Apparently, everyone in the Twitter-verse is all abuzz about Arby’s current dessert offerings. For a limited time only, Arby’s menu features several chocolate treats certain to please almost any dedicated chocolate dessert lover. For starters, Arby’s latest shake creation is called a Chocolate Swirl. This follows the popular Salted Caramel Shake available in the early fall.
Two other new dessert treats made their debut this past month at Arby’s.
They include a Chocolate Molten Lava Cake and a flakey Chocolate Turnover. Add to this list Chocolate Chunk Cookies, and Arby’s now has a quartet of rich, gooey, and, of course, chocolate-y desserts.
My only question was whether to sample these limited-time dessert offerings one at a time or to literally have a three-course meal consisting only of Arby’s chocolate dessert items. When it came time to choose, I decided to compromise. I purchased all three dessert items, but then ate them one at a time rather than all at once.
A Three Course Meal
I left Arby’s with three new dessert items, a thick Arby’s Chocolate Swirl Shake, a fresh-from-the-oven Molten Lava Cake, and a Chocolate Turnover. First I tackled the Chocolate Swirl Shake. It was indeed chocolate-y as my server had coated the sides of the container with rich chocolate sauce.
First Course: The Chocolate Swirl Shake
The Chocolate Swirl Shake was much better than the Salted Caramel Shake I had tried on my last trip to Arby’s. The shake retails for $2.79 and, the Chocolate Swirl version at least, tastes like a milkshake. It was both rich and filling and satisfied my milkshake craving. I appreciated the whipped cream topping but I didn’t believe it was necessary.
Like most quick service chains, Arby’s uses a dairy-based shake mix and adds chocolate flavoring. The added chocolate sauce, which is swirled on the inside of the cup, makes for a much better-tasting shake; the more chocolate flavor the better. The texture of the shake is about right, but there is a slight graininess to the finished product.
Second Course: Molten Lava Cake
Arby’s Molten Lava Cake is baked in its own little single-serving container and retails for $1.99. Outside of ice cream, chocolate cake with chocolate frosting is one of my favorite dessert items, so I was looking forward to trying Arby’s new dessert. Many full-service restaurants feature a variation on the molten lava cake theme, and I often order one to share.
Most restaurants serve the lava cake dessert to order; some add ice cream and hot fudge, so this pre-packaged item from Arby’s fell short of my expectations on several levels. The chocolate sponge cake is baked with a creamy chocolate filling and topped with what Arby’s describes as premium cocoa crumbles.
I found there to be too little filling in a cake that was a bit on the dry side. The cake was also stuck to the bottom of its plastic container. The crumbles were a bit disconcerting; dry bits of sweetness that I thought were just plain granulated sugar before I read the product description. I’d give the Lava Cake only a fair rating overall.
Third Course: Chocolate Turnover
Of the three dessert items, Arby’s Chocolate Turnover was my least favorite. It looked terrific and contained a sufficient amount of chocolate. It was also a good value at just $.99, but the turnover itself was very heavy, with way too many layers of dough between the outer shell and the chocolate contained inside.
I assume it had been made ahead that day but already seemed stale when I bit into it. I warmed the remainder of the turnover and that helped a bit, but not enough to make it any more enjoyable. Arby’s might take a lesson in baking from the folks at Pepperidge Farms. Aside from the shakes, Arby’s should stick to sandwiches and leave the desserts to others much more qualified.