I’m an avid fan of Consumer Reports, and I was a devoted subscriber to their magazine, ShopSmart. But I became disillusioned when I viewed the injustice they did to the dairy-free and vegan community. It was quite obvious in their recent taste test of ice cream bars and sandwiches that the staff at Consumer Reports didn’t consult our website to ensure they were getting an accurate sample of the dairy-free market.
Consumer Reports did a “frozen treat” taste test, trialing fruit bars, ice cream bars, and ice cream sandwiches. In what appears to be an afterthought, they decided to throw just two dairy-free and vegan ice cream sandwiches into the mix. Based on only these two soy-based options, they declared vegan ice cream bars and sandwiches to be subpar …
“How did dairy-free fare? So Delicious Dairy Free Vanilla Minis sandwiches aren’t so delicious. The innards (organic soy milk is the first ingredient) have a mild artificial-vanilla flavor, and the wafers are soft and sticky. Tofutti Dairy Free Cuties Vanilla sandwiches consist of gummy, artificially flavored innards (corn syrup solids, soy, and tofu) between sticky wafers that taste a little stale.”
I’m sorry to tell you CR staffers, but soy isn’t the end all be all for the dairy-free world anymore. It’s time to get up to speed on the range of options before passing judgment on an entire product range. Had you bothered to check out our reviews, then you might have been lured in by some of these delicious dairy-free and vegan offerings …
Luna & Larry’s Coconut Bliss Vegan Ice Cream Bars – A delicious blend of Organic Coconut Milk, Organic Agave Syrup, Organic Dried Coconut and Organic Coconut Extract (or Organic Fair Trade Cocoa), and Organic Fair Trade Vanilla Extract.
Almond Dream Bites and Lil’ Dreamers Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert Sandwiches – Just 100 calories per serving, the snack-sized Lil’ Dreamers desserts boast an almond-based vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two tender chocolate wafers. For a gluten-free option, they also offer Almond Dream Bites – think dairy-free bon bons!
So Delicious Almond and Coconut Milk Minis Frozen Dessert Sandwiches and Bars – Did the CR staff completely miss the fact that So Delicious has entire lines of coconut mik-based and almond-milk based (soy-free!) frozen desserts? They offer sandwiches and bars galore in both frozen dessert varieties.
DF Mavens Dairy-Free Ice Cream Bars – The other-worldly ice cream bars by DF Mavens would make those Consumer Reports tasters blush. Some are almond milk-based, some are coconut milk-based, but all are vegan, gluten-free, soy-free and simply amazing.
Rice Dream Non-Dairy Frozen Bites, Bars and Pies – The Dream brand doesn’t stop with almond-based ice creams. They have rice-based ice cream bars (sold as singles!) and bites that are dairy-free, gluten-free, and vegan (they do contain a touch of soy lecithin). Rice Dream also offers chocolate-covered ice cream sandwiches (not gluten-free) or “hand pies,” which can be quite addictive and are often sold as singles for a special treat.
Believe it or not, there are more! I do my best to continuously curate our frozen dessert reviews. This is just a visual sampling of the many amazing goodies that you can enjoy whether milk allergic (use caution and check with the manufacturer where cross-contamination is a concern – always!), lactose intolerant, or vegan. Time to send those Consumer Reports taste-testers back to the store for a fresh batch of dairy-free and vegan ice cream bars and sandwiches!