The definitive Girl Scout cookie power ranking
Matt McMahon | Thursday, March 17, 2016
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! No, it’s not because the five greatest holidays — 311 Day, Pi Day, the Ides of March, Opening Day of March Madness and My Birthday Day — all happen to fall mere days apart from each other. It’s because you can celebrate each holiday with a different Girl Scout Cookie.
Ah, Girl Scout Cookie season: the most financially draining, stomach padding and debate inducing time of the year. What’s that, debate inducing? Yes, everyone has a favorite Girl Scout Cookie and a strong allegiance to it. However, I’m here to unwrap, dunk and debunk the opinions behind the varieties of the best sweets money can buy, provided it’s between January and April.
1. Samoas/Caramel Delights
Samoas are hands down the best Girl Scout Cookies because they manage to be so much all at once. They are chewy yet shave a crispness to them, they manage to get me to like both caramel and coconut — the grainy, shaved, candy version of coconut, no less — and they elevate apples and peanut butter when you pair either, or both, with them. The only possible criticism of Samoas is that they are so good you end up eating an entire box in one sitting, and then have to rush out and find some peddling Girl Scouts in the streets or out in front of your local supermarket to get your next fix.
2. Tagalongs/Peanut Butter Patties
The flavor of peanut butter is objectively a better pairing with chocolate than the flavor of mint. This is a bona fide fact. It’s the reason you see all the unnecessary differently shaped Reese’s products around the holidays and why you have never once seen or dreamt of a toothpaste-filled chocolate cup candy. Maybe that’s a harsh reality to accept, but it is the truth. It is also one of the reasons Tagalongs are the second best Girl Scout Cookie. They are Reese’s in cookie form. They are also the inspiration for peanut butter Twix — one of the best candy bars out there — and they are the Girl Scout equivalent of a Tastykake Peanut Butter Kandy Kake, for all the Mid Atlantic-ers.
3. Thin Mints/Thin Mints
The Achilles heel of the Thin Mint in this ranking, besides the whole mint aspect — I may have gone a little hard on mint to prove my point, but it’s not that bad, just not as good as peanut butter and chocolate — the Achilles heel is that it requires external forces for it to stack up against the top two spots. Temperature is a key factor in the quality of the Thin Mint. Frozen, the combination of the sweet chocolate exterior, the crunch of the chocolate cookie center and the sensation of cool mint vie for first place. However, without a freezer, they are just okay, and, quite frankly, a little much.
Thanks-A-Lots, the relative newbie of the lot, suffer from the same problem as Thin Mints. The chocolate-dipped shortbreads require an outside element to reach their full potential. While it presents itself as a formidable cookie as-is (though a bit plain and a bit too messy), the Thanks-A-Lot is transformed by the presence of milk. When dipped in milk for five to ten seconds, the Thanks-A-Lot’s top shortbread side soaks up and becomes a soft, but still slightly crunchy, milky bite, while the chocolate underside retains its firmness. With milk, the Thanks-A-Lot could top this whole list, but without milk, it really struggles to be sought after. The Thanks-A-Lot is also the most obvious example of inflation in Girl Scout Cookies, the reminder of which acts as another deterrent; the width of the cookie used to not fit through the mouth of a normal-sized glass of milk, but now a whole Thanks-A-Lot dunks in with plenty of room.
5. Do-Si-Dos/Peanut Butter Sandwiches
One of the upsetting things about the Do-Si-Do is that it has quite a bit of potential: it is the one major non-plain Girl Scout Cookie without chocolate, the sandwich cookie is incredibly easy to pull apart without breaking and it desperately wants to make oatmeal shine as a dessert option. But, it squanders all of this potential with poor execution. The oatmeal cookies making up the bread part of the cookie sandwich are far too grainy. The cookie-to-filling ratio is way off, favoring the oatmeal cookie nearly 100 percent too much over the superior peanut butter filling. And although pulling apart the sandwich is easier than pulling apart those pesky split ends of yours, you have about the same motivation to do either, because there is so little filling to be had inside.
Go back to your lukewarm tea and Lorna Doones and take this loss with you.
Also-Rans: Savannahs, Cranberry Citrus Crisps, Lemonades, Rah-Rah Raisins, Toffee-tastics, Trios