The '80s and '90s were the golden era of childhood snacks. Lunchboxes were filled to the gills with goo-filled fruit snacks, cartoon-branded pastries, and neon green juice. Those nostalgic for their after-school eats from childhood only need to remember that they are now adults with a kitchen. Take matters into your own hands and recreate these lunchbox classics.
Most people remember Dunkaroos as their first lesson in restraint. Each kangaroo-shaped cookie received a carefully rationed amount of frosting, lest the eater be left with a bunch of dry cookies. While these cookies are still for sale in Canada, the rest of us will have to recreate the treat at home with Teddy Grahams.
Ecto Cooler was glowing green liquid sugar that was released in tandem with the new show The Real Ghostbusters. The drink was a huge success—even outliving the show it was helping promote—but it was eventually discontinued. [Update (April 2016): It's back!!]
Thanks to Bart Simpson, these bite-sized Butterfinger spheres will always have a place in our hearts. Luckily, you can make them at home using only three ingredients—and one of them is candy corn.
You knew you were at the right birthday party when they were serving Surge—the dangerously caffeinated soda that likely created a generation of very strong coffee drinkers. When the drink was inevitably discontinued, it was so traumatic that there is an actual website solely dedicated to resurrecting it. It must have worked because Surge is making a comeback, and you can now find Surge in most eastern states.
This one seems like a no-brainer, but you can recreate Sprinkl'ins simply by buying Dannon vanilla or strawberry yogurt, and then adding sprinkles or colored sugar. Since you no longer have to abide by what the packaging provides you, any candy you can think of will do.
6. TMNT PUDDING PIE
Even as a child, I found these bright green pastries a little gross. But I won’t pass judgment if you would like to go through the work of baking some of your own.
These best way to make a cookie better is to put marshmallow on top of it and cover it in chocolate. You can still buy Mallomars in the grocery store, but there’s something to be said for ones you can make fresh in your own kitchen.
The Wonderball was America’s version of the Kinder Surprise. Although they once had toys inside, in 2000 they were sold with candy instead to avoid choking hazards. You can no longer buy these spherical candies, but you can make your own. Follow the recipe above to make hollow chocolate balls, and then fill them with whatever candy or toys you would like.
You can still buy these chocolate cookies, but they won’t taste the same. After being purchased by Back to Nature in 2013, the cookies were re-released without all the high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, or preservatives. Blech! Luckily, you can make your own unhealthy treats at home.
Is there anything greater than biting the head of a smiling cookie elf? Probably not. This recipe lets you bake your favorite elf-shaped cookies, but you’ll have to settle on a different shape. Luckily, there are plenty of cookie cutters on the market to choose from.
Dipping crackers and pretzels into the little plastic container of artificial cheese always grossed my mom out, but it was a lunchbox favorite for me. For a classier version, you can make your own cheese dip and crackers.
12. HOT POCKETS
If you miss Hot Pockets, but not enough to actually eat one, try making your own—plus, this way you'll know exactly what ingredients are going into it.