Remember Dunkaroos? Sure you do. They were once the most coveted snack of school cafeterias everywhere. The single-serve cookies-and-icing combo appeared in the early ‘90s, but by 2012, they had vanished. So, what ever happened to Dunkaroos?
What Happened to Dunkaroos—And Why Were They Discontinued in the First Place?
We did some deep investigation in PureWow's nostalgic pop culture podcast, 'What Ever Happened To...?'—where we come together to relive pop culture history and uncover what became of the snacks, celebrities and trends that defined our adolescence. Let’s dive into all the sweet nostalgia, shall we?
What Are Dunkaroos?
Dunkaroos came in a turquoise rectangular package with cookies on one side and a little tub of icing for dunking on the other. Back in the early ‘90s, the cookies came in a bunch of different shapes: kangaroos with hats on, hot air balloons, motorcycles, capital D’s (for Dunkaroos, of course)—the list goes on. The icings came in multiple flavors, too. In the States, we could dip our cookies into Chocolate Chip, Cinnamon, Peanut Butter and the fan-favorite, Rainbow Sprinkles. Australia even had Strawberry and Hazelnut icings.
Why Were Dunkaroos Discontinued?
While Canada still sold Dunkaroos until 2017, the product was discontinued in the United States in 2012—but why?
General Mill’s Chief Brand Officer for North America, Brad Hiranaga, explained to The New York Times, “We run our businesses kind of by geography. In the U.S., our focus back in 2012, in snacking, was really trying to build out more of our healthy, nutritious snacking portfolio. And so there was a lot of work to put investment behind that. Things like Lärabar, different iterations of Nature Valley — there was a big push.”
But, once the product had been MIA from the U.S. for a few years, it became clear that devoted snackers wanted them back. So, General Mills launched a campaign called "Smugglaroos,” which encouraged Canadians traveling to the U.S. to bring the snack across the border to Americans. According to Teen Vogue, the company even set up a website (sadly, it no longer exists) where wannabe snack traffickers could sign up and wax nostalgic about “big hair, VHS tapes, and hammer pants.”
Do They Still Make Dunkaroos?
We’re happy to report that, yes, Dunkaroos are back. In 2020, Dunkaroos finally made a comeback, with the triumphant return of the most requested flavor: Vanilla Cookies and Vanilla Frosting with Rainbow Sprinkles.
Then, in 2021, chocoholics’ prayers were answered with the return of the Chocolate Frosting and Vanilla Cookie pairing. General Mills even came out with Dunkaroos cereal and partnered with Yoplait to release Dunkaroos Go-Gurt—essentially, Dunkaroos with yogurt instead of icing. The brand also sells Dunkaroos sugar cookie mix and cans of icing. Looks like a '90s-themed baking night is in your future.
According to the official Dunkaroos website, there have been no updates to the ingredients or taste, so they should taste just as we remember.
Where Can I Buy Dunkaroos?
So that’s what ever happened to Dunkaroos. Happy snacking!
Want more nostalgia? Tune in to 'What Ever Happened To...?' every Tuesday on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Don’t forget to send your "What Ever Happened To's" to email@example.com—or just comment on one of our TikToks @WhatEverHappenedToPod.