Monday, 27 March 2017
I've always got my eye out for healthier versions of snacks, and one that caught my attention recently was this new Sweet Freedom Choc Pot Spread. I've been waiting for something healthier in the spreads department, considering how unhealthy our beloved spreads like Nutella can be (and don't get me wrong, I do love Nutella!)
Where this spread differs is its lower calorie and fat content, whilst being vegan, gluten free and dairy free, and containing only natural fruit sugars. It's also GMO, palm oil and preservative free.
I found a pot for £3 in the Free From section of Asda, and have to say I love the cute bunny face on the label! Let's be honest though, who doesn't love a cute bunny face?!
The spread looked nice and gloopy when I opened the lid. So much so I ended up getting it all over THE Hand. But I won't be showing you that...
It was very runny indeed, perhaps moreso than Nutella. It was almost like caramel sauce in consistency. The taste is interesting. It's chocolatey and almost "earthy" in some way, perhaps due to the fruit sugar. It feels very natural and "clean" which is the only way I can really describe it. I enjoyed it a lot and it went perfectly smothered over a rice cake:
Overall this is a very nice spread for something that's healthier, lower calorie and dairy free. I would buy it again and I can imagine it would go nicely used as a filling in cakes and suchlike. As far as healthier chocolate spreads go, I reckon this is the best there is right now!
Ingredients: Sweet Freedom natural fruit extracts; apples, grapes & carob, water, cocoa, natural flavouring, rapeseed oil, sunflower lecithin.
Nutrition (per 5g tsp): 13.6 Calories, 0.4g Fat, 2.2g Carbohydrates, 0.2g Protein.
8 out of 10.
Friday, 24 March 2017
I wasn't sure whether to try this new ginger flavour Pepsi Max when it came out - I do love ginger beer but combined with Pepsi it didn't sound like my kind of thing. I'm not a huge fan of Pepsi at the best of times either - I much prefer Vanilla Coke (which, by the way is now available in a Coca Cola Zero Vanilla variation!)
So I tried this expecting something a bit like ginger beer, but it turned out rather different. It's pretty much Pepsi Max with all it's artificial sweetness - something I'm not used to since I stopped drinking drinks with aspartame in some time ago - with a hint of ginger flavour in the background. It's pleasant and warming, but very inoffensive and true ginger beer lovers might be disappointed. If you like milder flavours however this might just be your thing!
Overall, not a bad drink, but would I buy it again? Probably not - I'll stick to ginger beer! (which, incidentally I have a review coming up for Crabbie's Gluten Free Ginger Beer - stay tuned for that!)
7 out of 10.
Thursday, 23 March 2017
Today's review is for a product that's been out a while now...Alpro's Unroasted and Unsweetened Almond Milk. I first purchased this last year when it came out, since I like to try all the new dairy free milks on the market. It promised to have a fresher taste than regular roasted almond milk.
Like all Alpro milks it's vegan certified and gluten free. You can find it in the UHT section of most Tesco stores.
It tastes very different to roasted almond milk - it's like marzipan in milk form, but without the sweetness! That's the main thing it tasted of - a strong flavour that reminded me of Battenberg cake, which was quite novel and certainly made for an interesting cup of tea! I did actually prefer it over roasted almond milk, it's definitely more refreshing and suits hot drinks better.
Overall, this is one nut milk I would highly recommend - especially if you like marzipan!
8.5 out of 10.
Wednesday, 22 March 2017
I do love me some Ritter Sport chocolate, and luckily it's becoming more widely available in the UK - everywhere from Poundland, The Co Op, most supermarkets and even WH Smiths now sells it! However the newer flavours available in Germany are slower to find their way here. Luckily though, the Macadamia Nut Perfection and this Honey Salt Almonds have managed to make the trip!
I found this on a local market stall for only £1. It promises milk chocolate with roasted almonds, blended with a touch of honey and salt.
Like all Ritter Sport chocolate bars, the milk chocolate is of high quality - creamy, yet rich tasting, and better than most average UK milk chocolate bars. The almonds might have been a little ordinary by themselves, but with the sweet taste of honey and the savoury lick of salt they really do make this bar truly special. It's the perfect sweet and salty mish-mash, a very moreish bar indeed that is somehow quite satisfying compared to other bars of this size.
Overall, this is a great bar from Ritter Sport and one I hope sticks around. That said I am rooting for the Ritter Sport Einhorn (Unicorn) Limited Edition to be brought to the UK - it contains pink chocolate! And it's unicorn themed! Please do it, Ritter!
8.5 out of 10.
Tuesday, 21 March 2017
I've been gradually making my way through Lindt's Excellence Dark range recently - they do some excellent bars, and have recently added a Raspberry Intense to the UK range too.
However for today's review I've chosen something that's been on shelves for a while - Lindt Excellence Caramel with a touch of sea salt. Salted Caramel is still a trendy flavour in confectionery, so how does Lindt's version fare?
Like most of the Excellence range, the chocolate here is semisweet and comes in at 47% cocoa solids. It contains crunchy caramel pieces with a touch of sea salt from France.
The chocolate is very nice; sweet and slightly creamy whilst also tasting rich. The crunchy caramel pieces and sea salt bring a welcome sweet and salty taste that contrasts nicely with the chocolate. This is a very moreish bar indeed - it's very easy to eat one square after another and it's perfect with a cup of coffee!
Overall, this is an "excellent" bar (sorry) from Lindt and one I will happily buy again. In fact, most of Lindt's Excellence range is pretty great - although I do wish they'd bring back the White Chocolate Strawberry Intense!
8.5 out of 10.
Monday, 20 March 2017
Whilst in need of refreshment recently, I fancied something fruity yet not overly sugar laden, and spotted this Firefly Drinks Lemon, Lime & Ginger in Sainsbury's Express. The ingredients are pretty clean and consist of still water, fruit extracts, grape juice, lemon, lime, dandelion and nettle extracts, natural ginger flavouring and even natural rosemary flavouring.
It tasted very refreshing indeed; very zingy and fruity - the citrus flavour was very prominent. It was just what I needed to perk me up and I didn't feel the need to drink it all at once (a rarity for me!) The herbal extracts give a subtle flavour that compliments the citrus, and the ginger provides a light warming kick.
Overall, I would highly recommend this drink from Firefly! If you need some fruity refreshment it's ideal.
Suitable for vegans.
8.5 out of 10.
Friday, 17 March 2017
Whilst visiting the cinema recently, and in need of a cheap Easter-themed snacks fix, I decided to try these Poundland Mini Chocolate Eggs, their answer to the ubiquitous Cadbury Mini Eggs. I should've known better considering their Chocolate Choccers were abysmal, but curiosity got the better of me...
Surpringly, they weren't quite as bad as Choccers, but they were no Cadbury Mini Eggs either. They tasted cheap and sugar laden - the chocolate was of course like calendar chocolate, whilst the shells were just super sweet and pure sugar. They were kind of addictive to munch on mindlessly whilst watching a film, but I could feel my teeth decaying with every bite.
Overall, I would recommend just getting a bag of Cadbury Mini Eggs instead. They're not great these days but they're certainly better than these sugar bombs.
5 out of 10.
Thursday, 16 March 2017
I never thought the day would come - I have resisted it with all my snacking might - but finally, Snackaggedon is here and I'm reviewing...water! Not just any old water though, this is NuVa Spring Water with a kiss of Watermelon and Melon. It contains zero sweeteners, sugar or preservatives, just natural melon flavours and jasmine extract.
I spotted this whilst searching for something refreshing in Sainsbury's Express, and thought it fitted the bill. This is legally defined as a zero calories drink, however small traces may be present in the natural flavourings.
It tastes okay, pretty much what you'd expect from slightly flavoured spring water. The watermelon is literally just a "hint" of flavour, not very strong at all, but it's enough to make the water more interesting. It's refreshing and light, and definitely more enjoyable than plain water.
If you're on a low calorie, zero sugar or low carb diet then this is probably perfect for you. It adds some interest to otherwise plain spring water and doesn't cost a whole lot more in price.
Also available in Tangerine & Mango, Raspberry & Blueberry, Ginger & Lemon and Cucumber & Garden Mint flavours.
8 out of 10.
Wednesday, 15 March 2017
As well as the new Ape Crunchy Coconut Bites, I decided to try these new Ape Salted Chocolate Crispy Coconut Curls whilst in Holland & Barrett this week. They sounded potentially quite exciting for a coconut snack!
I've tried Nudie Snacks Chocolate Coconut Chips before, which were delicious, so I had high hopes for these. The ingredients are simply coconut, coconut nectar, cocoa and sea salt. They're gluten free, vegan, high fibre and 96 calories per bag.
Pouring the bag onto a plate, I was a bit disappointed in the amount - just 20g of coconut chips for £1.49 (although no doubt this is down to Holland and Barrett's pricing rather than Ape Snacks themselves).
They tasted okay, although not quite as chocolatey as I would have liked. The salt muddles up the flavour a little bit and masks the small amount of cocoa there is. They're simply just not chocolatey enough.
Overall, I have to say for a chocolate variation of coconut chips these are a bit of a letdown. My advice - go for Nudie Snacks Chocolate Coconut Chips instead!
Nutrition (per 20g): 96 Calories, 7.2g Fat, 6.4g Carbohydrates, 3.2g Sugars, 4.2g Fibre, 1.4g Protein.
6.5 out of 10.
Tuesday, 14 March 2017
It's been a while since I've tried Ape Snacks Coconut Curls now, and when I saw this new snack from them I just had to give it a try. These Crunchy Coconut Bites are gluten free and high fibre, and made with a mixture of coconut, tapioca and sea salt. They're also suitable for vegans and under 150 calories a bag. I found these in Holland and Barrett.
They look like mini rice cakes. There didn't seem to be a lot in the bag, which was disappointing since it cost £1.99.
They tasted quite nice, very coconutty and fibrous and very crunchy. If you're on a lower carb diet these might be a better option than the likes of rice cakes. They're very filling.
Personally although I thought they were good I don't think I'd buy them again, as the price is a bit much for what they are.
Nutrition (per 30g): 148 calories, 11g Fat, 9.3g carbohydrates, 3.6g sugars, 6.3g fibre, 2g protein.
Also available in sesame seed and chia seed varieties.
7 out of 10.
Sunday, 12 March 2017
I'm always experimenting with new varieties of dairy free milks; there's quite a few options on the market now, mostly nut-based, although there's a few coconut ones too like Koko Dairy Free Milk. However most are lacking the creaminess of regular cows milk. Luckily, this new Coconut Milk Alternative from Vita Coco seems to buck that trend.
This can be found in the fresh section of Sainsburys for £2.50, with a voucher for £1 off your next purchase. It contains coconut water, coconut cream, added zinc, calcium, Vitamin A and magnesium as well as stabilisers. It's dairy free, gluten free, soya free and only contains naturally occurring sugars.
Pouring it into a glass, it had a similar consistency to semi-skimmed milk. It tasted very nice; pleasantly coconutty, creamy and sweet in equal measure. I blended some up with cocoa powder to make a refreshing dairy free milkshake - and it was lovely!
Overall, this is one of the best dairy free milk alternatives I have found yet! And it seems to be the cleanest in terms of ingredients too. I will probably buy this regularly from now on and use it to make milkshakes or hot chocolates. If you're vegan or lactose intolerant, this is definitely one to try!
9 out of 10.
Friday, 10 March 2017
I've been waiting for the Haagen Dazs Ice Cream Bars range to go on special offer for a while now, and at last, Tesco are the first ones to do it! They're currently on a £2 deal (they're usually £3.50), so I snapped up a box of this Salted Caramel Milk Chocolate variety this week.
They're described as "caramel ice cream with Belgian chocolate, salted caramel swirl and salted caramel brittle". I'd heard this was the best flavour out of the new range so was very excited to try it, even despite my experience with the slightly disappointing Haagen Dazs Mango Raspberry Bars.
There's three sticks per pack, each individually wrapped. They're somewhat smaller than a Magnum in size.
They tasted pretty amazing! The Milk Chocolate is rich and creamy, with the ice cream tasting luxurious as Haagen Dazs always tends to. The pockets of salted caramel bring some welcome salty sweetness, whilst the salted caramel brittle is what really makes the bars extra special. It's chewy, sweet and slightly salty, and makes the bars just that extra bit luxurious! The combination of elements combined makes these some seriously tasty ice cream bars indeed.
As nice as these are, would I pay full price for them? Probably not to be honest. The smaller size does let them down a bit as it practically forces you to eat another one after the first! I don't consider myself greedy, I just have a normal appetite ;)
Nutrition (per 70g bar): 257 Calories, 18.3g Fat, 19.7g Carbohydrates, 17.6g Sugars, 3g Protein.
Gluten free, contains egg & dairy, may contain nuts.
8 out of 10.
Wednesday, 8 March 2017
When these Hershey Kisses Deluxe with Whole Hazelnut Center chocolates appeared in Poundworld stores recently I was very excited...at last, my chance to try a gluten free version of Ferrero Rocher!
The chocolates are wrapped in a special-looking gold foil, with 4 Kisses per pack in a plastic holder. Like traditional Hershey Kisses, you're meant to twist open the wrapper with the paper at the top.
The Kisses are dome-shaped, and the perfect size for popping in your mouth whole, but for review purposes I felt I had to see it from the side:
The chocolate is very sweet, sweeter than most standard UK milk chocolate is in fact, so immediately I wasn't too impressed. This is definitely nowhere near as good as a Ferrero Rocher. The creamy filling, rice crisps and whole hazelnut do add some crunch and make it a bit more interesting, but overall it is a pretty sweet and sickly chocolate that isn't that amazing to be honest.
In conclusion, I have to say I'm rather disappointed indeed with these Hershey Kisses Deluxe. It's great that they're gluten free but other than that, the quality lets them down. If you're going to copy Ferrero Rocher at least make it equal in quality!
If you've tried these I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments...what did you think of them?
6 out of 10.
Sunday, 5 March 2017
A new Dairy Milk variety is out, and true to formula Cadbury's have rebranded one of their existing European Milka bars as Dairy Milk. This one is based on Milka Peanut Caramel, and contains "Dairy Milk chocolate filled with peanuts, caramel and a peanut filling, with chopped peanuts and rice crisps". It's currently available from Sainsbury's for £3 per 278g slab, although should be in other supermarkets soon.
I was extremely excited to find this; I'm a big fan of all things peanut and peanut butter so I was expecting a peanut overload with all the peanutty ingredients crammed in. And for once, it was every bit as tasty as I'd hoped!
The bar is just as sweet and sickly as Big Taste Toffee Whole Nut, but a lot more moreish thanks to the savoury flavour of the peanuts. I couldn't stop scoffing it!
The peanut filling, crunchy rice pieces, caramel and peanuts all combine together to create something very indulgent...crunchy, creamy, crispy, sweet and savoury all at once. Despite it not being labeled as peanut butter, I couldn't help but feel this tasted more peanut buttery than some other so-called peanut butter products on the market! It doesn't skimp on the peanuts at all, which makes for a refreshing change.
If I were to buy any of the Cadbury Big Taste Bars regularly, this one would definitely be it. (let's just forget the pointless Triple Choc Sensation variety altogether!) I really hope it sticks around; if you're a fan of peanut butter chocolates I would recommend seeking out a bar...immediately!
Suitable for vegetarians.
9 out of 10.
Friday, 3 March 2017
When I heard a new limited edition Nakd bar was out, my ears perked up immediately; I had to have it! Especially since the flavour on offer is Lemon Drizzle - I used to looove lemon drizzle cakes back in my cake-eating days, so to have something similar was potentially very exciting indeed.
According to Talking Retail, these replace last years limited edition Carrot Cake variety, which is a shame but to be expected I suppose.
The bar cost 75p, and I was disappointed to see there were no multipacks - boo! The ingredients, like all Nakd bars are vegan, dairy free and gluten free, and contain a mixture of nuts, dried fruit, coconut and lemon flavour.
The bar looked a tad different to a regular Nakd bar, there were a few chunky bits in there which I presume were the almonds.
The taste was spot on for lemon drizzle - zingy, sweet, moist and chewy, without being too sour, but not skimping on the lemon either. I would say it was "just right". This is definitely a tasty bar and if you enjoy citrusy flavours you'll love it!
Overall, this is worthy limited edition, although I am sad that it has replaced the Carrot Cake variety. A shame they can't keep both bars on shelves, but that's how it goes I guess!
Ingredients: Dates, raisins, almonds, coconut, cashews, lemon, a hint of natural flavourings.
Nutrition (per 35g): 133 Calories, 5.4g Fat, 2.3g Carbohydrates, 2.1g Protein.
8.5 out of 10.
Thursday, 2 March 2017
Continuing with the Lindt Excellence reviews, today's is one that has been a favourite of mine for a while now. Lindt Excellence Mint Intense is a simple dark chocolate bar, described as "Fine dark chocolate with a delicious hint of mint". Like many of Lindt's Intense bars, it contains dairy so unfortunately isn't suitable for vegans.
It contains 47% cocoa solids, making it more of a semisweet chocolate than a true "dark" chocolate, which is perhaps what makes it so tasty and palatable. The bar has a sweet, minty aroma.
It tastes smooth, sweet and with a hint of creaminess that gives way to a refreshing minty flavour. It's perfectly balanced, with enough mint and enough sweetness - it's never bitter or unpleasant. It's a comforting bar indeed if minty chocolates are your thing!
Overall, for mint lovers this is a bar I would highly recommend, it's more of a grown up mint chocolate bar that fans of quality chocolates will really appreciate.
Ingredients: Sugar, Cocoa Mass, Cocoa Butter, Anhydrous Milk Fat, Emulsifier (Soya Lecithin), Natural Flavour (Peppermint Oil), Flavouring (Vanilla), Dark Chocolate contains: Cocoa Solids: 47% min. May contain Wheat, Sesame Seeds, Nuts.
Nutrition (per 100g): 529 Calories, 32g Fat, 51g Carbohydrates, 49g Sugars, 5g Protein.
8.5 out of 10.
Wednesday, 1 March 2017
Lindt have brought out a few new interesting bars in the UK recently in Sainsbury's. They've just started selling Lindt Raspberry Intense and Lindt Roasted Hazelnut, both of which I want to try but am waiting for a bit of a price reduction first! So for now, I'm delving back into the snacks archive to review this Lime Intense, described as "Fine dark chocolate with pieces of lime zest".
Unfortunately, this is not a dairy free chocolate so isn't suitable for vegans, as it contains milk fat in the ingredients. These cost around £2 or so in Sainsbury's and Tesco.
The dark chocolate is pretty nice, rich and sweet with a hint of creaminess from the milk. It contains 47% cocoa solids so is more of a semisweet chocolate rather than true dark chocolate. The lime pieces bring a welcome sweet zestiness that compliments the dark chocolate perfectly. Lime can be a bit too tart by itself but here the flavour is balanced really well, and kept me reaching for "just one more piece". This is a very tasty bar indeed!
Overall, this bar is one I would highly recommend especially if you enjoy the other bars in Lindt's Intense range.
8 out of 10.