Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Peeps Spooky Friends

Peeps Spooky FriendsJust Born has been adding lots of new products lately. Usually it’s just a different color or shape on the regular Peeps line, but the Spooky Friends add a new element to the Peeps marshmallow line.

What’s so different about them is that they’re individually wrapped. Oooh .... you know what that means? They’re not conjoined. There’s no little sticky spot where they’re separated from their row of quadruplicate siblings.

It also opens up the possibility for some diversity in a single package. This bag of 54 individually wrapped Peeps has three different shapes: Googly-Eyed Green Mummy, Purple-Eyed Jack ‘o Lantern & Shrugging Ghost. (There are other mixes that have skeletons, bats and spiders.)

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While I love the idea of being able to give out fun little sugar puffs to kids for Halloween, I feel like they may think it’s a practical joke when they try to get the little packets open. Let’s hope their parents let them have scissors, because that’s what I resorted to.

I thought these would be the same as regular Peeps, and I happened to have some regular Easter Peeps around for comparison. Here’s what I found:

  • Spooky Friends taste like vanilla, regular Peeps taste like lightly toasted sugar.
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  • Spooky Friends are not as fluffy and some are tacky & stiff. (Mostly the Ghost.)
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  • Spooky Friends insides are colored, the Pumpkin is slightly peach and the Mummy is lightly green. (The Ghost is still white.)
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  • Spooky Friends are smaller than regular Peeps. (This means that each has fewer calories though, at only 28 each instead of 32 for a conjoined Peep.)
  • The main thing that detracted from any recommendation for Spooky Friends is that they’re not as puffy and therefore do not work with Peeps Mash Ups as well. I rather liked the light vanilla flavor, but I missed the springly-lofty texture. They also didn’t seem to get stale as easily, but I’ve only had them for a week ... poking holes in each package in order to let them get dried out isn’t really that practical either. They have their selling points but they’re still not going to get a better rating than the original.

    At about 9 cents a marshmallow, they’re cheaper per item than the Frankford Marshmallow Pals, but they’re more expensive per ounce. Since they’re both made in China, I can’t see why you wouldn’t go for the more detailed Frankford Marshmallow Pals ... unless you don’t like coconut flavor.

    The package notes that Peeps are Gluten Free.

    UPDATE 10/31/2008: It does not appear that Just Born continued this product. I have not seen it for 2008.

    Related Candies

    1. GudFud Stuffed Marshmallows
    2. Peeps Mash Ups
    3. Peeps Lollipop Rings
    4. Peeps Spooky Cats & Cocoa Bunnies
    Name: Peeps Spooky Friends
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Just Born
    Place Purchased: KMart (Park LaBrea)
    Price: $4.99 (on sale)
    Size: 14.25 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 104
    Categories: Marshmallow, China, Just Born, Peeps, Halloween

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:27 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

    Comments
    1. i was excited to see the pic of the bag on the blog and thought you were doing a review of something i found a while back. BUT, lo and behold, what you have is different, well kinda. I found Peeps Spooky Friends, but mine are purple bats, brown spiders, and white skulls with big black eyes. Like yours they all taste the same, like vanilla. however the biggest complaint i had was the marshmallow to sugar ratio. and after viewing your blog i am headed to Kmart to see if i can find some like yours. : )

      Comment by Rai on 10/18/07 at 2:15 am #
    2. I live in the town of Peeps and the local paper ran a story today about the Spooky Friends being produced in China. The first time Just Born has outsourced any candy making outside of Bethlehem. This may account for the off taste and texture.

      The good news is that Just Born said that they wanted to test the products success and outsourced the product before investing in expensive equipment to make them here.

      Comment by Peeps Town on 10/30/07 at 3:49 pm #
    3. It is very saddening for me to see Just Born beginning to outsource the Peeps and/or Peep products(Halloween candies, etc.). This is very saddening to me for two reasons. 

      The first reason is that I am from Pennsylvania originally, and I lived in the country near Bethlehem for years. I am sure that Pennsylvanians do NOT want to see more of their jobs being outsourced.  Pennsylvania needs more industry to move into the state.  Like the rest of the United States, we do not need to see our industries outsourced!

      Secondly, I worked and lived in China for nearly 6 years and I will no longer buy Just Born products, if they are made in China.  I worked for an American company while living in and around Beijing(Hebei Province).  The company that I worked for was there to teach the Chinese people about data centers and data processing.

      The work standards (especially cleanliness), quality assurance, and values are not the same as that of America.  I am not saying that they are worse or better.  I am saying that I will not buy any food products made in China, if I can avoid it in any way. 

      Since we (USA) continue to sell ourselves to the rest of the world, I have learned to be more vigilant in my research to learn more about which American companies are outsourcing, what products(food or otherwise) are outsourced, and where I can find similar products that are made in the USA!  I will definitely have to learn how to make marshmallow Peeps, Bunnies, and Pumpkins, etc, if I ever want to give them to my children again. 

      WHO is NOT listening or reading the recent reports of lead paint being used on Mattell products?  What kind of pot are we stirring while outsourcing to other countries that have different belief and value systems than our own?

      Comment by Linda on 10/31/07 at 3:44 am #
    4. I don’t think these are made by “Just Born” but maybe they just licensed the name “Peeps” to someone else.  If you go to the official Peeps website (http://www.marshmallowpeeps.com) they are still in Bethlehem,PA and proudly state on the site that everything is still made in the USA.  The product above (Spooky Friends) does not appear anywhere on their website.

      Comment by Olive Marie Jones on 10/26/08 at 8:07 pm #
    5. Cybele's avatar

      Olive Marie Jones - this review is from last year (2007). I haven’t seen them on the shelves this year either, so my guess is they did not make them again this year.

      Comment by Cybele on 10/26/08 at 8:10 pm #

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