A Roundup of My 2020 Birthday Freebies

I recently celebrated my birthday (Shoutout to all the Aquarius people out there) and while it wasn’t necessarily a large milestone, I wanted to make the most of it. In addition to the multiple plans I made throughout the day, I decided this would be the year I would hunt down all the birthday freebies I could find. Check out all the items I received for free on my birthday:

Starbucks

I am not ashamed to say I have been a member of the Starbucks Rewards program since around 2013. Now that’s a commitment! In addition to all the rewards I receive throughout the year, I thoroughly enjoy my annual birthday reward. This year I decided to treat myself with a Venti Iced Caramel Macchiato with an extra shot of espresso to start my day off right. Pro Tip: Maximize your free drink rewards by ordering a larger size. Regardless of size and customization, the drink is always free!

Retail Value: $6.35


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Einstein’s

After getting my free coffee from Starbucks, I was really craving a good breakfast and Einstein’s came in clutch. Prior to my actual birthday an email came to my inbox from the Einstein’s Bros Bakery Smear Society which included a coupon for a free, one egg breakfast sandwich. Einstein’s puts together delicious breakfast sandwiches so I jumped at the opportunity for a free bagel sandwich. I ordered the Bacon, Avocado, & Tomato Egg White Sandwich on an Everything Bagel and went on my merry way.

Retail Value: $4.89


Redbox

This was my first experience with the Redbox Rewards program. I have used Redbox in the past but I generally try to stay away because I am notoriously bad at returning the movies. However, Redbox gifted me with a free DVD rental so I decided to take advantage of the offer. My boyfriend and I rented Joker and enjoyed a cozy movie night at home.

Retail Value: $1.75


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Nothing Bundt Cakes

Before moving to Texas I had no idea about Nothing Bundt Cakes. Trust me on this; there’s nothing better than a red velvet bundlet with cream cheese frosting. I received a coupon for a free bundlet through the Nothing Bundt Cakes reward program so of course I had to pay them a visit. No surprise here the cake was as delicious as ever. The creamy frosting compliments every bite of red velvet, and there are chocolate chips hidden in the cake that add extra bits of flavor.

Retail Value: $4.00


Sprinkles

Ah, Sprinkles. Who can resist? Join the Sprinkles Perks program and you can get a free cupcake on your birthday too! Sprinkles offers plenty of options to choose from including a selection of featured flavors each month. However, I went with the classic Red Velvet so I could compare with my bundtlet. Both are great in their own regard, but I think Nothing Bundt Cakes wins with their cream cheese frosting.

Retail Value: $3.99


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Ulta

Every year during my birthday month, I always head to Ulta for a freebie and other great deals. Through the Ultamate Rewards program, members receive double the points on purchases throughout their entire birthday month. Along with a $10 coupon I received the Tarte Maneater mascara during my birthday month. The real gamechanger for me was receiving an offer for five times the points on any salon, skin or brow service during the week of my birthday. I decided to get my hair done and now have $50 worth of points that I can redeem at any time.

Retail Value: $23.00


The entire retail value of the my birthday freebies totaled $43.98! These are just a few of the many rewards available on your birthday. In fact, The Penny Hoarder put together an extensive list of almost 80 birthday freebies to enjoy. I will say that redeeming six of these birthday freebies was challenging enough, but it is possible to go the entire day without spending one cent. Take the challenge for yourself and see how many free items you can redeem on your birthday!

7-Eleven Joins Edible Cookie Dough Craze

Lately, I have been a little bit obsessed with cookie dough, but to be fair, there have been so many new products coming out in this category. A couple weeks ago, I tried the Ben and Jerry’s Cookie Dough Chunks and continue to see even more edible cookie dough products hitting the shelves. Now 7-Eleven is contributing to the cookie dough craze with their own version of edible cookie dough.

If you haven’t tried any of 7-Eleven’s private branded snacks, you are missing out. Chips, candy, and even ice cream; 7-Eleven has a whole range of hidden gems under their private label. The 7-Select Edible Cookie Dough was recently introduced in stores nationwide. As the package states, this cookie dough is both safe to eat and bakeable.

The 7-Select Edible Cookie Dough comes in three varieties: Chocolate Chip, Birthday Sprinkle, and Peanut Butter Cup. Unfortunately, my local 7-Eleven did not have the chocolate chip flavor in stock so I had to settle with the other two offerings. Let’s get to the review:

Birthday Sprinkle

7-Select Birthday Sprinkle Edible Cookie Dough

First of all, these are huge chunks of dough. Like any birthday cake-inspired product, these cookie dough bites are really appealing to the eye. In every chunk of dough you can clearly see sprinkles galore. I expected the dough to smell like sweet cake batter, but honestly could not smell much. Despite the lack of birthday cake aroma, I shoved a whole chunk in my mouth.

The dough is very soft and melts in your mouth while the sprinkles add texture and sweetness. Overall, I was not amazed by the taste of this Birthday Sprinkle cookie dough. When it comes to birthday cake I expect the sweet, rich taste of batter with an additional touch of sugar from the sprinkles. I did not pick up that classis birthday cake flavor in this cookie dough. Maybe I will pop these in the oven and see if it changes anything.

Peanut Butter Cup

7-Select Peanut Butter Cup Edible Cookie Dough

Similar to the Birthday Sprinkle cookie dough, these chunks of 7-Select Peanut Butter Cup dough are much larger than normal cookie dough bites that I have seen. This cookie dough actually exudes a strong peanut butter smell once you take the lid off and I was living for it. Reese’s and 7-Eleven teamed up to provide cookie dough with the perfect peanut butter smell.

They did not disappoint in the taste category either. Peanut butter dough mixed with little pieces of Reese’s peanut butter cups creates a truly delicious combination. I enjoyed the balance between both sweet candy and the salty notes from the peanut butter. This Peanut Butter Cup Edible Cookie Dough definitely edged out the birthday cake flavor in my book.

Okay now for my final thoughts…

I am fully on board with this edible cookie dough trend. Look, I disregard the warnings about salmonella every time I bake anything; brownies, cookies, etc. If edible cookie dough ends the hysteria around eating cookie dough, then I can hop on the bandwagon. I like that 7-Eleven markets this cookie dough as bakeable too because it shows people can consume this product in more than one way.

In relation to the other edible cookie dough products I have tried, this 7-Select Edible Cookie Dough ranks pretty high. I ate one cookie dough chunk from each container and my craving was fully satisfied. I definitely do not recommend eating the whole container in one sitting. Aside from a stomach ache, a full container of these cookie dough bites will cost you over 700 calories. However, you can catch me indulging on these edible cookie dough bites from now on.

Are We Crazy for Confetti?

I think it’s time to talk about one thing that is running rampant in our grocery stores; confetti. Have you noticed the rise of confetti products everywhere? I swear it’s all cake, cookies, Pop-Tarts and more with nothing but sprinkles galore.

Look, I enjoy sprinkles just as much as the next gal. A spoonful on my ice cream, cupcakes, or donuts not only adds some extra sugar but also makes the dessert even more fun and appealing. However, this year I have seen an excess of “confetti” products hit the shelves. When did the “confetti” or “birthday cake” product category get so big?

Pillsbury has even broadened the range of confetti products by introducing Funfetti pancake mix. Now, the confetti cakes and cookies I can understand, but pancakes? Even though I don’t like to admit, pancakes are pretty much just a dessert in disguise. When you throw sprinkles into the mix, the breakfast facade is completely lifted.

I’m not completely against confetti, Funfetti, or whatever you want to call it but I have seen so many confetti products that it really makes me wonder if brands feel compelled to add these products to their portfolio. I tend to think of Pillsbury when it comes to confetti because they introduced Funfetti cake in 1989. Although Pillsbury has definitely expanded the Funfetti brand across other products, they are no longer the only player in this space. Recently, brands such as Pop-Tart, Hostess, Hungry Jack, and many more have joined in on the confetti craze.

On Ranker, Funfetti cake ranks 21 on a list of cakes based on deliciousness. Similarly, a survey conducted by 973 The Dawg found that Funfetti came in last on the list of most popular birthday cake flavors. It appears that confetti is not the first choice for many consumers, so how come we are seeing even more products coming out with the same theme?

Let me clear the air; I do not have a personal vendetta against confetti. In fact, I think the confetti and birthday cake products are pretty fun. I believe that confetti appeals more to children rather than adults, but there must be a growing market for these products if so many brands are releasing their own spin on it. I simply want to acknowledge that confetti is taking over right before our eyes.

How do you feel about the rise of confetti foods? Let me know in the comments below!