What is Van Leeuwen Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Ice Cream?
Ever have the urge to dump a Kraft Macaroni & Cheese powder packet into a pint of ice cream? I kid you not – the ingredient list here is cream, milk, cane sugar, egg yolks, and Kraft cheese sauce mix. Of course, when the Van Leeuwen / Kraft Mac & Cheese truck set up in Manhattan and gave away free cups last week, I was there.
Why is this happening? Come on, it’s 2021. Stop asking – we’re beyond that now.
How is it?
I did not like this – and I went in with an open mind. I’ve had an ice cream made with brie cheese that was delicious. I liked the French’s Mustard Coolhaus Ice Cream and Oscar Mayer Hot Dog Ice Cream. But here, I thought the levels of the sweet ice cream base and savory cheese powder were too equal, fighting each other for center stage. In the mustard and hot dog ice creams, the base vanilla was the star of the show, the novelty ingredients were accents.
This combo might have worked better if one of the flavors dominated. But as-is, it was a cheesy-sweet mess that was not refreshing on a blazing hot day. That being said, it wasn’t even close to the worst thing I’ve ever tasted, so I’ll throw it some points.
Anything else you need to know?
This flavor is currently sold out at all the Van Leeuwen shops and online. So if you really want to try it, keep checking for a restock. Or just drop a powdered cheese pack into a pint of vanilla ice cream.
People have said they liked it. Now, I like A LOT of stuff. Scroll back through my reviews at the ill-advised stuff that I’ll defend. But I can’t here. Only go for this if you’re a hardcore curiosity seeker.
Purchased Price: Free Giveaway Size: approx. 3 oz. serving Purchased at: Van Leeuwen ice cream truck Rating: 4 out of 10 Nutrition Facts: not available
First photo courtesy of KraftHeinz. Scoop and sign photos courtesy of Steve Flack (mine melted too fast to photograph!)
Self-care is Philadelphia’s new single-serve Cheesecake Crumble Dessert cups.
After nearly 150 years, the Philadelphia cheese mongers finally went beyond providing cheesecake recipes inside the package to give us the actual cheesecake!
OK, technically they call it a three-layer cheesecake with sauce, cheesecake filling, and crumble topping, but it’s all the same deliciousness to me. There are four flavors: Cherry, Chocolate Hazelnut, Original, and Strawberry.
These were so enticing and tasty that my partner ate them all before I could even write a review and he usually leaves my snacks alone. But, after I re-purchased and tried them for myself, I couldn’t blame him.
(From L to R) Original, Strawberry, Cherry, and Chocolate Hazelnut
There were two key thoughtful choices that made this dang good.
First, instead of a dense block of cheesecake filling, it was creamy and smooth with a whipped texture. Whipped cream cheese is my favorite form, but even if it weren’t, this was the right choice for easy eating with a spoon.
Second, the crumbles were very crOnchy. Yes, cronchy. As someone who always goes for the crust first, I appreciated that it maintained its texture. No soggy crust or crumble in this house please! The amount of crumble was also just right. I was concerned that there wouldn’t be enough just by looking at it, but it was plenty to ensure a consistent eat!
I’m also extra impressed by this because I know Philadelphia doesn’t make grahams or cookies on the regular. I mentioned cookies as the Chocolate Hazelnut flavor is the only one that comes with “rich cookie crumble” and not a “buttery graham crumble.” The graham tasted like regular, crushed up graham crackers and the cookies reminded me of Oreo.
As for the flavor – let’s start with the filling first. It’s truly like having a cheesecake slice in a cup. I got the expected slight tang from the cream cheese balanced by the perfect amount of indulgent sweetness. The chocolate one tasted more chocolate pudding cup-like than hazelnut, but I still was able to taste the tanginess.
Three of the four had an additional layer of sauce: cherry, strawberry, and chocolate flavored. I started with the cherry because I was the most skeptical of it – usually cherry-flavored foods taste like cough syrup to me. However, it definitely tasted like real fruit! It was a bit tarter than I had expected, but that was quickly solved by mixing the sauce and filling evenly. The strawberry, though, was just right for me and didn’t require any mixing! I ate the “layers” as-is.
As for the chocolate one, the sauce was negligible. I’m never going to complain about more chocolate goodness, but it was more of a visual difference given the darker color. I was hoping that this would be the hazelnut flavor part, but no dice. Regardless, it was still absolutely delicious. It wasn’t as much as a dealbreaker because unlike the fruit ones, the sauce wasn’t integral to delivering the flavor as the chocolate filling did most of that legwork!
All of this combined was like lightning in a bottle. I’m ready for a pumpkin cheesecake one for PUMPKINUNDATION season please!
Purchased Price: $3.99 Size: 2 – 3.3oz cups Purchased at: Meijer Rating: 10 out of 10 Nutrition Facts: (serving size: 1 dessert) Cherry – 290 calories, 18 grams of fat, 12 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 gram of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 220 milligrams of sodium, 25 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 19 grams of sugar, 16 grams of added sugar, and 4 grams of protein. Chocolate Hazelnut – 320 calories, 17 grams of fat, 11 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 gram of trans fat, 50 milligrams of cholesterol, 240 milligrams of sodium, 37 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 26 grams of sugar, 25 grams of added sugar, and 5 grams of protein. Original – 340 calories, 24 grams of fat, 15 grams of saturated fat, 1 gram of trans fat, 75 milligrams of cholesterol, 290 milligrams of sodium, 24 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 17 grams of sugar, 16 grams of added sugar, and 5 grams of protein. Strawberry – 290 calories, 18 grams of fat, 12 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 60 milligrams of cholesterol, 220 milligrams of sodium, 26 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 19 grams of sugar, 17 grams of added sugar, and 4 grams of protein.
A woman walks into a supermarket and buys the following: a bar of soap, a toothbrush, a tube of toothpaste, a loaf of bread, a pint of milk, a single serving of cereal and a single frozen dinner.
The checkout guy looks at her, smiles, and says, “Single, huh?”
The girl smiles sheepishly and replies, “How’d you guess?”
He says, “Because you’re ugly.”
If one wanted to modernize the joke, they could easily add the single-serving Kraft Velveeta Original Shells & Cheese Cup to that list. While doing research on the product, I found out that even Kraft admits it’s perfect for those who eat alone. So not only can we determine someone’s loneliness by the number of cats they own or the number of pornographic sites they subscribe to, but also by their purchase of the Velveeta Original Shells & Cheese Cup.
Because it doesn’t need any refrigeration, it’s one of those products you can leave in your desk at work and forget about. And then when you’re really hungry and look through your desk for something to eat, you’ll find it and be moderately surprised. It would be like finding loose change in between couch cushions, five bucks in the pocket of something you haven’t worn in months, a condom in the back of a drawer or a piece of steak in between your molars.
While each cup doesn’t contain enough for an entire meal, it does make a nice snack or side dish while you watch your cats or the Bang Bus website (please don’t Google “Bang Bus” at work or at home). The concept of the Velveeta Original Shells & Cheese Cup is similar to the Kraft Easy Mac Cups; add water, microwave for three and a half minutes and then mix in the cheese, except instead of using a cheese powder, the Velveeta Cup uses a packet of creamy cheese sauce.
The result of all that preparation was a decent cheesy snack that tasted similar to the Easy Mac Cup. I can’t say which was better, but I guess it depends on how radioactive orange you like your cheese. The shell pasta came out tender and although the cheese flavor was slightly watery at first, thanks to the excess water used to boil the pasta, after a little more stirring it turned out fine. In the end, the Kraft Velveeta Original Shells & Cheese Cup is just like scrambled porn channels with really fuzzy images and muzzled sound — it’s good enough.
(Nutrition Facts – 1 package – 220 calories, 8 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 640 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of fiber, 3 grams of sugar, 8 grams of protein, 2% vitamin A, 10% calcium and 6% iron.)
Item: Kraft Velveeta Original Shells & Cheese Cup Price: $1.24 Size: 2.39 ounces Purchased at: Target Rating: 6 out of 10 Pros: Decently cheesy. Uses a cheese sauce instead of a cheese powder. Easy to prepare. Doesn’t need to be refrigerated. Finding five bucks in the pocket of something you haven’t worn in months. Paying for porn when you can get a lot of it for free on the internet. Cons: Small serving size, so I won’t make a good meal. Turns out to be a little watery at first, but a little more stirring helps. Owning more than eight cats. High in sodium.