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Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies

Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies

Trader Joe’s is just daring you to FREAK OUT!

Hold the presses! Hold the presses once again folks, for Trader Joe’s has unleashed a new form of cookie butter delivery system upon the world. This time they’ve packaged their joyful condiment in the form of Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies – a delicious butter cookie / cookie butter sandwich.

If you’re not familiar with cookie butter, and that would truly be tragedy, you can better educate yourself on the topic here, here, here, here and here. Basically any time Trader Joe’s develops some new application of this most delicious cookie spread I will be there to buy it. If you don’t have the time to work your way through the backlog of posts, the tl;dr version goes like this:

Cookie Butter is like peanut butter – only it’s made from the delicious European cookie speculoos instead of peanuts. It tastes so good that once you eat it you will generate a sort of free-floating anger at the world for not inventing it sooner. HOWEVER – cookie butter is also a curse. It is so truly wonderful in and of itself that combining it with anything only seems to dilute its goodness.

The sorry truth is that the best way to enjoy Cookie Butter is to just spoon it directly into your mouth like a decadent Roman emperor. Trader Joe’s has tried numerous times to improve upon cookie butter, and each time they have failed. Cookie butter and Nutella failed, Oreo cookie butter fell short, and even Cookie Butter Cheesecake fell short of the mark set by a simple spoonful of cookie butter, eaten all by itself.

Nevertheless, Trader Joe’s refuses to give up on the dream of improving cookie butter. Which leads to the periodic release of new developments such as our speciment today – Cookie sandwiches with cookie butter.

Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies 1

As pretty as macaroons but way better tasting.

How did they do this time? Well, first off, it’s cookie butter, so it’s pretty damn good. More specifically, however, it’s really damn good. It’s hard to see where they could improve on these sandwich cookies. Two simple, but sweet and flaky butter cookies are sandwiched around a thick swathe of divine cookie butter. The result is a really handy way to get cookie butter into your mouth without getting your fingers sticky.

It’s in the use of plain butter cookies that Trader Joe’s really succeeds on this count. I’m sure that someone suggested using speculoos cookies for the two cookie halves, they may have even tried it, but that would only have muddled the decadent cookie butter taste. On the other hand, these basic butter cookies simply stay out of the way. They provide a nice crunch, and a nice mild sweetness but don’t get in the way of the main attraction. You really taste the cookie butter in these cookies, and not much else. That shows that TJ’s is learning. Come for the cookie butter and get the cookie butter- it’s an easy formula but a winning one.

There’s only one point I found myself disappointed on – and that is dunkability. With any sandwich cookie – oreo or otherwise – the mind immediately turns to a glass of cool, dunkable milk. Now there are certainly a plurality of theories on the perfect way to dunk a cookie, but the general consensus holds that you want a sort of al dente toothsomeness – yielding but not too soft. Unfortunately, the butter cookies involved here don’t lend themselves to that at all. Denser and not as porous as an Oreo, you’ll have to hold one of these cookies under the surface a long time before they even start absorbing milk. The butter cookies give you that “water off a ducks back” phenomenon, keeping the core resolutely dry no matter how much you dunk. Phooey. If they’d stuck the landing it would have been a solid 5 star performance.

Are these cookie sandwiches any better than cookie butter by itself? Not better, but almost as good – and that’s saying something. By keeping it clean and simple, you end up getting that same delightful cookie butter taste, with a bit of added crunchiness. If you want to think of these as a great all around cookie to serve anytime, or as a less barbaric way to get your cookie butter intake, you wouldn’t be poorly served. You can chalk this up as another “W” on the cookie butter scoreboard.


The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: Yes, this is an awesome new way to eat cookie butter.

Would I Buy It Again: Definitely, if I could trust myself around it.

Final Synopsis: Delicious cookie butter sandwiched between two pleasantly low key butter cookies.

Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies - Nutrition Facts

Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter Sandwich Cookies – Nutrition Facts

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Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter Cheesecake

cookie butter cheesecake box

Such non-descript packaging! Like an oyster shell hiding a pearl

Stop the presses folks. World shaking news is afoot.

Look, we all know and love Cookie Butter,we love it crunchy, we love it as ice cream, we even love it when it’s made from Oreo cookies. Now Trader Joe’s has taken it all two steps further by putting it on cheesecake. Yes, you read that right – cookie butter cheesecake – just in time for the holidays.

For those of you who are still, bafflelingly, in the dark about cookie butter, it’s that miraculous creamy substance that replaces the peanuts in peanut butter with ground up speculoos cookie. Reminiscent of sugar cookies and ginger bread, this creamy, sweet, smooth and delicious treat is so good that it makes peanut butter look like parsley. It’s simply fantastic.

What TJ’s has dared to do here is spread a thick shmear of cookie butter across the top of an ordinary cheesecake, then set the whole thing in a crust made from crushed up speculoos cookies. Brilliant move on both accounts. Resisting the temptation to mix the cookie butter into the cheesecake filling itself is absolutely the right move – choosing to let the cookie butter speak for itself instead of diluting it with lesser sugars. The cookie crust is just a little extra flourish that adds a tasty touch to an already very tasty cake.

As we’ve noted before, Trader Joe’s has struggled to trump their simple, flagship creation, ordinary cookie butter. The issue is that cookie butter is so good on its own that mixing it with anything – even if that anything is nutella, tastes less delicious. It’s like we’re dealing with cocaine – the more stuff you cut that sweet nose candy with, the less pure it becomes.

It’s a daunting task, but combining cookie butter with cheesecake is brilliant enough that it seems it might work. If there’s anything in this world as rich and decadent as cookie butter, it’s cheesecake. Maybe even more so! Isn’t it possible that the whole thing is going to be a mouth-melting act of dietary terrorism so rich that the smallest slice will overwhelm all but the stoutest gourmands?

cookie butter cheesecake

Cookie butter. On a cheesecake.

As it turns out – no. Despite all the potential, cookie butter cheesecake falls short of its promise.

“How could that possibly be,” you may be wondering, “Given such a pedigree?”

Well, I’m certainly not saying it isn’t a good cheesecake. It is. It’s very good – sweet, creamy, smooth and delicious. No one will be turning down a slice of this cheesecake after dinner. It won’t be going back into the freezer for another day. This is a fine and tasty cheesecake that people will eat up despite themselves.

That said, I was disappointed by my first bite. I expect cookie butter to be exceptional, and this cheesecake isn’t particularly exceptional in any way. It’s entirely tasty, but it’s not going to blow your mind or anything. Again, that’s not really an insult. The cake is well thought through. Trader Joe’s obviously considered making a much more decadent cheesecake and pulled back. What you get is not as overwhelmingly sweet as you might imagine. Both the cheesecake filling and the cookie butter topping seems less intense than they usually are. Here, this works to their advantage. The one seems to mellow out the intense, rich taste of the other, making it much easier to enjoy a whole slice of this cheesecake than it is to enjoy a whole spoonful of cookie butter by itself.

While this works for the cake, and works quite deliciously, it doesn’t elevate the dessert to either the cookie butter or cheesecake hall of fame. The fact of the matter is that I’ve had other cheesecakes, non cookie-butter cheesecakes, that are better than this one. Given the immense calorie value and special occasion status of cheesecake, I’m looking for something stunning to put in my mouth – not merely good.

It’s a noble try, and a delicious one, but the quest for a superior form of cookie butter continues.


The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: Yes, this is a pretty good cheesecake, and worth a try for cookie butter lovers.

Would I Buy It Again: Probably not. There are better cheesecakes (and cookie butter products) out there.

Final Synopsis: Good – but not as good as it sounds.

Trader Joe's Speculoos Cookie Butter Cheesecake - Nutritional Info and Calories

Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter Cheesecake – Nutritional Info and Calories


Trader Joe’s Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter

Trader Joe's Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter

Trader Joe’s Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter. Not technically made from Oreos… but only technically.

Hold the goddamn presses, ladies and gentlemen. We may be in the very height of pumpkin season, the most exciting time of the year of the Trader Joe’s product reviewer, but we’ve got to forget about all that for a minute. Novel pumpkin products are all well and good, but Trader Joe’s has just released something of national importance. I’m speaking, of course, of Trader Joe’s new Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter. It is, not to mince words, Cookie Butter made from Oreos.

Yes.

Yes, Oreos. Oreo cookie butter.

Yes.

I understand if you need another minute to grapple with this fact. Take your time. Breathe.

Look guys – look. I’ve occasionally accused Trader Joe’s of screwing around, hinted that maybe they don’t always know what they’re doing. I take all that back, because this is a masterstroke. Needless to say, it is almost terrifyingly delicious.

The orignal Cookie Butter, precious Speculoos Cookie Butter, our lord and savior, has always been great. It’s been there for us in thick and thin, when times are tough as in times of bounty. Its creation objectively improved the state of affairs in the world, and its creator should be enshrined upon her death – but for all that, it always seemed to me like it peaked too early.

There was never any other place to go with the original cookie butter, regardless of how Trader Joe’s tried, and tried to improve upon what was already, it appeared to me, unimproveuponable. That was my folly, for while I was naysaying TJ’s efforts, I never in my wildest dreams realized there could be more types of cookie butter. That there was no reason to limit cookie butter just to the original, delicious speculoos cookie base, but to expand it to other types of cookies! To expand it to Oreos!! OREO COOKIE BUTTER!!!

This development is almost unbearable exciting for two reasons. One, it’s super, super delicious. It’s just so damn good. Eating Trader Joe’s Cookie and Creme Cookie Butter is like mainlining Oreos into your blood stream. Oreos or, as I should say, Trader Joe’s Joe Joe’s. Joe Joe’s are, of course, the Trader Joe’s take on Oreos – identical to their forebearer in all ways except the name.

Trader Joe’s has taken these Joe Joe’s, and broken it down into a brand new type of cookie butter – or more correctly, a cookie butter and cream filling swirl. TJ tried this sort of cookie butter swirling before with Trader Joe’s attempted Cookie Butter and Nutella mixture. While in theory this sounded amazing, a couple issues with the flavors kept it form becoming a classic. Those problems are absent here, and the oreo cookies and oreo crème mixture works beautifully together.

The thick, black veins “cocoa” cookie butter tastes exactly like the dark and crunchy cookie part of oreo cookies – only better. Whatever process they were applying to the cinnamon-spiced speculoos cookies they simply applied to the chocolate cookie shell here, making a mostly smooth, slightly crunchy, delightful cookie spread. Everyone knows that the chocolate exterior of the oreo cookie is what you put up with in order to get to the delicious creamy center. What Trader Joe’s has succeeded in doing is taking the tasty essence of that chocolate cookie and distilling it to it’s simple, beautiful core. The resulting cookie butter gives you the strange but amazing sensation of eating a cookie without the chewing.

This amazing, chocolatey cookie butter is paired, naturally, with unbelievable pure stripes of the Joe Joe’s creamy, frosting filling. This filling does taste a little different from the filling you get in a standard joe-joe/oreo, but it’s hard to say why. The creamy filling here is much softer than what you find in the cookie form, and there is much more of it. If anything, it tastes better than it does in ordinary cookie form.

I’ve often dreamed of getting a whole bag of oreo cookies, scraping out just the filling and eating it all at once, but never dared to try lest the delicious taste drive me insane. Where I only dreamed, Trader Joe’s has acted, not only combining the creamy filling together in one place, but making it even gooier and creamier. This is literally a dream come true.

Trader Joe's Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter - Top View

The beautiful, untouched surface of cookies and creme cookie butter. It’s almost like the Bat Signal, but for deliciousness.

There is no down side to Trader Joe’s Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter – there is only the challenge it presents to your existence. How can you go on living a normal life, knowing this new product is in the world. Are any of the rationales that prop up your life strong enough to stand up against the idea of just sitting down and eating an entire jar of Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter with your bare hands? This is a non-trivial question, folks.

The biggest challenge, really, comes from trying to figure out what to do with this stuff. It’s very, very tasty, that’s true, but there isn’t really a decent way to cook with it. Even Trader Joe’s acknowldeges this on the side of the jar, listing three feeble ideas (dip pretzles in it?) before admitting that you can “eat it right out of the jar”. And really, that does seem to be the most enjoyable thing to do with this cookie butter – aside from possible covering your nude body with it and plunging into an unimaginably hedonistic orgy. This cookie butter is less a condiment than it is a confection in a jar. It’s like  an advanced form of super cookie that, nevertheless, fills the exact same space in your life that regular cookies do –  enjoyable moments of indulgent snacking. Cookie butter just does it more efficiently

This brings us to the big question – is Trader Joe’s Cookies and Creme Cookie Butter better than Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter? It’s a serious quandary, and one that I’ve considered carefully over many spoonfuls of both these spreads. In my considered opinion, the original cookie butter is still best. While the cookies and creme cookie butter is amazing, and delicous and wonderful, it’s almost overwhelming sweet. In the long run, when eaten directly, it tends to be a bit one note compared to the somewhat more nuanced speculoos cookie butter. In the absence of any real recipes to incorporate these amazing spreads into – if we’re simply eating them out of the jars with our fingers like elevated apes – the win goes to Speculoos Cookie Butter, where the remarkable sweetness is tempered by the more complex, spiced flavor of that classic Christmas cookie taste.

That said, so long as Trader Joe’s continues producing both there’s no reason to choose. Buy them both, and enjoy them in unguarded moments, gliding upon the clouds of heaven.


 The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: YES!

Would I Buy It Again: YES! YES!!!

Final Synopsis: COOKIE BUTTER MADE FROM OREOS! BUY NOW!

 


Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter Ice Cream

Trader Joe's Cookie Butter Ice Cream

Humana humana humana- COOKIE BUTTER?!?!?

We all know about Cookie Butter. We all know that it’s a semi-divine creation that has melted hearts across the nation and, in fact, the world – lighting  up the taste buds with the decanted taste of pure Christmas from here to Belgium. If, and it saddens me to even spin the hypothesis, you don’t know what cookie butter is, you had better educate yourself.

Now, it has long been my firm stance that cookie butter is like an edible form of elemental gold – pure and perfect in and of itself. We’ve seen that mixing it with anything else, even Nutella (?!), merely dilutes it’s purity and introduces imperfections.

So it was with a great deal of excitement, but also skepticism, that I picked up Trader Joe’s latest, greatest development – Cookie Butter Ice Cream. On the one hand, how could cookie butter ice cream possibly be better than cookie butter by itself. ON the other hand, it’s ice cream! Maybe “Nutella” couldn’t do the job, but if there was ever anything that could improve on CB it’s a good helping of heavy cream and sugar.

These are high stakes to be sure. Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter Ice Cream is sure to either elate me to previously imagined heights of ecstasy, or deliver a crushing blow to the solar plexus of my soul – there is no middle ground here.

It is to my elation that I can report Trader Joe’s really knocked this one out of the park – an undeniable master stroke. How did TJ manage it? The answer is as simple as it is brilliant. Starting with a nice, creamy vanilla they mixed in a plenty of crushed speculoos – permeating the medium with that cookie butter taste. On top of that, is this is what carries  the day, they wove ribbons of pure cookie butter, caramel like, through the whole thing. The result is a sweet, delicious ice cream that alternates moments of low-key, pleasant cookie butter taste with bursts of intense, uncut cookie butter. I don’t see how heroine can be illegal while this isn’t, but regardless you and I get to reap the windfall.

There’s not much more to add, really – the ice cream is as good as you want it to be. If you’re still reading at my post at this point, you should obviously stop and go out to buy some cookie butter ice cream. Eat some of that, then come back and we can finish here.

The question of how to incorporate Cookie Butter Ice Cream into a recipe is may well be as futile as asking that question of cookie butter itself. It’s hard to improve on eating it straight from the bucket – sometimes even the spoon seems like a cruel impediment standing between you and sweet, sweet cookie butter. Nevertheless, I took my best shot at it with this week’s recipe for Salted Cookie Butter Ice Cream Shakes.

Is it better than the straight ice cream? I can’t look you straight in the eyes and say that. It might be better to think of the recipe as a remix of a song you really like, as another way to experience that initial rush over again.


 

Trader Joe's Salted Cookie Butter Ice Cream Shake

Trader Joe’s Salted Cookie Butter Ice Cream Shake

Salted Cookie Butter Ice Cream Shake

Ingredients:

  • ~ 3 cups of Cookie Butter Ice Cream
  • ~1  cup milk
  • A pinch of Trader Joe’s Pyramid Salt

 

Directions: 

  • Put all the ingredients in a blender and puree to your heart’s content.

 

I would recommend using whole milk, or even Trader Joe’s Organic Top Cream Milk, for the creamiest taste.

Also, a note on the salt. I used the pyramid shaped flake salt we’ve looked at before. The advantage is that even after blending there are small flakes of salt suspended in the shake, meaning you get little pleasant moments of saltiness to highlight the sweetness. If you don’t have flake salt on hand, consider just throwing a tiny pinch of salt on top at the end, instead of blending it in.


 

The Breakdown:

Would I Recommend It: Yes. If I met the President, I’d probably recommend it to him.

Would I Buy It Again: Sure, whenever they’re not sold out.

Final Synopsis: Cookie butter meets vanilla ice cream – and it’s as good as you’d hope.

 

 

 

 


Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl Spread

Just looking at the jar is exciting!

Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl

I’m typing this post with sticky fingers. No, not because I’m engaged in unsavory, graphic acts. Shame on you for thinking that. My fingers are sticky because I’m currently knuckle-deep in a brand new jar of Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl – the latest development in TJ’s now three-prong assault on American waistlines known as cookie butter. As readers of this blog know, I’m hopelessly in the thrall of cookie butter, and avoid buying it simply because it will plunge me into mango levels of reckless binging.

I got into the whys and hows cookie butter before. As you’re all probably now aware, Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter was their own version of what is also known as biscoff spread, a peanut butter like spread where instead of peanuts there are finely ground speculoos cookies. I won’t rehash old news, but suffice to say that Trader Joe’s take on the delicious condiment outstripped the original in both taste and texture – creating a mind-blowingly delectable taste sensation and a brand new way to eat cookies.

Trader Joe’s followed up this first miraculous, iPhone level market disruption with a second version, crunchy cookie butter, some months later. The iPhone 4S to cookie butter’s iPhone 4, if you will – a variation on the original theme. Which is why this new approach, the cookie butter cocoa swirl, is so exciting. Trader Joe’s is, for the first time, legitimately attempting to innovate their ground breaking product. But do they succeed?

Like most of you cookie butter fans out there, I’ve tried adding cookie butter to everything and anything that will hold its weight. I’ve put it on everything from celery to croissants, I’ve baked it into cookies, used it on pancakes and even tried spreading it on other speculoos cookies. The results have always been the same – no matter what cookie butter is combined with, it isn’t better than cookie butter by itself. As I pointed out in my first post, cookie butter is like pure, elemental gold. You can add anything to it you like, but you’ll only end up with a less pure gold.

That said, Trader Joe’s clearly decided to take a proper run at clearing this particular hurdle. Before cookie butter came on the scene and took its throne, the previous regent of sweet, spreadable condiments was Nutella – the thick hazelnut and chocolate spread of your dreams. Trader Joe’s has whipped up their own version of Nutella for this product – a mixture of 8% cocoa powder, vanilla flavoring, hazelnuts and cocoa butter. So what happens when you combine a #1 with the former #1? The answer, rather predictably, is that you get a #2. In other words, Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl is beautifully delicious but simply not as good as cookie butter by itself.

Where do I get off making such a claim, you ask. Who am I to judge between two angels? To you sir, I say set down the two side by side and conduct a taste taste for yourself.

Let’s eat a nice spoonful of this new cookie butter and cocoa swirl. Do you taste that wonderful cookie butter taste? That delicious silky smoothness that’s bursting with impossibly rich speculoos cookie goodness? But pay attention now, notice how the chocolate flavor rises to the fore, overpowering the comparatively subtler and more complex flavor of the cookie butter. It’s a good taste at first, for a moment they mingle together in a perfect balance. Then the chocolate takes control, blanketing your tongue in a heavy chocolate flavor. Notice how that chocolate taste continues to linger on the tongue, not just immediately on swallowing but long after. Wait long enough and you’ll notice it almost becomes sour at the edges of your tongue. Not exactly an unpleasant taste, and to be sure you’ll be going back to the jar for more, but it’s just not quite as good as regular cookie butter is it?

Nutella by itself is wonderful. Cookie butter by itself is even better. Combining the two is a noble idea, but their child, unfortunately, is a bastard unfit to claim the cookie butter throne.


The Breakdown

Would I Recommend It: Yes – but only if you’ve already tried regular cookie butter.

Would I Buy It Again: There’s no reason for me to choose this over pure cookie butter.

Final Synopsis: Even when mixed with nutella, you can’t improve on cookie butter.

Trader Joe's Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl - Nutrition Facts

Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie and Cocoa Swirl – Nutrition Facts


Trader Joe’s Speculoos Crunchy Cookie Butter

Trader Joe's Speculoos Crunchy Cookie Butter

Oh my god… seriously? Seriously? Ohmygod.

Folks, it may seem easier than ever to focus upon the dark spots in our lives nowadays, but not all is blight and sorrow. I, for one, am sitting here buoyed up with the elation of having spotted the first, incontrovertible signpost that the year of 2013 will be humanity’s greatest to date. I speak, of course, of the new variety of cookie butter our good pal Trader Joe has put on the market.

Crunchy cookie butter. Crunchy. Crunchy Cookie Butter. In retrospect, I suppose it’s obvious that they’d come out with something like this. Nevertheless, I was utterly gobsmacked when I rounded the corner and found it sitting there, gussied up in burgundy and yellow, proclaiming itself to the world.

There’s not much new to say about crunch cookie butter that I didn’t say about it’s older brother before. It’s still incredibly tasty, still better than anything on the market, still ten times tastier than the tastiest peanut butter and still a must-buy for every household interested in treating taste buds right. There are only two changes the game – one, the aforementioned new packaging, and two, the alteration in texture.

As for the much showier packaging, I can’t help but speculate that this might be Trader Joe’s way of taking squarer aim at it’s rivals in the condiment market. After all, the jar now matches, almost exactly, the look of the classic Peter Pan peanut butter jar, giving it much more of an “everyday essential” sort of feel. Have the shadowy marketing managers in the TJ’s corporate offices decided to play off our preexisting preconceptions in a bid to insinuate cookie butter into cupboards? I have no idea and, what’s more, I can’t possible prove it either way. Let’s move on.

Texture. Without mincing words, what does crunchy cookie butter taste like? Well, if you’ve left cookie crumbs in your regular cookie butter before, you actually have a pretty good idea. Crunchy cookie butter has the same creamy feel of regular cookie butter, but with the extra grit of sprinkled speculoos crumbs mixed in. It is very much a different sort of “crunchy” from crunch peanut butter, which tends to be more lumpy, with large chunks of peanut, than crunchy. The crunch in crunch cookie butter is a much smaller crunch, but quite satisfying.

Is it a superior texture? The Crunch v. Smooth debate is one that has raged for many years before I was born and where you fall on it depends, ultimately, on personal taste. I will say this however, I found it a welcome change to the silky uniformity of the smooth cookie butter. The granularity of the tiny crumbs lends the butter a sort of heft and substance that makes a spoonful feel like a bit more than a spoonful.

 

Would I recommend it: If it’s down to the cable bill or this, choose this.

 

Would I buy it again: Yes, in regular intervals, alternating with smooth cookie butter.

 

Final Synopsis: Cookie butter with a little more cookie.

 

 

Trader Joe's Speculoos Crunchy Cookie Butter - Nutritional Information

Trader Joe’s Speculoos Crunchy Cookie Butter – Nutritional Information


Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter

Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter

Trader Joe's Speculoos Cookie Butter

Peanut butter must be so jealous.

I have been remiss, criminally, criminally remiss, to have not mentioned cookie butter on my blog to this point.

What can be said about this marvelous paste. It has been said that, “(Cookie butter) is the best stuff on earth.” I have also heard that “The life is cookie butter, and cookie butter is the life.” Less esoterically perhaps, and certainly more to the point, cookie butter has also been said to “taste like Christmas.” But does cookie butter live up to these claims – this, a product hiterto unknown to all but the most deeply entrenched in the culture of European import food shop?

The answer is yes. This can brook no argument. Behind me in my apartment I have stockpiled a small but significant quantity of weaponry in case I’m called upon to fight for this belief. I know this is a hard sell to those of you out there who have not yet tried this strange-sounding substance. We’re all familiar with peanut butter, a good many of us even with apple butter, but cookie butter? The name resists our minds attempt to parse the taste. Can they even do that?, we wonder. Surely they’re not just smooshing an indiscriminate bunch of cookies together and then voila, into the jars it goes.

My best advice to you is simply don’t ask, just try it. All the questions will wash away in a flood of understanding that may be quasi-religious. For the skeptical, I’d put it this way. You know peanut butter? That amazing substance that goes good with everything – chocolate, apples, bread, raisins, ice cream – everything? Peanut butter that you’d never turn down a nice spoonful of just right out of the jar it tastes so good? Well once you try cookie butter you’ll never go weak in the knees for peanut butter again. Cookie butter not only out performs peanut butter in the taste department in a big way, it actually transcends the foods it goes on. Combining it with things actually detracts from the amazing taste of the cookie butter itself. It has no need to be weakened and debased through novelty alloys. It’s like elemental gold, pure in and of itself with no need to be weakened and debased through alloys. Consider this simple equation: peanut butter plus chocolate = delicious. Cookie butter plus chocolate = not as good as cookie butter alone. As shocked as I am to say it the math speaks for itself – cookie butter is better than chocolate.

We owe our thanks to the Belgians for this wonderful cream. As the label itself boldly states this cookie butter is “Speculoos”. Speculoos itself is the eponymous cookie used in the concotion. It originally hails from the Low Countries where it has been baked for the Feast of St. Nicholas for centuries. Though the word is Dutch, and likely the recipe for the cookie used as well, it was the blessed Belgians who first decided to blend cookie crumbs into a spread. In early 2007 a Belgian chef went on the blockbuster Belgian prime time hit De Bedenkers (The Inventors) with the creation and by November had risen from a crowd of over 2,000 entrants to the position of finalist. It is no wonder. Cookie butter was first marketed by the European company Lotus as Biscoff Butter. And though Biscoff butter is very, very nice, the food wizards at Trader Joes have improved over even it with a creamier texture and more nuanced blend of spices.

Please, if you disregard every other word I write until I shrivel and die in the cold and my soul drifts off to the void of a godless sky, do not disregard these. Try Cookie Butter.

Would I recommend it: Dur, I dunno – maybe.

Would I buy it again: I would fight you for the last jar if I had to. I would gouge your damn eyes out.

Final Synopsis: Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter is proof that man has at last surpassed God himself.

Trader Joe's Speculoos Cookie Butter - Nutritional Data