Fast Food Review: New! Caramel Apple Frosty Parfait from Wendy’s
Wendy’s is the latest fast food chain to capitalize on the whole “eat seasonal” trend, in the process saying “adios” to their tribute to summer in the Berry Almond Chicken Salad (read our review here) and welcoming in autumn with the Caramel Apple Frosty Parfait. I wasn’t much of a fan of the salad, but anything involving a Frosty – especially one involving Ghirardelli caramel sauce – is worth a try.
It’s our creamy, classic Frosty swirled with all-natural brown sugar granola, fresh red and green apple slices, and real caramel. It’s a tasty, feel-good treat.
OK, full disclosure is in order here. If you’re asking me what the best value menu item fast food dessert is, I’ll undoubtedly spell out for my love for the classic Chocolate Frosty in Petrarchan Sonnet form. That is, provided I don’t live in Maryland, where the 99 cent small Frosty is actually $1.49+. My love of the 99 cent Frosty really has extended into all parts of my life, so much so that I’ve developed a rather unshakable habit of measuring cost in Frosty’s. That 1% commission I earn in my job? Well, if it comes out to $1.82, I’m more likely to pat myself on the back and say “hey, that’s like 1.82 Frostys” then I am to say “swell job dude, you just made a buck eighty-two.”
All that being said, I have to be honest with you in that I had never had a vanilla Frosty before. And I probably won’t be having one anytime soon, because the Caramel Apple Frosty Parfait is good enough to convince you to skip the regular old Frosty and pay $1.79 for the seasonal treat.
I really don’t know what took Wendy’s so long with getting the idea to put granola on a Frosty, but it works perfectly. With its cool, thick, and sweet soft serve base, the Frosty gets a textural foil from the granola, which also adds a strong taste of brown sugar that reveals another depth of sweetness. I love how Frostys don’t immediately melt on you, but at the same time, don’t stay pathetically cold. This makes the play between the caramel sauce and the Frosty base an enjoyable experience, as the thick and warm sauce manages to melt elements of the Frosty while not destroying the structural integrity of the whole thing. It makes for a fun little treat to mix around, and at 400 calories, it doesn’t weigh you down like even the lightest of milkshake offerings from other chains.
I really enjoyed the sauce, which while exceptionally sweet, does have a taste of cream and a hint of depth which accentuates the granola. The apples were not plentiful, and if there is one flaw to the mix, it’s the apples. The chunks are a bit too large, and any tartness and astringency is lost behind the exceptionally sweet Frosty base. I understand some people might be disappointed at the dispersion of the granola and sauce at the top of the Frosty, but remember this is a parfait. Mixing it up – and creating the balance of soft and crunchy, warm and cold - is on the eater, not the product itself.
I didn’t think you could improve on the beloved Frosty, but the Caramel Apple Frosty Parfait proves you can. Not only is it a dessert which won’t break the bank, but it’s fairly sensible as far as fast food desserts go, and more than tasty enough to earn its way onto my normal rotation.
Pros: Sweet and thick Frosty base provides perfect pillow for crunchy granola and warm caramel sauce. Apples are fresh. Cheaper and healthier than a milkshake.
Cons: pple chunks are too large and seem out of place in the soft serve mix.
Grubbing on-the-go: 8.00/10
Overall GrubGrade: 9.00/10
Caramel Apple Frosty Parfait
Calories – 400
Total Fat – 9 grams
Saturated Fat – 5 grams
Trans Fat – 0 grams
Cholesterol – 30 milligrams
Sodium – 180 milligrams
Carbs – 71 grams
Sugars –57 grams
Dietary Fiber – 1 grams
Protein – 8 grams
Calcium – 30%