Thursday, August 27, 2009

Pop-Tart Quiz

If you like Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts, how do you eat them? Yes, how? Because apparently there is more than one way to enjoy a Pop-Tart.

The other night, my wife and I were in the kitchen. She finally noticed the small box of Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tarts I’d snuck into the shopping cart at the last minute. She opened the box, pulled out one of the silver packets, tore it open, lifted out one of the Pop-Tarts…and bit it.

“What are you doing?” I said. “That’s not how you eat a Pop-Tart.”

She didn’t respond because she was chewing.

“It’s called a Pop-Tart for a reason,” I said. “You drop it in a toaster and, when it’s done, it pops up.”

She told me they were just as good at room temperature, then she bit off another chunk.

Okay, here’s one of my quirks: I’m a rule-follower.

  • Don’t open a board game you’re only kind of familiar with and start playing. You know it’s not going to make sense at some point. So read the rules first!
  • If you have the right-of-way at an intersection, don’t be polite and wave me on, because when I finally trust you and start inching forward, and you inch forward because it took me so long to trust you, we’re in a mess. You should’ve just gone. You had the right-of-way!
  • And Pop-Tarts should be toasted!

But my wife is smart. She knows me. So she checked the directions on the box. And as she handed me the box, her lips slid into a very one-sided smile.

While Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts are fully baked and ready-to-eat right from the pouch, if you prefer them warmed, please follow these instructions:

If you prefer them warmed???

Okay, maybe they’re good “right from the pouch” (though I refuse to try them that way…they’re not called Pouch-Tarts). But does anyone else find it odd that “if you prefer them warmed” is mentioned after eating them at room temperature?


Either way, before my wife checked the directions, we made a little wager. So if I don’t immediately respond to your e-mails or phonecalls this week, I’m probably cleaning the bathrooms.


Caprica-Lex said...

I have no idea, I've never eaten a Pop-Tart in my whole life. I don't know if they even sell those in Germany. But I think I'd toast them. (I'm not a great chef, but if it fits into a toaster, I can cook it)

Then again, I love cold pizza leftovers for breakfast. And pizza is definitely supposed to be eaten warm ;)

shbook said...


shbook said...

Warmed! Definitely! And I'm not just sayin' that 'cause I'd hate for you to have to clean the bathrooms!

Anonymous said...

We do both around here, but most of us like them better warmed. Aside from the heat, the edges take on a toasted flavor. Yum, yum.

As for you, donuts and Pop-Tarts? Hmmmm . . .

StefanieEmmy said...

I don't think Pop-Tarts are available in Austria either, so, I have no idea. I guess, Pop-Tarts are one of those typical american things that you are not able to get a hand on here in Europe - pity, I'd really like to try them, they sound great :)

StaffPicks said...

This is a travesty! Pop means pop up out of the toaster, people (aka The Wife). It is wrong to eat then un-toasted.

Kat Heckenbach said...

I don't eat pop tarts at all (by choice), but I have to agree with you on the rule thing. What you said about the 4-way stop and being waved through--that is one of my pet peeves. The exact same thing always happens to me!

Steve Brezenoff said...

I got used to eating them raw in college. They were sold in the dorm vending machines, yet there were no toasters to use, and having a toaster in your dorm room was strictly forbidden.

Another fun fact: some other people in my dorm microwaved them instead. To me this was outlandish, but sure enough there were directions on how to microwave them.

And here's Brian Regan on the subject. I assure you, hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Oh, bluh. They HAVE to be toasted. Otherwise, they're too cardboardy.

Jen Robinson said...

Definitely toasted. I want the filling in the middle to be warm and gooey. (And I have never been able to stomach cold pizza, either - I won't even eat microwave re-heated pizza - it has to be crispy from heating in the oven).

But I think that the pop tart directions are in logical order - you could just eat it, or you could heat it up. What are you supposed to do if the directions are in the other order. Wait for one that you heated to cool off?

rh3a said...

as much as i'd like to agree with you.....the wifey is right.

from the pouch ftw!

JenE said...

I must help speak for the minority. I eat them straight from the pouch. It's been so long since I toasted one it's hard to remember what it was like. I'm sure I would prefer toasted, but to me a pop tart is a pop tart. It's all about the same. In fact, I think all the flavors taste strangely similar. Plus I'm impatient.
Don't forget to scrub the outside of the toilet, too!

AmandaHewer said...

HaHa. Pouch-Tarts.

I personally do not like them, at least not usually. Sometimes I take the apple cinnamon or the brown sugar cinnamon ones and crush them up into my vanilla ice cream. Sometimes warm, sometimes not. Its kind of like apple pie "a la mode" for students. lol.

My sisters eat them for breakfast, but I do not like other ones. The frosting on them are gross or they are filled with chocolate. What kind of breakfast is that?


Jay Asher said...

Amanda, I'm definitely going to have to warm up a Pop-Tart and crush it over some ice cream. Sounds great!

Okay, here's the deal... My wife and I think it's a tragedy that they don't have Pop-Tarts in Germany or Austria. So Caprica-Lex and Stefanie Emmy, send your mailing addresses to writejayasher[at] and prepare to have your taste buds Popped!

Oh, and the bathtub? Spotless!


So I'm a little late to the party, but ... I'm untoasted.

Pop-Tarts are a little too sweet for me, so if I eat them, I prefer them unfrosted.

If I ever do heat them up, I use the microwave. I think this is partially b/c I'm impatient. I hover over the toaster and stare inside, and after 10 seconds or so, I just scream, "Oh for the love of God!" and eject everything. Plus, I don't like burnt edges. Or gooey, hot fillings that ooze out while I'm eating it. Ick.

My husband is just like you, though. He's a toaster. And for the unfrosted kind, he adds butter. Because, well ... why the heck not.

Donna Gambale said...

Oh, Jay. This is too funny. My parents never thought they were suitable for breakfast, so I actually didn't eat them until almost college. And I think I got them from a vending machine, so I ate them as pouch-tarts way before I ever did as Pop-Tarts. I could go either way.
And Steve's Brian Regan link? Awesome.

Brian also has some great stuff of pronunciation and spelling & plurals.
"Many much moosen!" has become a part of my everyday language because of him.

Wild About Words said...

I was never allowed to eat them, growing up, so now I NEED to buy them every once in awhile. I think real men, er, women eat 'em raw! But my weenie kids like 'em toasted. Whatever! Bring on the sugar and artificial flavors!

Renee said...

I eat them right out the package...why wait to warm them up and then sometimes you might burn yourself.. if they're too hot

Flemmily said...

It's been a long time since I ate a pop-tart (being diabetic has certain disadvantages), but back when I did, I have to admit I was a bit ambivilant. I could do hot, I could do cold.

The part that I remember (most strangely), is that there used to be (and perhaps still is) some strange secondary warming option that tells you to heat it in the microwave for a very short amount of time (like 3 or 5 seconds).

THAT I would never do. :)

Flemmily said...

....except for that one time at work.


But, that time I also burned my tongue, so really, never again.

Sandi Greene said...

I like them cold too, but my husband likes them toasted. Since this is my post, that’s one point for your wife. I hear Lime-away works great for soap scum :-)

Caprica-Lex said...

Best. Discussion. Ever. *ggg*

Jay, thanks for the offer! I'll drop you a mail with my adress.

Ignacia said...

I hope to buy your book soon. I just found that is already on sale in Spain.

chancelina said...

I bought Pop-Tarts once, just for kicks. They have a pretty steep price for pastries here in the Philippines, but what the heck. I prefered eating them as it is, no toaster whatsoever. But I only do them that way 'cause they're already a little warm when I open them. Mmm... Pop-Tarts. I ought to save up for a pack of those again. :)

Anonymous said...

Sweet, the Spanish publisher kept the original artwork.

The text says "A moving tale about the need for true friendship.", if I can thrust my little Spanish that's left from school.

Monica said...

I am a compulsive rule follower, too, Jay Asher. That 'waving me on ahead' thing drives me absolutely bonkers. Do people not know the rules of stop signs????? I have been known to wait an inordinately long time for the 'waver' to proceed... i will not budge.

Poptarts are good at room temperature, however.Sorry. i hate cleaning bathrooms, too, but i have to tell the truth.

i, chihuahua said...

your wife is clearly an unusual woman. first of all, she eats pop tarts out of the pouch. second of all, she's reads the side of the package for instructions on how to eat them.

that whole eat out of the pouch thing is so american way, like, oh sure, you can eat them on a train in the rain! whatever suits your fancy!

but pop tarts should definitely be toasted. it melts the sugar on the top so you burn your tongue, the sugar on the inside so it's gooey, and the 'tart' itself loses its flaccid pallor, becoming crisp and aromatic.

what is a pop tart without being toasted? i say it is like life, without a taste for it.

ItsjustLiz said...

I eat them like your wife does :)

PebbleCafe said...

Way late to the debate but I'm with your wife on this one! I've never eaten them warmed. That just sounds gross to me.

Btw, this blog entry had me literally LOLing especially at pouch tart.

Anonymous said...

Gotta say, Jay, as much as I love you- Poptarts SHOULD NOT be toasted!!!


Anonymous said...

Toasted! You brought me right back to 1972 when Pop Tarts were a staple in our house. Might need to stop by the store on the way home to relive this wonderful memory.