September 24, 2010
Trader Joe's Corn Dogs
So today, I'm going to talk about something that's been in my freezer for quite some time. I'd made a big fake meat purchase at Trader Joe's a while back, about half of which was refrigerated stuff and half frozen, so I had to use up all the non-frozen stuff first. You know how it goes. So here comes my next Trader Joe's review.
As recommended by j spiker here, I decided it was time to try Trader Joe's Corn Dogs.
Easy enough preparation - bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Nothing fancy - it's just a frozen corn dog, for crying out loud. Usually, when I get frozen real-meat corn dogs, I have to bake them for quite a bit longer than indicated, to get the level of crispy-crunch I like. These, however, were super crunchy and perfect at the end of the prescribed 20 minutes. I was pretty excited to dig in, to be honest. Texture is a big thing for me. So, I busted out some ketchup (much as I try, I just can't get into mustard), and took a big, optimistic bite.
Luckily, I was not disappointed. The texture of the cornbread part was awesome! Ditto the flavor! Just like the real-meat corn dogs I like. However, the dog part was a little different, as you'd expect. A little background - when I get real-meat corn dogs, I prefer the beef dogs to the pork (or, as my favorite brand calls it, "classic"), because they have a more meaty flavor. Pork hot dogs just don't cut it, ever since I switched to beef hot dogs. So I've built up a pretty high standard for corn dogs. Once I got over the fact that it wasn't beef, I was able to fully embrace the experience. No weird flavors from the dog - at least, none that I could detect over the taste of the cornbread - and the texture was just mushy enough to simulate a cheap hot dog (the kind with ingredients that you try not to think too much about).
There's a very good chance that we'll eat these again. They are close enough to satisfy a corn dog craving (at least, for me), and are drastically lower in fat than a real-meat corn dog. We're talking about a 65% reduction in fat, here, plus a bonus 3 grams of protein per corn dog. The calorie content is relatively similar, but if you're concentrating on eating less fat (especially saturated fat) and cholesterol (no meat = no cholesterol), then this is a good way to go.
Well done, Trader Joe's - you've restored my faith in your products. Until next time, perhaps. We'll have to see.
Texture - Crunchy on the outside, squishy on the inside - very accurate representation of a frozen real-meat corn dog
Flavor - Cornbread part was great - hot dog part didn't have a great deal of flavor on its own, but it's not intended to be eaten on its own, so who cares?
Final grade for this attempt: A