Archives: September 2012

28 Sep 2012, Comments (0)

Del Monte Vanilla & Spice Diced Pears

Author: Healthnuttxo

I have a pet peeve when it comes to fruit cups…why, oh WHY must EVERY SINGLE TIME I open one, it has to explode?! In class–> explodes on the table. At home–> explodes on my desk. On the subway–> probably would explode everywhere (let’s not try that one).  And then there is a good tablespoon of the juice/syrup wherever the fruit cup is resting, which in turn makes the bottom of the fruit cup sticky. And then I’m sticky.

Sigh.

ANYWAY, moving on past my little rant, let’s talk about this product in particular. Del Monte Vanilla & Spice Diced Pears. (I suppose the “explosion” of fruit juice is something that can’t really be helped, anyway). The pears were soft, but not mushy, which I liked. I could taste a bit of cinnamon, and an aftertaste of vanilla. It was the kind of vanilla flavor you would taste with a vanilla flavored coke. Artificial tasting, and just not quite right. I also almost expected this fruit cup to be sweeter.  I felt it was “lacking” sweetness, as if an actual pear would have been sweeter. I find this odd, because the pears are sitting in a “extra light syrup” which if you look at the ingredients, sugar is added, so I kind of was expecting this to be sweeter.

Overall, pretty good. Not my favorite fruit cup, as I felt the vanilla and cinnamon flavors were dulled out a bit. I would have liked more flavor from the cinnamon and vanilla, and I felt the vanilla flavor made it taste sort of artificial. I don’t know if I would buy these again, but I certainly will finish the 4 pack that I bought. 3 stars


26 Sep 2012, Comments (4)

Quest Bar Cinnamon Roll & Coconut Cashew

Author: Healthnuttxo

The LOVELY people over at Quest Bar sent me a  free sample box of 11 of their products, the QuestBar.

What’s a QUESTBAR you ask? This particular line of protein bars states it is “the only protein bar with a perfect nutritional profile” according to the insert I was sent alongside the bars. Each bar has 20 grams of protein, 4-6 grams of “non fiber carbs”,  has no added sugar, no soy protein, and is gluten free.

I got the box yesterday, and already tried 2 of the bars. (Eager beaver over here 😉 )

The first one I tried was Coconut Cashew.

It was a tan colored bar, about the size, length-wise, of my palm.  Upon first bite, I though…cinnamon? There was a bit of a cinnamon flavor, which accompanied the yummy coconut. It was very chewy, very soft, and dense. It was sweet, but did not have a sugary taste to it. There was a bit of an aftertaste, but not overpoweringly so. I LOVED how chewy it was, and how it had a good bite to it. And although I didn’t really taste much cashew flavor, it was predominantly coconut and that “cinnamon” I tasted, I think the cashew may have played a role in the softness and (very) slightly oily consistency. You can see when you touch the bar it’s not super dry and I think the bit of fat from the nuts may have something to do with that. This one gets 4.5 stars

Next up, The Cinnamon Roll flavor.

I was recommended by 2 people to try this one, so I had high expectations. And…they were most certainly met!  This bar was SO good! Upon first bite, I definitely tasted the cinnamon. It was sweet, but again, not sugary tasting. It was also very soft, chewy and dense, as well as it had a very fresh and moist feel to it. I could almost taste the “icing” in the bar on the “cinnamon roll”, and….in fact…it DID pretty much taste like a cinnamon roll! Dang!!  I will definitely be ordering more of these in the future, as I really enjoyed it. I was quite sad when it was over, because the flavor was phenomenal and the nutritional facts were awesome to back it up. It was a tad high in sodium (300 mg) , but nothing too outrageous. 5 stars

One thing I liked about these bars, is that although they had a good deal of fiber in them, it didn’t bother my stomach. Sometimes with products that have a LOT of fiber (more than 8 grams or so added) I notice my stomach will hurt, but these did not do anything, which I liked. I was very content and filled with the bar, and really enjoyed both of these flavors 🙂 More reviews to come!

Here is the nutritional facts for the Coconut Cashew flavor.

I love when I see new things in the store. It’s like a prize for my taste buds (and often a deficit in my wallet…). SO, buying my weekly stash of CHO, I found the Chobani Flip Honey Low-Fat Yogurt with Banana.

SO is this not greek yogurt? GASP! :O

It does say “low-fat” on the container, but there is 11 grams of protein per serving, so that was still good. It was the same price as a regular Chobani, which in my neck of the woods (haha no woods…) was $1.79.
***ADDED- confirmed by Chobani…it is STILL greek yogurt! Yay!***

The yogurt part is definitely VERY creamy and not as thick as Chobani greek yogurt tends to be. By itself, it has a mild sweetness, mild tartness and subtle honey flavor.

The banana part, I was not crazy about. It literally is pureed (and sweetened) bananas, which reminds me of baby food (cause you know, I eat sooooo much baby food!). I like the fact that it’s “real”, and not a banana syrup of some sort. I checked the ingredients which were sweetener and bananas, so I know it literally is a banana puree, and a thick one at that. So not crazy about it, but it was still pretty good, but had that flavor that when you freeze really ripe bananas and then eat them defrosted. (what you haven’t done that before?)

HOWEVER, together the combo is quite good. The banana flavor works well with the honey, as it sweetens and almost eliminates the tartness from the honey yogurt, and I like that the container is big enough to get all the banana fruit part out. One thing to keep in mind, if you don’t like fruit chunks, I do not recommend this. I definitely had a few chunks of banana in the fruit compartment, which doesn’t bother me but I know can definitely turn some people off. 🙂

Overall, pretty good. I can’t say it will replace my greek yogurt consumption ( I love you Pineapple/Strawberry-Banana Chobani!), but I think it’s a nice sweet treat to have alongside your lunch, which is what I did (with some good ol’ chicken breast!) The sugar content is a bit high, at 21 grams, as well.  4 stars

A new line of products for me to try, UNREAL has supposedly “Unjunked” candy, and taken out the “bad” stuff like high fructose corn syrup, additives and hydrogenated oils. I got some free samples from the company asking me to try, and I happily obliged. A “healthier” spin on candy? Sure, why not? 🙂

Today’s review is of the UNREAL Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar. I’m guessing this is a healthier take on a Snickers bar, for the similar ingredients. First I looked at the nutrition facts. It was by no means a health food, but it was slightly better than the average candy bar. The sugar content was 17 grams for the entire bar, as compared to the 30 grams the website advertises here. However, keep in mind that the UNREAL bar is slightly lighter in weight, thus less calories for it’s smaller size. I definitely think this is a good thing, as it keeps the candy bar from being a high calorie indulgence, but more of a sweet treat to be eaten in moderation that won’t completely derail a diet.

So all that is fun…but how did it taste? It was actually  quite good. Like I stated before, it did taste like a snickers, but I noticed it wasn’t as sugary tasting. It was sweet, don’t get me wrong, but just didn’t have that “I just took a bite of sugar” feel to it, which I liked. It broke apart easily when I took a bite, which was good. It was chewy and had a mild chocolate flavor, and I feel the inner part of the bar had the predominant flavor. The peanuts added a nice crunch and great flavor as well.

Overall, I liked it! I almost wish they came in mini sizes for a treat, because I know I could certainly down that entire bar in one sitting and I do try to abstain from sweets (as a type 1 Diabetic). However, I do like that one bar had 200 calories and 5 grams of protein, and a not too terrible 17 grams of sugar. An everyday kind of thing? No, but certainly a better choice if you need your candy bar fix. 4 stars


7 Sep 2012, Comments (0)

Cosi Asian Shrimp Salad

Author: Healthnuttxo

SORRY I have been missing as of lately! But no worries, I am back, and here to stay!

Today’s review….Cosi Asian Shrimp Salad!!! MMMM!!!! Because who doesn’t love salads, right? 😉

I ordered this one after a long day and I wanted a nice little treat that was also healthy. I don’t eat out much, due to added sugars, preservatives and such that may be in the foods, as well as sodium. However, this salad definitely hit the spot.

A generous bed of lettuce, with shrimp, edamame, cucumbers, pieces of the Sesame Break Bar, tiny pieces of pineapple, and a yummy dressing. The lettuce was crunchy and fresh, and the shrimp was the perfect consistency. There was a good amount of shrimp, so I know I was getting a good amount of filling protein. That’s really important to me, I do NOT like when I get salads and there is hardly any chicken or protein on it. Not filling enough for me! The shrimp itself was not too chewy or rubbery, which is definitely a plus for me. I loved the tiny bits of pineapple, as they added some zing to the salad. The cucumbers, very crispy and also fresh, were abundant, although I am not a cucumber fan, so sadly most of mine were not eaten 😀

Moving on, the best part of the salad, hands down, was the pieces of the Sesame break Bar. SO GOOD! Crunchy, slightly sweet and nutty, it really pulled the salad together and made it feel like such a treat. I honestly was tempted to see if I could buy just the Sesame Break bar!

Lastly, what’s a salad without a good DRESSING? This one was very good. Tangy yet sweet, and a generous amount. It wasn’t flooded with dressing, which I like, but everything was well coated. It also had a little bit of spice to it.

Overall, a definite try! It also comes in the Asian Salmon Salad variety, but I am more of a shrimp person than salmon. As for the nutrition, according to the website it is

375 calories, 17 grams of fat ( 3 saturated), 1123 mg of sodium (yikes!) , 6 grams of fiber, 25 grams of sugar, and 20 grams of protein.

This salad has a bit too much fat/sodium and sugar for my likings,  but it is a good treat every now and then. It comes with bread and carrots as well. Overall, 4 stars

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