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Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Archer Farms Apple Cinnamon Pretzels

It's still fall, and we're still checking out these autumnal "limited edition" goodies that show up on Target's shelves every year. Today's choice: Apple Cinnamon Pretzels.

Very similar to last year's Pumpkin Spice Pretzels, this offering is simply salted mini-pretzels with a "confectionery coating." The coating on these pretzels does taste vaguely of apple cinnamon, although the specific flavoring is less pungent than I'd like it to be. It's undeniably sweet—not unlike traditional white fudge covered pretzels—but as my wife was quick to point out, the apple flavor in particular tastes fake.

I wasn't expecting an authentic apple cider flavor or anything like that. I didn't expect the number one ingredient to be actual apples. In fact, there's absolutely no mention of apples or apple derivatives of any kind in the ingredients list. A bit disappointing. I suppose some kind of apple essence might be included under the "natural flavorings" banner.

"Cinnamon" is listed in the "less than 1%" category.

I think it might have improved these pretzels greatly had they found some way to put dried apple bits in the sweet coating, both to make the texture a little more complex and also to boost the apple flavor. Even if they'd have pureed a single apple in the fudgey part of these pretzels, I think it might have made them vastly more interesting.

My better half expressed her wish that they'd have used a yogurt coating instead of "white fudge." I suppose yogurt might be a tad healthier, but in most cases, there's just as much sugar involved. I'm not sure if there'd be any discernible health advantage in a product like this that's already loaded with sugar and sodium. It's an indulgent, dessert-ish treat for sure, with plenty of fat and carbs.

I know, I know. The product makes no claims that it's a health food, so why analyze it as such? Because this product, in my humble opinion, simply isn't worth the calories it carries. It's odd to have a product that's supposed to be flavored like sweet apples taste this salty. Sweet and salty does often work, but throw cinnamon and fake fruity flavors into the mix, and it's a bit of a gray area if you ask me. 

This flavor simply doesn't work as well as the aforementioned pumpkin spice version. The wifey liked them even less than I did. She refused to go back for a second handful. Nice try, Archer Farms, but I don't think this is a repeat buy for me.

I give these pretzels 6 out of 10 stars.

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