Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Creamer is a delicious addition to the seasonal Coffee mate line. It’s tasty enough that I’d like to see it become a regular flavor, or at least a regular seasonal flavor that joins Pumpkin Spice and Peppermint Mocha.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary product sample from Coffee mate. Doing so did not influence my review.

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 32 fl oz
Purchased at: Received from Coffee mate
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 tbsp) 35 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 1 gram of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 15 milligrams of sodium, 5 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of sugar (including 5 grams of added sugar), and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cake Batter Signature Latte

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte 1

Summer is (sort of) here, and with it comes Dunkin’s new summer menu featuring the Cake Batter Signature Latte because nothing says summer like stirring unbaked cake into your coffee. What, you’ve never done that? Do you mean to tell me you’ve never set out to make a cake, decided it was too hot to turn on the oven, and then solved the problem by just swirling the batter into your espresso? Yeah, me neither, but that didn’t stop me from deciding I needed to know what it would be like if I did.

Combining espresso and milk with cake batter flavor and topped with whipped cream, mocha drizzle, and rainbow sprinkles, this beverage blurs the lines between coffee and dessert. It looks like something you’d order if you decided to have a little party for yourself.

My quest for this party began on a cold Chicago day where summer felt far away, but the idea of coffee with sprinkles felt just right. I ordered both iced and hot versions, and my request was met with confusion. I couldn’t tell if this was because the employee didn’t understand why I’d want both or if he didn’t know what the Cake Batter Latte was. After some questioning, I received them, and now it was my turn to be confused.

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte First Attempt

Both had whipped cream and sprinkles, but “rainbow” would be a stretch as most were white or very muted pastels. Where there should have been a mocha drizzle, there was a thin, tan syrup and a dash of brown powder. The drinks weren’t bad but were kind of sad looking and tasted nothing like cake batter. I walked away thinking I had two possibly hazelnut flavored lattes and vowed to try again.

Ok, Round Two! A new day, a new Dunkin’ location.

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Cake on Summer

This time I opted for just the iced version and was relieved when it looked more like the image on the menu encouraging me to “Cake on the Summer.” Don’t mind if I do! The mocha drizzle was clearly present this time, and the sprinkles had a brighter appearance. Then it came to taste time and I was disappointed that the bulk of this coffee is the same flavor I had before, and it still doesn’t taste like cake batter to me. It seemed closer to a French Vanilla and I’m wondering if the nuttiness is some sort of almond flavoring. Almond extract is a fairly typical ingredient in many cakes, so maybe it’s unfair to say this doesn’t taste like one. I should say that it doesn’t taste like the kind I thought it would, a vanilla-forward birthday cake mix. Maybe this tastes like a petit four?

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Sprinkles

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Mocha Drizzle

The espresso has a rich flavor and the (non)cake batter flavoring and toppings don’t totally overwhelm it. It’s sweet but more balanced than you might anticipate something swirled with cake batter to be. The mocha drizzle doesn’t add much taste but aesthetically contributes to a decorated cake look, and the drink itself is pleasantly creamy. Some sips seem thicker and sweeter, like frosting, which wouldn’t really be present in cake batter but does make one think of cake. The highlights for me were any sips with sprinkles. They don’t taste like anything, but they provide some textural pop and festivity. If made correctly, this drink looks like it should be served next to presents and a bounce house, but the taste doesn’t deliver the same amount of fun.

Update: There was a birthday in my house this week, and because I care about authenticity, I sampled a boxed mug cake batter and a homemade cupcake batter. Both confirmed my suspicions that I know what cake batter tastes like, and this latte doesn’t capture it.

Purchased Price: $5.29
Size: Medium (Iced)
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Medium iced with whole milk) 440 calories, 14 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 45 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 67 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 62 grams of sugar (45 grams of added sugar), and 11 grams of protein.