Sandwich them with melty marshmallows and chocolate, smear them with nut butter, pulverize them into a buttery, crumbly cheesecake crust, or eat them straight from the package — just don’t forget the graham crackers.
Often regarded as kid food, grahams are so versatile that they qualify as a pantry essential, especially at this time of year. Unlike so many crackers that are either bland and dry, salty or laced with savory flavorings, grahams are sweet, toasty and flavored with a magical trio of ingredients: honey, cinnamon and vanilla.
For decades, the brand that has ruled the category is Nabisco’s Honey Maid. But a quick sweep of local supermarkets turns up a stack of competitors, including organic, gluten-free and all natural versions of the beloved graham.
Great graham crackers have a delicate crunch and lots of deep, nutty flavor thanks to plenty of fresh, coarsely ground whole wheat flour. The earthy flavor of the flour is enhanced with dashes of honey, vanilla and sometimes cinnamon. The very best graham crackers are made with top ingredients and toasted to perfection.
As simple as it seems, making great graham crackers is apparently tricky, as far too many boxes are filled with grahams gone wrong. Bad grahams are flat, flavorless squares that taste fruity and fake, primarily due to too many preservatives, too much white flour and less than a hint of flavorings.
Here are details on the most delicious graham crackers, and the questionable grahams that fall short in every way. Nutrition details refer to 31 grams; a full cracker sheet in most cases.
Baker’s Harvest Honey Graham Crackers
These small, individually baked crackers are super crispy and toasty, and packed with so much flavor that they taste like homemade. 133 calories, 3 g fat, 143 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $5.69 for 14.1 ounces at Whole Foods. (4 stars)
Market Pantry Honey Graham Crackers
A punch of nuttiness and a pleasant balance of flavorings make these a terrific, budget-friendly choice. The extra hit of vanilla is a plus. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 140 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $1.99 for 14.4 ounces at Target. (3 1/2 stars)
Nabisco Honey Maid Graham Crackers
This iconic brand serves up crackers with deep honey flavor, but the nuttiness is understated, making them taste a bit too sweet. More graham flour would be an improvement. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 160 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $4.49 for 14.4 ounces at Raley’s. (3 stars)
Signature Select Honey Graham Crackers
Significantly less graham flour in this recipe makes for a texture-compromised cracker with minimal flavor. These are edible, but not standout. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 135 mg sodium, 7 g sugar, 2 g protein. $3.49 for 14.4 ounces at Safeway. (2 1/2 stars)
First Street Honey Grahams
When it’s necessary to cut corners, these work. They are less flavorful than the top contenders, but they look like a traditional graham and have a subtle honey note. $2.99 for 14.4 ounces at Smart & Final. (2 stars)
Annie’s Homegrown Organic Honey Grahams
The organic ingredients in these are a huge plus and the texture is perfect, but the flavor is far too subtle. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 130 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $6.99 for 14.4 ounces at Raley’s. (2 stars)
Pamela’s Gluten Free Honey Grahams
These pricey crackers made with rice and sorghum flour are far too dense and oily to be used in recipes, but the cinnamon kick is enjoyable. 155 calories, 7 g fat, 103 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 1 g protein. $5.99 for 7.5 ounces at Target. (1 1/2 stars)
Great Value Honey Graham Crackers
Too much white flour and poor quality flavorings make these a bad pick. They are not going to perform well in recipes, and they are likely to be rejected by even the youngest of cracker eaters. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 135 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $1.98 for 14.4 ounces at Walmart. (1 star)
Crav’n Flavor Honey Graham Crackers
These won’t make you choke, but they artificial flavors quash every trace of graham cracker deliciousness. 130 calories, 3 g fat, 135 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 2 g protein. $3.49 for 14.4 ounces at Raley’s. (1/2 star)
Soruce : https://www.mercurynews.com/2022/11/22/taste-off-2/