8 Childhood Snacks You Thought Were Discontinued but Actually Aren’t

published Jun 19, 2022
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Graphic collage of 4 childhood snacks: a box of Oreo O's cereal, a cannister of Planters Cheez Balls, a bag of Mother's brand circus animal cookies, and 4 bottles of Little Hugs juice drinks.
Credit: Photo: Oreo, Amazon

Ah, Y2K. What a time to be a kid! Frosted pastries and sugary cereals for breakfast, cheesy beef and shells and rich and tangy sloppy Joes for dinner, and let’s not forget the ingenious invention that is chocolate lava cakes. And in between it all, of course, there were snacks! So many snacks!

My childhood in the early 2000s was centered around oatmeal studded with sugary dino eggs, finger-staining cheese balls, yogurt that somehow ended up in a tube, and more. They were fab then and, to a few people’s surprise (including mine), they still exist today! Here are eight nostalgic snacks that are sure to give you all the feels.

Credit: Taylor Kocher

1. Mother’s Circus Animal Cookies, $.99 for 9 ounces

Plain animal crackers have their place, but the frosted rainbow nonpareil sprinkle-covered animal crackers are really where it’s at. I packed these in my lunch box as a kid, and just knew my friends would try to barter with me come lunchtime. Don’t worry, I shared!

Credit: Taylor Kocher

2. Planters Cheez Balls, $3.29 for 2.75 ounces

Cheez > cheese. That was my motto when I was growing up. There was no shortage of cheez-y snacks too choose from — doodles, crackers, curls — and these puffy balls were (and still are) my favorite. The more orange my fingers are stained, the better!

Credit: Taylor Kocher

3. Little Hug Fruit Barrels, 5.49 for 20 (8-ounce) bottles

I firmly believe drinks can be snacks and I can’t talk about the ’90s without mentioning these foil-topped barrels. I had no idea Little Hugs were still around, but now that I do, I can’t wait to pierce through a top and take a sip! Drinking an ice-cold barrel of intensely sweet fruit juice was the best on a hot summer day.

Credit: Taylor Kocher

4. Kool-Aid Blue Berry Blue Bursts, $1.39 for 6 (6.75-ounce) bottles

I was also pleasantly surprised to find these in the drink aisle on a recent visit to the grocery store. How could I forget powdered Kool-Aid’s bottled-up cousin with the plastic, twist-off top? It really is just Kool-Aid in a bottle, but somehow it tasted different. (Nineties kids, you agree with me!)

Credit: Taylor Kocher

5. Quaker Dinosaur Eggs Instant Oatmeal, $4.59 for 14.1 ounces

Obviously oatmeal with dinosaur eggs was an ideal before-school breakfast, but did you ever have it as an after-school snack? (Spoiler: It’s even better!) Were you an eat-the-eggs-before-they-hatched type of kid, or did you wait until the tiny colorful dinosaur shaped pieces were revealed underneath? I was a little bit of both!

Credit: Taylor Kocher

6. Smuckers Uncrustables Peanut Butter & Grape Jelly Sandwich, $10.99 for 20 ounces

Sure, my mom could make me a standard peanut butter and jelly and cut the crust off, or even use a cookie (or biscuit) cutter to create fun shapes. But. But! With these ready-to-go PB&J’s in the freezer at all times, all the work was already done for me (read: my mom). 

Credit: Taylor Kocher

7. Post Oreo O’s Cereal, $2.99 (on sale) for 11 ounces

As someone who likes to dunk her cookies in milk, this launch was the innovation of my childhood dreams. (Clearly I find breakfast foods to be excellent snack fare.) A favorite cereal of the ’90s and early 2000s, Oreo O’s made its triumphant return in the summer of 2017. It remains a preferred cookie and milk combo to this day.

Credit: Taylor Kocher

8. Yoplait Berry & Cherry Go-GURT, $5.99 (on sale) for 20 (2-ounce) tubes

In the early 2000s, somehow yogurt made its way into plastic tubes. The Shrek-themed Go-Gurts, and all their funky colors, are forever etched into my memory. If you were really in the know, you threw your Go-Gurts into the freezer for a few hours before snack time. If you weren’t in on it, you’re welcome!

Did your favorite make the list? Tell us about it in the comments below!