There was once a time where we thought that adding bacon to something automatically made it better. Bacon cheeseburgers? Genius! Bacon pancakes? Brilliant! Bacon Pop-tarts? Okay, this one I'm a little on the fence about.
I love bacon, and it's one of the reasons why I haven't adopted my boyfriend's vegetarian diet even though my personal eating habits lean towards the veggie side. When my sister and I survive an usually hard work week I always buy and cook an ENTIRE PACKAGE of bacon on the weekend and we eat the entire thing. (Throughout the day, not all at once. We tried eating the entire thing as breakfast and it was too much bacon. Which was a thing I never thought I'd ever say in my life, but it's true.) We call this bacon-feast, "real people breakfast" and it's usually served with eggs, toast, and all that well-balanced-breakfast stuff you see on TV commercials and cereal boxes. Just with 400% more bacon. Okay, I think I've proven my bacon-loyalty, but with that being said...I don't know how bacon will translate into Pop-Tarts, but I'm ready to find out! (Although to be honest...I'm going into this with really low expectations.)
Pop-tart packaging hasn't changed since my last review, so there's nothing to discuss here design-wise. The only difference between this and other flavors is the photo of the pastry and the flavor themed foodie images. It's appealing enough, but I would have liked to see more bacon on this box. I don't think Pop-Tarts have ever used meat product or flavoring before, so they should have gone all out and focused on the bacon aspect of this flavor to get more attention.
The pouches are silver, like usual, and the pastry inside has the classic vanilla-cracker-like crust with a white icing and tiny little sprinkles? Wait...I think these are actually itty bitty bacon bits?
Yup! Upon further inspection these "sprinkles" aren't crispy and sugary, they're soft and kind of spongy. (Which is NOT a texture I like to associate with bacon.) It's bacon! Well, not really. I looked through all the press releases and the ingredients and nowhere do I see anything bacon or meat-based. The original posting says these are "bacon flavored sprinkles," so what is this stuff? I saw gelatin in the ingredients list, so these pastries aren't vegetarian, and my boyfriend still can't eat them, but there's no actual meat in this? That's kind of a bummer.
I usually eat my Pop-Tarts un-toasted, so I tried that first. Right out of the package, the crust is just as dry and cracker-like as it's always been, so I initially tastes try vanilla pie-crust-cracker-ness, but then the filling started to kick in. The filling seems to have a denser texture than the brown sugar cinnamon flavored Pop-Tarts, but it's still quite similar. The filling is sweet, with a slightly grainy sugary texture, and the flavoring is similar to those soft maple-leaf-shaped candies you can buy in Vermont and Canada. The maple flavoring is pretty nice and breakfast-y, but where's the bacon? After everything is chewed and swallowed (giggity) you have this slightly salted and smokey after taste that must be from the tiny bacon bits, but it's pretty weak and underwhelming. Maybe toasting will help?
I toasted the second Pop-tart which made the sugary filling less gritty and enhanced the maple flavoring a bit, so it come off as more of a warm maple syrup on top of really dry pancakes kind of experience, but the bacon portion was still lost. If I just scrapped the little sprinkle bits off and ate them alone I got more of a bacon-y experience, but it was still not as bacon-y as I had hoped.
On a bacon-y scale of 1-10 (with 10 being me and my sister eating an entire packet of bacon without being judged), this is a 3, maybe 4 when toasted, but you know what? It was still tasty! I really liked the maple flavoring and I thought it was a really nice change of pace from the usual brown sugar Pop-Tart. Why haven't they ever made a maple flavored pastry before? Even though the bacon part of this turned out to be nothing more than a gimmick, the flavoring is still really enjoyable and I liked these quite a bit. They aren't my favorite Pop-Tart, but I could see myself buying another box of these for the maple flavoring alone.