Wendy’s Frosty Alternative

This is the end result of what I call “Facebook made me do it.”
Browsing Facebook I saw a friend posted a Frosty alternative recipe. Going over the recipe I was intrigued but decided I was going to make it with a few tweaks to make it more my “style” if you will. The original recipe had really no sweetness to it (as told by the ingredients and those who tried the recipe comments).  I knew I wouldn’t enjoy it as it was originally, so I opted to tweak it a bit. I have to say, the end result came out pretty well. It’s not an exact Wendy’s frosty replica, but it’s a healthier alternative. The only thing missing was my small fry on the side.
I didn’t go into making this expect it to be creamy and smooth. It’s got the classic frosty flavor, with a hunt of banana in the background, but texture wise it’s icier (to be expected) but nonetheless it was an enjoyable treat.
Serves 1. 1 Points Plus Values.
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (I used vanilla)
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp sugar free chocolate syrup
  • 1 packet Equal
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 15 ice cubes
Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth and ice is all chopped up.
Serve in your favorite glass.

Starbucks Caramel Flan Frappucino Light Blended


Those of us folks who are coffee fans have been hearing and seeing the new Caramel Flan beverage line (available in both latte and frappucino) advertised.  I’d been looking into the drink online and was interested in perhaps giving it a try one day.  That “one day” came a lot sooner when I received a complimentary drink e-mail from Starbucks for a tall Caramel Flan drink for 1-day only.
Since I am a Weight Watchers member I hopped on the Starbucks website and looked up the different versions of the drink and was very pleased to find this drink is sold in light variety – which is different from their nonfat no whip version.  According to Starbucks website the drink is described as follows: “Caramel Flan Frappuccino® Light Blended Beverage is a creamy-cool indulgence. Along with our own caramel flan flavored syrup, we add a drizzle of caramel flan sauce.
I was sold.
While running an errand I popped into my local Starbucks and picked up my drink. I found this to be quite delicious. It’s undoubtedly caramel but there is that flan flavor lingering in the background.  It wasn’t overly sweet, actually perfectly sweetened, and was a great treat for the coffee and frappucino lover in me.
A tall is 110 calories and only 3 points plus values.

Nestle Fat Free Hot Cocoa

I’ve been searching high and low for the Nestle Fat Free Hot Cocoa but continuously came up empty handed because for some reason Swiss Miss is the hot cocoa mix of choice on many grocery retailers’ shelves.  I specifically wanted to pick this up because it’s more of a guilt free hot cocoa in comparison to other brands. I found this in my local grocery store one afternoon because they brought the brand in because they were completely out of Swiss Miss diet and sugar free.
Since it was a very cold night, I decided to make myself a cup of hot cocoa. I boiled my water, emptied the cocoa package into my mug. When done I stirred it up and gave it a sip … and was pleasantly surprised.  The cocoa is chocolately but it’s not creamy – so if you’re looking for something as creamy as say a Swiss Miss you won’t find it here. Considering the nutrition facts I’ll take it because it’s one of those products that can curb a chocolate craving.  I’ve also been told this is great to add to coffee to help sweeten it up without needing to add sugar/creamer. While I’ve heard it’s also good to incorporate with whipped cream or yogurt. I plan on giving that a try sometime soon!
A single packet is 20 calories or 0 points plus values.
QUESTION:
What is your favorite hot cocoa mix?

Swiss Miss Limited Edition Candy Cane Hot Cocoa

While making a quick run through the grocery store I noticed they had a display up for the new winter flavored Swiss Miss. I figured since it’s getting frigid cold out I’d get a box of Swiss Miss Limited Edition Candy Cane Hot Cocoa to try out.
My boyfriend is more of a mint flavored drink/dessert guy over me. I’m more of a peppermint hard candy girl. One night it was sooo cold I decided to boil a kettle of water and make myself a hot cocoa. Opening the package up, you wouldn’t quite be able to tell its peppermint (aside from the red and white striped marshmallows). After adding the water, I was awarded with a noticeable peppermint scent. The flavor is undoubtedly chocolate with a peppermint infused flavor in it. It’s definitely more peppermint than I’d say the marshmallows gave off. But nonetheless it tastes like Christmas.
An envelope packet is 90 calories or 2 points plus values.
QUESTION:
What is your favorite Swiss Miss flavor?

Bolthouse Farms Holiday Nog

Egg nog! One of those beverages that I love … but I find the calories/points associated with it not even worth it … so I don’t have it. When Thanksgiving/Christmas roll around I start eyeing the egg nog selections hoping someone will invent a delicious egg nog that’s calorie/points plus friendly. Last year I tried the Silk version and it’s tasty but it’s as thin as water. Egg nog is delicious because of its flavor, but also due to that recognizable thick and creamy texture.
While at Wal-Mart I noticed they carried Bolthouse Farms Holiday Nog, so I checkd the nutrition facts label and stuck the bottle in my cart.  I’ve only tried Bolthouse Farms salad dressings, so I wasn’t entirely sure how the nog would be.  After cracking open the bottle as a late night treat, I was pleasantly surprised to find it was thicker in consistency. Very egg nog-like which was appreciated well before I even took a sip.  After I did take a drink I was sold … this is hands down the best lighter alternative to egg nog that I have had. It’s thicker, it’s creamy, it’s nutmeggy, it’s vanillay … and it’s just a party in a glass.  I’m truthfully quite floored as to how good this is so once I finish the bottle I purchased, I will gladly purchase another.
A 4 ounce serving (1/2 cup) is 80 calories or 2 points plus values.
QUESTION:
Have you ever tried a Bolthouse Farms limited edition beverage?

Gevalia Mocha Latte

I received a sample of the new Gevalia Mocha Latte k-cup “foam at home” drink.  I was intrigued by these because I am a fan of lattes, coffee and milk chocolate and this just seemed so interesting. The lattes are sold with k-cups and foam packets, so you add the foam packet to your coffee mug, put the k-cup in and brew.
The lattes are sold in three flavors: mocha latte (a creamy blend of cocoa and coffee topped with a velvety layer of froth), caramel macchiato (creamy and smooth with the indulgent flavor of caramel, made from real milk) and cappuccino (smooth, mildly sweet, with subtle roasted notes, made from real milk).
The mocha latte is truly as described – a delicious blend of coffee and cocoa. It tastes as if you brewed a cup of coffee and put half a packet of hot chocolate into it. It’s smooth, mildly sweet and a decadent late night treat or even early morning wake-me-up. I did not add any extra milk or sugar into my cup as I found it to be perfect. What I will note is that it was making this really strange crackling sound as the coffee was drizzling into the foam. Initially I thought some sort of glass was cracking in my kitchen until I realized it was coming from the cup that was brewing.  After a few stirs once my keurig was done brewing, the crackling sufficed once the powder mixture was fully incorporated. I enjoyed this quite a bit and will be picking up a box next time I spot it in stores.
Each cup is 80 calories or 2 points plus values.
QUESTION:
Have you tried any of the Gevalia foaming drinks?

Swiss Miss No Sugar Added Hot Cocoa


I love hot cocoa – but I tend to only drink it in the fall and winter months – probably because I associate it with a warm and cozy beverage. Sure, I drink hot coffee all year round, but cocoa has it’s place – at least in my book.  I usually prefer the original cocoa, but I received this box for free – so no sugar added it was.
Swiss Miss No Sugar Added Hot Cocoa is Swiss Miss’ take at hot cocoa that is without the added sugar in comparison to the original. I find this one to be pleasantly sweet enough without it being too much. There are occasions where regular hot cocoa is just too sweet for my taste buds.  This particular type is smooth, creamy, rich and delicious. It could be made with hot milk to make it even more filling but I tend to prefer my hot cocoa made with water and perhaps a splash of milk to help cool it down just a tad.
A single packet is 60 calories or 2 points plus values (truthfully, the same points plus value of the original Swiss Miss – but if sugar is a concern for you – this is good).
QUESTION:
How do you prefer your hot chocolate/cocoa?

BzzCampaign: Green Mountain Coffee Fair Trade Certified

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I was invited to take part in a BzzAgent campaign for Green Mountain Coffee Fair Trade Certified. I opted in because I am undoubtedly a coffee lover and was looking forward to trying out the new flavor.  I don’t mind paying a little more for a cup of coffee that’s going to help in making a difference.
October is Fair Trade Month and Green Mountain stands behind fair trade coffee pretty faithfully. Fair Trade ensures farmers get a fair price for their beans (meaning coffee manufactures aren’t nickel and diming the farmers).  By doing this farmer are able to improve working conditions, invest in their crops, while there’s also assistance in protecting the environment, while it also aids in supporting the community aiding in creating new schools, roads, drinking water, etc. Simply put “Fair Trade means great coffee for you and a better life for farmers.”
This year Kelly Clarkson teamed up with Green Mountain to aid in presenting Fair Trade coffee to the world.  In doing this Kelly Clarkson was able to visit some of the coffee farms. With that Green Mountain created a limited edition Three Continent Blend.  This blend is a delicious blend of beans from Asia, South America and Africa.  The coffee itself is listed as a medium roast that’s extra bold.
I brewed myself a cup of Three Continent Blend and I found it to be delicious. Smooth yet mildly bold. I didn’t find it to be overwhelming on the taste buds, particularly because I’m a light roast type-a-gal. With a packet of sweetener and a little milk it was quite an enjoyable cup.

Pure Protein Shake Cookies n Crème

While grocery shopping I picked up a bottle of the Pure Protein Shake Cookies n Crème. I had seen the Cookies n Crème flavor in stores for a while and had wanted to try it. I’ve tried both the chocolate and vanilla and I have to say I am pretty impressed with this line of protein drinks.
The Cookies n Crème flavor is not quite what I expected. When I think of cookies n crème I think of vanilla base with oreo cookie bits running through it. This particular protein drink is chocolate based with a hint of vanilla and cookies in the background.  It’s definitely far more chocolate than any other flavoring – but regardless of that, it is good. But if you’re looking for classic cookies n crème flavoring you will not find it with this product.  I enjoy these drinks because they’re loaded with protein (23g), are convenient and they are not chalky or have a weird aftertaste to them. They’re delicious, filling and come in a few flavors to offer some variety.
If you are a powder protein fan, they do sell powdered protein in stores. I’ve seen it sold in my local grocery store – Market Basket, Hannaford and Wal-Mart.  Calorie wise a 12 ounce bottle is 120 calories of 3 points plus values.
QUESTION:
What is your favorite protein drink/mix?

Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Spice Rooibos Herbal Blend Tea


I’m sure many of you have read how much I enjoy pumpkin-things especially in the fall/winter months. So with that I was given a tin of Trader Joe`s Pumpkin Spice Rooibos Herbal Blend Tea and I got that giddy child feeling when you get something you typically love but haven’t tried.
The moment you open the metal canister you get a nice fragrant smell — pumpkin, nutmeg and a little cinnamon. It just has a very homey and delicious scent. After reading the ingredients, I was a little hesitant because the tea does have clove in it and I just happen to not be a huge clove fan.  Thankfully, I have found after trying the tea, the clove taste doesn’t come through very much otherwise this would have been a complete miss for me
I prepared my tea as I would any other.  Boiled the water in my tea kettle, poured it over the tea pouch and let it steep for about 5 minutes. I then removed the tea bag and added in one packet of artificial sweetener and gave it a whirl. I have to say, this was really delicious. The flavors blended together nicely and there was a hint of all the flavors present (cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin, etc), but not one stood out more than the pumpkin flavor. Which is appreciated.
QUESTION:
Do you like pumpkin tea?