Snack Review: ‘Fattening’ the curve with Nutter Butter Fudge Covered

In these sad, frightening times, I am hoping for a bit of levity. We can all use some personal reflections…And in all honesty, I bought these (and two other of Nabisco’s finest, Chips Ahoy Soft-bakes and Peanut Butter Pie Oreos) in a hunger-filled haze where all I wanted was ridiculous junk food. You should have seen what I bought in that shopping order…It was pretty gratuitous. (Including pickled herring, a 1kg bag of fruit juice gummies, sparkling water, peanut butter, snack crackers, party mix, chips, popcorn, peanuts…)

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But these did pique my interest, so much so that I tore into the box like some sort of insane wolverine (my box not pictured because I still have SOME dignity).

So how are they then?

In a word- fine. My other word would be ‘disappointing’ but I do feel like that is a bit unfair for these snack cookies. They don’t claim to be anything better than they are, which is exactly like what Oreos and Chips Ahoy are. Cheap midrange mass produced snack cookies. Nothing more, nothing less. However I do get to rag on them a bit because ‘fudge covered’ is laughable. Fudge what? Have these people met fudge and did it slap them or something? The cookie is covered in the thinnest, stingiest layer of WTF not chocolate but something that looks and smells like chocolate. Not fudge, a poor excuse for chocolate, really.

Cookie itself? Like a bland peanut butter Oreo. The ‘made with real peanut butter’ makes me laugh. Like, really? Sure doesn’t taste like it! I can’t go above and beyond that. Just really ‘eh’ for something that has a laughably absurd number of calories. I actually liked the Peanut Butter Pie Oreo better, even if it did have a weird smell that reminded me of my long-time smoker grandmother’s house.

It reminded me of my similar complaints about Nature Valley’s peanut butter granola cups. Really cool in concept, execution is the cheapest, wimpiest, lamest thing ever. Light, cheap and tastes cheap (both for Nature Valley and Nutter Butter Fudge Covered). If I may make a leap here, I would say this type of cookie is perfectly acceptable for a party where nobody is expecting anything better than Oreos, I guess. Certainly not good junk food, but you know, you can dumpster-dive a little on a special occasion, eh? I actually put peanut butter on mine to make it more interesting, and likely triple the calories. Oh well, I never claimed that I wanted to live forever!

These were purchased for $2 on sale at Canadian Club Warehouse, and I wouldn’t pay more for them. Or buy them again, probably.

My reviews: Nature Valley Peanut Butter and Chocolate Granola cups

And I have to say that while I liked it (and let’s face it, peanut butter and chocolate can NEVER go wrong in my books!), it was pricey for what it was- glorified granola bars in puck-form. A box is $3.99 at Save-On, and each pack has two granola pucks.

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The peanuts on top were a nice addition but weirdly the only thing I could think about when I was eating it was that it needed to be more dense and like, filling? It’s ridiculously light, feels like air. Peanut butter is more substantial than that!! Also it could have a deeper well for the peanut butter, and the chocolate coating on the bottom was ‘eh’…could barely even taste it. For show, mostly. Would I buy again? Only if it was on sale. I liked it, but I also like eating peanut butter out of the jar for roughly the same price for a whole jar, soooooo yeah. Nice try though, Nature Valley, on keeping me separated from my money once again.

 

I gave one to Ian and he had 1 bite and said he didn’t like it, because- and I quote- “It was too much peanut butter.” ?????????? So that’s been a fun marriage.

 

I ate the rest of his. And the rest of the box, if we are being honest here.

Time to settle this: The BEST Peanut Butter is PLANTERS! Yes!

Time to settle the great Peanut Butter Debate by sharing the gospel of Planter’s Peanut Butter. I know this is contentious (among the biggest arguments in our office, right up there with Which Breakfast Place in Victoria is the Best/Worst, people have lost limbs over that one…) but I have to do it. I have to inform the masses! This is definitely the best, chunky or smooth.

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Not ashamed at how many I have hoarded… Old on left VS new on right. 

The only issue I have is that they recently changed their packaging and it’s doing my head in. They are both 1kg, but the new one looks/is shaped significantly smaller. This leads me straight down the road to suspicion- when is 1kg not 1kg? ARGH. Yes, I do have several jars hoarded at home. You never know when you might need 3-4 jars of peanut butter.

Anyways, photo evidence attached. I have yet to take this to a scale or better yet, The Planters Peanuts Company themselves, but I’m seriously considering it…

And don’t come at me Adams Peanut Butter People- you know your place…And no way am I stirring peanut butter or keeping it in a fridge. Sacrilege!!

My review: Tim Horton’s Love Reese’s to Pieces doughnut & brownies

My lovely friend Lindsay bought me both the Love Reese’s doughnut and the brownies last month from Tim Horton’s, and they were both great! And now I am sharing the favour with reviews of both. Starting with the doughnut…

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Now, doughnuts from Tim Hortons automatically get marked down by me, because they are like the lowest-common denominator in sweet snack foods. They barely try at all, and it’s like well, better than nothing I guess but also pretty much EVERY doughnut out there is better than theirs. So… yeah. I ate the Reese’s doughnut gratefully (who am I to turn my nose up at doughnuts) and I remembered the last time I bought a Reese’s doughnut, I was bitter and appalled because it was a SHAM – it was a paltry Boston Crème doughnut with like, a few mini Reese’s peanut-butter cups on top. Pfft!

Happy to say that this one is no sham doughnut masquerading as a delicious doughnut- it has really good peanut butter filling it! And the toppings are tasty as well, chocolate glaze with Reese’s Pieces. My only quibble that takes it from being an amazing must-buy: There is not nearly enough peanut butter filling in it, and it’s in the end still a Tim Horton’s doughnut- too flimsy, makes you think you’re eating mega-calorie air and not at all satisfying. Plus I have a history with their old Reese’s doughnut, so I do hold that against them.

Now, the brownies…

So good. Must buy. The portion sizing is generous, you get two squares which was perfect for eating one before my riding lesson and one after. Genius! The texture is fantastic, it doesn’t taste like slightly stale air like all Tim Horton’s doughnuts seem to, and best of all it is soooo peanut-buttery! The icing is amazing, smooth mix of chocolate-peanut butter and really makes the brownie. Top notch! It is worth the calories–have no idea what the count is, but if it’s like all fast food (fat food) it’s probably heinous– and I loved it. Rich, so the two squares are a great idea, and offers some semblance of portion control.

My advice? Ditch the doughnut and go all in for brownie. Actually consider that my advice for life.

My Reviews: Reese’s Creamy Peanut Butter

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Yummmm

Just so you know the depths of my peanut butter/Reese’s addiction- you can’t buy these in Canada, not quite yet. I bought these from England via Amazon.

I know, I know. But still, I HAD to try them. And I have seen them in Canada, weirdly in Penticton at a candy store so there is always that option…Back to the peanut butter. At first glance and smell, it looks just like normal peanut butter- your Jif, Skippy, Kraft, et al. BUT on tasting it, it has a more intensely smooth flavour and texture.

Where the lesser peanut butters fail (oily, weird, bad mouthfeel and cheap tasting), the Reese’s Peanut Butter has a fabulous mouth feel despite what can only be a gazillion calories in palm oil, etc. However, you can’t fool yourself- it’s still peanut butter, not a Reese’s spread. It is lacking the gritty, delicious texture and taste of the Reese’s Spreads. So, it’s probably the best dessert peanut butter I have ever had, and yes there is a difference between what I think is ‘dessert peanut butter’ and more ‘savoury peanut butter’- see Adam’s peanut butter for an example).

I also went nuts on it the other day and I ate probably half a jar, so if that says anything about it to you…In my defense I prepared for this eventuality and ate a salad for dinner and then marshmallows with peanut butter for the main course.

New Reese’s Easter Egg: My review!

Thanks again to the generosity of Stephen May, and as promised- a review as soon as I had time/ate it! As you can see, my Reese’s Egg had a fold where the second eye was supposed to be so the chick is giving me a jaunty wink…

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Opened it up and it has a patterned egg with festive Easter designs and the Reese’s logo. It seems they try harder than Cadbury’s, but also my suspicions are that the Reese’s Egg is slightly lighter than Cadbury. Can we get an exact weight on each, please? Want to make sure nobody is getting ripped off here in the cut-throat world of Easter candy.

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Opening it up, it’s glorious. Full peanutbuttery glory, full to the brim and it tastes EXACTLY like a better Reese’s peanut butter cup – chiefly because the ratio of peanut butter filling to-chocolate- is even higher. YUM!

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It does have a strange, almost licorice after -taste that I am noticing 3 minutes after eating it, but that’s not going to detract from it for me! It’s very good, and it beats Cadbury’s hands-down. (But I will still buy & hoard Cadburys too, because who are we kidding?!). The chocolate shell may be a bit cheaper and thinner- it seemed much softer than Cadbury’s right off the bat.

Fly in the ointment- the price is silly. I saw them at Save-on for $1.19 this weekend and as high as $1.29 at the less competitively priced Pharmasave and Shoppers. Please- this is a small treat and the price is not competitive. Wait for these things on sale, or better yet…cut out the middle man and buy a jar of Reese’s spread- less festive but so good! I like eating it with pretzels. And a jar does not last long around me.

That is my one caveat for all Easter (and probably Halloween) candy- it’s just not worth what the price is for novelty items.

My review: Reese’s Big Cups (King Size) stuffed with Reese’s Pieces

New Reese’s Big Cup (King Size) stuffed with Reese’s Pieces: Too decadent? Read more and find out!

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Looks tasty

My friend bought this for me, because she knows I am 100% obsessed with Reese’s. Were they as good as the packaging promised?

They were! The cups were large, so there were only two of them. The Reese’s bits add a really nice textural crunch to the famous Reese’s peanut butter filling. Visually they look like chunky Reese’s, and taste just a little bit more interesting than the traditional cups. The only quibble I had was that the Reese’s pieces tended to be more like ‘shards’ rather than full pieces. Towards the back of the cup a few full-sized pieces showed up, so I guess it’s not completely false advertising. I am definitely a fan of the filling, and I liked it even more than the traditional cups because per cup, you got a lot more peanut butter.

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The inside- as you can see, shards of Reese’s Pieces.

To sum up, if you’re the type of person that can easily eat the half pound Reese’s cup in one sitting, this is the BEST THING EVER. Even if you’re not, it’s still really great. I would definitely eat these again! (and yes I can easily eat a half pound cup in one sitting). I am unsure if they also come in ‘regular size’ as the packaging indicates ‘King Size’ at this point.

Food that I like and dislike: A thorough examination

Didn’t ride yesterday as Oats had the day off – much needed for the both of us, honestly. For him, he was worked Sat-Tues, which a quite intensive dressage lesson. For me, I am feeling brain-fried so best to take a day and rest my calf muscle, which is actually feeling fine right now and I think I’ll be back to running again in a day or so.

So, I actually post a lot on Facebook about food (usually junk food) that I love or hate. I want people to share in my obsession (Reese’s!!!) and avoid the real duds- currently anything by Tim Hortons.

A clear winner.

A clear winner.

Love it:

Reese’s spreads– OMG. I could eat this all day with a spoon and no regrets. I particularly love it because I often feel shame about how many little Reese’s wrappers are surrounding me after eating them…With this, no millions of wrappers and paper cups, no shame! Just yum yum yum yum.

Pumpkin Scone– Yum! I made these with Kabocha squash puree instead. Delicious! I am a bit allergic to them right now at the same time though, so have to eat carefully (I have uncontrolled hayfever and it triggers many other food allergies at the same time, trying medication #3 at the moment to see if it works in combination with OTC drugs).

Any Halloween chocolate bars– except for Twix, I would eat fist-fulls of these alllll day.

Gummi coke bottles– bought a bucket of these and brought them to work. The bucket is almost gone. A clear winner!

Clif Bars– Love the new flavours, and have coconut-chocolate waiting for me at the barn….

Luna Bars– Tried the lemon flavour yesterday. Yum! A refreshing taste, though kind of a bitter aftertaste (maybe true to the lemon flavour?).

Peanuts– Love the red-skinned variety. Not from Fairway though, ended up with too much peanut skin ‘dust’.

Popcorn and Popcorn Balls- a clear winner! Made these on the weekend and am loooving them.

Pear chips– Just what they sound like. They are soooo delicious, I wish I had more pears to make them in my dehydrator.

Fruit leather- Made it in the dehydrator, with rhubarb and plums cooked and pureed smooth. Tricky to make, a bitch to clean after, but so good!

Nerds- These are still good, though the flavour selection sucks. What exactly are kids eating these days?

Aussie licorice– Any brand will do. Soooo good…

Milk to Go Sport– Delicious, milky goodness. Both the vanilla and the chocolate milk are not too sweet, contain a ton of calories (200) and protein for after races. Love the taste, and I am chronically deficient in calcium/Vit D and potassium, so these are great!

Hate it:

Muscle Mlk– anything by them is SO GROSS. Tastes like aspartame and tears. Gave me a two-day stomachache that i couldn’t shake. Yuck. Have a bottle of the ‘Extreme Vanilla’ in the fridge and can’t work up the courage to drink it…

Tim Horton’s Reese’s, Toffee, and Oreo doughnuts– You think you’re getting a big fancy doughnut splurge and all you’re getting is a shitty Boston Creme doughnut with some mini Reese’s cups stuck on top faking at being a good peanut butter doughnut. Eff you Tim Hortons! Also the Oreo one tastes like diabetes and the Toffee one had gross crunchy chunks of ‘something’ on them. Yuck! And I like sweet things!??!

Recipes that use too much freaking sugar- Yes, I’m looking at you, all dessert recipes ever.  There is just too MUCH sugar in them! I hate it! I love sweet things and these ‘1 cup of white sugar and 1 cup of brown sugar’ is so disgusting. I have been quartering the amount of sugar in recipes and still finding them very sweet! Case in point- I made an apple crumble that had way too much sugar and I found it too sweet with even a quarter of what the recipe called for, and husband made a peach cobble with way less sugar than needed, and it was still very sweet?

Willy Wonka Fun Dip/Lik m Aide– these are now gross. Not tangy, not good, not anything.Yuck.

Any ‘flan’ desserts– No, no thank you. No.

Starbucks– Any drink left full sweet there is icky and served lukewarm, and their bagels suck so hard. Their food in general is terrible actually, though the snack boxes (of apples, crackers, cheese and nuts) are hard to screw up, so I go with those if pressed. Yes Starbucks you can’t screw up pre-packaged apple slices, go you.

Pickles that include olives for some reason- No, I want my olives separate. Now everything tastes like olives. I like olives on their own, not infecting my pickles!

Kraft peanut butter with chocolate– Good, if you like the taste of emulsified oil products. And I eat Kraft peanut butter, so this is saying a lot. It is SO shitty, compared with Reese’s spread even. Gag. Why did you even do this, Kraft? To punish chocolate?

This pains me to write it, but…the chocolate cronut– Tastes like a cheap-ass chocolate pudding mushed inside a hard as fuck layered croissant. Too chewy, pudding goop falls everywhere and it is a total, try-hard mess. I can do this terribly at home, thank you very much, and save myself like $3.75 in the process. I am sad that one of my fav bakeries, ‘Crust’ screws this up like this. Ew.

Cakes from the Dutch Bakery. They look SO good, mouthwatering, delicious, and are not cheap. They taste like Styrofoam and oil, and cheap promises. You know how buttercreme is made with butter? Well, you can taste the difference, and these taste like the frosting is made with hydrogenated oil. Yuck. Don’t waste your money.

Nailed it!

So, some Pinterest-worthy fails…Courtesy of yours truly, my mom and my sister. Don’t worry, we did make more (actually, my mom did WITHOUT my sister helping OR me) and they turned out way better. Photos of that to come!

Macaron, oh those sweet little pillows of delicious ground almond. So tricky though. Why did these fail? WELL…
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We used was paper instead of parchment. Bad idea. As you can see, they got stuck.

We didn’t mix the egg whites for long enough before adding in the ‘superfine’ sugar.

Oh and we didn’t have superfine sugar and tried to substitute confectioner’s sugar. It did NOT work.

So, HAHAHA…Fail, Pinterest-worthy. These were just dyed blue, we made them in vanilla flavour. Tasty though! But the better ones tasted fluffier. Yummm