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'Smell like sunscreen': A taste-test of new Mango Crèmes Girl Scout cookies

Jan. 17, 2013 at 10:21 AM ET

Brandon Goodwin / TODAY /
Mango crèmes are the newest cookies to become a part of the Girl Scout collection. They're vanilla and coconut cookies filled with mango-flavored crème that claims to have "nutrients derived from fruits."

If you were looking for a Girl-Scout-cookie fix in 1942, you had two options — chocolate or vanilla. Today we have 11, and even though variety is said to be the spice of life, that might not be such a good thing.

The newest cookies sold by cute little girls across America are Mango Crèmes, vanilla and coconut cookie sandwiches with "mango" crème. These aren’t just any old mango-flavored cookies: They’re made “with NutriFusion.” And ABC Smart Cookies, one of two licensed Girl Scout Cookie bakers, claims they come “with all the nutrient benefits of eating cranberries, pomegranates, oranges, grapes, and strawberries.”

Mango is nowhere in the ingredients list for Mango Crèmes, though shiitake mushrooms make a curious appearance.

“Our product isn’t a replacement for real fruits and veggies,” NutriFusion vice present William Grand told The Daily News. “But we can offer an alternative for people who still want their chips, pasta and cookies. Through our technology we can put some nutrients in the food they eat.”

Nutritious or not, Mango Crèmes are still cookies, so it should come as little surprise that three of them will eat up about 20 percent of your daily allowance for saturated fat.

But let’s get to what you really want to know: Do they taste good enough to bypass a box of Thin Mints or the caramel-crunch goodness of the Samoa? If our office taste test is any indicator, the answer is no, but if a box were within your reach, you'd go for it.

Most people just couldn't get over the artificial flavor of the new cookies (one person compared them to "car freshener"), which starts out relatively subtle before turning very tart and leaving a strong aftertaste.

“I couldn't bring myself to take a second bite — they don’t taste like mangos, or like crème, or like any other thing you’re supposed to eat,” said NBCNews.com producer Matt Rivera.

A few others ardently defended the cookies’ fresh fruitiness.

“I was dubious, but I really like it. It has zing; a refreshing tang that moderates the sweetness,” said TODAY.com editor Rick Schindler.

"I’d easily eat a whole box of them without thinking twice about it," chimed in another editor, Alex Smith, who came back for fifths.

Everyone agreed on one thing: Their sunscreen lotion-like smell (noticeable even several inches from your nose) is intense and off-putting, cueing you up to dislike Mango Crèmes before you’ve even taken a bite. (And who wants to be reminded that sunscreen season is still so far away?)

Basically, the best way to eat a Mango Crème is to plug your nose before chomping down and sip on some milk as a chaser. It’s all about those one or two seconds when the vanilla-coconut wafer mingles with the mango crème to create a mild, but inoffensive fruity flavor.

Or you could just stick to Thin Mints.

Tell us, have you or will you try Mango Crèmes? What's your favorite Girl Scout cookie?

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