Not Martha

Oreo vs. Hydrox vs. Newman O’s

The other week Scott and I had an Oreo/Hydrox/Newman O’s taste off for no reason at all other than to celebrate having Hydrox around again, at least for a while. We broke the tasting into Overall Cookie, Just the Biscuit Part, and The Creme, with a side consideration for dunking in milk.

For Overall I liked Oreos while Scott preferred the less sweet Hydrox. I preferred the extra crunch that the Oreos had and found that the flavors were the most balanced. The Newman O’s had the crunchiest cookie and I found it had the most pronounced cocoa flavor, but I thought the cookies tasted slightly off, something which came through most when we compared the creme fillings.

Oreo had the sweetest and grittiest filling. I though the Hydrox filling had too many hints of powdered sugar/cornstarch, though Scott liked that it tasted like cake frosting from a can. I really disliked the Newman O’s filling, it had a strong taste of raw grain to me, but it was Scott’s favorite for being not too sweet.

When dunked in milk for two seconds the Newman O’s held their crunch the best of all, with Hydrox showing signs of getting soggy fast, and Oreo’s going “straight to mush!”. A friend of mine uses Newman O’s to mix into her homemade cookies and cream ice cream because they hold up against getting too soggy.

· comments [59] · 09-26-2008 · categories:food ·

59 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jen // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:35 am

    I’ve been impressed with Trader Joe’s Joe-Joe’s. If you haven’t already, you should try them out. (They taste like real food instead of chemicals!)

  • 2 Weaver // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:40 am

    I second the Joe-Joe’s. They are fabulous! and if you keep you eyes open closer to Christmas, try the Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s. Too good for words!!!

  • 3 Anne (in Reno) // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:47 am

    I am a huge Newman-O’s fan, I think they do hold up better when they’re not being directly compared against the unhealthy stuff though, I haven’t had an Oreo in ages now but I’m sure if I did I’d be off the Newman-O wagon. My vegan friends adore them for having no animal products and I approve of the no high fructose corn syrup. So I think they’re a good alternative for non-Oreo eaters.

  • 4 jesser // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:58 am

    I am a huge fan of the Back to Nature brand Oreo-style cookies. I described them to someone as “The best tasting oreo, ever. They taste more like Oreos than Oreos.” They win top prize in my book.

  • 5 mamacita // Sep 26, 2008 at 7:01 am

    You’re doing God’s work, Megan.

  • 6 jen // Sep 26, 2008 at 7:05 am

    Oooh, I’m inspired to do my own taste test now. The photos here are great, too! :)

  • 7 Countervail // Sep 26, 2008 at 7:05 am

    I’ve tried both recently and I have to completely recommend the Hydrox for one main reason. Instead of using high-fructose corn sweetener, like Oreos, Hydrox uses plain old sugar for their filling.

    There’s a big controversy about the use of high-fructose sweetener and obesity and the Hydrox is plenty sweet for me.

  • 8 Mary Gondola // Sep 26, 2008 at 7:48 am

    I’m definitely team Newman-O’s, like Anne above. They do have a different taste/texture than Oreos (I’ve never had Hydrox, so I can’t compare) but I prefer their flavor. They don’t taste as processed as Oreos, and as Scott said, the sweetness is not as in-your-face sugary.

  • 9 Rebecca // Sep 26, 2008 at 7:56 am

    The mint-flavored Newman Os are among my favorite snacks on the planet. Give those a try.

    And I’d advise against getting too hooked on any Trader Joe’s products. One day you’ll go in for a fix and they’ll have stopped making them altogether. I hate that!

  • 10 phillygirl64 // Sep 26, 2008 at 8:09 am

    There will be riots if Trader Joes discontinues Jo-Jos…I think I am the reason I never see them out for sampling anymore around here…lol

  • 11 Kristin // Sep 26, 2008 at 8:11 am

    I love the TJ’s Joe-Joe’s also…love them so much that I can’t buy them or else I get a tummy ache. The candy cane ones during the holidays are amazing! Just like Jen and Weaver said.

  • 12 just barrie // Sep 26, 2008 at 8:28 am

    my dad still puts oreos in his milk, mashes them up and then drinks it like a smoothie. makes me cringe to no end!

  • 13 Anotheryarn // Sep 26, 2008 at 9:05 am

    I was never a big fan of plain oreo-style cookies in the first place but have to be very careful around packages of Newman’s Ginger-Os and TJs Peppermint Jo-Joes. I will eat most of a package of either cookie in one sitting if I’m not careful.

  • 14 liz // Sep 26, 2008 at 9:34 am

    I’m in complete agreement with the comments about the Back to Nature O’s and the Hint ‘o Mint Newman O’s but my favorites are the Newman O’s Ginger O’s.
    Now I want cookies. Thanks, Megan(& Scott)!

  • 15 amy // Sep 26, 2008 at 9:45 am

    Oreo’s “straight to mush!” is CLASSIC. You only have so long (about two seconds) between dunking and mouth insertion. I love it.

    Also, Oh oh ah-oh oh, Oh Are E Oh, Oh oh ah-oh oh… The white stuff. (I heard the NKOTB song yesterday which of course makes me think of the Weird Al song.)

  • 16 Lorie // Sep 26, 2008 at 9:52 am

    Oreo gets my vote hands down!! They are SOOOO bad for you, but they are SOOOOOOO good!

  • 17 Kate // Sep 26, 2008 at 10:31 am

    for reference, from my experience (always check labels):
    Oreos: nut-safe
    Hydrox: NOT nut-safe
    Newman-Os: NOT nut-safe
    Anyone know about Joe-Joes? It would be nice to have a HFCS-free option.

  • 18 kelly // Sep 26, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Wow. I really appreciate the sacrifices you guys make for science. Could we also get a ripple chip taste off? And maybe for October, a best candy corn tasting. This could become a full time taste-test blog. YUM

  • 19 shokufeh // Sep 26, 2008 at 10:57 am

    I appreciate your sufferings.
    My favorites are Whole Foods’ 365 Brand Sandwich Cremes. (Please don’t pronounce as “creams.”

  • 20 Sarah // Sep 26, 2008 at 11:27 am

    You are too funny Megan. This sounds like a really fun taste test. Happy weekend!

  • 21 michelle // Sep 26, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    I love the original Oreo, but can’t have then in the house. I love the mint Oreo’s even more. I did try the Newmans version and I thought the cookie was too hard.

  • 22 kelley // Sep 26, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    as long as it’s dipped in chocolate, i’ll take any of them. that’s how i roll.

  • 23 Betty // Sep 26, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    I fourth or fifth or sixth TJ’s Joe joes they rock. Esp the peppermint ones. Too bad I cut out processed sugar of any kind…. Thanks!!

  • 24 Randi // Sep 26, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    How did I miss this blog? I love it!

    I tried to make myself like Newman-o’s, because I’m trying to rid myself of HFCS, but I can’t stand them. I’d rather kill myself slowly with the chemicals in Oreos. (I’ve never had any of the other mentioned cookies.)

  • 25 Denise // Sep 26, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    We love TJ’s Peppermint Joe Joe’s but we just recently tried the Wild Harvest Organic from Jewel and we love the great cocoa flavor in those cookies!

  • 26 Mer // Sep 26, 2008 at 5:56 pm

    Best blog post ever.

    I can’t have Oreos in the house, either. I’m guaranteed to gain ten pounds if I do.

    Darn, I want some now…

  • 27 susan // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    Megan, what on earth would we do without you? You are never afraid to ask the tough questions.

  • 28 Spring // Sep 26, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    The next time you and Scott travel north of the border pick up a package of Oreo’s. The Canadian Oreo’s filling is much more smooth and not quite as sweet when compared to their US siblings.

  • 29 Laura // Sep 26, 2008 at 9:47 pm

    Trader Joes brand of said cookie perfection should be considered.

  • 30 bbq pancho // Sep 26, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    to my knowledge, only oreo is available as a double stuff cookie. for me that makes them the hands down winner.

  • 31 plumpdumpling // Sep 27, 2008 at 8:04 am

    Must. have. cookies. My boyfriend is currently trying to talk me out of buying a package of double stuff Oreos today. I like that first photo so much that I’d like to re-create it myself, blow it up to massive proportions, and hang it in my kitchen.

  • 32 Anne (in VT) // Sep 27, 2008 at 9:47 am

    Newman’s are the best! The filling tastes like simple confectioner’s sugar icing (butter, sugar, vanilla, milk) not chemicals. The choclatey cookie is delicious as well. Cannot eat any other since we discovered these.

  • 33 Nomie // Sep 27, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    See, the sog factor of the Hydrox in milk is exactly why I like them – they don’t get mushy too fast and dissolve in the milk like Oreos, but they do eventually soften a bit unlike the Newman O’s.

    Speaking of which, let’s all crumble a cookie for Paul Newman, may he rest in peace.

  • 34 Joan // Sep 27, 2008 at 7:43 pm

    omg…OREO’s are the bomb! Hydrox were always known as the “cheap imitation” in my day…And Newman-0’s? Must be regional as not in Florida, but mmmmm…now I’m 0-so-cookie-curious!

    BTW, for what it’s worth, it always seemed like the guys went for the Hydrox with the thinner, less sweet filling…wonder what that’s all about?

  • 35 Cakespy // Sep 28, 2008 at 12:06 am

    Fantastic. I have always had a chip on my shoulder about Hydrox (they were the brand my mom would buy and say “they’re Oreos!”. But we were NJ children of the 80’s. We knew they were NOT Oreos.) But these days I rather enjoy them. Fun to read!

  • 36 Locks Fan // Sep 28, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    All 3 are fine. But the CHOCOLATE filled Newman-O’s ROCK. They can give you what you want if you seek a chocolate fix.

  • 37 Sheryl // Sep 28, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    I grew up with Hydrox and preferred them over Oreos. I was delighted last week when I found Hyrdox at my grocery store. I hadn’t seen them before.

    I also love Jo Jos. So much that I can’t have them here because I go crazy.

    RIP, Paul Newman. You were loved!

  • 38 lucy // Sep 29, 2008 at 4:24 am

    I know it’s been said, but the TJ’s Joe-Joes are the best, I can’t eat Oreo’s any more. And the holidays, when the peppermint Joe-Joe’s show up for their limited appearance, are truly a reason to celebrate.

    To the commenter worried about nuts, I don’t have a box handy, but Trader Joe’s is really good about labeling their products if they are made in facilities that also process nuts.

  • 39 dot // Sep 29, 2008 at 5:40 am

    Thanks for sharing this important research…! Love it. I’ve always been an oreos girl myself..

  • 40 Erin // Sep 29, 2008 at 6:10 am

    I am definitely on the list for Trader Joe’s Joe-Joes. Especially the candy cane flavor ones that come out around the holidays.

  • 41 Melissa // Sep 29, 2008 at 7:28 am

    I found that I loved Newman O’s but only when they had been left open to go a bit stale. Yes, I’m a little odd.

  • 42 haus // Sep 29, 2008 at 8:41 am

    My favorites are the Newman Ginger-Os. Yum! I prefer them to any chocolate cookie, which is saying something.

  • 43 Isabel Kallman // Sep 29, 2008 at 10:28 pm

    omg. this may have been the best product smackdown ever.

  • 44 Kathleen // Sep 30, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    I love that you are having this cookie taste-off! All in the interest of research right? Rock on! I’m going to do this!
    How about buying Newman’s cuz we love him and all the profits from his food goes to charity? May you rest in peace you handsome, awesome artist, brutha.

  • 45 Renai // Oct 1, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    Whole Foods store brand are my absolute favorite sandwich cookie. The half black half white kind are to die for. They’ve become my automatic potluck/picnic/bbq backup when I don’t have time to bake anything.

  • 46 marthe // Oct 1, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    Best way to eat an Oreo.
    Fill teacup with milk.
    Drop cookie in.
    Wait 2 seconds until cookie begins to sink.
    Quickly spoon it out and eat it while it’s softening.
    Say “Thank you God!”

  • 47 phillygirl64 // Oct 9, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    If TJs had a nut issue, I would have known about it IMMEDIATELY!!

    Working on a pack of the mint Newmans…not Jo-Jos, but not bad…

  • 48 chocoloco // Oct 13, 2008 at 6:40 pm

    Here are my observations between an Oreo/Hydrox cookies smack down I’m conducting on these packs of cookies that a friend forgot at my place on their way overseas a couple of days ago. I’ve sampled 24 cookies thus far.(somebody stop me!).

    Oreo cookie: Very sweet filling, intense chocolate flavor, very crunchy.
    Dunking data: n/a

    Hydrox cookie: Not as sweet as Oreo filling(which I prefer), ok chocolate flavor, crunchy.
    Dunking data: n/a

    My wish list Frankencookie: Oreo cookie with Hydrox cookie filling (to cut down on quick sugar overload).

    Conclusion: Between these two, the Oreo cookie wins, although some may find it too sweet, but the chocolate flavor can hold you over until a slightly less sweeter but every bit as chocolatey contender is recommended.

  • 49 Sylko // Oct 15, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    I grew up with Hyrdox, so when I bought a package recently, I was surprised that it was the taste and texture of my memory. When I started eating Oreos when I was older, I thought they had changed the filling consistency, but now I realize I grew up with the harder filling of Hydrox (not easy to lick off the cookie). I prefer the taste of Hyrdox, though, and I like the firmer filling.

    Oreos are still super good, though.

  • 50 erin // Nov 14, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    i would recommend the Late July version of Oreos/Hydrox…the vanilla ones have green tea vanilla creme and the chocolate chocolate ones are very dark chocolate. kind of a grown up version of the classic…

  • 51 Perfectly Disgraceful // Nov 17, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    I’m another fan of the Whole Foods brand oreo knock-off. I love them so much that they’ve ruined me for all other oreo-style cookies.

  • 52 Brickbat Kid // Nov 17, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    I am also a fan of the 365 whole foods oreos. They peel apart best, and the icing is not as creamy.

  • 53 James B.Curtis // Feb 6, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    I consider Hydrox the original gourmet cookie. Oreo’s are the comercial ripoff that are sticky sweet and over hyped. The Hydrox flavor is rich and delicate. The Oreo is heavy. You only eat an Oreo if you can’t find Hydrox.

  • 54 Isaac X Vallentyne // Feb 27, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    I must say that I have found the one Oreo-like cookie that I think is the best. I’ve tried JoJo’s and Oreos but this Japanese cookie beats them both. (this is the company that makes it) under cookies the black vanilla cookie blue and whtie box.

  • 55 Isaac X Vallentyne // Feb 27, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    here is a link to wht the cookie box looks like :)

  • 56 Roger Bernstein // Apr 12, 2009 at 1:10 am

    Newman-o’s simply are the best….crunch and the mint augments this fabulous cookie….got that right, baby!!!!

  • 57 Ella // Jan 1, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    We just tried Newman-O’s for the first time, and I couldn’t even get through one bite without having to spit it out. It tasted like chemicals (although obviously that’s not what it was), and an hour later, and several food attempts later at trying to get the awful taste out of my mouth, it’s still somewhat there. If you’re a “supertaster,” you probably won’t like these. Awful.

  • 58 KC // Feb 18, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Put all 3 on a counter, same size, same price and I’ll pick Hydrox every time. Oreo’s are too sweek and Neuman’s just don’t taste right.

    Hydrox wins my taste test.

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