The last time the Kids Eat tasting crew sampled organic, natural, healthy snacks, they were not impressed. So I didn't have high hopes for Lifeway's ProBugs, a line of fruit-flavored organic whole-milk kefir drinks. Kefir, by the way, is a fermented milk beverage that is catching on as a health-food trend because it contains "probiotics," strains of bacteria that are supposedly beneficial to the digestive and immune systems.
Rather than gloss over the fact that these drinks contain bacterial "bugs," Lifeway's marketing embraces it, hoping to hook kids with gross-out flavor names like "Orange Creamy Crawler," Sublime Slime Lime" and "Goo Berry Pie"--while simultaneously appealing to health-conscious parents.
With regular Kids Eat taster Iris out of town, three friends stepped up to help Lyle (7) try out the drinks: Eva (10), Emma (10) and Jiri (7). Turns out those bugs are pretty darned tasty: all three sampled flavors were a unanimous hit. They also liked the packaging...and even managed not to spill any when tearing the things open.
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Orange Creamy Crawler
Emma: Mmm. It tastes more like banana yogurt than orange. It's OK. It's got a tangy flavor.
Eva: Mmm. It's good. It tastes like banana.
Jiri: It tastes like regular yogurt.
Lyle: It's pretty good. I like its flavor. It tastes kind of fruity and like regular yogurt.
Sublime Slime Lime
Emma: This one tastes like blueberry-orangey. It's got a lemony tang.
Eva: It's like a little fruit salad. It's like a lime dressing on a fruit salad.
Jiri: It tastes like banana. It's good. More banana-y, but the same good as the other.
Lyle: I like it. It tastes like yogurt. It kind of tastes like something that I noticed...
Eva: It sounds funny when you shake it.
Goo Berry Pie
Emma: It has an aftertaste of strawberries. At first it tastes like raspberry. It's an explosion of fruity flavor in your mouth. It's my favorite.
Eva: It's a lot more like blackberry, blueberry and strawberry. It's a berry blend. It's good!
Jiri: It tastes like blackberry Izze and tastes like blueberry Izze.
Lyle: Can I have the rest of this? It tastes better than the other ones. It tastes like a fruit I know ... Oh yeah, grape!