'Chain Reaction' on Serious Eats

We Try Jamba Juice's New Light and Soy Pumpkin Smoothies

There's nothing like autumn to make food and drink chains whip out the specialty flavors, and no flavor is more present than pumpkin. While pumpkin coffee drinks kind of gross me out, sipping something warm and spicy as the weather gets colder does have a certain seasonal appeal. But slurping a refreshing pumpkin smoothie? Jamba Juice thinks you should, for they are rolling out their Pumpkin Smash smoothie for fall—including a new light version and a soy variation. More

Why Sonic's Cherry Limeade Is The Best

Where I grew up, the Sonic chain of drive-in fast food burger restaurants was thin on the ground. New York is not exactly a city with a car culture. So I was a bit slow to get onto the Sonic Cherry Limeade boat, but now that I'm aboard, I can say with reckless abandon that it is truly the king of fast food soft drinks. More

Our Take on Jamba Juice's New 'Make It Light' Smoothies

Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area smack dab in the middle of the so-called health food movement, smoothies were everywhere. That is, before fro-yo swept through and became the trendy snack du jour. Poor little smoothies. But smoothie chain Jamba Juice lives on, ever popular in malls across the country. We recently tried their new low-calorie lineup. More

We Try the New Slurpee Lite Fanta Sugar-Free Mango from 7-Eleven

It's hard to resist a Slurpee in the summer time, even if you're not a high school kid hanging around in the 7-Eleven parking lot. I'm drawn to the onomatopoeic name and its natural association with Bart Simpson. But does the world need a diet Slurpee? Just in time for the warm months, 7-Eleven has unleashed Slurpee Lite, a sugar-free frozen beverage with half the calories of your run of the mill Wild Cherry Slurpee. Today I sampled the Slurpee Lite Fanta Sugar-Free Mango, May's signature flavor. More

Starbucks Refreshers: New Energy Drinks from Starbucks

People across the country (and across the world) pack themselves into Starbucks locations each morning and afternoon with the goal of pumping caffeine into their veins. Others pop into convenience stores, highway rest stops, and drug stores in search of an energy jolt. Caffeine is big business, so it's no surprise to see a player from one arena cross over into another. Starbucks has already put out a number of coffee drinks, but they've now moved into another corner of the caffeine world, releasing a line of energy drinks, much like a Monster or Red Bull. More

Burger King's New Smoothies and Frappés

Most of my favorite foods come in liquid form. I stick mainly to beer and soup, but come spring I like to work the occasional smoothie into the mix as well. I make more smoothies at home than I order out, however, because the take-out models tend to be too expensive for a snack and not substantial enough for a meal. Restaurant smoothies aren't insubstantial in terms of calories—you easily can cram several hundred calories and triple-digit grams of sugar into a fruit smoothie—but rather in terms of "Wait, that wasn't lunch; that was a very sweet pink thing that required no chewing." More

It's Back: the Shamrock Shake at McDonald's

People go gaga over this drink: each Shamrock season, blogs (like, well, us) and news sites around the country hail its return to the McDonald's menu, and there's even an entire website, shamrockshake.com, devoted to tracking down the milkshake (which, presumably, will be a lot easier to do this year, but that hasn't stopped users from breathlessly posting local "sightings"). What is it about this soft-serve creation that gets people so fired up? More

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