I'm a cookie/pastry snob. There, I said it! I don't like Tastykake, I don't like Entenmann's, and I don't like Chips Ahoy. Those are three hugely popular items, and all of my friends loved them growing up (my family too), but I never understood it. Even as a little kid I preferred my pastries and cookies to be homemade, but the only exception to my processed pastry pickiness was Little Debbie's Oatmeal Creme Pies.
There was just something about that whipped waxy frosting and that dense flying-saucer-like cookie-pie that always put a smile on my face. With that being said, I had to try their pumpkin version. Plus, they look like little Jack-O'-lanterns!
The packaging for these "cookies" (they look more like pies to me) gives me the same unfinished and faux retro vibe as a lot of Trader Joe's products. The photos are oddly magenta-toned, we've got little Debbie in the corner behind some cheap pumpkin clip-art, and some really oddly colored text. Why stick with the bright blue and yellow for the banner? It's so out of place! I've never like the "Debbie" logo. It's based off a real photograph, and even though the logo is practically a perfect illustration of the real little girl, there's something about this rendering I find unsettling. I think it's something with the eye-nose area... Anyway, it's safe to say I don't care for the packaging and design, but I do have high hopes that the little pastries inside will be as adorable as they look on the package.
Welp, I was completely wrong. This is a face only a mother could love. I mean, just look at it! What happened? Why are the eyes so small? These instantly reminded me of all those novelty shaped frozen popsicles you can buy on the ice cream truck. They always looks super cute in the photos, like Bubbles from the Powerpuff Girls, but when you opened the wrapper the actual product looked like some kind of LSD fueled nightmare. Bubbles was my favorite, but she always looked like she wanted to devour my soul.
Actually, did any of you see that awful Super Mario movie? When I showed these to my sister she immediately thought they looked like the Koopas! I gotta say, she's right. Tiny eyes, ovate head, big grinning mouths...they're pretty spot on.
So yeah, it looks kind of ugly, but it smells amazing! Like a mixture of ginger snaps, pumpkin pie filling, and soft molasses cookies.
I took a bite, and I absolutely love it! It might be ugly as anything, but it tastes great! I think I might even like this more than the original Little Debbie Oatmeal Pies!
The cookie portion is soft and chewy with a delicious ginger-heavy spice blend. It's a little heavy handed with the ginger, which might not be for everyone, but ginger has really grown on me in 2015, so I was all about it. Plus, the sweet caramelized pie filling helps keep the ginger in check.
Imagine gingerbread and pumpkin pie were combined into one deliciously moist and chewy cookie. It might not be pretty, and it might looks like a badly designed dinosaur-movie villain, but it tastes great and I will definitely be buying a second box for myself before Christmas completely takes over the shelves.
On a Pumpkin Scale of 1-5 (5 being the most pumpkin-y) I’d give this cookie a 5! Normally I hate these processed cake/cookie things, but these are awesome! They're soft, chewy, nicely spiced and the pumpkin "smile" tastes just like pumpkin pie. These may be ugly...but they're awesome! I want to eat them warmed up in the toaster oven with a tall glass of ice cold milk.