Marisa’s Take: In honor of Pi Day, we decided at the last minute to pick up a suitable product for the occasion (literally bought it yesterday morning). You’ve probably seen these babies gracing supermarket checkout stands, aging gracefully like fine wines. With enticing flavors like apple, cherry, pineapple, lemon, blackberry, strawberry, French apple (ooh la la!), Hostess Fruit Pies have served as after school snacks for generations of fat children and will probably continue to for years to come, despite all the anti-HFCS sentiment (High Fructose Corn Syrup, which the majority of this product seems to consist of) and Michelle Obama campaigns.
If you thought pastry snacks like Pop Tarts and Toaster Strudels were bad, think again. Hostess Fruit Pies are 480 calories a pop (for reference, two Pop Tarts are 400 calories, even the indulgent flavors like “Hot Fudge Sundae”). Considering the nutritional value of this fruit pie, I was a bit disappointed that one pie cost one dollar (and that was the sale price). I would expect something more like 50 cents. I decided to go with cherry since it’s a classic flavor, though not as American as Apple Pie. If anything, it’s painful to call this thing a “pie”; this ain’t no dessert baked by your dear old Grandma and cooling on the windowsill.
You’re sorely mistaken if you think the inclusion of the word “fruit” in this product makes it anywhere near healthy. The fruit in this product only consists of a bright red goo inside; no actual cherries in sight, besides on the packaging. I do have to give props for the Hostess website for attempting to make these sound slightly appealing with phrases like “heat them up and let the fruit filled aroma fill the house” and “serve them a la mode”. I hereby nominate a Hostess Fruit Pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream hastily slapped on top as the most depressing dessert ever. The site also mentions that “a trip to the snack cake aisle can be like visiting a country fruit stand”, that is, if your local fruit stand consists of jars of red, yellow and purple goo.
Truth be told, I didn’t even eat any of this pie, since I remember the sugary gooey taste from my childhood. Ben took off a piece of the frosted crust and ate it, then threw the rest away citing, “I don’t want anyone else to eat the rest of this” with a somber look on his face.
I’d link to a site where you could buy these online, but they’re available at pretty much any supermarket, convenience store or gas station.
Ben’s Take: Back when I was a geeky overweight middle schooler with a bowl haircut, I was totally into these hand pie things. My parents wouldn’t buy them for me, but I would ride my bike to the local grocery with portly geek friend Matt to get some Jones Soda and fruit pies. No wonder I was a porker (I’m still a bit of a porker but you wouldn’t know based on my new profile photo!).
You know, after reading the ingredients on these things, and actually paying attention to the NUTRITIONAL FACTS, I wouldn’t feed these to my hypothetical children. I wouldn’t even feed these to my neighbor’s children. I mean, holy butts. It has 80-90 more calories than an Eggo Real Fruit Pizza. Twice the sugar. TWICE the sugar of the Real Fruit Pizza! I can’t believe I didn’t turn into a freaking diabetic. It’s not like I was drinking diet soda with these. I’m going to guess that it was the whole bicycle ride that kept me from being a 250 lbs 13-year-old kid. I would have been on Maury and gone to fat kid boot camp.
Upon revisiting these unholy hyper-sweetened abominations, I found the sugar glaze on the crust alone to be unbearably sweet and I had to spit out the bite that included the filling. I’m going to be an old curmudgeon about this and say, how the heck did I eat these AND drink a flippin’ full sugar soda? That’s a hyper-mega-sugar-sweetness-overload. These things are terrible. TERRIBLE. And this is coming from a guy who LOVES Twinkies.
Unless you’re into horrible foods or have a compulsive disorder that forces you to purchase products that contain more sugar per serving than years you have lived, avoid this. It’s just so bad for you. Now where did I put those Twinkies?