City Snacks – freeze dried fruit

City Snacks - freeze dried pears

A Confessions of a Dietitian member brought this product to my attention. She loves snacking on fruit and saw City Snacks freeze dried fruit at her local grocery store.

Unlike conventional dried fruit that uses heat to remove moisture, freeze drying removes moisture under pressure which results in a very different texture – one that is more crispy like a chip. Freeze drying isn’t exactly a new technique. It’s commonly used to make instant coffee but it also works well with fruit. As a result, you may start seeing freeze dried fruit on your grocery store shelves more often.

City Snacks are made of 100% fruit with nothing else added (no preservatives, no sugar and no sulphites) and are available in seven different flavours: banana, strawberry, strawberry/banana, pineapple, apple, peach and pear. They retail for approximately $1.75 for a single serving 15 gram bag and can be found at Longo’s stores in Ontario and Sobey’s and Metro stores in Quebec (as well as smaller stores and distributors).

We sent out City Snacks freeze dried pears to 24 members of the product review club to try. Check out what they thought in the comments below.

Have you tried freeze dried fruit? What did you think of it?

20 thoughts on “City Snacks – freeze dried fruit

  1. Thank you for letting us (my daughter and me) try this product! We loved it!!
    We eat regular dried fruits, but had never tried freeze dried fruits.

    When I saw them, they reminded me of baby rice snacks (the oval shaped, puffy, light texture ones). They tasted so much … pear! They were so sweet, but like just fruits pears, it didn’t leave any aftertaste. I felt like they are a lot sweeter than fruits pears. They were so light, and the texture reminded me of the baby rice snacks as well.

    One of the best part of this product is that nothing was stuck between my teeth! Unlike regular dried fruits, they don’t stick to teeth at all. They are not as hard as baked fruits, so nothing is left in molars after eating. I can share this with my children without worrying about brushing teeth right after snack time, which will be perfect snack inside and outside!

    Also, another part I loved about this product is that they are 100% pears, nothing added. It is quite hard to find dried fruits which are nothing added. I spent so long time to read labels of the dried fruits products. This is something I can serve with confidence, without any worry!

    I strongly recommend this product to everyone. And I would buy it next time, for sure!
    I rate 5 stars because we loved the taste, texture, and the fact nothing added!

    Again, thank you for this trying opportunity. It was quite an eye-opening tasting time for me.

  2. The pears look like dry, white/pale yellow thick and puffy crisps. They’re slightly sweet, and you can taste the pear flavour. If you bite them they’re crisp, or you can let them dissolve in your mouth, and turn into a slightly chewy paste. I prefer dried or baked fruit as the texture is so much crunchier, and the flavours much stronger, but these are a great choice for babies who are just moving onto finger foods as they dissolve, have no added sugar, and aren’t overly sweet. They’re also a nice snack for kids as they can be carried (and eaten) easily, and are a nice size for little fingers. For people who like to carry around easy to access, slightly sweet snacks they’re a good choice as they’re not overly expensive at $1.75/bag and they’re low in calories and fat, have no added sugars or additives, suit a wide variety of diets (they’re gluten/nut/dairy/peanut free) and are, of course, fruit!
    Honestly I’d prefer to eat a pear as the freeze drying takes away the juiciness, but if I was craving something sweet and saw these on the shelf I could be convinced to buy these.

  3. I was excited to try Citysnacks Freeze Dried Fruit, so when I received my package, I dove right in.
    Well actually, first I read the package. The snacks have no GMOs, no dairy, no gluten, no fat, no peanuts, no coloring, no additives, no preservatives, no added sugar…you get the point. They are basically straight freeze dried fruit. The entire bag has 55 calories, 1 gram of fiber, and 9 grams of sugar. To compare, a medium fresh pear has 107 calories, 6 grams of fiber, and 17 grams of sugar.
    The snacks are white and have a puffed texture, sort of like a dissolving baby snack (just like the previous commenter mentioned). They’re dry and quite brittle.
    I found the snacks extremely sweet, more so than conventional dried fruit. Funny enough, they’re lower in sugar than a fresh pear. The texture bothered me as well. There’s something processed-feeling about them, even though they are just straight pears without the water. My 6 year old daughter took a piece of the snack, and spat it out. Thumbs down from Jordan.
    I personally prefer fresh fruit to this snack, for the satiety factor plus the fiber as well as the visual and texture factor. I may recommend this snack to people looking for something healthy, but I would likely recommend fresh fruit first – it’s just as easy and portable..and cheaper.

  4. Thank you very much for sending me this product! The packaging is very modern and appealing. I always like to look at the fine print before I eat something. There is a little stamp on the bottom which reads “100% Certified Quality”. I am not sure who endorses this check mark system? Next, I looked to see if it is organic. When I eat a dried, or freeze dried snack, I like it to be organic. If a conventional fruit or vegetable is dried, the pesticides/herbicides get dried with it. If you read the fine print, the product is from China. Interesting.

    In terms of the texture, it also reminded me of something a baby without teeth would enjoy sucking on. It has a Styrofoam texture to it. I found the flavour very sweet and enjoyable. It was a little messy to eat, but I enjoyed eating them up. I have to be in the mood for that texture. I agree with RivRD that I look forward to the juiciness factor of a pear. Although, if I was looking for a crispy snack, this product would fit the bill!

    Since this product only has 1 gram of fibre, you can’t really compare it to it’s fresh counterpart. But, as a portable non-perishable snack it would be a nice take along when travelling or camping!

  5. These freeze-dried pears were hands-down totally delicious, candy-like and left you wanting more! The texture is kind of like Styrofoam in that the pear pieces are light, crisp, and easily dissolves on the tip of your tongue similar to that of cotton candy. It differs from traditional dehydrated fruit chips such as apple chips in that they are nice and crisp rather than “crunchy” and dry. The pears had an intense fruity flavour, which sometimes lacks in dehydrated fruit chips. I would highly recommend this snack for those looking for a healthier candy alternative, though would caution that 1 package probably wouldn’t be enough, so instead grab a fresh piece of fruit! Word of caution, don’t try “extending” the savouring of these freeze dried pears in your mouth, as they become very soggy and unpleasant!

  6. Thank for the trial of City Snacks Pears – a 100% pear snack but in a package.

    The contents can be described as light and airy, sweet tasting, puffy like a rice cake texture almost. The contents melt in your mouth – easy and portable snack. I like the fact that it is just pears – I think of this one package as being about 1/2 pear – without the skin – since the fibre content is only 1 g. Portable yes.. tasty yes… would I pay $1.75 for 1/2 pear… I might not but someone else might!
    I don’t eat dried fruit much, but do agree that the texture is more appealing than the regular dried sticky fruit.

    I think this is a better alternative for a child to bring in their lunch as a cool but healthy snack choice – that isn’t going to be messy in their lunch bags – and one that isn’t sticky on their teeth either.

    I gave this snack a 4 – as I would much rather have a fresh piece of fruit…but having this one dried with nothing added is second best!

  7. Hi All,

    The pear snack was tasty – even my boyfriend enjoyed a bite or too. It actually tastes like pear and the texture was much better than I anticipated from the look. I was expecting a cardboardy taste but was pleasantly surprised by the light and airy texture. Easier to eat that chewy dried fruit. It’s a nice alternative to dried fruit that has been sweetened. I would recommend it – however the price point might be a bit high for an everyday kids lunch box treat.

  8. I think the best part of City Snacks is the convenience – the pear snack would keep easily in a desk drawer, in the car, in a purse/bag, etc. And I was surprised by how reasonable the price is. The texture is very light but the pear flavour still comes through. It’s a totally different experience compared to dried fruit that tends to have a more leathery texture. For me, fresh fruit wins hands down, but as far as a processed fruit I really like that there are no additives in this product. I would recommend this for someone who is looking for healthy, on-the-go snacks.

  9. These “City Snacks” have the texture of “Popcorn Curls” of the late 60’s…or was it early 70’s? I loved the texture as a child. And I really enjoyed this freeze fried pear snack today.

    The texture of dried fruit is not a favourite of mine. I prefer the light puffy freeze dried variety. Other freeze dried fruit and vegetable products (Orchard Blend, Sensible Foods – retail for much more than $1.75), that I have tasted, sometimes have a somewhat unpleasant bitter after taste. Also, they are not as light and more densely textured.

    The City Snack is light sweet and satisfying as far as snacking goes. Not so much on the feeling of quantity. My issues with this snack include, a serving is consumed rather quickly, you don’t feel satiated, like you’ve had a treat. The fibre content in the nutritional information is only 1 g. Which I think is par for the course of freeze dried products. In fact, the nutritional information is much less than eating a fresh pear. The fibre content for a fresh pear is around 5 g. The carbs are much higher in a fresh pear. The good news is that there are no additives and it’s just pear. The removal of the moisture appears to take out some of the nutrient properties.

    I would love to sample the other fruit flavours. The chances of my purchasing and recommending this product is high. I really enjoyed the flavour and the crunchy melt in your mouth texture.

  10. These City Snack fruit snacks are a lot of fun. The texture makes me feel like I’m eating cheesies but I’m actually eating pears (or half a pear) which is way healthier. I love the fact that it’s a fruit snack that is fun! Just as fun as eating cheesies or chips in my mind.

    I see this being a good product for people who would like a healthy snack option, or something light and portable (camping, hiking, etc). I have to say that the texture also makes it easy for people who might have teeth issues where eating raw fruit or dried/sticky fruit might be an issue. Overall, a great product and one I would recommend from a health standpoint.

    The only criticism I can make is that it’s quite a small amount and I didn’t find it all that filling in terms of a snack. I wish there was more in the package or maybe the option to buy a bigger package (regular dried fruit goes for around $3-5/bag so wouldn’t mind paying a little more for a larger amount).

  11. City Snacks look like fruit that is light and airy. They are sweet tasting and ‘melt’ in your mouth. They have a freeze dried texture which instantly disintegrates when you put it in your mouth. The flavour is that of the actual fruit, which is very tasty.

    Compared to conventional fruit, City Snacks are extra airy and light. They don’t have any added fat or sugar so they retain their lightness.

    I do buy these snacks on occasion, however, they tend to be a bit expensive for what you are getting, so I don’t buy them too often. Although I do love them!

    If a person is not overly concerned with price, then I would recommend this product, however, I would say that buying fresh or frozen fruit would likely be best.

    Out of 5, I rate this product a 4 (price is the only downfall).

  12. When I first open the package and saw what looked to me like Styrofoam I was a bit skeptical. It was also my first encounter with freeze dried fruit. Fortunately, I didn’t let my eyes get the best of me and put the pear in my mouth. I was shocked at how flavourful they are! The texture didn’t bother me at all once I was tasting delicious ripe pear : ) I love conventional pears but I always find it tricky to time to eat so that I am eating them at the perfect ripeness so I often eat over-ripe or too green pears. With City Snacks Pear that definitely wasn’t an issue as every single piece was delicious and packed with flavour.
    In terms of satiety, I do not feel that this snack is very filling. But I feel like it could be a good option to curb a late night sugar craving!
    I am very budget conscious so I don’t think that they would be a regular purchase for me but I think they would be a fun beach or roadtrip snack! And I am very interested in seeking out the other flavours to compare.

  13. I will echo my fellow reviewers and say that I found the snack very tasty. I could easily have eaten the whole package but wanted to save some for my toddler to see her reaction. Surprisingly she did not like them. I’m not sure if she found them too sweet or if they were too soggy for her (I mixed them with another snack that may have affected the texture).
    Nevertheless, though they do not pack a nutritional punch, their taste, portability and convenience factor might make them an occasional purchase.

    This was a great choice for a taste test!

  14. These are nice, very light snacks that taste exactly like fresh pears. They’re crispy and they don’t have any of that leathery toughness you often get from dried fruit. You will go through them quickly, which is a good thing – because after a couple of days open they get soft. Same flavour, but no crispiness. You don’t get a whole lot in a bag, but given that you want to finish them in a day or so, that’s not so unreasonable. You’ll enjoy them, but don’t count on them to satisfy hunger – they’re for taste and crunch.

    I liked them well enough. My wife really liked them. She wants me to get more.

  15. I split the package with my mom and both of us enjoyed the product immensely. When I opened the package, they looked and felt like rice cakes which took me aback. I don’t know what I was expecting for the look and texture but I thought it’d be more akin to fruit leather.

    The taste was amazing, so much like pear and just the right amount of sweetness. The snacks dissolved in your mouth when eating, just like a rice cake.

    I liked these so much more than dried fruit or fruit leather as they stick in my teeth, but these freeze dried pears were perfect, leaving no residue. I think they’re a great snack for children because they’re so healthy and fun to eat, just like eating a bag of chips.

    The only problem for me is the price as I find for what you get the bag is pretty expensive.

    Overall these are a great, tasty, and healthy product that I highly recommend. I probably will not be purchasing them again, however, unless the price is reduced a bit or if you receive more product in the bag (15 g isn’t really a lot).

  16. Thanks for letting me taste test these! When I opened the bag, I was surprised. These freeze-dried pears didn’t look like what I had expected, they look like pieces of Styrofoam. Unlike dried pears that retain a yellowish color and are easy to identify as having been a fruit in its past life, these didn’t look very appetizing. They are mildly sweet and seem to melt in my mouth. I was disappointed because pears have such a nice floral flavour to them, these freeze-dried versions seem to dumb that down. I definitely prefer dried pears.

    Although these are a healthy snack and can be fun to try, I wouldn’t buy these or recommend them. They’re quite expensive, $1.75 for a small bag whereas you can get a pound of fresh pears about $1.59. One fresh pear will give you a lot more fibre and vitamins than a serving of freeze-dried pears.

  17. What an interesting product to try! I have to admit that I was surprised to see the shape of the freeze-dried pears! For some reason, I was also expecting dried pears. When I tasted them, I was also surprised and wasn’t sure if I liked them. But after a few bites, they grew on me.

    This snack can be a convenient snack. It’s true that a fresh pear is quite fragile and can get damaged when you carry it around in your bag but the dried-freeze pears are quite fragile as well. I also thought that they were a little expensive for the nutritional value. All you get is calories from sugars and a little bit of fiber. No protein, not many vitamins, etc. So it’s unlikely that eating this snack will sustain you until your next meal.

    So bottom line, they were a fun and different snack. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend them because I think there are other snack options that are more interesting and less expensive. For myself, I wouldn’t buy them either, unless I was stuck somewhere and this was one of the only good options that were available.

  18. Thanks for the opportunity to try these freeze dried snacks. I was curious about their taste, as I love pears. I had no clue their texture would be so different ….
    If I had $1.75 to spend on a snack, I’d feel alot more satisfied with $1.75 worth of dried pears. The gummy texture is a lot more appealing to me than the foam texture of the City Snacks. However… if I was a mom trying to find different snack for my kids to try, I could probably convince them that this was “astronaut food”, and the novelty would keep them interested for a little while…
    Otherwise, I felt this snack didn’t provide the fullness, flavour and texture bang for my buck that dried fruit (without sulphates) has.

  19. Thank you for letting us try this product. I was expecting a different taste and to me it did not taste like a pear, so for that reason I did not like the taste. The texture was interesting, crispy, but melted in your mouth.
    Although the crunch was nice, the flavour ruined it for me. I much prefer the dried pear taste.
    I do not think I would buy them because I did not like the flavour, the value for the serving size and not significant the nutritional.
    I doubt I would recommend this to others. However I did taste a banana flavour before and that tasted a lot better, so I would be interested in trying other flavours.

  20. The packaging on this product is appealing, portable and modern. The texture of the pear is light but crispy looking. Then it seems to melt when placed in your mouth. It has a nice sweet pear taste. It is a low calorie option for a snack. This package is not enough food for a satisfying snack (if you are eating because you are truly hungry). It will be more filling if I ate an actual pear. Eating the fresh fruit would be cheaper as well.

    Advantages to this product – good texture, portable (pears can bruise when you carry them around), convenient.

    I personally would eat a pear but this is a good second option. I would choose it over the fruit “roll up” type snacks.

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