Don’t have a cow, man. I’ve received a lot of requests to review more of the Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Ice Cream line, and tonight I’m going to do just that. Now I am not a Veganoid, but I will bite at any opportunity to further distance myself from the cow since I now look like one. Tonight’s flavor will draw another comparison to my new physique: Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chunky Monkey!
My first foray into Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy line didn’t go so well. I chose Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Coffee Caramel Fudge, the only flavor in the line with no dairy version to compare to. What a dumb-dumb. I thought the flavor missed, but I didn’t have enough data points to completely give up on the non-dairy line. This time, I’m going with a classic flavor in Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey – a flavor I grew up on. Chunky Monkey was always a favorite for this Chunky Human as a certified banana lover.
By now, you know the drill. Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy line is made with almond milk, is certified vegan, and non-GMO. Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy chunky features a banana frozen dairy dessert base, walnuts, and chunks of fudge. Other flavor agents include vanilla extract and coconut. Don’t confuse this with a health product – it still contains 26g of sugar and 14g of fat, only marginally leaner than the dairy version. But I didn’t come here to talk about calories… I came here to review some fake ice cream.
With Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Coffee Caramel Fudge, I thought the texture was alright all things considered. Noticeably lighter and icier, but it met my tempered expectations. My main gripes were with the flavor in particular. This isn’t the case with Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chunky Monkey, where I think the flavor performs much better. This is Chunky Monkey, alright.
The banana flavor is prevalent with undertones of vanilla, and there are a lot of crunchy mix-ins between the fudge chunks and the walnuts. Their density is crucial here, because they distract from the conclusion I’m leaning towards: almond milk is far from a perfect alternative for a banana-flavored base. The banana flavor is indeed there and draws comparisons to their dairy version, but it’s just… thin? Like it has no spine. You beg for it be richer and denser, but it’s just not quite there.
Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Chunky Money is superior to the Non-Dairy Coffee Caramel Fudge in my book, and the flavors are squarely “Chunky Monkey.” The vegan chocolate chunks taste great and combine with the walnuts to offer all the familiar flavors you’d expect from this product. However, the banana frozen dairy dessert suffers from the switch to almond milk.
My recommendation is this: If you are looking for the next great non-dairy ice cream, look elsewhere. But if you used to love Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey and then later learned that dairy is poison to you, I think you’ll enjoy this one.
How Much I Look Like a Cow Rating: 7 out of 10
How Much I Look Like a Chunky Monkey Rating: 8 out of 10
Overall Rating: 6 out of 10
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