Any product with the tagline “pack in the fun” is good enough for me. Or so I thought. Incidentally, that’s my proposed porn star motto if the lucrative world of food blogging somehow doesn’t pan out. Recently, I had the opportunity of a lifetime. The fates aligned to allow me two hours in a Walmart Supercenter with Miss Love in Westerly, Rhode Island, and I took it upon myself to scrutinize the grocery shelves and revel in the bevy of all that the Walton monarchy has to offer for limited-edition, Supercenter-exclusive foods. One of those foods was this bizarre pudding, proclaiming “NEW!” but sitting, all canisters dented, on the clearance shelf. Hunt’s Snack Packs Bakery Shop Frosted Sugar Cookie Pudding, fear not. There’s a home for you here.
You’re probably asking yourself two things right now: Jess, why did you just slap a bunch of unrelated, meaningless, individually capitalized words up there and why does the Hunt’s website look like it was designed by a C++ student in community college with Dreamweaver circa 2002? I can answer them both with a single response: No. Just…no. I can best attribute all of this to keyword spamming. The pudding somewhat resembles a run-of-the-mill frosted grocery store sugar cookie, provided that said cookie had been partially digested and left out in the sun for a few days. It’s liquidish, I guess. I’m also extremely disappointed that the box portrays sprinkles but leaves them out of the actual product.
Hunt’s pudding snacks have always struck me as a little less creamy and a little denser than other commercial pudding snacks, not quite living up to the luxuriously fatty Kozy Shack and subpar to sugar-free Jell-O with more sugar. Approximately 52 calories’ worth of sugar, in fact. Each 100-calorie cup has 13 grams of sugar, making the “sugar” in frosted sugar cookie pudding aptly named. There are supposedly two layers to this but they meld together too easily and come out pallid and bland-looking on the spoon. Even regular vanilla pudding often looks pleasantly off-white and, if you’re lucky, has vanilla bean specks. This is sunblock in color and in scent with a blobby, plasticky consistency. I’m guessing that the top layer was originally whipped or frothed to appear more frosting-like, but it was fragile and had reduced to a sad, filmy ooze on top of the cookie-flavored pudding bottom. It tasted greasy and flavorless, like Pond’s cold cream topped with sugar.
The bottom layer kind of tastes like a sugar cookie, but more like the individual components before they’re mixed than the end product. There’s a cornstarch-heavy wet texture and a floury aftertaste, and the pervasive, omnipresent sugar at every turn. With the viscous frosting, it’s appalling. Our gluttonous cat wouldn’t touch it, and this is an animal who regularly drinks out of the toilet bowl and tries to see what curtains taste like. Don’t bother trying this.