Thursday, May 31, 2012

Tutti Frutti Soybean Yogurt: Vegan Fro Yo!

Last weekend we were in Charleston, SC for our anniversary.  There's a Whole Foods in Mt. Pleasant right outside of Charleston so we decided to go to dinner there for the salad bar.  As we were pulling into the parking lot, we noticed a sign for Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt that said, "Now serving soybean frozen yogurt."  I didn't get too excited at first because I was afraid that it would be similar to sorbet which isn't really exciting to me.  But we decided to check it out after dinner to see what it was all about.  When we went in, they had 3 soybean flavors:  vanilla, peanut butter, and Oreo....yes, I did say Oreo!  They have it set up where you can sample all of the flavors so we were able to try all of them.  (Here's the link to the Mount Pleasant Tutti Frutti if you live near here!)  I was definitely most excited about the Oreo flavor because I knew they would have Oreos on the toppings bar.  All of the flavors were very creamy and delicious!  As a vegan, I get really excited about the ice cream machines that you can pull down the lever and it makes swirly ice cream/frozen yogurt.  That was always my favorite kind of ice cream before I became vegan.  So whenever I find a place that has it, I always get excited....too excited!  The toppings bar also had lots of vegan options:  fruit, nuts, Oreos, Reeses peanut butter sauce, and Ghiradelli dark chocolate sauce (both of the sauces were vegan).  Right now you might be wondering about the nutritional info of all of this vegan frozen yogurt craziness and I will be honest with you, I didn't do this healthy at all!  The first day (yes, we went back) I had the Oreo frozen yogurt with Oreos on top.  Pretty simple and basic and totally NOT healthy.  However, it was delicious and super exciting as a vegan.  The next day, I got a little bit of all 3 flavors with Oreos, peanut butter sauce and chocolate sauce....yes, even unhealthier than day one.  I let the excitement of it all get to me.  Sometimes I go into "vegan survival mode" or "vegan excitement over a rare vegan find" mode.  It gets the best of me sometimes.

Even though I did this very unhealthy, I looked up the nutritional information online and it doesn't have to be unhealthy.  It could actually be a fairly healthy treat occassionally.  The peanut butter flavor was listed as having 34 calories per one ounce.  No one eats one ounce of ice cream....that's ridiculous.  But if you ate 1/2 cup (4 ounces) that would be 136 calories of the peanut butter flavor.  Vanilla wasn't listed but I bet it is even less calories.  If you ate one cup, that would be 272 calories.  The only issue is that you would have to eyeball it since you serve yourself or I guess you could ask them to weigh out your frozen yogurt before you put toppings on it (if you put toppings on it at all).  I feel like the toppings are the "danger zone."  With things like Oreos, nuts, peanut butter and chocolate sauce (all vegan) that's too temping.  I think I would really have to have a game plan next time I go to a Tutti Frutti that has the soybean flavors.  If I did get Oreos, I would just get a few and not get the chocolate and peanut butter sauce.  Or I might just get the vanilla and eat it with some fruit.  You really could have this be a relatively healthy treat if you did it right.  It's just so hard to do it right when they have Oreos and peanut butter!  :)

Another cool thing about the vegan soybean frozen yogurt is that it supports an initiative to fight hunger.  They donate a portion of the proceeds of the soybean frozen yogurt to help fight hunger.  Very cool. 

Here's the catch:  not all Tutti Frutti locations sell the vegan soybean frozen yogurt.  Some of them just have sorbet.  Asheville has two Tutti Frutti locations and neither one of them have the soybean yogurt.....yet.  Hopefully (or maybe not) they will get it soon.  Before you get too excited, I would call your local Tutti Frutti shop (if you have one in your city) and see if they have it.  If they do, check it out!  It's totally worth it! 

Check out the website link for Tutti Frutti listed above.....they advertise the soybean frozen yogurt on the main page of the website!  How cool is that?!

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