Whenever I think of Weight Watchers Smart Ones Desserts, my mind drifts back to a theoretical board meeting where some guy, let’s call him Harry, is being carried around on the shoulders of his well dressed and normally businesslike partners, while they all sing “for he’s a jolly good fellow.” You see, Harry has just come across the greatest idea since disproportionate photographs in advertising. Instead of shopping their desserts in their intended role, the middle pocket in a Hungry Man frozen dinner, why not sell them by themselves for $1 a piece? Harry gives himself a pat on the back as his coworkers carry him out of the board room, completely oblivious to the fact that in ten minutes he will be thrown over the balcony of the Weight Watchers tower in the bloodiest coup since General Mills led his troops to capture the great cereal empire. Unless my history is wrong, that is.
Weight Watchers, named so to advertise to someone like myself who might casually glance at the nutrition facts while I eat the entire box, is generally associated with a more health-conscious type of consumer, and in the worst way possible: Tiny portions. In order to cram something moderately dessert-like into a 120 calorie, 4 grams of fat package, that meant removing most of the strawberries. And the shortcake.
What is left is a product slightly longer than the length of a gameboy advance cartridge. For comparison, the amount of space contained by the food is about the length of your pinky finger. Each cake has 210mg of sodium, or about a third of a loaded potato skin from TGIF. The box also claims 2% Vitamin A and 4% Calcium.
After eating most of the box, I still cannot figure out from what depth of mass production hell that the whipped cream came from that after a short trip in the microwave simultaneously melted and then turned into a frothy curdle which I can only compare to the texture of those Yoplait Yogurt whips. The strawberry filling is exactly what you’ll find in a package of strawberry shortcake filling. The “moist yellow cake” has been pushed deep into the tray so that almost all of the air is let out, which in hindsight is probably a blessing as what I assumed would be a soggy mess actually kept its form during the cooking and eating process. The whipped cream, for what it is worth, adds to the taste and the overall flavor and texture is appealing.
Like any other Smart Ones dessert, the Strawberry Shortcake is only “satisfying” if you are a small child or have the appetite of a small child. Alternatively this is a great product if you fit the Weight Watchers stereotype of women who treat dessert like a heroin addict treats his next fix: Just enough to satisfy your habit but not enough to fall into a full blown dependency. Otherwise, this is about as satisfying as paying a dollar for one of those sample cups of sausage they hand out at the supermarket.
Pros: Can be eaten in about two scoops, thus is great if in a rush. Is not filling at all, and thus is not an impediment to your hunger.
Cons: Is not filling at all. Isn’t necessarily billed as “healthy for you” as it is “not as bad as the alternative.” Should really be considered a shortcake vitamin.