There’s Something New in Juice Boxes. Here’s a Hint… It’s water!
I put juice boxes in my kids’ lunches every day. EVERY. DAY. I also tend to pack juice boxes for a day at the zoo or when we go to the park. I just don’t feel like dragging around their water bottles wherever I go and juice boxes are just so darned portable and just the right size. Now while I try to skew towards the fruit/vegetable blend, no sugar added juices, I know there is still a ton of sugar packed into those little tiny packages. I know it’s not the best for them, but they like them and I figure there has to be SOME vitamins in there… right?
Well, hint® waters has taken up the cause of guilt-ridden parents who want make more healthful choices for their kids. They want to break the cycle of kids asking for sugary juices and have them fall in love with water instead. So hint has come out with a new line of products aimed at breaking the juice box cycle. They now sell Hint water in the same 200 ml Tetra boxes, which generations of kids have come to identify as “juice boxes”, in Apple, Blackberry, Cherry, and Watermelon flavors. As described by the release from Hint, Inc. “hint® waters are NON-GMO certified and WHOLE30 approved. They are vegan, and contain no MSG, nuts, soy or gluten. Like all hint waters, the kids’ version delivers delicious refreshment with no juice, no sugar, no diet sweeteners, no colors, no calories and no preservatives. “
Now let me get this straight. There’s no juice, no sugar, no sweeteners. Is there any taste? And if so, would it be enough for my kids to prefer these boxes to their old reliable ones? I enlisted the taste buds of my 6.5-year-old daughter, D, to join mine and we had ourselves an old-fashioned taste test. It should be noted that D likes plain old water to begin with, so do with that information what you will.
There was a definite apple scent and I could discern the apple flavor promised underneath the more prominent water taste. I thought it was a nice alternative to water if you want just a bit more oomph.
D: “It tastes a little like apple juice. It’s like water with a smidge of apple juice.”
My kids’ favorite juice is a berry/vegetable mixture (that I usually water down to a 50/50 mix), so I was eager to see how this measured up. Out of all the waters, this had the least flavorful “essence”. I could smell the berry (Fun fact: It reminded me of smelling Strawberry Shortcake dolls), but the taste was hardly noticeable. I just tasted water, honestly.
D “Oooo, great smell, but I taste mostly water. I can barely taste the berry. Like… BARELY.”
The cherry scent was strong with this one and I thought it had the most flavor of the bunch. I enjoyed the little cherry kick without the cloying sweetness that most cherry-based drinks seem to resort to. This was my favorite.
D: “I love this one. It smells so good and I can taste a lot of cherry. It reminds me of medicine… I love it.” (Mom note: I didn’t know she liked cherry-flavored medicine. The things you learn.)
I enjoyed this one as well. It had a refreshing watermelon taste but didn’t overpower the senses. This would be a go-to post-workout drink for me (if I worked out, that is).
D: “This is my FAVORITE. I taste a lot of watermelon and I love it.
When we were all done, D asked if she could finish all 4 boxes, so I’m guessing she liked them. I liked them too. Depending on their price point and availability when I am shopping, I could definitely see myself buying these. They are worth a try if you want the convenience of juice boxes with the benefits of drinking water.
hint water for kids is available at drinkhint.com, and soon at Costco and grocery and specialty stores nationwide.