We Tried The New Fried Cookie Dough Bites From Sonic. Here's How It Went

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You know that expression about gilding the lily, right? It basically means that the lily, on its own, is such a perfectly beautiful flower that even to literally coat it in gold (that's what gilding is, for the record) could not make it better — in fact, gilding a lily would, in the context of the expression, take away from its loveliness. When it comes to a ball of cookie dough, perfection has nearly been achieved; indeed, there was only one thing we thought that just might have been able to improve on it without being that proverbial unneeded gilding: deep frying it.

Going into this taste test, we had hoped that, as with chicken wings, pickles, the Scotch egg, beignets, falafel, and so many other delightful fried foods, frying cookie dough balls would a great way to make a tasty food into a superb treat. When you add ice cream on the side of said fried cookie dough, well, you'll have Sonic Drive-In's newest menu item on your hands, because this classic fast-food chain, long noted for servers with roller-skates, wacky drink blends, and pickles aplenty has done it again, adding a unique menu item. Sonic's new Fried Cookie Dough Bites are a wild ride to be sure, and we took the ride for you so we can tell you all about them. Do you think this latest sweet treat from Sonic is going to be a winner? We'll have a few words about that at the end.

What's in the new Fried Cookie Dough Bites?

Properly called Fried Cookie Dough Bites à la Mode on the Sonic Drive-In menu, in this latest menu item you'll find — lo and behold — according to Sonic's own site: "Chocolate chip cookie dough, fried to a golden brown and served with a side of real ice cream for dipping." So that means, for the record, something like these ingredients for the chocolate chip cookie dough, noting that we are using a major national brand, Nestlē's Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, to be precise, as our reference; we can't be 100% sure of what's in the Sonic recipe, but it's likely something like bleached wheat flour, sugar, chocolate bit, oils of various sorts, and some flavorings and preservatives. And more, but you get the picture.

As for the vanilla ice cream, we're going to assume the ingredients listed in the soft serve vanilla from another fast food chain are a close comparison, because the ingredients in Sonic's ice cream are notoriously hard to find. So let's look at what's in the soft serve from this place you may have heard of called McDonald's, which does readily disclose ingredients. And they are: "Milk, Sugar, Cream, Corn Syrup, Natural Flavor, Mono And Diglycerides, Cellulose Gum, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Vitamin A Palmitate."

How much do Sonic's Fried Cookie Dough Bites cost?

Sonic Drive-In's newest sweet treats are quite affordable ... or so it may seem. Priced at just $2.99 (that's the price at our local Long Island, New York Sonic, anyway, and that's before tax, for the record) these surely seem a veritable steal, even! But think about this: you only get three Fried Cookie Dough Bites with your order, so in a matter of thinking, that's paying an entire dollar per bite. Now OK, slow down, we know technically it's paying just 99.67 cents per bite, not that you can divide the value of a penny. And OK, sure, we know that calling it a dollar per bite does not factor in the price of the ice cream that you will also get. But for a frame of reference, an entire 48-ounce tub of, say, Walmart's Great Value Homestyle Vanilla Ice Cream? That costs, at last check, just $2.24.

Long story short, the ice cream costs the company so little in this small of a portion that it's hardly worth factoring it into their cost. You can go ahead and think of this as a dollar a fried, chocolatey bite, with some ice cream thrown in as a free bonus. All that grumbling aside, to be fair, $2.99 (which comes out to a cool $3.25 with taxes added in) is still a pretty affordable price for you dessert lovers out there.

How long will the Fried Cookie Dough Bites be on the menu?

Sonic is adding these new sweet gooey treats to the menu for only a couple of months, actually, so don't wait too long to try them, if you're into sweet gooey treats. You can order the Fried Cookie Dough Bites via the Sonic app starting on the date of this writing, Monday September 19th, but you can't even order them directly in store yet. (Except you basically can, because you could just use the app while standing there in the store, and really what's the difference?)

The Fried Cookie Dough Bites go on sale everywhere and for standard in-store (or from the car, delivered on skates or via the drive-thru window) ordering on Monday, September 26th. And as of now, Sonic is only planning on keeping them around until Sunday, November 27th, per a press release the company put out through Business Wire. So you'll have a two-week window during which you can get these tasty little bites and that side of ice cream, and you can still enjoy them through the Thanksgiving holiday, but they will be gone again well before December rolls into town.

How do the Fried Cookie Dough Bites compare with other items on Sonic's menu?

Sonic Drive-In is no newcomer to the world of fried sweet foods. And in fact, these Fried Cookie Dough Bites à la Mode are hardly Sonic's first rodeo when it comes to deep fried sweet treats served with ice cream. Earlier this year, the fast food chain introduced a new Churro Shake, which featured deep fried (and delightful) churros dropped into a shake made with ... well, we'll let them tell you: "Real Ice Cream blended with caramel and cinnamon sugar then topped with a cinnamon sugar churro, whipped topping and a cherry." And we'll tell you it was really good. You can also order churros on their own and get five of 'em for just $1.49. Then there are the Cinnabon Cinnasnacks with Cream Cheese Frosting, another potently sweet offering from Sonic that compares to these new Fried Cookie Dough Bites.

Long story short, these new Bites fit right into the Sonic menu — they won't seem off-brand or be a surprise to anyone who has any meaningful experience with the chain, a chain that's as well known for it's sweet treats as it is for its nearly countless blends of beverages, that roller skate-wearing (or roller blade-wearing) servers, and for some pretty solid viral commercials and online videos from a few years back.

What's the nutrition info for the new Fried Cookie Dough Bites?

So... here's some bad news for you: the nutrition info about these new Fried Cookie Dough Bites. These things are about as far from nutritious as the tip of Mount Everest is from the Mariana Trench. In the mere three Fried Cookie Dough Bites you get in an order you'll accrue 440 calories, 220 of which are from fat (so yes, that's fully half if we do the math carefully enough), a whopping 25 grams of fat, a hefty 10 grams of sugar, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 410 milligrams of sodium, and a little bit of fiber and protein (one gram and five grams, respectively) as something of a consolation prize. Oh and there are about 50 grams of carbohydrates, a number that's really neither here nor there if you're following current dietary guidelines for a healthy adult, which are between 225 and 325 grams of carbs per day, according to the Mayo Clinic.

And for reference, per Sonic's nutrition reporting, the side of vanilla ice cream isn't helping much either on the health front. Using their nutrition reporting for an "Ice Cream Dish" as the nearest comp in terms of portion size, you can assume you're getting another 350 calories total, 19 grams of fat in total, 12 grams of saturated fat, 65 milligrams of cholesterol, and a hefty 25 grams of sugar. And that's well over half your entire daily allotment of sugar.

Verdict: Did we like Sonic Drive-In's new Fried Cookie Dough Bites?

You know the part of the job we like the most? It's trying foods we love and then writing about them. Now, guess what part of the job we like it lot less? Yep, it's trying foods we don't enjoy all that much and then having to report the sad facts out to you. And as sorry as we are to say it, Sonic's new Fried Cookie Dough Bites à la Mode fall into that latter category. We really didn't care for them that much because, quite frankly, they are just too sweet. This seems to be one of those very rare cases where frying a food does not make it better, because in general we love a good chunk of raw chocolate chip cookie dough, and we love chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, so the factor here that must have messed things up was the frying, which lends a richness that's just overboard. And when we added the ice cream to a few of our testing bites, it only further increased the sweetness and sugar overload.

Now, to be sure, you and many other people out there may well love these new deep fried cookie dough treats, but for our palate — a palate with a raging sweet tooth, truth be told, but usually for things like Hi-Chew or Tamalitoz or other candies — this was too much. In fact, we only at one and a half of them.