Lunch Buddies Vanilla Pudding Cups (Aldi)

A stock image of Lunch Buddies Vanilla Pudding Cups, from Aldi
Like finding a long lost friend.

As a kid, I never really paid attention to vanilla pudding cups. I mean, why would you, when there’s a perfectly good chocolate version right next to it? (I did do the swirled version, from time to time.) That’s actually a mindset that has stayed with me throughout the years: Outside of ice cream, I rarely eat vanilla anything, preferring chocolate whenever applicable. Hell, even when eating vanilla ice cream I tend to put cookie chunks, or hot fudge on it...anything to prevent just the plain ol' taste of vanilla.

Our son used to be the exact opposite of me, favoring vanilla pudding to the chocolate. But then, when he decided—quite literally almost overnight—that he just didn’t like vanilla pudding anymore, someone needed to step up to the plate to make sure the entire 4-pack wouldn’t go to waste. It took a lot of arguing back and forth with myself, before I finally just…okay, I was excited that he didn’t want it, because I really wanted to try it. And while I’m not opposed to stealing his food on occasion, even I'm not gutsy enough to touch his pudding...if he ever found out, I'd be banished from my own home.

Oh man, this is rich and creamy goodness. It’s got a strong vanilla taste that actually reminds me a lot of the flavor of tapioca pudding, but without the weird globby bits in it (maybe I’m way off base though, because I haven’t had tapioca pudding in forever). It’s very sweet, but in a good way—I mean, it’s a kids snack for goodness sakes, and there’s a reason pudding is a main ingredient in a variety of desserts.

The texture is soft and rich and…well, like most puddings, let’s just say it goes down all too easy. Have my taste buds evolved, or has vanilla pudding always been this good, and I’ve just been neglecting it all these years? In fact, in the ultimate irony of life, I went back and tried a chocolate one, too, and found it to be a little bitter, and not nearly as delicious as I remember it being. vanilla this good? Will I be buying vanilla milkshakes and swearing off chocolate forever? Not even close, but this is a great-tasting occasional treat, and at $.95 per 4-pack, one that won't come anywhere near breaking anyone's bank.

Overall: 8/10. Is this what my life's been missing? After eschewing vanilla pudding in favor of chocolate for years, I finally tried some after our three-year-old son literally decided to hate it out of nowhere...and actually think I prefer the white stuff. It's very sweet, but rich and creamy, with a strong (and probably fakey) taste that kinda reminds me of tapioca pudding, minus the random globs scattered throughout. And at $.95 per 4-pack, you really can't go wrong in the price department. Great for lunches, dessert, or just a quick snack on the go. Consider me impressed!