health valley fruit yogurt smoothies

Have you ever had the inclination to try baby food, but couldn’t be seen eating baby food? Well check this out – it’s virtually the same ingredients, in the same container, but with a mature, sophisticated label design.

I’m talking about Health Valley “On the Go” Fruit Yogurt Smoothies. You can get them in a box of four and no one will know you’re buying mashed fruit in baby food containers! I found them on sale for $2.50 per box, but I guess the typical retail price at Wal-Mart is still only $2.98 per box.

These ready-to-drink smoothies are a blend of real fruit and yogurt with no added sugar, and you don’t have to refrigerate them (until after opening… but that would be like refrigerating an energy gel packet after opening.)

Speaking of which, could these be a more natural alternative to an energy gel? Let’s see…

health valley fruit yogurt smoothie label

Health and Nutrition Inspection

Starting with the ingredients list…

Ingredients: Pears, mangoes, water, yogurt (milk, nonfat dry milk, yogurt cultures), calcium citrate malate, citric acid, ascorbic acid (vitamin c), vitamin d.

Seems like a healthy list – it really is fruit and yogurt. Obviously both those ingredients are naturally full of sugar, but there’s no added sugar (or worse, corn syrup.)

It also looks like these have the upper hand over comparable bottled smoothies, like Yoplait or even Stonyfield Farms Organic Super Smoothies, which contain added sugar (yep, “organic sugar” is Stonyfield’s #2 ingredient.)

Nutrition Facts

Calories 90
Total Fat 0.5g
Total Carb. 20g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 15g
Protein 1g

Running the numbers, these Health Valley smoothies contain nearly as many grams of sugar per ounce as the Stonyfield ones, but here, the sugar is from the fruit. Stonyfield’s smoothies are based on yogurt and added sugar, with fruit coming in third place.

That makes these Health Valley Fruit Yogurt Smoothies a good sugary snack that could probably function as an energy gel substitute! There’s dairy in them, but they’re mostly just fruit puree, so you’d get a good shot of fructose.

health valley fruit yogurt smoothies

Taste Testing The Smoothies

I purchased all three flavors, and they all taste like real fruit!

Strawberry Banana: This one is “pretty good.” It tastes like real fruit; we’re not talking fresh cut fruit, but real fruit nonetheless. You can taste strawberries and bananas separately, like fruit on the bottom yogurt. Sometimes the bananas tasted like they were a little too ripe, but not bad. The strawberry half was just right.

Pear Mango: OH MY GOSH! Now this is amazing! Again, it tastes like real fruit, but this time the pear and mango flavors are perfect! Perfect ripeness, completely natural and real, and they taste like fresh picked fruit!! I’ve never had a pear mango flavor combo before, but now I want to mix pear and mango all the time! These are at least as good as, but probably better than, a Naked fruit drink! (Green Machine would be the one exception.)

Just wait, the next Cooking With Coach Levi segment this summer will be a pear mango protein smoothie!

Apple Blueberry: This was really really good!! The blueberries taste amazing and it tastes like they’re mixed with apple butter! (That’s right, apple butter!) Right now I think I like it better than the pear mango, but they’re two completely different, complementary flavors, so you should get a box of each.

One thing that was odd was that every single package, even of the same flavor, was slightly different. Some had more of one fruit than the other, and sometimes the fruit was just right, while others it was overripe (specifically the banana.)

That would explain why sometimes the mango ones were awesome and sometimes lackluster. (Not unlike buying fresh mangoes – you never know if you’ll get a good one.) And a few tasted like pears, with just a hint of mango. It wasn’t a bad thing, but with pre-packaged food I expect a consistent flavor.

health valley fruit yogurt smoothie opened

In Use (A.K.A., What Is It Like Eating Baby Food?)

Not familiar with today’s baby food? Just take a look at diapers.com. Aside from the pic of Elmo, you can’t tell the difference!

How does it work? You twist the cap the break the seal (super easy,) unscrew the lid, and squeeze it all into your mouth. No shaking or stirring required. There’s even a spout to make sure you don’t get messy! It’s very simple, and re-sealing the bottle is easy too, should you only have the appetite of an infant.

It’s kind of like squeezing a tube of toothpaste.

What makes them even more convenient is that they don’t need to be refrigerated… But I would if I were you! Who wants a room temperature fruit and yogurt smoothie?!

I tried eating a couple partially frozen, to really get that smoothie experience, but I found them to be just fine refrigerated. With the freezer, it was too hard to judge the proper timing to be worth it.

So I just tossed a whole bunch in the fridge and I’d grab them for post-workout snacks when I wanted something cold and refreshing with no prep time.

My final verdict is…

I like how they contain just a few natural ingredients, are tasty, and are very convenient to carry around. I wouldn’t use them to replace real fruit, but they do make sense for an occasional snack.

Official website: www.HealthValley.com

Product Review Details
Company: Health Valley
Product: Health Valley Fruit Yogurt Smoothies
Reviewed by: Coach Levi
My Rating: 3.3 out of 5
Date last updated: 2013-05-18
Obtained Product: Purchased at retailer.
CoachLevi.com Advertiser: No.

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