Saturday, August 17, 2013

REVIEW: Blue Bell Cookies 'n Cream

While I’m a bit more adventurous with my taste in ice cream, and food in general, my girlfriend’s culinary curiosity is kept under lock and key for the most part. Every once in a while however, I can get her to break out of her shell, but there’s only one way to do it. Out of all the possible ice cream combinations other than plain chocolate, Blue Bell’s Cookies ‘n Cream is the only arrangement of ingredients that seems to satisfy her picky palate. With access to more than 300 different pints and cartons that have come through my freezer over the past year, she has turned her head up at all but a few (mostly chocolate heavy offerings like Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Therapy and Steve's BKLYN Blackout). For whatever reason though, this creamy vanilla ice cream with tasty chunks of chocolate crème cookies does the trick. In order to encourage her ice cream exploration, I invested in a whole half-gallon carton and while the cookies and cream concept isn’t a new one, Blue Bell claims ownership by saying, “we were first to create this innovative flavor.” Even though I'd tried their recently released Mint Cookies 'n Cream back in February, I'd yet to try The Original.

This premium duo of ice cream and cookies contains 180 calories per ½ cup serving, which is easily fit into anyone’s daily diet. After removing the golden lid, the first layer of off-white ice cream had been able to hide the extreme influx of chocolate crème cookies sitting just below the surface. Before I had even taken my first bite, I was impressed. Scooping some out into a bowl revealed so many oversized chunks of soft, flaky cookies that they were sure to make their way into every bite. After putting the Blue Bell vanilla debate to rest back in early July, we discovered that offerings like Cookies ‘n Cream use the fourth variation that can’t be purchased as a stand-alone flavor like their Homemade Vanilla, Natural Vanilla Bean or French Vanilla can. This variation isn’t quite as complex (or delicious) as their Homemade Vanilla, but the sweet and simple flavoring makes this plenty capable of hosting all these cookies.

Most cookies and cream flavors from other companies feature only small cross sections of chocolate cookie, but Blue Bell goes overboard (in a very good way). Instead of blending their crème cookies into oblivion, they’ve opted to leave the chunks in large, uncut pieces that give this flavor a rich taste that provides far more texture than the crumb sized chunks used in much of the competition. These soft, flaky pieces of cookie compliment the sweet, vanilla ice cream in both taste and texture to create one of Blue Bell's better offerings. Only well-constructed, super-premium offerings like Graeter’s Cookies & Cream were able to outperform The Original from Blue Bell and while it can't live up to some of their more complicated creations, this easy-to-pass-over option deserves some recognition.

Where I Found It: Ingles Markets
Grade: B

1 comment:

  1. As this is one of the few flavors Blue Bell has reintroduced since returning to market last month, I plan to try some while in Houston this weekend, if I can find it. Will report back to see if it still has the same good flavor you describe here. :)


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