fruits · healthy eating

Culture Clash: Noosa vs Yoplait

~Yogurt, one of my favorites ^_^ I love to eat it with breakfast or as a healthy snack.  It’s rich, creamy taste, an endless combination of flavors, with the added goodness of probiotics?! What’s not to be happy about? I’ve always been a Yoplait kind of girl, but a tasty newcomer is giving Yoplait a run for its money. I was introduced to Noosa yogurt (or as they spell it ‘yoghurt’) by one of my co-workers. Unlike the one co-worker that told me I should try hot yoga, this co-worker didn’t say anything at all. I simply noticed that she had brought a Noosa (cherry I think) to snack on and one of the clinic cats was trying to eat it! Haha

After I had seen her bring it to work a couple of times, a simple but powerful thought penetrated my subconscious: “Why don’t you try it?” The next day I had gone to the store and found a 4 pack of vanilla Noosa, figured I’d start plain and work my way up. When I got home, I opened a cup and cautiously licked the lid. It had a curiously sweet taste, more like honey than using actual sugar to sweeten it. I took my first spoonful and my taste buds were sent on an unexpected yet wonderful journey of pure deliciousness. The vanilla beans that spattered the yogurt had an unctuous feeling and wonderfully bright aroma. The honey was sweet, but not too sweet, and a twist on traditional yogurt using sugar. It was so good that in 5 seconds flat the cup was licked clean. It almost tasted as good (or slightly better than) ice cream!

Now that I familiarized myself with Noosa, I decided to conduct a little experiment to see which, in my opinion, is the better yogurt. The criteria I judged it on were flavor varieties, taste, and nutritional balance. Round 1: flavors! Noosa boasts exotic flavor combinations such as blackberry serrano and pear & cardamom, but also offers classics like lemon and blueberry. It’s French counterpart, Yoplait, is almost strictly classic in its flavorings, but does branch out with flavors like red velvet, root beer and its seasonal apple crisp. Unlike Noosa, however, Yoplait offers it yogurt in different variations such as Light, Whips, lactose free and Greek. In that respect, the winner of the flavor varieties category goes to Yoplait. So close Noosa, don’t worry, there’s still two rounds to go.

Round 2: the taste test. I already described my taste experience with Noosa, but I still commend them for using honey in their yogurt. Although I don’t eat Yoplait yogurt with vigor like I do with Noosa, I still take the time to savor the flavors and let the rich silkiness coat my palette. One of my favorite Yoplait flavors is the orange creme. It tastes just like a Dreamsicle, a childhood classic.  Though Yoplait got the nod of approval for bringing back fond food memories, I definitely get more excited to buy Noosa because I know how good it tastes. I never thought I would get excited about buying yogurt haha. Without a shadow of a doubt, the taste challenge goes to Noosa.

Ooooooh!! It’s neck and neck! Are you guys on the edge of your seats?! Who’ll come out on top?! And now, the final challenge: nutritional balance! (dun dun dun…) This part of the challenge was a doozy for me to judge. Each yogurt had their pros and cons when it came to nutritional content, but the key points I chose to focus on were total calories, sugar content, fat content, and the ingredients themselves. I compared the vanilla varieties of the two yoghurts, pitting the 4oz Noosa to the 6oz Yoplait.

First and probably the one everyone focuses on the most, calories. Most people count calories these days, but they’re also thinking they can count on a quality product that’s also nutritionally sound. Both yogurts each contain 150 calories, which is great for you calorie counters! Their lower caloric content makes for a satisfying snack that won’t send you into a downward diet spiral. Up next is fat content, or as I call it the battle of the bulge (pun very much intended). Yoplait’s vanilla is only a meager 2 grams of fat, while it’s Aussie adversary packs more of a wallop at 7 grams. It’s not Earth shattering, but for comparison’s sake Yoplait takes one for the boys back home.

Hope y’all have a sweet tooth, because next is the sugar content. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been told by my doctor to cut down on sweets. That means no doughnuts, cookies, and ice cream. But he didn’t say anything about yogurt! Noosa’s ice cream like vanilla yogurt contains 16 grams, while Yoplait has 18 grams. Despite Yoplait’s best efforts to lower its sugar content from 26 grams originally to 18, the winner of the sugar showdown is Noosa.

 And now, for my final trick, I shall demonstrate the nutritional power of not one but TWO different yogurt brands! Both vanillas had similar ingredients, so I won’t riddle them all off. But I will point a few key things that stuck out to me during my analysis. In Noosa’s vanilla, they use both pure vanilla extract and vanilla bean, whereas Yoplait doesn’t mention anything about vanilla, only ‘natural flavor’. Seems very vague and a little sketchy. The type of milk each brand uses differ, but the way it’s pasteurized does not, with Yoplait using cultured pasteurized grade A reduced fat milk and Noosa features grade A pasteurized whole milk.

Lastly, both Noosa and Yoplait contain active cultures. Only Noosa goes the extra mile to list the exact probiotics they add to each yogurt. Those being S. Thermophilus, L. Bulgaricus, L. Acidophilus, Bifidus, and L. Casei. It makes me feel a little better knowing what I’m putting in my body with each spoonful. So… after much deliberation (and delicious taste testing), the winner of the culture clash is……… *drum roll*

NOOSA! Their unique collection of flavor combinations, existential taste and using the purest ingredients possible is what made Noosa victorious. Though of course I’ll still continue to eat Yoplait.

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