Anabel tastes the seasons: pumpkin spice edition

The+selection+of+Pumpkin+Spiced+items+that+Anabel+tasted+includes+creamer%2C+cereal%2C+cookies%2C+cream+cheese%2C+and+cookie+butter.

Alex O'Brien

The selection of Pumpkin Spiced items that Anabel tasted includes creamer, cereal, cookies, cream cheese, and cookie butter.

Anabel Prince, Copy editor

With Halloween just around the corner, it stands nearly impossible to grocery shop during this time of year without spotting at least 25 different pumpkin flavored snacks. As I only tried out a few of them last year, I felt curious as to what new concoctions food industries held in store for me this time around:

Trader Joe’s Pumpkin O’s:

Not a cereal lover, I failed to hold any high expectations for Trader Joe’s Pumpkin O’s. At first bite, the pumpkin flavor seems overwhelming. However, as I ate more, they began to taste like one my favorite cereals, Honey Nut Cheerios. Slightly cinnamon-y but not overly sweet or pumpkin-y, these stood my favorite of the bunch.

The pumpkin snacks made for an interesting but overwhelming arrangement.

Alex O’Brien
The pumpkin snacks made for an interesting but overwhelming arrangement.

CoffeeMate Pumpkin Spice Flavored Coffee Creamer:

From this creamer I expected an over-sweetened, not-quite-as-tasty version of Starbuck’s Pumpkin Spice Latte. Instead, it delivered a subtle sweetness and a hint of spice that left me astounded to say the least. I am not ashamed to say I used this all month and plan to purchase more when I run out.

Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Joe Joe’s:

Those who know me know that Oreos hold a dear place in my heart as my favorite snack. Considering I have tried original Joe Joe’s (Trader Joe’s version of Oreos), and remained quite pleased with the knockoff version, the pumpkin variety intrigued me. After eating a few I decided one should only eat these if he or she lives, breathes, and worships pumpkins. Expecting merely a pumpkin creme, these cookies hit me with a crushing combination of pumpkin cookies and filling. In the end, I decided the pumpkin in this case held too strong a role in the beloved snack.

Anabel tries Trader Joe's Pumpkin Joe Joe’s.

Alex O’Brien
Anabel tries Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Joe Joe’s.

Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Cookie Butter:

If you have not tried Trader Joe’s classic cookie butter, why are you still reading this? It literally contains pieces of crushed up cookies, which you then use to spread on toast or, even better, more cookies. As I tasted every variety sold to date, pumpkin held the next spot on my radar. Sadly, the sweet spread disappointed. Right off the bat, I detected no pumpkin, but instead a staggering amount of ginger. Despite having the little crunchy bits of cookie to add texture, there was no saving this one.  

After trying the pumpkin spice cookie butter, Anabel shows her displeasure at the odd taste.

Alex O’Brien
After trying the Pumpkin Spice cookie butter, Anabel shows her displeasure at the odd taste.

Target Brand Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese:

Let me begin by saying that it was not my idea to purchase this item. I respect bagels too much. I ultimately caved, reasoning that in order to taste the best renditions of pumpkin, I would also have to endure the worst. Surprisingly upon trying it I decided there stood far worse things I could force myself to eat. Would I put this on my bagel? No. Would I spit it out? Probably not.

 By itself, the cream cheese may look odd with its vivid color, but when spread on a bagel, it had a tolerable flavor.

Alex O’Brien
By itself, the cream cheese may look odd with its vivid color, but when spread on a bagel, it had a tolerable flavor.

Sadly, at least from what I tried , the lackluster pumpkin section this year failed to match my expectations.