So Delicious is a brand of plant-based (vegan) ice creams and other frozen desserts – including ice-cream sandwiches that I’ve heard good things about and am excited to try. I picked up a tub of So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse at the Grocery Outlet ($1.49 compared to a regular price of around $5) and to be honest my hopes were not that high – for two reasons.
1. I don’t eat much ice cream anymore because the high sugar content can cause a mood crash.
2. The last time I tried a vegan ice cream (I don’t remember the brand) it was icy and fairly tasteless.
However, the So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse took me by surprise by being none of the above – it was barely distinguishable from regular ice cream and was actually fairly low in sugar: 9 grams per serving compared to around 24 grams for regular ice cream. The mousse, part of a low-calorie range from So Delicious, has a large 330 printed on the front of the tub that indicates the total number of calories inside (so that’s 110 calories for a regular serving of 1/3 pint). Normally I go for nutrient rich foods, but ice cream is an exception – since most of the calories in ice cream come from fat and sugar it’s better to have a lighter version. The So Delicious mousse contains 4 grams of fat per serving, compared to around 20 grams for vanilla ice cream from Häagen-Dazs or Ben & Jerry’s.
But the best thing about it, though, was the taste – and how the ice cream brought me back to my childhood, like that great scene towards the end of Ratatouille. Growing up in Ireland, we had chocolate-covered vanilla ice cream bars known as the Choc Ice. The So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse is really similar to the flavor and texture of a Choc Ice and it’s one of the best ice creams that I’ve had in a while that’s also fairly guilt-free.
It looks like this may be another “limited edition” product that’s now only at the Grocery Outlet. I don’t know if that’s because it’s brand new, or (more likely) has been updated – there’s a new product on the So Delicious site that looks almost the same, but it’s called Cocoa Chip Light Frozen Dessert instead of Chocolate Chip Mousse. (I prefer the latter name.)
So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse – ingredients
Ingredients: Filtered Water, Organic Tapioca Syrup, Organic Coconut Oil, Cane Sugar, Erythritol, Chicory Root Extract, Pea Protein, Cocoa, Organic Cocoa, Sea Salt, Guar Gum, Sunflower Lecithin, Tapioca Starch, Chocolate Liquor, Natural Flavor, Xanthan Gum.
When I looked up nutritional information for some conventional ice creams (Ben & Jerry’s and Häagen-Dazs vanilla) I wasn’t too surprised at the large amount of fat and sugar, but I was shocked to see that both contained 1 gram of trans fats per serving. Trans fats!?! I was pretty sure these had been phased out of all but the very junkiest of foods after they were so strongly linked to heart disease and cancer. Anyway, that’s another perk of going with a plant-based brand like So Delicious – zero trans fats.
Ethical rating for So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse
Here’s a summary of how I feel about the social and environmental impact of So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse, which I’m scoring 4/5 Green Stars:
- A vegan product, as are all So Delicious products.
- Does not contain palm oil, a common ingredient in ice cream.
- The top two ingredients (tapioca and coconut) are certified organic.
- The So Delicious website provides a decent amount of info about packaging, including their use of plant-based plastic (from sugarcane) and post-consumer recycled or FSC-certified paperboard for some products. However, the ice cream pint containers are non-compostable (because of a thin plastic lining) and also non-recyclable.
- So Delicious is part of Whitewave Foods, which is now owned by the French multinational food company, Danone Group. Danone Group, like many multinationals, is a mix of good and bad. The negatives are similar to those of Nestlé – bottled water and pushing infant formula in developing countries. But, overall, Danone looks better than Nestlé to me.
- Danone North America is a certified B-corporation, just about qualifying with a modest score of 84.9.
- Neither So Delicious nor Danone North America report on ingredient sourcing or corporate sustainability – you’d have to dig into Danone, the parent company, and by that point you’re dealing with generalities rather than specifics on this product.
Summary scores (out of 5) for So Delicious Chocolate Chip Mousse:
- 4.5 gold stars for quality and value.
- 4 green stars for social and environmental impact
If you have a different opinion, please share your rating! Until next time, stay safe : )