My Ice Cream Taste Test: Are Haagen-Dazs and Ben & Jerry's Overrated?

Did you know ice cream has been around since at least the 18th century? It has.

And although the first ice cream parlor in the United States opened in New York City way back in 1776, commercial mass-production of the tasty treat didn’t get started until 1926, after the invention the continuous-process freezer.

Today, the ice cream industry is as big as ever. In fact, 1.53 billion gallons of ice cream

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My Margarine Taste Test: Which Brand Tastes Most Like Butter?

Did you know margarine was invented in 1869 after a challenge from Emperor Louis Napoleon III, who was looking for a satisfactory low-cost substitute for butter that could be used by commoners and his military? It was.

Over the years, butter consumption has steadily decreased in the United States. By the end of World War II, the average person consumed roughly 15 pounds of butter annually, but less than 4 pounds

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My Cola Taste Test: Is Coke Really Better Than Pepsi?

People have been enjoying cola-flavored soft drinks ever since 1886 when the first glasses of Coca-Cola were being served up for five cents each (about $1.10 in today’s dollars) at a local Atlanta pharmacy.

Today, soft drinks are a key part of a beverage industry worth billions of dollars, so it should be no surprise that when it comes to the highly-competitive soft drink wars, the century-long crusade for cola lovers

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Are Gas Clothes Dryers Worth the Extra Money?

As I mentioned last week, we recently spent over $4000 replacing many of our aging home appliances, including the clothes dryer.

People looking to save money on appliances quickly learn that gas dryers typically cost between $50 to $100 more than their electric counterparts, primarily because the components are more expensive; for folks on tight budgets, that price premium can be a deal breaker. That’s one reason only one of every

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My Potato Chip Taste Test: Are Lay's Really Worth Paying More For?

Potato chips are big business. According to AIB International, over $7 billion of the salty snacks were were consumed in 2009.

It’s been reported that over 1.2 billion pounds of potato chips are consumed annually; I know I’m probably good for ten pounds a year all by myself.

I bet most of you are too. Don’t deny it.

A Brief History of the Potato Chip

As legend has it, the

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My BBQ Sauce Taste Test: My Family Bucks Conventional Wisdom (Again)

Depending on who you talk to, barbecue sauces have been around since the days of the American colonies.

Wikipedia claims that the first commercial barbecue sauce appeared around 1909. I know; please don’t grill me on my source, folks.

And while most, but not all, barbecue  sauces include some secret blend of ketchup, mustard, vinegar, sugar, onion, and garlic, in the United States there are a multitude of different barbecue sauce

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My Peanut Butter Taste Test: What 8 Choosy Mothers Really Chose

Before the average American kid gets his high school diploma he or she will supposedly eat 1,500 peanut butter sandwiches.

Americans’ passion for peanut butter doesn’t stop after childhood though. Somewhat ironically, adults eat more peanut butter than kids. In fact, almost $800 million is spent each year on the sticky stuff, which makes it one of the most frequently purchased grocery store products.

Smooth vs. Chunky Peanut Butter

According to

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My Ketchup Taste-Test: Upset! Guess Which Brand Topped Heinz.

Flickr Photo Credit: Pixel Drip

Ketchup is the most popular condiment in the United States, and if you ask one hundred people what their favorite brand is, ninety-nine will usually say Heinz.   As for the other guy, he’ll simply say he doesn’t like ketchup, period.   It’s true.

Then there are the kids; I’m certain mine believe that if Heinz ever went out of business, then ketchup would become

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Deal or No Deal? Comparing Dollar Stores to Walmart & Others

Believe it or not, the dollar store has been around since at least 1955 when Dollar General opened up its first store in Springfield, Kentucky.

Granted, in terms of purchasing power, a dollar went a lot further back then – equivalent to just a hair under $8 today. Even so, when you walk into a dollar store, it quickly becomes apparent that inflation has done very little to reduce the size

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My Store-Brand vs. Name-Brand Blind Taste-Test Experiment #3

Okay.   If you are a regular reader here you know the drill by now, so feel free to skip to the juicy parts!

Are name-brand groceries really worth the extra cost when alternative cheaper store-brand groceries are available?   More specifically, when it comes to edible products, does the quality and taste of name-brand products always justify the price premium which can often be as high as 50 percent or

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Question of the Week:

Chocolate, vanilla or strawberry?

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