Dunkin Donuts has an amazing new Donut!

Dunkin Donuts has quickly hopped on the pumpkin pie bandwagon, and has released exciting new coffee concoctions, such as pumpkin mocha coffee and pumpkin white chocolate coffee. I sampled the pumpkin white chocolate flavor iced coffee drink, and loved it. I had never had a white chocolate and pumpkin flavor pairing, but the buttery white chocolate rounds off the edges to any spicy overtones in the the warm pumpkin overtones.

Similarly, I also ordered a pumpkin pie filled donut. The center is mousse-like in consistency, a whipped, brown dollop of spicy cinnamon, clove and pumpkin flavors that roll off the tongue. The icing, which is a standard buttercream is nestled under graham crackers, which all balance the sharp spiciness in each bite.

Pumpkin Pie Yumfactor: 3 tongues (3 stars). This is a fantastic seasonal donut. The pumpkin flavor is pretty authentic for it to be in a donut, thought there are obviously natural and artificial flavors. There is a bit of a wax coating like finish as many sweets have, but worth a try.

 

pump

 

 

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Must Try Foods: Super Target’s Limited Time S’mores Cupcake.

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S’mores perfection, but bite sized.

In honor of summer (which is nearly done) ¬†Target has released their delicious s’mores cupcakes. I have been meaning to do a blog on these delights a few months ago, but was to busy cramming my face with these to blog about them. ūüėÄ These mini desserts are made with a chocolate cake base and a divide of marshmallow creme icing, and chocolate icing. To top it all off you also receive a dash of crumbled graham crackers to add texture, and the authenticity of the classic s’mores flavor.

I have to say I have enjoyed snacking on these because I love s’mores. The marshmallow icing is delicious, and I can’t resist these. Another benefit is the size as you can control how many calories you intake and control the amount of sugar you consume. The serving size is 3 mini cupcakes, which total out to 330 calories, individually ¬†110 per cupcake. If you are watching your sugar, or trying to practice self-discipline while you snack on sweets, you may like the portion control. As for the rest of us who gobble up things without regards to self-discipline, 3 may not suffice! These are delicious, and the¬†flavors¬†are a fun, well balanced treat perfect not only for summer, but for the entire year. Too bad they won’t be¬†available¬†for that long!

You get 12 in a pack for $2.50 or $2.99. Yes, I know it’s pretty bad I can’t remember the price, and I cannot find my receipt at the moment :-/ Either way, try them if you can. You won’t be sorry, unless sugar scares you.

S’mores cupcake Yumfactor:¬†4 tongues and a taste bud. It’s just really good. Only thing is, they may go fast if you love them as much as I do. And I don’t even share these.

Sonic’s Pumpkin Pie Milkshake Review. (And Edy’s Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream Overview)

Too artificial and "spicy" to be well rounded. Just so you know.

I went to Sonic’s to try the pumpkin pie milkshake which of course is available for a limited time, along with their new Kickin’ Coney and Bacon and Bleu hotdog. I had a previous run in with a pumpkin flavored dessert that left me dazed, hurt and disappointed. Actually, I’ll name names ūüôā Edy’s pumpkin pie ice cream is overly artificial in flavor, with too much focus on the sweet with poor traces of¬†spice. ¬†And the spice that IS there tastes off balanced. Too cinnamoney to me. I was not a fan at all…Now, I know some of you are¬†going¬†to say “Duh, it’s ice cream. What did you expect?”¬†Certainly¬†not that frozen weirdness I tasted. ¬†Apparently, Sonic understands what I mean. Why? because their pumpkin pie¬†flavored¬†milkshake is amazing; it has lovely layers of rich pumpkin flavor that¬†delicately¬†infuses traces of cinnamon nutmeg that do not over power the pumpkin flavoring.

I took a pic, but it got deleted, so I borrowed this one.

It’s not an overly spicy shake it’s just a nicely balanced cup of bliss. ¬†And I¬†think Sonic’s whipped cream is¬†indulgent and creamy and the fact that it’s¬†topped¬†with pie crumbles makes it even more so epic. So take that all of you who think I should expect pumpkin pie flavored ice creams/shakes to be disgusting. ūüėõ

The texture is rich, creamy, and thick, like regular Sonic shakes are. ¬†There is an earthy depth to the shake, as the first sip is laden with ripe, sweet pumpkin that doesn’t scare the taste buds. ¬†Then, there is a warm undertone of cinnamon and nutmeg that add a well rounded feature to it. I felt this milkshake aptly used fall flavors of pumpkin and spice to make for a fun and sweet shake- and I feel it’s very easy to mess up frozen pumpkin type desserts by over using spiciness. I got a medium for $2.29. I wouldn’t¬†recommend¬†it for diabetics. Again this is fast food, so it’s not for the health conscious who are concerned with calories, fat or sugar. According to their site,the calorie content is 710. Wow. 78 g sugar, 9 g¬†protein, and 1 g of fiber. But hey, there’s 0 g trans fat! ūüėĬ†And that’s the best of it with nutrition, folks, bt what do you expect? it’s a milkshake from Sonics!

Pumpkin Pie Shake Yumfactor: 5  tongues!! (5 out of 5 stars) I think this is flawless, and I have a friend who is scared of pumpkin flavored drinks and she agreed that is was rich, true to pumpkin pie goodness and yummy.

Edy’s Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream Yumfactor: 2 tongues and a tastebud. (2.5 out of 5 stars) I wanted to like it, but it was not well balanced in flavor. I like the color though, so I added an extra “.5” ūüėÄ It is “light” so perhaps the lack of extra fat manifests itself in the way it tastes.

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Must Try Food: Honey BBQ Cheeto Puffs.

These Cheetos are the best things I have found in a long time. At first, I thought cheese, honey and bbq would be gross as a cheeto, but once I tasted a few, these were all I wanted.

Honey BBQ Cheeto Puffs

It appears they came out about a month or so ago (or rather that’s when I first¬†discovered¬†them), and shortly after I tried them, I thought they were discontinued. ¬†I just recently found them at Kroger grocery stores. ¬†I find that the cheese is not at all overbearing in contrast to the honey, and the tangy BBQ ties everything together. Most people I know love these puffs just as much as I do, so hopefully, you will enjoy them as well. ¬†These are absolutely perfect! 5 stars, easily!

Tell me what you think if/once you have tried them!

What I’m Sippin On: Green Tea and Strawberry Smoothie (With Recipe)

Hello all! So, fun fact time: I love making and drinking smoothies. It’s a great way to get your fruits serving, calcium and even protein! It’s a great way to replace a meal, and you can even add veggies to your smoothies!!! (I think only carrots may work for this, though) I am currently drinking a green tea and strawberry (with orange juice) smoothie. I love the green tea’s light and herbal flavor, but I also appreciate its light caffeine¬†content. I will be doing a post on why green tea is so epic of a tea, including health benefits, info on tea types (loose leaf, powder and bag). The only thing is I seldom measure when I create things, but I do want you guys to have the recipe. I do think these¬†measurements¬†are pretty accurate, though. It’s delicious! You’ve gotta try this recipe.

Green Tea and Strawberry Smoothie (2 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 tsps.Matcha Powder (Green Tea Powder- I’m thinking you can also use 1/4 to 1/2 a cup of chilled green tea, just be sure to make sure you sweeten it prior to using it. You may need to adjust this as you go aing, because matcha powdered green tea has a different flavor than liquid green tea in drinks I find. So please, pour, mix and sip, then adjust if necessary! In order to make green tea, please follow the directions on the back of the green tea box.) I bought mine on ebay, but you can find it at Asian stores as well.
  • 1/2 cup Vanilla Yogurt
  • 1/4 cup milk (can be soy or regular)
  • 2 -4 strawberries (depends on how berry you want it to be. I used 2. Can also be frozen)
  • Vanilla flavoring (extract or syrup. I used French Vanilla Flavored Torani syrup) (Vanilla enhances whatever flavors you are using)
  • 1-3 tsps of sugar *to taste* (Can also be¬†substituted¬†with agave nectar, honey, or splenda)
  • 1/4 c orange juice (Really, I just poured enough in the container, and eye measured it.
  • ice cubes (I used about 5-6 whole cubes)

(I used a magic bullet blender to make this.)

1) Spoon 1/2 cup of Vanilla flavored yogurt into the container. This can be adjusted according to how much protein, yogurt content you desire. More yogurt will make the smoothie thicker in texture.

2) Add matcha green tea powder (or cold sweetened green tea) Then add 5 to 6 ice cubes. This can be altered to your personal taste level, but remember that more ice cubes equals a colder beverage, and too much ice can make the drink more slushy  in texture.

Smoothie will be more pink than green, because you are using a small amount of green tea.

3) Add 2-3 strawberries, vanilla flavoring, milk and orange juice. If you are also using a magic bullet, it should be nearly full of ingredients by now. Add desired sugar amount (I added about 2.5 teaspoons)

4) Blend until smooth. You may have to premix the smoothie to ensure the yogurt becomes well incorporated. Smoothie is finishes when it is light pink in color, and smooth in consistency. If you see green powder, or yogurt, please blend until it mixes well.

5) Garnish with a strawberry if necessary. Enjoy!! This can make 2 servings, but if you want more, you can add more milk, which shouldn’t alter the flavor of the smoothie. The consistency however, may be changed. Play with the ¬†fruit content, as well as the yogurt content to get the balanced texture.

*Optional* For added protein content, add desired amount of protein shake mix to smoothie, or even use vanilla soy milk. I have made similar smoothies with soy milk, and it tastes wonderful! Also, you may use powdered sugar in smoothies as they contain a small amount of corn starch, which acts as a mild thickening agent! Info on matcha can be found here: http://www.google.com/search?aq=f&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=matcha

Panera’s Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich- Reviewing My Obsession+Copycat recipe

Close Up

Everyone who knows me knows how much I love and often crave¬†Panera’s Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich. Here’s why. It’s light and refreshing, healthy, full of both sweet and savory flavors, and it’s rather exotic in nature. First, let’s analyze this sandwich from inside out. Sun dried tomato and basil bread, with a sweet undertone around the crusts, a tangy hummus spread on the bread adding a nice kick of flavor and complexity,cilantro, ¬†fresh cucumbers, lettuce, spicy Peppadew¬† peppers, red onions, and tomatoes…and FETA cheese!!!! ¬†The bread is soft and full of flavor itself.

Inside Shot

And no, I’m not a vegetarian,but this sandwich is good enough to make me order it faithfully at Panera for over 5 years. I have tried other items as well, but this¬†Panera’s Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich with a cup of their epic Iced Green Tea is all I need to have a great day. Plus, it’s under 650 calories!! (or a few little numbers above 650, but not above 670)

Copycat Recipe link!!!! alla *Debbie Does Dinner*

http://debbidoesdinnerhealthy.blogspot.com/2010/09/mediterranean-veggie-sandwich-with.html

Panera’s Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich Yumfactor- 5 tongues!!! I just only wish there were sun-dried tomatoes versus regular ones, but it’s still amazing! Cost- $6.30 including tax.

Must Try Food: Sweet Potato Fries (with a surprise tip!)

Firstly, I must blog about my new guilt free indulgence sweet potato fries. ¬†I¬†love sweet¬†potatoes¬†as I find them more versatile and tasty than regular white potatoes. Also, nutritionally, they are more valuable than white potatoes.¬†Let’s compare briefly. First, here’s a video of the difference between the two:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTb42OGnxLQ

Yummy sweet potato fries (frozen then baked) with A sweet and spicy Asian Chili Sauce.

Nutritional Content of : White Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes: (Some of this may be redundant after the video, but this is more those who may want to see things written versus in audio form) obtained from  http://www.lisanelsonrd.com/blog/white-potato-vs-sweet-potato-which-is-better

White Potatoes vs Sweet Potatoes: ‘Tater Wars!

  • Calories: 1 medium sized white potato has 128 calories when compared to the same size of a sweet potato which has¬†¬†103 calories.
  • Fat: Both have the same amount of fat content, which is 0.2g
  • Fiber:¬†White potatoes have 3 grams of fiber, where sweet ones have 4 grams. (which helps keep blood sugar levels neutral. Some diabetics have even reported that white potatoes make their blood sugar levels rise, where as sweet¬†potatoes¬†do not increase them)
  • Glycemic Index: White Potatoes are nearly 35 points higher than sweet potatoes.
  • Potassium: White potatoes have¬†738.3 mg while sweet ones have 541.5 mg.
  • Vitamins C and B6: White potatoes have less Vitamin C, but more of B6, and the opposite for sweet potatoes¬†(more Vitamin C and less B6)
  • Beta-carotene: White potatoes have¬†8.28 mcg , where sweet ones have¬†13120 mcg. Holy Smokes!

So what does this mean,folks? Sweet Potatoes > White Potatoes,though they possess different flavors.

Mr. Potato Head doesn't seem too happy about this...

{Reviewing The Fries}

Moving on, I am reviewing a brand of Sweet potato fries I recently tried. I prefer to buy the frozen fries and baking them due to a healthy lifestyle I want to maintain.  The taste of too much grease and fat literally turn my tummy in many directions :/

Alexia Julienne Sweet potato fries comes in a Family Size, low sodium variety that is sure to be a crowd pleaser. After baking them according to the directions, you can be sure that you will be satisfied due to the rich taste of the sweet potato. To make things interesting, I added a touch of garlic to combine the sweet, rich flavor and a savory note that I was happy with. (If adding garlic salt, be warned that some of the moisture will be reduced, and your fries may end up a little shriveled.) Perfect with chicken, or burgers, these bright and healthy baked fries are fabulous! I even tried the chipotle variety because I wanted a more intense experience! These run about $4.

Alexia Sweet Potato Fries Yumfactor: 5 tongues!!! (5/5) These are healthy, fun and yummy! Think low-budget gourmet!

Alexia Chipotle Sweet Potato Fries Yumfactor: 4 tongues and a tastebud. ¬†(4.5 out of 5) While fun, and blends savory and sweet, I find that the addition of chipotle can inhibit¬†eaters¬†from adding a variety of flavors, and may clash with whatever else is being eaten with it. IT is yummy, and perfect for¬†barbecued¬†side dishes, or as a snack on it’s own.

Asian sweet Chili Sauce- a great dip.

Tip: For an exotic touch, use 2 to 5 tsps. of Asian Sweet Chili Sauce as a dip, or even garlic Mayo. This dip gives the sweet fries an exotic depth that is irresistible.