It's the holiday season and that means merry spirits, holiday cheer, and stuffing a decorated shrub in your living room. But more importantly, it means the arrival of that delicious and obscure-tasting drink known as eggnog.
For those unfamiliar, eggnog is a sweetened dairy drink made with milk, cream, sugar, whipped eggs, and usually an assortment of spices. It's generally popular throughout the United States and Canada and is generally associated with winter celebrations. The original recipe called for some sort of alcohol mixed into it for that extra bite, however, most store-bought eggnog today is nonalcoholic.
Eggnog is usually not available year-round. It normally first makes an appearance in November, however, I've seen it as early as October. Eggnog is normally available until mid-January. It's probably good that eggnog is not available year-round as I might grow tired of the flavor, but not before I keel over from a heart attack. Eggnog is not too friendly to your health. I'm sure the last thing I need this holiday season is coronary artery disease, served with a friendly visit to the emergency room.
The resourceful people at Bolthouse Farms have thought of this and presented us with their healthier version entitled "Holiday Nog." The name itself is a little disconcerting, as it would signify that their version was filled with some strange soy-based, egg-flavored health store substitution. But I checked the ingredients, and they seemed right for real eggnog: milk, egg yolk, nutmeg, vanilla. Yes! All the necessary ingredients appear to be here. Now, let's see how it compares to the traditional standby.
Holiday Nog vs. Eggnog
|Nutrition Facts||Standard Eggnog (1/2 cup)||Bolthouse Farms Nog (1/2 cup)|
Calories from Fat
Holiday Eggnog Doesn't Have the Same Creaminess
Just going by the numbers, it looks like this is a much healthier alternative to your traditional nog, but how does it stack up in terms of taste?
I poured a glass and took a pretty hefty swig. It tastes for the most part like eggnog. It has that familiar flavor with a hint of nutmeg and vanilla. But something's wrong. There's something missing.
The creaminess just isn't there. Sure, it's not a watery mess like some other healthy drinks, but it's not as thick as traditional eggnog. It could be that a focal point of the traditional eggnog's flavor does come from that massive helping of fat swirling around in its viscous creamy goodness. It's difficult to say.
If you're looking for a suitable alternative to the deliciously unhealthy mess that is eggnog, this probably will not disappoint. If you feel that it's not satisfactory enough, you could get a little creative. Try mixing it up in the bowl with half of it Bolthouse Holiday Nog and the other half a good high-quality traditional eggnog. Or just dump enough nutmeg and Southern Comfort into it and soon you'll forget about the Holiday Nog altogether.
I myself may try this again in the future. It's not a bad nog, but it's not really a substitute for the original.
Clayton Brantley on December 31, 2019:
This garbage should be banned from stores. It is not fit to drink.The store ran out of Southern Comfort original and this was all that was left.
It tastes too watery and leaves a bad taste in your mouth. I tried their web site but they didn't list it in their products and I couldn't contact them directly. My advice is to leave this crap alone. NOT FIT TO DRINK!
Rika on December 15, 2018:
At which supermarket can I buy this product?
John vee on December 15, 2014:
I have tried various Bolthouse products,
I have not been disappointed, I think the eggnog is the best I've ever had
Krystal on November 10, 2014:
Bought some today since it was the only one I found after going to 3 different stores. It tastes like a graham cracker. Very, very disappointed. Not sure I can finish the bottle. Not impressed at Metro it was $7 and change... thankfully I found it at Freshco for $5.40.
I was really optimistic too because I love their Iced Mocha drink.
I think I might just have to start making my own nog... but I've never had fresh home made nog before so not even sure I'll like that. Oh well.
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on October 21, 2014:
Thank you for reading, Cindy. I agree that it has a few odd ingredients. I don't know why they choose to put both agave nectar and cane sugar since agave is only slightly healthier than sugar. Some of these other ingredients I'm sure were to mimic the taste and texture of real eggnog, but it doesn't look like it worked.
Cindy on October 20, 2014:
I bought some the other day because it was the only brand in the store. While I like Bolthouse products I do not like this Holiday Nog. Not only is the taste off, and as you said, "something missing" with the creaminess, it also has a weird aftertaste. Frankly I don't taste any nutmeg in it at all -- and when I put more nutmeg in it to doctor it up, the aftertaste was even worse, almost as if a chemical reaction. Blah!
In addition, it also cost $6 so I had an expectation that it it would be good, and wasn't even aware that it was less calories. Also, the ingredients list includes carrot juice and agave nectar. I won't buy this again even if the price is half as much. If you want eggnog, with or without alcohol, who cares if it's a lot of calories? If I want low calories, I'll drink water.
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on December 23, 2013:
Thanks for reading, Gemini.
Their products can be hit or miss. Thankfully, I've been pleased with most of their drinks.
Gemini on December 18, 2013:
Aw, man I must find this! I love the juices and smoothies! I've never had eggnog but I am willing to give this a try. Thanks for the review!
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on November 14, 2013:
Thanks for reading, Dee.
Eggnog season is upon us once again. I'm going to have to grab a bottle of this to lessen my chances of fatally overdosing on normal eggnog's deliciously delicious goodness.
Dee on November 14, 2013:
Just tried this for myself. Its definitely missing something. Not bad, but the fat is clearly missing, and it feels like they tried to use something else to make thick, and the flavour just isn't as deep and rich as real egg nog. oh well, maybe it will be good in my coffee instead of creamer? Or mixed half and half with real egg nog like you suggested
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on January 30, 2013:
Possibly could be the heavy use of vanilla and nutmeg.
sandyhill on January 30, 2013:
It tastes like there was some kind of alcohol in it.
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on December 10, 2012:
I kinda have to agree, Joel. But for those health-conscious people, like I probably should be, it is an acceptable alternative.
Joel on December 10, 2012:
Not bad, but not eggnog, hence the name, "Holiday Nog, flavored dairy beverage." It has a strong nutmeg flavor but very little dairy definition. The plus side is that you can drink more of it as it is very light.
Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on November 26, 2012:
Hmmm...sort of tasted like chocolate milk? I'll have to try these Bolthouse products! I guess the healthy part is the trade-off.
John D Nathan (author) from Dallas, Texas. USA on November 26, 2012:
Thank you for reading, Vespawoolf! Yes, the thick texture is important, and I think that's probably what turned me off.
Of course Bolthouse Farms makes a lot of interesting healthy alternatives. I once had a healthy weird soy-based vegan-friendly chocolate milk... it sorta tasted like chocolate milk, but it was pretty good.
Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on November 26, 2012:
Sounds like you're an eggnog conoisseur! I also love eggnog, and I think the thick texture is important. So I don't know if this one is for me. Mixing half-and-half is probably a good idea just to cut some calories. Great review...thanks!