Ben & Jerry’s officially has a product to protect us from themselves.
The company blew its load in the first month of the year and released EIGHT new products, and boy were they fattening: three brand-new cookie-covered truffle flavors, two more nondairy flavors with gobs and brownies and dough, and three more chocolate-covered entire pints of ice cream. You couldn’t even walk through the freezer aisle without gaining five pounds.
Enter Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria!, a low-calorie, light ice cream that ensures we only gain two and a half.
The new Moo-phoria! line debuts in three flavors: P.B. Dough, Caramel Cookie Fix, and Chocolate Milk & Cookies. The pints contain 60-70% less fat and at least 35% less calories than what’s in their traditional ice cream pints, and does this with no artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols. A serving ranges between 140-160 calories with about 15g of sugar.
Let’s get right to it, because I’m certainly not getting any skinnier over here.
Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria P.B. Dough features chocolate light ice cream with gobs of chocolate chip peanut butter cookie dough.
Ben & Jerry’s regular full-fat chocolate ice cream isn’t amongst my favorites. But believe it or not, I’m way more impressed with their light version. Where you save over 35% of the calories and 65% of the fat, you don’t give up those amounts in flavor. This is a richer, darker chocolate than its best comps like Edy’s/Dreyer’s Slow Churned, and it sure beats the living hell out of Ben & Jerry’s non-dairy chocolate.
Texture wise, it’s no doubt less creamy than full fat (there’s less cream in it after all), but I like that it’s not as stretchy/gummy as many other light creams or non-premium brands – even the likes of Blue Bunny.
The gobs of peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough are great – full of peanut buttery, brown sugary goodness with no compromise to texture. A nice little bonus: this is the only pint in the entire Ben & Jerry’s lineup that has chocolate chip peanut butter cookie dough. I’ll “Moo” to that, but the absence of any “wet” components does make it fall a little flat.
I’ll “Moo” to that description too.
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition for 1/2 cup: 160 cals, 5g fat, 25g carbs, 16g sugar, 4g protein.
Caramel Cookie Fix
Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria Caramel Cookie Fix features vanilla light ice cream with shortbread cookies and a salted caramel swirl.
In a frozen fist fight, give me Ben & Jerry’s vanilla over chocolate. Nobody will go nuts for it but I’m impressed again with how much the flavor isn’t compromised by the tradeoff in calories.
My pint was truly loaded with shortbread cookies. Huge pieces too. They’re incredibly soft and extremely shortbready; you really get a ton of flavor from them against the light vanilla ice cream, which is something I think got lost in Keep Caramel & Cookie On. The flavors complement each other well. Even if I don’t think shortbread cookies are the sexiest cookies, there are a lot of cookies in here.
This is the only Moo-phoria launch pint with a true swirl. However, the salted caramel doesn’t impact the flavor as much as you’d hope. It’s kind of weird – I see plenty of caramel as I work through the pint, but my taste buds only registered it when I found comparatively larger pools. Thankfully this did occur multiple times.
Rating: 7.5 out of 10
Nutrition for 1/2 cup: 150 cals, 4.5g fat, 25g carbs, 15g sugar, 3g protein.
Chocolate Milk & Cookies
Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria Chocolate Milk & Cookies features chocolate and vanilla light ice creams swirled with chocolate chip cookies.
With both the chocolate and vanilla light ice creams established as “solid,” I value the variety when both are in the same container. Regular Ben & Jerry’s Milk & Cookies is my favorite year-round pint they produce, and this one is of the same bloodline. It only has one type of cookie, but the addition of a chocolate base is fun.
The chocolate chip cookies aren’t so much chunks as they are mashed-up cookie puddles. They taste better than Chips Ahoy!, but not as good, firm, or chewy as traditional chocolate chip cookie dough. But again, it’s better than the mix-ins found in most light ice cream brands competing in this calorie/fat range.
This is probably my favorite Moo-phoria pint, though the margin is razor thin over Caramel Cookie Fix. Another plus: it contains the fewest calories.
Rating: 7.5 out of 10
Nutrition for 1/2 cup: 140 cals, 4.5g fat, 22g carbs, 15g sugar, 3g protein.
Ben & Jerry’s Moo-phoria is a strong launch for fans of the brand who frequently avoid it for its high fat and calorie count. All three pints are in the same tier and each has different strengths: P.B. Dough has the best mix-in, Caramel Cookie Fix has the most mix-ins, and Chocolate Milk & Cookies has the most variety.
I have to say it now: please don’t compare this to Halo Top & Enlightened. Both of those are fine products, but they’re competing in much different categories. Not everyone wants protein, dietary fiber, sugar alcohols, and other science added to their ice cream, nor do they feel the need to eat a full pint in one sitting. Moo-phoria is real ice cream made with real ice cream ingredients, and it definitely tastes better than Halo/Enlightened. You’ll have to accept more calories to make that possible.
At the same time, don’t mistake Moo-phoria for health food. The number you’ll want to pay most attention to is sugar, with each 1/2 cup serving rocking a good 15-16g of sugar. They don’t market it as health food either – it’s just a lighter version of their pints, full of mix-ins synonymous with the brand.
Thank you, Ben & Jerry’s, for letting us moo a little more softly.
Disclosure: Ben & Jerry’s sent me Moo-phoria pints free of charge. They didn’t require that I make a blog post, and it didn’t affect my review.
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