I think it’s a scientifically-proven fact that the best ice cream flavors involve cookie. Cookies and cream is by far my favorite example of that theory, with its rich, creamy ice cream flavor blended with large cookie chunks. But in second place arrives cookie dough, what with its unbaked cookie balls providing an excellent topping to delicious white ice cream.
So here we have Kroger’s version of the latter, which isn’t only “deluxe”, but also “jammed”. Hmmm, sounds promising, so let’s take a dive in, shall we?
I actually got this in pint form, as they were sold out of both cookies and cream and cookie dough in the larger cartons. One thing I’m quickly learning is that, aside from the exaggerated price differential (pints are usually only a dollar or so cheaper than getting a full carton, for a quarter of the size), the pints seem to be more loaded with goodies. I guess it makes sense, considering the smaller amount of ice cream means there are no room for empty bites, so maybe that’s why they cost so much. It’s like you get as many “mix-ins” as you do in a carton, but in concentrated form.
Opening up the carton reveals just what everyone wants to see: a top layer loaded with visible cookie dough, and chocolate chip pieces. It’s a refreshing change of pace from the larger cartons, which seem to be spread thin with “toppings” or whatever the fuck you call contents inside ice cream. It almost seems to be a 50/50 ratio, with many bites having very little – or none – of the delicious accouterments one is paying for. I have to admit this pint got my mouth watering immediately as I eagerly dove right in without a moment’s hesitation.
I have to be perfectly frank here: This ice cream sucks. It’s further proof that you can never judge a book by its cover, but whereas that saying is usually reserved for pleasant surprises, this is a case of a beautiful cover betrayed by awful execution.
The main antagonist in this experience is the ice cream: It tastes like absolute shit. I don’t know what in the hell they were going for, but unless it was to recreate the taste of frozen puke, they missed the mark considerably. One would think that cookie dough ice cream is just going to have a vanilla-ish base – at least, that’s what I always assume. Instead, Kroger’s version adds some sort of disgusting flavoring to the ice cream that is nothing at all like vanilla. My wife, who somehow liked it, suggested that they flavored the ice cream like cookie dough, as well. I can’t deny or verify it, but I can verify that it’s awful.
The other main issue is that the cookie dough pieces are too hard. Who likes hard, almost crunchy, cookie dough pieces in their ice cream? When you bite into actual cookie dough, it’s always soft and rich and that’s just part of the texture. Now, I know it’s probably impossible to get frozen cookie dough to stay completely soft, so I’m not expecting it to have the same texture as “fresh” cookie dough. But a few other brands of ice cream manage to pull off more appealing cookie dough bits, so it’s clearly manageable. And once you do dive in, they at least taste good. Not the best, but better than anything else in this pathetic mess. (Oh, and to make matters worse, this is technically not ice cream at all, but a “frozen dairy dessert”. Whatever the difference is.)
To end on a positive note: The chocolate chip pieces were mostly large, and generously spread throughout. They are the typical semi-sweet chips found in virtually every other choco-chip cookie dough ice cream, but there seemed to be more in this than in other brands. Unfortunately, that’s easily my least favorite part, so I didn’t really care.
Value is pretty decent, though not really noteworthy, with a 48 oz. carton retailing for $2.99 at retail, or $2.50 on sale. Even the sale price can’t go toe-to-toe with similar private label offerings from the likes of Walmart and Aldi, but it’s still a good price. Even at full retail a case could be made for some of Kroger’s flavors…unfortunately this definitely isn’t one of them.
Overall: 4/10. This is just a miserable failure from the outset. Well, technically not the outset, because it actually looks pretty appetizing, with a generous amount of both chocolate chips and cookie dough immediately visible from the top of the pint. However, it’s all downhill from there, thanks to an awkward-tasting ice cream that’s barely edible (my wife suggested it’s cookie dough-flavored ice cream, which seems like a possibility), and hard chunks of cookie dough that are texturally off-putting. Value is pretty good at $2.50 per 48 oz. carton (on sale), but value ain’t shit when the product is shit.
Just a side note: Who in the fuck pays $6 for their “Private Selection” brand of ice cream?! I feel like it hasn’t always been that high, but the retail price is now $6.47, with the sale price dipping it down to $5.97. Five-ninety seven. You can get virtually all name brand ice creams for cheaper than that when on sale, and some even at full price.