I used to love Nilla Wafers as a kid. It’s not that the cookies themselves were so amazing, though. The thing I liked about them was that they are vanilla flavored and, up until the last couple of years, vanilla wasn’t usually a flavor highlighted in storebought cookies . Most cookies were butter cookies, chocolate cookies or chocolate chip cookies – and for a kid that wasn’t a big fan of chocolate cookies (just storebought, homemade were always good), having a vanilla option was just tops.
Nilla wafers themselves are crunchy and slightly dry, with a mild vanilla flavor. Good, but great. Some of the fun of them has worn off for me since I usually look for a stronger vanilla flavor, but they still give me a feeling of nostalgia and I really want to like them as much as I used to. Fortunately, I recently came across a Nilla Wafer-like cookie at Trader Joe’s and had to give them a try after one of the crew members told me that they were amazing.
Ultimate Vanilla Wafers certainly look like the classic cookie in size and shape, but have tons of vanilla beans specks throughout, as well as a darker ring around the edge that is the telltale sign of a butter-rich cookie. They have a wonderfully strong vanilla flavor and, while crunchy, are not quite as dry as Nilla Wafers are. I like them on their own, with tea/coffee and will definitely opt for them over the “other” cookie in recipes where the cookies are used or a vanilla wafer crust would be good. Yum!