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Reactions to New Shake Flavors at Five Guys

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Gustavus chapter.

Milkshake lovers unite, because milkshakes are being incorporated into more and more Five Guys across the nation! While the fast food joint has been introducing milkshakes into their stores since 2014, our local Five Guys recently began serving our favorite sugary drinks, so we knew we had to give it a try!

While every milkshake starts as a standard vanilla shake, there are a plethora of mix-ins, including Five Guys infamous bacon bits, so we decided to each make our own customizable shake, beginning with tasty and ending with…well, with everything.

Chocolate Carmel Coffee…Without the Coffee (Katie)

 I decided to order a flavor combination that sounded appetizing to me and that I would normally pick off a menu. I ended up going with chocolate, Oreo pieces, and salted caramel for my mix-ins to the vanilla shake base.

Initial Impressions: As a huge coffee fan, I originally wanted to order coffee and chocolate and have a mocha shake. However, they were sadly out of coffee so I’ll have to try that next time.

Taste: My first impression was that my shake was both very sugary and sweet. The flavor I noticed first was the salted caramel, some sips were very salty and some sips I couldn’t taste any salt. I couldn’t really taste too much chocolate, and the vanilla base flavor still came through. The Oreo pieces added a nice crunch.

Final Verdict: My final verdict is that this flavor combo is pretty good! It didn’t have any outlandish flavors in it (I decided to pass on the bacon) and was very sweet. It did start to get overly rich towards the end and it would have been nice if there was a smaller size option. Currently, Five Guys only offers one size.

I definitely would order this again, although I might leave out the chocolate because I honestly couldn’t taste it and the Oreo did provide some chocolate flavor. All in all, I would give this shake a 4 out of 5 stars.

Cherry Butter (Rachel)

I ordered a peanut butter and cherry shake. I was a little confused when I received the shake, not entirely sure that I picked up the right one. The image of drinking a stranger’s shake sent a wave of embarrassment. Only one way to find out, I thought before taking my first sip. Well, I definitely did not get my order wrong.

Initial impressions: It may seem silly that I couldn’t tell whether I got the right shake. In my defense, most of the shakes at our table were the same color. I was also expecting actual chunks of cherries in drink. The cherries, however, were soft and looked like jam.

Taste: The taste of cherries overpowered the taste of peanut butter, which surprised me. Actually, the peanut butter added a sort of creamy feeling to the shake. It tasted strangely like chocolate cherry cordials – without the chocolate.

Verdict: Overall, I enjoyed the drink. The shakes only come in one size, which made the drink’s sweetness become overpowering towards the end. I’ll probably stick to a good, old-fashioned chocolate from now on, but it was still fun.

The Salty Pig (Lily)

When it came to picking out flavors to come up with a zany milkshake, it was really a no brainer for me. All my friends know my two favorite things in this world are candy and bacon, so when I had the option to throw salted caramel and bacon into a shake, I was all for it.

Picking out a shake with multiple flavors is a huge deal for me! I’m the kind of person who hates different foods touching on their plate, and that includes in shakes! So although I usually go for just one flavor, the thought of a breakfast food with more of a dessert-based item was irresistible and I was ready to give it a go.  

Initial impressions: When I picked up The Salty Pig, it didn’t look like anything out of the ordinary. From far away and even close up, the bacon bits just looked like little pieces of chocolate you might see in any kind of vanilla chocolate swirl ice cream. The size was also a little daunting, especially when you’re trying to order something crazy because if you don’t like it, it’s a huge waste to throw the entire thing out!

Taste: While I would say the milkshake itself is not bad, it will not be my first choice the next time I swing through Five Guys, looking for a shake. The salted caramel is truly delicious. The salt really came through even in such a dense shake, although the caramel undertones were lost and it tasted more like salty vanilla than anything. The bacon though. The bacon was the game changer, and for me, not in a good way. Perhaps if the bacon was not done as well as it was, or if it came in larger pieces it would have been better, but in this instance the bacon did not contribute to the overall tastiness of the milkshake. Rather, the constant crunches were off-putting and you could only taste the bacon bits if you sucked on them.

Verdict: I’m stogy in my ways, but maybe for good reason. The next time I visit Five Guys I’ll stick to my one flavor and it won’t include bacon bits! Still, I’m glad I got to try something which I would not have otherwise unless out with a good group of friends. 

The Almost Everything (Laura)

I decided to be adventurous and order an “everything” milkshake; the plan was to get every single mix-in on the menu, but unfortunately the Mankato Five Guys was completely out of coffee, so I had to settle for an “almost everything” one instead.

This consisted of the standard vanilla milkshake with every available mix-in:

  • Bacon bits
  • Chocolate
  • Malted milk
  • Peanut butter
  • Salted caramel
  • Oreo cookie pieces
  • Bananas
  • Cherries
  • Oreo cream
  • Strawberries
  • Whipped cream

When I ordered this, the cashier guy looked at me like I was crazy.

“Really?” he asked, his eyes growing wide. “All of them?”

I nodded, telling him it was for an experiment.

Bewildered, the cashier turned around to ask his supervisor if they could even do that, which I found quite amusing. Apparently, no one had ever requested every single mix-in before, so I’m not sure he really knew what to do.

 I now have the privilege to say that I was the very first person to ever order an “everything” milkshake at the Mankato Five Guys, so that’ll be a fun conversation starter somewhere down the road.

Anyway, as the cashier proceeded to type in my order, he stopped for second and looked at me doubtfully.

“Even bacon?”

“Even bacon.”  

“I’m scared for you,” he said.

Initial Observations: In terms of overall presentation, this looked just like your standard milkshake, with a rather generous amount of whipped cream heaped on top. It was a sort of pale pinkish brown in color, and the only clearly visible mix-ins were the bacon bits and Oreo cookie crumbles, the majority of which seemed to be collected at the bottom of the cup.

Taste: The first sip of this milkshake was like a strong shot of saltiness — I could taste the peanut butter, salted caramel, and bacon right away. The saltier flavors definitely overpowered the other mix-ins, some of which were hardly distinguishable. The bacon bits were smaller, harder, and crunchier than I had anticipated — while the bacon flavor actually worked well with the milkshake itself, the texture of the pieces was more than a little off-putting. Like Pop Rocks, almost. There were also several moments when I honestly couldn’t tell if I was getting bacon bits or Oreo pieces — this was a little strange, but I have to say that it certainly kept me guessing, which was kind of fun. Most of the other mix-ins, particularly the fruit flavorings, were really hard to taste. However, each sip did had an aftertaste of what I think was very, very artificial cherry — overly sweet and not particularly pleasant. The weird cherry undertones got stronger towards the middle of the milkshake, which kept making me want to get rid of the taste with French fries. Also, most of the Oreo pieces and bacon bits gathered up on the bottom of the cup, which was a little unappetizing.

Verdict: Honestly, not bad.

In spite of the weird texture of the bacon and the unsettling cherry undertones, this milkshake was actually strangely pleasant. It was unpredictable, it kept you guessing, it played tricks on you. And it was far less disgusting than it sounds, to be sure. I would have liked to see how the coffee mix-in impacted the overall flavor — I guess that’ll have to be an experiment for next time!

Would I ever order it again? Probably not.

But it was quite the adventure, and definitely worth trying. We did not find our match made in milkshake heaven, but it did not discourage any of us from ever trying again, especially in the company of good friends and fries. So next time you’re sitting around on a Fry-day night, go ahead and add a shake with that. Just maybe not with the bacon…

Lily is a Junior English major at Gustavus Adolphus who loves love, supporting those around her, writing creatively, and using oxford commas. In her spare time, one might find her with a book or watching YouTube videos way too late at night.