The Gustavian Weekly

The Great Girl Scout Cookie Debate | The Gustavian Weekly

By Ben Wick - Managing Editor | March 13, 2020 | Opinion

The Delta Phi Omega sorority volunteers to help girl scouts sell cookies.

The Delta Phi Omega sorority volunteers to help girl scouts sell cookies.

Girl Scout Cookies are a national staple, and we are currently in the thick of cookie season. Girl Scouts are selling their wares in front of every building that exists, and all your relatives with six year-olds are Facebook messaging you about it.

We buy these overpriced boxes of heaven every single time we see them, like the weak-minded, sugar-loving Americans that we all are, deep within.

We grow up with them, and we all know the iconic flavors like Samoa and Thin Mints, but everyone has differing opinions on which cookie is best. I’m writing this to tell you what’s what—with an ultimate ranking of Girl Scout cookie flavors.
All right. First up is America’s favorite—the Thin Mint. Now, I’m not a huge fan of mint and chocolate together so I might be a bit biased on this one, but honestly, they’re only good after they have been in the freezer for a good 24 hours. They have a good crunchy texture, but they’re not quite as chocolatey as they look. I give them a three out of five “girl scout berets” (this will be my form of rating for this column).
Next up is the Samoa, alternately known as the Caramel deLite. This caramel, coconut and chocolate-covered cookie is absolutely delicious, and probably the most well-known flavor apart from the Thin Mint. Samoas are my personal favorite: the three flavors of the cookie form a perfect trifecta of sweet with savory toasted coconut, which is why I have dubbed it “The Holy Trinity” cookie. They’re great to eat three packs at a time, and especially great if you feel the need to add ice cream and put them in a blender for a Samoa milkshake like I often do. I give them five out of five berets—no ifs or buts about it.
The Tagalong is a peanut butter cookie covered with milk chocolate. These are not very good. I like peanut butter, but combined with the milk chocolate there are two very sweet elements battling each other. They would be better if dark chocolate was substituted, and maybe add a pretzel element for a little extra crunch. Maybe I just want a Take5. Either way, these cookies are fine in a pinch, but really only worth one and a half berets.
Now to the Trefoil. These shortbread cookies are fantastic—sweet but not overly so, buttery, crunchy, and all over yum-town central. Truly a classic biscuit. Yes, they might be simple, but why re-invent the wheel if it’s doing its job just fine? Four and a half out of five berets.
The S’mores cookie is a bit controversial for me. S’mores is quite possibly my favorite flavor for a sweet treat, next to caramel. Something about the combination of graham cracker, fluffy marshmallow and chocolate makes me feel less terrible about myself than I do on a typical day. Girl Scout cookies are produced by two different companies and depending on what region of the U.S. you live in, you might get a different cookie; this is also why there are different names for the same cookie. This is what has happened with the S’mores cookie and unfortunately, Minnesota lands in a region with the worse version. Our s’mores cookie is a graham cracker covered in what can only be described as a pathetic layer of marshmallow-flavored icing (it’s not even real marshmallow). You really can’t even tell it’s there because the layer of chocolate over it overwhelms the more subtle flavor. Can you tell I get upset just writing about it? The other version of the S’mores is a delicious sandwich-style cookie with creamy chocolate-and-marshmallow filling nestled between two graham crackers. They’re absolutely delicious, and a dip in some milk really doesn’t hurt them. The Minnesota version of the s’mores cookie gets a two out of five berets, while the other region’s delicious and not terrible version gets a five out of five.
Another divisive cookie is the Lemonade. This lemon-flavored cookie also has a regional counterpart that is better than the one available to Minnesotans. Yes, the Minnesota ones suffice, by they really aren’t satisfying. I love lemon, and really the only thing lemony about them is the greasy lemon icing on the bottom of the cookie. The cookie looks like it would taste like a citrus Trefoil but looks are deceiving, Gusties. The counterpart of the lemon cookie is named the Savannah Smile which is much more imaginative than “Lemonade.”

The Savannah Smile is a crumbly little thing that really doesn’t make much sense, but it’s much more flavorful than its counterpart.

And it’s covered in powdered sugar! Fun! Lemonades—two out of five. Savannah Smiles—a mildly confused three and a half out of five.
Do-Si-Dos are a classic, plain peanut butter sandwich cookie. They are my mom’s favorite, therefore I must like them because that’s how genetics work. They’re really not terrible, but they’re also not the best cookie. There’s not much to say about them other than that. I give them three out of five berets.
To conclude, yes, all Girl Scout cookies deserve love (except for the horrible Minnesota s’mores one). Here is my ultimate ranking—take it or leave it. From best to worst: Samoas, non-Minnesota S’mores, Trefoils, Thin Mints, Do-Si-Dos tied with Savannah Smiles, Tagalongs, Lemonades and finally the Minnesota S’mores.

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