Cheddar ‘n bacon, Take 2

15 11 2010

I like to think I never make the same mistake twice. That’s not true, of course, but I like to think it.

When I was wandering through Safeway’s cracker aisle the other day, I though about last week’s Cheddar ‘n Bacon Easy Cheese, which is still sitting in my cupboard. (I was pondering cheese again, yes.) Suddenly, like a sign from the heavens, a box of Ritz Crackerfuls caught my eye. “Cheddar Cheese and Bacon,” the package read — which sounded all too familiar.

I’m not trying these, I thought. They’re just like Easy Cheese on a cracker — gourmet-style.

But then I saw something beautiful on the box: “Real Cheese & Bacon.” That sounded…refreshing. Promising — like it just might have that bacon-burger-on-a-cracker taste I’d hoped for from the Easy Cheese. With a resigned sigh, I plopped the box into my cart.

When I went to open the box, I expected rows of crackers in a plastic container, or maybe brown plastic bags stacked with crackers like regular Ritz boxes have. What I didn’t expect was individual wrapping.

Impressive.

Now the real test: would they taste any better than the Easy Cheese version?

I took a bite, and the answer was a definite yes.

These tasted real. The cheese tasted like cheese (although obviously it’s drier and more powdery than your standard block of cheddar). And the best part? I could taste the bacon.

Real bacon, according to the ingredients. It was beautiful.

I have to say it still didn’t taste like a bacon burger, but that makes sense, seeing as it was missing the burger factor. Come to think of it, adding beef to these might make them even better. But they weren’t bad to begin with.

The crackers are whole grain — not your average Ritz crackers, but probably healthier. From a read-through of the ingredients list, the cheese and bacon are apparently real (though the cheese is made with pasteurized milk — but that’s understandable). And the overall quality in taste is miles above Easy Cheese on a cracker.

Plus, they’re individually wrapped. You can’t go wrong with that.

———

Ingredients:

Unbleached enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate {Vitamin B1}, riboflavin {Vitamin B2}, folic acid), whole grain wheat flour, palm and/or soybean and/or high oleic canola oil, resistant corn maltodextrin, sugar, cheddar cheese powder (pasteurized milk, cheese cultures, salt, enzymes), maltodextrin, corn syrup solids, semisoft cheeses (pasteurized milk, cheese cultures, salt, enzymes), partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil, bacon ends (cured with water, salt, sugar, sodium phosphate, sodium ascorbate and sodium nitrate), whey, salt, leavening (calcium phosphate and/or baking soda), partially hydrogenated soybean oil, high fructose corn syrup, whey protein concentrate, lactose, disodium phosphate, natural flavor, citric and lactic acids, soy lecithin, rendered bacon fat and bacon bits (cured with water, salt, sugar, sodium phosphates, sodium ascorbate and sodium nitrate), dry cream (from milk), monosodium phosphate, rosemary extract, green tea extract, cheddar cheese (cultured milk, salt, enzymes, annatto extract color), annatto extract (vegetable color) and sodium caseinate.
Price: $3.79 at Safeway
Pros: Real bacon! Real cheese! Whole grains!
Cons: The ingredient list took up an entire side panel on the box, but at least I can pronounce most of them.

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17 05 2011
War On Pants — Ritz Crackerfuls

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