Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Strawberry Pop Tarts vs. Real Strawberries

I was flipping through a cooking mag the other day and noticed an advertisement with the words "Baked With Real Fruit" spelled out in Pop Tarts. And in little tiny print at the bottom I found the disclaimer *filling made with equal to 10 percent fruit* This marketing ploy had me belly laughing. Fat Unhealthy Andra LOVED Pop Tarts, especially the frosted strawberry flavor but she never once ate them for the fruit. Fat Andra never read the label on a package of Pop Tarts either.

Let's take a look now, shall we?

WHAT?!? The second, third, fourth and sixth ingredients are sugar in some way, shape or form. The highest percentages being in the form of corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup, nice. Now this may be a slightly outdated label since it says that there is two percent or less each of dried strawberries, dried pears and dried apples. So that's just 6 percent or less fruit and not the healthy ten percent that's being flogged now. Now have a look at the calories. 200 calories. PER PASTRY. I always thought the serving size was both pastries since they're packaged by twos, or used to be but it's been a couple of years since I've had them.

On to the strawberries. Strawberries don't have any ingredients other than themselves, just 100% ripe, juicy and delicious fruit full of water, vitamins, fiber and natural sugars. Click here for the nutrition information of strawberries from the website Strawberry.com. To equal the calories in just one toaster pastry, you'd have to eat 5 cups of fresh strawberry halves. That's a lot of berries! Take just one cup of those strawberry halves, add some Greek yogurt, honey and Kashi cereal and you have a super fast, delicious, satisfying and healthy breakfast.

I know why I ate Pop Tarts, for the highly processed, sugary, fatty pastry goodness that would give me a nice serotonin high. But how is it that parents give them to their children and think that it is a healthy breakfast? Are we really that busy that we can't take a moment to feed our families and ourselves actual fruit? Real strawberries require nothing more than a quick rinse before serving. How inconvenient.


  1. Yummm....just had strawberries this morning, straight from our local u-pick farm. I have to admit, PopTarts are SO tasty. I loved them as a kid, which is probably why I was always a chubby kid.

    I'm enjoying your blog, am exploring the farm to table options, myself. I'm picking up my first 1/2 gallon of milk tomorrow and joined a CSA on my side of town (south of Atlanta in Fairburn).

    Keep up the good work!

  2. Strawberries - I eat them like they will be gone tomorrow!

    I must confess, I like poptarts. Still like them even after knowing all about them!

  3. Re: Strawberry pop tarts vs. the real fruit. Wow - seeing that label was eye-opening! Felt like I was reading the ingredients for a science project. I was a huge poptart fan growing up and also a chunky kid...hmmm, now the correlation is clear. Great blog!