A couple of weeks in the past, my Cup of Jo coworker Maureen shared a professional tip with the remainder of us…
When folks come over for dinner, Maureen slips in a batch of grocery store slice-and-bake (additionally known as “break-apart”) cookie dough whereas her company are wrapping up their meal, then serves everybody freshly baked chocolate chip cookies with milk for dessert. “Everybody loves heat cookies,” she identified. Better of all, Maureen says, she simply plunks down the plate of cookies earlier than even clearing the desk. That approach, nobody feels compelled to stand up and assist, and it takes the formality out of serving a capital-D Dessert Course. It additionally cuts again on the dishwashing. As she says, “Who needs to load an entire set of dessert bowls and spoons into your already full dishwasher?”
A girl after my very own sensible coronary heart! I liked this concept and determined it was simply the excuse we wanted to determine the very best grocery store model refrigerated cookie dough. I started gathering those that confirmed up most frequently in my buying exploits (pictured above) and invited some specialists over to my home to assist identify a winner — for taste, for texture, for warm-and-fuzzy-memory-making potential, you already know, all the traditional variables when coping with cookies proper out of the oven.
You may acknowledge these specialists! Joanna’s boys, 12-year-old Toby and 9-year-old Anton, suffered by means of an excruciatingly long dinner with the grown-ups and lastly obtained to sit down down with the contenders. As a result of we’re good dad and mom, we determined it was unfair to depart all of the arduous work to them, so a few the adults (Joanna and my husband, Andy) joined them within the tasting.
However first, the extremely rigorous methodology! As at all times, the style check was blind — nobody besides me knew which cookie was which — however everybody weighed in on the identical cookie on the identical time, which in all probability signifies that the science of social stress was in play a teeny tiny bit? Both approach, it was an opinionated and authoritative group of eaters — they not often wanted greater than a chunk earlier than providing assured suggestions, chasing every little thing down with chilly milk, then revisiting bites if crucial for comparability. I took an audio recording of the commentary and decided the highest two that garnered the very best evaluations for the finals. Right here’s what they mentioned about every one. (Costs are rounded to the closest greenback.)
1. Pillsbury Ready to Bake Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ($5 for twenty-four cookies) Purely on sight, Toby determined one regarded “the worst,” however modified his thoughts shortly after taking his first chunk. “Very buttery,” he mentioned. “And the dough crushes the chocolate, which is what I like.” (Translation: He preferred that the chocolate didn’t overpower the dough.) There’s nonetheless loads of chocolate, you simply can’t see it till you flip it over, which might be why it garnered low marks for the visuals. Different evaluation: “Bought an excellent crunch,” mentioned Andy. “General, a really stable cookie.”
2. Stop & Shop Break’n Bake Cookie Dough Chocolate Chip ($4 for 12 cookies) “Oh, yeah,” mentioned Andy. “That’s actual good.” Undoubtedly “crunchy-crispy,” agreed Joanna, although she initially noticed that it “appears wheaty.” General, we agreed that this one was the least synthetic of the bunch, nearly tasting home made. “The chocolate is very good,” declared Anton.
3. Nestlé Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bar ($4 for twenty-four cookies) I had excessive hopes for this one as a result of it’s Maureen’s go-to and in addition as a result of it’s an iconic model, however nearly instantly the critiques got here pouring in: “Not my factor,” mentioned Andy. “No style,” mentioned Joanna. “Really,” she mentioned, “I take that again, it tastes sorta…gassy, like when the range is left on.” Everybody commented on the dryness and Toby went in arduous, giving it a “adverse zero out of ten.”
4. Sweet Loren’s Chocolate Chunk Gluten Free Cookie Dough ($7 for 12 cookies) The one gluten-free possibility of the bunch (“It appears gluten free” — Andy; “It appears wholesome” — Joanna), this one tasted “like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich,” mentioned Toby and “like a chunk of candy toast,” mentioned Anton. All of us guzzled our milk after a single chunk due to its dry and cakey texture, and in addition its aftertaste which was “persistent” and “actually not nice,” in keeping with Andy.
5. Annie’s Organic Chocolate Chunk Cookie & Share Dough ($5 for 12 cookies) “Anton, you didn’t even end this one,” noticed Joanna. “That itself is a daring assertion!” Certainly, this one was criticized throughout for our “chalky” and “sandy” and “dusty” expertise consuming it.” I used to be shocked as a result of I’ve lengthy been a fan of Annie’s merchandise.
Primarily based on a fancy auditory information breakdown of the oooohs and ahhhhh on my recording, we decided that the final three have been, “meh” (sorry to be so educational). The Pillsbury (proven right here) and the Cease & Store generic model have been by far the very best — particularly Cease & Store which tasted home made. I really feel sure you all have opinions on this, so please do share!
P.S. More taste tests, together with the best supermarket salsa
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