You know those ads that follow you around the internet until you cave and buy something? I’m a sucker for those. One of my favorite YouTubers has actually made some videos based on buying things from ads he sees. Luckily, I don’t usually get ads for weird half space suits, unimpressive belt buckles sold as revolutionary, or kind of useless one-compartment backpacks. My ads are usually about food, books, or planners. This time, the ad following me around the internet was for dairy-free croissants from L’artisane Bakery. And wouldn’t you know, they were vegan AND they would ship to me!
I can’t tell you how many times I looked at these croissants, drooled, and closed the window, trying to forget about them. Someone over there is doing a good job retargeting previous visitors, because it followed me around Facebook for weeks until I finally gave in and ordered a 5-pack. At the time, the 5-pack of vegan croissants included:
- Pain au Chocolat
- Nocciolata croissant (hazelnut spread)
- Coconut caramel cruffin
- Guava & cream cheese danish
- Strawberry balsamic croissant
As soon as I placed the order, I was giddy. Some people may take eating a croissant for granted. Oh, you just go to a bakery and get one, so simple! But I’ve been hard pressed to find vegan or dairy-free croissants in any city I’ve lived in. With the increasing popularity of indulgent food delivery sites like Goldbelly (another story for another blog), I was pumped to see this available through L’artisane’s website at a price that felt like a splurge, but wasn’t accompanied by guilt. I think all in all, I spent about $40 on the croissants.
Full disclosure – it’s been a while since I last ate these dairy-free croissants, but I’m going to review them to the best of my recollection, plus offer advice for anyone who is thinking about ordering them in hopes that you’ll get the vegan croissants that best suit your palate and preferences.
Let’s dive through these layers, shall we?
One piece of advice right off the bat – don’t skimp on the oven time. In fact, bake a little longer than you think you need to. I ended up having one or two baked goods that came out with some cold-ish filling in the middle, which dampened my experience.
In general, I felt that most of the croissants and other items I received in the 5-pack had too much filling. The pain au chocolat had the best balance, but everything else had a TON of filling. I’m one of those people who doesn’t like too much frosting or too much filling in jelly or custard donuts, so take what I say with a grain of salt. If you’re a filling fan, you’ll probably love these. The flavors were great, it was just too much for me overall.
This is the perfect vegan croissant for Nutella fans. Nocciolata is a hazelnut spread that, unlike Nutella, is dairy-free. What I didn’t like about some of the items I got were that they felt like they had too much filling. The balance of hazelnut and chocolate made this filling, although abundant, not too overwhelming to me. I am a big chocolate fan, so that could be why I ended up preferring the chocolatey croissants to the other baked goods I received.
Coconut Caramel Cruffin
The coconut caramel cruffin (or as its friends call it, I’d imagine, triple-C), was the baked good I expected to like the most, and perhaps that’s why I was the most disappointed by it when I walked away just feeling “meh” about it. It was too sweet, too much filling, and not enough coconut for my taste. I’m sure it would be perfect for someone.
Guava & Cream Cheese Danish
I wanted the cream cheese to be tangier, but the guava flavor was really nice. I don’t often eat guava in a danish or other baked good, and it is one of my favorite fruit flavors. While it wasn’t my favorite, this dairy-free danish was in the middle of the pack for me.
Strawberry & Balsamic Croissant
Much like the cruffin, the idea I had about this going in surpassed my experience, so I ended up disappointed. Too much filling and too sweet for me. I would have liked some more balsamic. I’m learning that for the fruit fillings especially, I’m probably better off buying regular croissants and adding my own jam in the amounts I’d prefer.
Pain au Chocolat
A classic. Honestly, how can you mess this up? I don’t think you can. A stand out from the bunch, if I were to order a pack of these again, I would consider doing all pain au chocolat or the newer Chocolate Lovers Combo they now offer. This one also didn’t feel like it was TOO filled. Definitely my favorite from the 5-pack I received.
In case you’ve also been pursued by these dairy-free croissants and other decadent items from L’artisane Bakery, hopefully you can now better determine whether these will be a good buy for you. It’s been a while since I’ve eaten these, and writing about them again has got me craving that pain au chocolat. Maybe I should go add them to my cart…