Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Review: ZonePerfect Classic Cinnamon Roll

While I am a total chocolate and caramel fiend, I do love a good sticky bun every now and then. When I was younger and didn’t understand or care about the nutrition facts of a Cinnabon, I would shamelessly ask for one at every airport or shopping mall where their heavenly aroma entered my nostrils. And then stuff my little face with the entire thing.

As much as I wish I could still do that, the truth is that a 900-calorie cinnamon roll is just a little too daunting at the moment. So I settle for other cinnamon snacks, like coffee cake or other brands of cinnamon buns, and, of course, cinnamon roll-flavored protein/snack bars!

Which is where the ZonePerfect Classic Cinnamon Roll bar comes in. I’d seen it on their website, but had given up hope of ever finding it around here when I stumbled into a Giant I’d never been to before and saw it staring me in the face. Perfect!

This bar has that sweet-cinnamon smell of a cinnamon roll, but it’s not very strong. Still, you can’t expect it to compete with a real Cinnabon, since it’s so much healthier. I love the white coating. The inside is made of crispy rice and is easy to break.

Well, it still has that sweetly cinnamon taste, but I think it’s mostly from the coating. The sweet part, anyway. The base does seem to carry some cinnamon flavor, but it comes off as slightly bland or proteiny. Not badly, just enough to remind you that you’re not indulging in something ooey gooey fresh from the oven.

That’s in case the texture doesn’t remind you! It’s crispy but not as airy as a Rice Krispies Treat, and a little soft as well. The creamy, melty coating goes really well with those rice crisps, and it does cover up the funny base taste to a satisfying extent. It might be odd for some to think of eating a crispy cinnamon bun, but trust me--it totally works. Then again, I’m not averse to eating them in frozen form, either. :)

It’s not quite as Cinnabon-y as Kellogg’s Cinnabon Snack Bars, but I’d definitely eat this flavor again--it was a very good approximation of a cinnamon roll while still offering 15 grams of protein and none of the guilt of a Cinnabon, or even a Minibon. Of course, I’m still a sucker for chocolate/caramel, and Quest’s cinnamon roll version will always be my number one...but everybody needs some variety waiting in the wings, and this is great for that.

Taste: 8--it has the sweet cinnamon roll flavor, but not as intense. There is a slight “nutritiony” taste from the base.
Texture: 9--crisp but soft, with a creamy white sugary coating.
Health: 8--be careful if you’re low-carbing it, but it still has 15 grams of protein and a bunch of vitamins and minerals. Can Cinnabon say the same?
Eat Again? Yes.

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