REVIEW: Ranking All 22 ENLIGHTENED Flavors

ATTN: Fit Chicks & Beefcakes Everywhere!

Hiya, sexy! I’m assuming you just finished up that fasted cardio session and found me on Google. Are you having trouble reading this because you’re about to pass out from all the preworkouts you took with only a loose understanding of what’s actually in them? Do you normally experience your junk food not by eating it, but by reading what a complete stranger thought of it? This review is for you!

Hey I totally get it; dieting blows and you’re miserable. You desperately want a sugar fix, but that won’t fit your current meal plan. Oh, Heavens no… you can’t even look at a dessert unless a half-naked person on Instagram told you it was so “macro-friendly.” Yeah, some friend she is!

Thankfully I follow A LOT of half-naked women on Instagram, and they’re all green-lighting the shit out of ENLIGHTENED ice cream:

Enlightened Ice Cream

ENLIGHTENED Ice Cream

ENLIGHTENED Ice Cream, the “good-for-you” ice cream with more protein and less sugar. Reviews in the fitness community indicate that Enlightened tastes “OMG uh-maz-ing!!” and promo code “fitchickhooray” will get you 10% off some stupid, unrelated thing. Here’s the only problem: these are the same people that think Stevia on cucumbers is a good substitute for nachos. Well I’m here today to tell you which ones actually taste good, and which ones taste like stevia on cucumbers.

ENLIGHTENED Ice Cream advertise 60-100 calories per serving. They’re made with skim milk, milk protein isolate, erythritol, non GMO-soluble corn fiber, and some other buzz words from that one article I read about health once. They have 7-8g of protein per serving with only 4-6g of sugar.

Let’s go… you’ve got a tanning appointment to get to.

Note: Due to its makeup, ENLIGHTENED ice cream freezes much harder than the real stuff. If you don’t have the patience to temper it fully on your countertop, try microwaving for 30-35 seconds before eating. I know it’s annoying but it makes a world of difference.

1) Caramel Oatmeal Cookie Crunch

Caramel Oatmeal Cookie Crunch

Caramel Oatmeal Cookie Crunch ENLIGHTENED 

Description:  Oatmeal cookie clusters and ribbons of silky caramel blended with rich caramel ice cream.

My favorite part about Caramel Oatmeal Cookie Crunch ENLIGHTENED is everything about it. This stuff is exactly as advertised with a double caramel punch from both the ice cream and the swirl. The oatmeal cookie clusters are spot on; they have a bold cinnamon oatmeal flavor that tastes a lot like Grandma’s recipe. Ya know, if your Grandma lifted. This is the best protein ice cream I’ve had across any line – Halo Top included.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 3g Fat, 6g sugar & 6g erythritol. 

2) Black Cherry Chocolate Chip

Black Cherry Chocolate Chip

Black Cherry Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Black cherry ice cream swirled with rich chocolate chips and sweet cherries.

How the hell did this happen? It’s seriously stupid how much Black Cherry Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTEND makes me wanna eat fruit. A wonderfully sweet & tart black cherry flavor emanates from the base, and a flurry of chocolate chips make me proud to call this my dessert tonight. Halo Top really screwed the pooch when they omitted chocolate chips from their version of this flavor, but ENLIGHTENED’s authentic black cherry flavor is really what won me over. Fruit is really good in small doses, and ice cream is really good, period.

1/2 Cup: 90 calories, 7g Protein, 17g Carbs, 3g Fat, 6g sugar & 5g erythritol.

3) Snickerdoodle

Snickerdoodle ENLIGHTENED

Snickerdoodle ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Sugar cookie ice cream sprinkled with cinnamon spice.

SUGAR COOKIE ICE CREAM! The world needs more Snickerdoodle flavored things, and ENLIGHTENED Snickerdoodle is a great start. This is one of the sweetest flavors in the line and it’s still balanced beautifully by cinnamon. Where Arctic Zero has a Snickedoodle Dandy flavor that tastes like cinnamon sprinkled onto an ice cube made with bathwater, Enlightened Snickerdoodle actually has a creamy component that makes it more decadent and delicious. The fact that they made this work without any cookie dough or cookie pieces is a feat in and of itself. Another feat in and of itself: you’re still reading this lengthy review. You must be really hungry.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

4) Cold Brew Coffee

Cold Brew Coffee

Cold Brew Coffee ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Smooth cold brew coffee blended with reach and creamy ice cream.

This one is pure sorcery. The only thing flavoring this ice cream is real cold brew coffee and it still earns super high marks. Cold Brew Coffee ENLIGHTENED is really balanced between robust coffee and sweet cream flavors. The taste reminds me convincingly of a Dunkin Donuts Coffee Coolatta. It earns bonus points for being the lightest on calories too. If you’re the type of person who likes to drink 5 cups of coffee before leg day, it’s exactly like that except today you’re only working your ass muscles deeper into the couch.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14 Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

5) Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake Enlightened

Birthday Cake ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Rainbow sprinkles mixed into creamy cake batter ice cream.

Halo Top’s version tastes like a fistful of sprinkles in a vanilla protein shake. Birthday Cake ENLIGHTENED, on the other hand, actually tastes a little like yellow cake. Really, it does! To the extent that an ice cream can taste light and floury like cake, this achieves its goal. The sprinkles add some flavor and sweetness without any of the powdery, chalky flavor that some sprinkles have. I would have welcomed extra calories if it meant some real cake pieces in here, but I can’t remember the last time I didn’t say that about anything… ever.

1/2 Cup: 70 calories, 6g Protein, 15 Carbs, 2g Fat, 5g sugar & 5g erythritol.

6) Brownies & Cookie Dough

Brownies & Cookie Dough Enlightened

Brownies & Cookie Dough ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Chunks of soft chocolate chip cookie dough and chewy fudge brownie with milk chocolate ice cream.

Did you read that? My hand is pretty much forced. ENLIGHTENED uses a couple different versions of chocolate ice cream but it’s this milk chocolate one that’s best. The base tastes like a Fudgesicle but with more dairy. The description for Brownies & Cookie Dough ENLIGHTENED doesn’t even mention the copious amount of chocolate chips scattered about. The brownie & cookie dough chunks are both rich and sweet – easily the best part. This could use more chunks, but it would also cost you a couple of abs… or in my case, just the one.

This flavor is currently a Giant/Stop & Shop store exclusive, so sucks to suck if you don’t have one near you.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 3.5g Fat, 6g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

7) Butter Pecan

Butter Pecan Enlightened

Butter Pecan ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Creamy butter pecan ice cream with roasted pecan bits.

Butter Pecan ENLIGHTENED gets the nod for the authenticity factor alone. The base is creamy and buttery and more true to its non-protein competition than any other in the lineup. It’s also the fattest at 6g fat per serving, which pays dividends. Best texture in the whole lot. The toasted pecans are huge and distributed well throughout the pint. You win this round, butter. You always do.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 7g Protein, 14g Carbs, 6g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol.

8) Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Rich chocolate chips blended with creamy peanut butter ice cream.

Use your imagination a second, if it hasn’t turned to muscle yet. Imagine the inside of a Reese’s cup (hold on) with fake sugar and less chocolate. Still pretty good, right? Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTENED  reminds me of that kind of thick, candied peanut butter. There’s real peanuts in the base and the chocolate chips give it a candy bar vibe as well. Now now, it’s won’t replace an actual Reese’s cup anytime soon… but it sure beats another cup of egg whites with that Walden Farms calorie-free Frankensyrup.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 8g Protein, 16g Carbs, 4.5g Fat, 4g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

9) Sea Salt Caramel

Sea Salt Caramel

Sea Salt Caramel ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Silky ribbons of caramel swirled through smooth sea salt caramel ice cream.

Butterscotch city. Sea Salt Caramel ENLIGHTENED tastes genuinely of butterscotch with some nice salty notes. It’s a little less sweet than Halo Top’s version and that is something I miss. The ribbons of caramel do a good job making this flavor pop though. There’s the slightest aftertaste here, but at least it tastes like something. Do you even remember what it’s like to taste things? Your taste buds need exercise too, people.

1/2 Cup: 80 calories, 7g Protein, 17 Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 5g sugar & 6g erythritol.

10) Fudge Brownie

Fudge Brownie

Fudge Brownie ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Milk chocolate ice cream with chunks of chewy fudge brownie & chocolate chips.

Seems kinda cruel, but just take the chocolate chip cookie dough out of Brownies & Cookie Dough and you’re left with Fudge Brownie ENLIGHTENED. This shouldn’t be too difficult for you though; you already took everything else out of your diet. The brownies are really full-flavored and hit the spot, and the chocolate chips keeps things interesting when you’re not getting brownies. Unfortunately you won’t be getting brownies a lot of the time. Needs more chunks.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 7g Protein, 19g Carbs, 3.5g Fat, 6g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

11) Chocolate Peanut Butter

Enlightened Chocolate Peanut Butter

Chocolate Peanut Butter ENLIGHTENED

Description: Creamy peanut butter swirled through rich chocolate ice cream.

It’s really unfair what globs of peanut butter can do to carry a flavor, but such is the case of Chocolate Peanut Butter ENLIGHTENED. The peanut butter is thick, really salty, and extremely genuine. There’s lots of it in the pint which is why I’m placing this here. Unfortunately the “rich” chocolate ice cream holds the overall experience back. It’s simply not sweet enough to put you in a peanut butter cup state of mind. I wish they used their milk chocolate ice cream instead because this chocolate is kind of bitter – just as bitter as you’ll be when you realize you dieted for 6 months straight and didn’t even get first or second call outs.

1/2 Cup: 90 calories, 7g Protein, 13g Carbs, 4.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol.

12) Toasted Almond

Toasted Almond ENLIGHTENED

Toasted Almond ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Creamy almond ice cream.

This one reminds me of the long underrated ice cream bar: the Good Humor Toasted Almond Bar. I spent many years of my childhood huffing and puffing behind an ice cream truck and whenever I finally gave up and caught him the next day, I would get the Toasted Almond over Strawberry Shortcake and Chocolate Eclair. Toasted Almond ENLIGHTENED has a smooth almond extract type flavor without being too pungent. The almond slivers help the taste a lot but don’t make a big impact on texture. I just wish this finished a little sweeter. I also wish I was eating real ice cream and that I looked like Channing Tatum.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

13) Pina Colada

Pina Colada Enlightened

Pina Colada ENLIGHTENED

Description:  A refreshing blend of pineapple and coconut ice cream.

A refreshing change of pace, Pina Colada ENLIGHTENED is indeed refreshing. The balance favors coconut over pineapple, and there’s definitely a vanilla factor going on up in here. It also clocks in at a slim 60 calories per serving. Some erythritol sweetener lingered on my tongue as it finished, but not enough to kill this one for me. It’s the closest you’ll come to alcohol on this diet, so take what you can get and call me when you’re fun again.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

14) Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Chunks of soft chocolate chip cookie dough and rich chocolate chips blended with sweet cream ice cream.

It’s honestly just the cookie dough chunks that put this one here. They’re buttery, they’re sweet, and they’re chocolatey – it’s a solid cookie dough chunk by any ice cream company’s standards. The chocolate chips help again, but the sweet cream ice cream is a little bland in Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ENLIGHTENED. But bland is your way of life now, and you might take comfort in this. Just be thankful for any cookie dough at all since your coach makes you run wind sprints every time you even think about a cookie.

1/2 Cup: 100 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 3g Fat, 6g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

15) Triple Chocolate

Triple Chocolate Enlightened

Triple Chocolate ENLIGHTENED

Description:  A trio of rich chocolate chips, chocolate fudge, and creamy chocolate ice cream.

No doubt that Triple Chocolate ENLIGHTENED is a better chocolate ice cream than Halo Top’s straight chocolate flavor. But still, I think this one needs a little more sweetness to round it out. The fudge sauce sure helps a lot, as it often does. It adds some more decadence in the absence of any baked mix-in, and lots of chocolate chips make this a good-not-great option for pure chocolate lovers. Remember how much you used to love chocolate before you pretended to love kale? You’re doing great though.

1/2 Cup: 90 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 2.5g Fat, 6g sugar & 6g erythritol. 

16) Red Velvet

Red Velvet Enlightened

Red Velvet ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Cream cheese frosting swirled through red velvet ice cream.

Red Velvet ENLIGHTENED was at a severe disadvantage because Halo Top’s version is my favorite in their lineup. ENLIGHTENED’s version is a good-enough chocolate ice cream with subtle vanilla undertones and no significant protein aftertaste. It’s deeper and more chocolatey than Halo’s version, but it’s less sweet and doesn’t have any cake pieces or friggin brownie dough chunks like its competition. The cream cheese swirl imparts some added sweetness; however, it didn’t remind me of cream cheese in any way, shape, or form. And trust me, my form is basically 100% cream cheese… I would know.

1/2 Cup: 70 calories, 6g Protein, 15g Carbs, 2g Fat, 5g sugar & 5g erythritol.

17) Bananas Foster

Bananas Foster Enlightened

Bananas Foster ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Silky ribbons of caramel swirled through banana ice cream.

I had high hopes for Bananas Foster ENLIGHTENED because Halo Top has no comparable flavor, but this wasn’t one of my favorites. The banana base is refreshing but light, kind of like when you blend some frozen bananas and skim milk together when making a smoothie. The caramel is sweet and I think there’s a little cinnamon to it too. It just lacks a certain butteriness to make the overall flavor click as bananas foster. You can try setting it on fire to see if that helps; it would be a great outlet for all those steroids or whatever the f*ck you’re taking.

1/2 Cup: 80 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 6g sugar & 5g erythritol.

18) Vanilla

Vanilla Enlightened

Vanilla ENLIGHTENED.

Description:  Creamy vanilla ice cream.

😴 You finally have your chance to eat something close to ice cream, and you chose plain vanilla – this one’s on you. Enlightened VANILLA would be a strong foundation for a solid flavor if it had a mix-in. Eaten in the raw, the vanilla bean extract comes on a bit too strong at the end. It tastes natural but natural isn’t very good when it comes to extracts. A sweet mix-in would help cut that factor tremendously. I still like it better than plain Chocolate ENLIGHTENED, but naked flavors rarely win me over. Naked women on the other hand… Snap me.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

19) Mint Chocolate Chip

Mint Chocolate Chip Enlightened

Mint Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Rich chocolate chips perfectly paired with refreshing mint ice cream.

Mint Chocolate Chip ENLIGHTENED is indeed refreshing, and this is a tried and true flavor combination that masks the protein element well. However, the mint isn’t as strong as in Halo’s version and the chocolate chips don’t sweeten the deal as effectively. Let’s be real with each other: the most flavor you’ve had on prep is toothpaste, so may wanna look elsewhere than another mint flavor.

1/2 Cup: 90 calories, 7g Protein, 16g Carbs, 3g Fat, 4g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

20) Chocolate

Chocolate Enlightened

Chocolate ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Rich chocolate ice cream.

Is it rich as in “wealthy?”, because Chocolate ENLIGHTENED isn’t very rich on the taste buds. This is a bona fide snoozer even if it’s not entirely gross. Comparing it to Halo Top’s Chocolate, it’s a little more authentic with some true cocoa flavor. But that also makes it slightly more bitter, and I got bored with it very quickly. There’s not much else to say here; I can’t see why you’d pick this over Fudge Brownie or Triple Chocolate. Learn how to pick flavors.

1/2 Cup: 60 calories, 6g Protein, 14g Carbs, 2g Fat, 3g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

21) Strawberry Cheesecake

Strawberry Cheesecake Enlightened

Strawberry Cheesecake ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Sweet ribbons of strawberry swirled through creamy cheesecake ice cream.

The only thing I really enjoyed about Strawberry Cheesecake ENLIGHTENED is the strawberry swirl. It’s the only fruit swirl they use in their lineup and it’s mildly sweet and mildly tart. It’s slightly jammy but not as full-bodied as processed jelly or preserves. The cheesecake ice cream is far, far too mild. It’s like a slightly tangier version of nothing-flavored ice cream. I’d like to see Enlightened utilize a fruit swirl in more flavors but it’s a shame they wasted it on this one. Rather eat cottage cheese than this cheesecake.

1/2 Cup: 70 calories, 6g Protein, 15g Carbs, 1.5g Fat, 5g sugar & 5g erythritol. 

22) Frozen Hot Cocoa

Frozen Hot Chocolate Enlightened

Frozen Hot Cocoa ENLIGHTENED

Description:  Fluffy swirls of marshmallow & rich chocolate chips blended with chocolate ice cream.

Okay, I admit that Frozen Hot Cocoa ENLIGHTENED may have been a victim of my impatience. Like all flavors I decided to microwave it because when I crave ice cream, I’m an unstoppable beast and Lord knows I’m not waiting 15 minutes for it to temper naturally. But this caused the marshmallow swirl to become runny and nearly evaporate before the ice cream had softened. Couldn’t even get a good swirl for the photo. I didn’t love the lasting flavor it imparted though – it’s kind of funky & artificial tasting. This tasted like a reduced fat hot cocoa mix sprinkled on a Fudgesicle. It says a lot about how much I disliked the marshmallow to rank this behind plain chocolate.

1/2 Cup: 90 calories, 7g Protein, 18g Carbs, 2.5g Fat, 6g sugar & 6g erythritol. 

Summary

Enlightened ice cream impresses with a smart variety and several knockout flavors in the top half of the list. However, there are certainly misses along the way. In general the chocolate ice creams fail to meet expectations and some gambles don’t pay off (cheesecake flavored protein ice cream).

When comparing to Halo Top, Enlightened’s flavors aren’t as sweet but have a thicker, less icy texture once you thaw it. Enlightened currently has a more robust selection with some offbeat flavors like Snickerdoodle, Pina Colada, and Bananas Foster. They also have some sleepers like Butter Pecan. Enlightened and Halo Top trade victories in their head-to-battles. For example, Enlightened scores decisive victories on Black Cherry, Coffee, and Birthday Cake, while Halo Top takes home Red Velvet, Chocolate Peanut Butter, and Mint Chocolate Chip. My recommendation is to not remain loyal to either brand and to swear by my top recommendations religiously.

In summary, Enlightened sure beats stevia on cucumbers.

Stevia on Cucumbers Rating: 2 out of 10
How Many Women Are Actually Going to Snap Me Rating: 0 out of 10
Overall Rating: 7.5 out of 10

Related Reading:

REVIEW: Ranking All 17 Halo Top Flavors

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4 Responses

  1. Erin says:

    I’m so jealous you got to try them all! I always check every store and each one only has like two flavors 🙁

  2. Junk Male says:

    They just increased their distribution so much and entered a lot of new stores! I hope you find soon. By me I’m able to find at Shop Rite and a select few at Giant/Stop & Shop.

  3. Monica says:

    Next review roundup I hope you do: A ranking of all RXBAR flavors, including the three newest varieties. I definitely know how I would rank them, but I’m curious what you think.

  4. Marc P says:

    Your lips to God’s ears: “I would have welcomed extra calories if it meant some real cake pieces in here, but I can’t remember the last time I didn’t say that about anything… ever.”
    You could also sub out cake pieces for pastrami for anything in the savory side of the world.

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