Saturday, November 17, 2012

Review: MHP Power Pak Protein Pudding

You might have noticed I love protein bars. I’ve done review after review of them, justifying it by the fact that at the same time I was meeting my daily protein goals. 15 grams, 20 grams, and now even some of the enormous ones packing up to 32 grams in one bar! I can’t help it, I think they’re...well, OK, not all of them are great, but for some reason I really enjoy trying them.

What I haven’t done yet, is protein pudding. I tried putting protein powder in Greek yogurt once, with gag-inducing results. So I’m kind of afraid of mixing anything up myself, aside from my usual water-and-powder shakes. But if someone packaged it up for me and came up with a nice flavor...

Oh look, my last order from Netrition included a FREE can of Power Pak Vanilla Creme protein pudding! I have to hand it to them, the nutrition information on this thing looks stellar: 30 grams of protein; only 190 calories; sugar-, lactose-, and gluten-free; and it’s not one of those measly Jello snack cups. This is a substantial size--8.8 oz. Plus, the words “vanilla creme” have already sent me into a whole world of Oreo filling fantasy.

So I opened the can eagerly...

...well, it doesn’t look all that appetizing, does it? There are little bubbles everywhere, but it’s nice and thick and maybe a little gloopy. I tried to remind myself that the reason I like Greek yogurt is that it’s so thick.

Well, after taking a few bites I came to the conclusion that while Jello pudding gives you little nutritional bang for your buck, it’s also something you’re likely to eat again after the first time. This...not so much. It is sweet, but almost sickly-sweet and faintly gross. I’m not sure what it was, but my stomach was a little queasy the whole time. Granted, the same thing happened the first time I tried protein shakes, so maybe I just needed some time.

Unfortunately I don’t think I’d actually spend money on this just to try it again. On top of the queasiness, it gave me a powdery feel instead of the creamy bliss you expect from pudding. Basically, it’s what I would expect to get from mixing protein powder with pudding. Which really isn’t surprising considering that’s pretty much what this product is.

Taste: 5--it is sweet, but there was something about it that made me want to puke at the same time.
Texture: 7--nice and thick, which is good, but powdery rather than creamy.
Health: 9--for all that protein, it’s got very few negative ingredients. I like the fact that it’s sugar-free, and with about half the calories of a jumbo protein bar with the same amount of protein.
Eat Again? Probably not.

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