REVIEW: Baskin Robbins Belgian Waffle

In my funny fantasy food mind I’ve got a number of dream ice cream flavors. A truly satisfying spin on peanut butter banana, white chocolate blueberry basil, popcorn and anything, a caramel ice cream that utilizes real peanut butter as a swirl, and the list goes on and on. Above all else though, I’ve always wanted a pancakes and syrup ice cream, and this year, my dreams nearly come true. The September Flavor of the Month at Baskin Robbins is Belgian Waffle, which combines a maple praline ice cream with Belgian waffle pieces, pralined pecans, and a creamy caramel swirl.


On my first spoonful this ice cream is already fantastic. The maple praline ice cream is smooth and rich with a wonderfully balanced maple flavor that is present but not too over the top sweet. The addition of the praline brings some richness and depth so there is a touch of nuttiness that pushes beyond just a pure syrupy sugar flavor that maple can fall victim to. Maple bases are few and far in between for mainstream companies, and this is one that I would love to see offered on a more regular basis.


The pralines, just like in one of my favorite BR core flavors, Pralines ‘N Cream, are positively top notch. Super gritty and sugar-coated crispy crunchy, they bring huge textural contrast and a big burst of sweet yet fatty pecan flavor that is nostalgic magic to my tongue. They work very well in tandem with the thin and sweet caramel that weaves its way in and out of every bite, adding syrupy depth to the base and more fun melty contrast. The caramel seems to enjoy pooling itself around the big chunks of toffee-ed nuts for an extra sweet pop of indulgent breakfast delight.


The most intriguing and risky part of this flavor is the waffles themselves – and overall they work pretty damn well. The waffle pieces are soft and fluffy chunks of Saturday mornings finest, and have the chewy cakey texture most baked goods take on in ice cream. They’re mostly small to medium sized and integrate themselves into bites rather than take over like a massive mix-in. It’s hard to distinguish any particular buttery or eggy nuances, but there is an airy-ness to them that signals waffles, and given the context of the maple and praline it all makes sense and tastes truly delicious.


When I manage to isolate one of the waffle pieces and eat it on its own, there’s a bit of maple flavor that comes through in the dough as well, which helps drive the overall waffle experience to new heights. While my fantasy flavor may have been pancakes and syrup, I will admit that I think the slightly tougher exterior of a waffle is a better fit for ice cream, and the execution here is about as good as I could hope for.


I had very high expectations for this scoop and it really lived up to them. Baskin Robbins essentially took one of their top five best flavors and added maple and waffles to it – brilliant. This is one that is worth the trip to the shop to try, and my favorite monthly special so far this year.

Rating: 9.5/10
Found at: Baskin Robbins ($2.99)
Quick Nutrition: 4 oz scoop – 280 cal – 14g fat – 260mg sodium – 34g carb – 27g sugar – 4g protein



REVIEW: Cap’n Crunch’s Limited Edition Blueberry Pancake Crunch

Pancakes have played a pivotal role in my culinary journey.  They were the first thing I ever learned to cook when I was five years old, are the breakfast I have every Christmas morning, are my most often customized and changed entree, and the only reason why I own a plug in griddle.  I even memorized the recipe from the Joy of Cooking book, which I have since adapted and incorporate blueberries whenever I can get my hands on them.  Blueberries work so well in pancakes that I often wonder if they were created solely to be cooked in cake or muffin form, so I was elated to learn that the Cap’n had caught onto this perfect combo and wanted to package the flavor in cardboard form to deliver Cap’n Crunch’s Limited Edition Blueberry Pancake Crunch.

Opening the box delivers a big sugary aroma with the sharp undercurrent of maple syrup.  It’s hard to explain exactly how the two smells work together, but there isn’t a specific blueberry essence as much as there is just standard breakfast cereal “sweet”.  Trying the cereal dry has a satisfying sweet and slightly salty crunch, with some but not a ton of distinction between the tan and blue colored corn and oat balls.  You would think that the two different colors would function similarly to the Cap’n’s crunch berries, but they taste much more like each other than they do two separate flavors.  There’s a touch more maple in the tan balls and a hint more berry sweetness in the blue ones, but still no dominant blueberry flavor, especially when compared to a cereal like Tiny Toast.

Adding in some milk really drives the maple smell to the foreground and I’m excited.  The moisture from the milk helps bring the flavor together and definitely reminds me of a maple-y pancake, although not one studded with my favorite baking berry.  As the blue cereal balls towards the bottom get more soaked in milk they give off more blueberry vibes and I’m starting to see the full flavor be revealed before me.  Interestingly, as I sit contemplating over my empty bowl the flavor that lingers in my mouth IS blueberry, which is pleasant, but a bit of a surprise considering it didn’t play too big of a role during most of the chomping.  The leftover milk has absorbed a good amount of the maple flavor and tastes like cold creamy syrup, definite A+ cereal milk satisfaction.

I’m not going to be unreasonable, but it’s worth noting that none of the other nuances you would expect from pancakes like butter, eggy-ness, or buttermilk can be found here; but there is a golden sheen from the maple that will remind you of the classic griddle cake.  Is it as delicious as a piping hot short stack bursting with berries and drowning in syrup?  No, of course not, but it is a maple-forward cereal with some berry boost and a satisfying sugar snap that is right up there with Peanut Butter Crunch as some of the Cap’n’s finest work.

Rating: 8.5/10