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Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade Sugar Free Drink Mix Review

Updated Review Date: 06/02/2017
Original Review Date: 01/29/2012

         Have you ever thrown a few crushed raspberries into a glass of lemonade? If not then here's a good opportunity to get pretty close to the actual flavor of that concoction in a low-calorie, sugar free way. Crystal Light's sugar free version of this popular lemonade combo is sodium free, carbohydrate free and has just 5 calories per serving. Because of those qualities, it's a viable solution for anyone looking to cut sugar and calories out of their diet but still wants to enjoy a full-flavored drink that tastes like it's sweetened with sugar. Currently, Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade Sugar Free Drink Mix is available in 8 and 12-quart size canisters (multiple 2-quart pitcher packets per canister) and boxes of 10, 30 and 44 count On The Go packets. Each On The Go packet flavors one 16 to 20oz bottle of water.
         Now on to the review to see how Crystal Light scores.

Nutrition Information for Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade Drink Mix

Each serving of Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade, which is 0.125 packet of powdered mix (canisters) or 1/2 packet (On The Go packets), has the following nutritional values:

Calories: 5
Sodium: 0mg
Sugars: 0g
Carbohydrates: 0g
Total Fat: 0g

Ingredients of Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade Sugar Free Drink Mix

Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Calcium Phosphate, Aspartame (Phenylketonurics: Contains Phenylalanine), Raspberry Juice Solids, Contains Less than 2% of Natural and Artificial Flavor, Acesulfame Potassium, Soy Lecithin, Artificial Color, Red 40, Blue 1, Tocopherol (Preserves Freshness).

The Scorecard for Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade Drink Mix

With a maximum of 4 total points available, here's how Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade scores:

Taste: Phenomenal. Although Raspberry Lemonade from Crystal Light is both artificially and naturally flavored, it's one of the best tasting powdered drinks mixes I've ever had. There was a good lemonade bite and no detectable sweetener aftertaste from the aspartame and acesulfame potassium blend, which does seem to happen more often with lemonade-type mixes. The Two taste testers that participated in this part of the review also reported no aftertaste. Very good job on taste and it earns a top score in our collective opinion. (+1)

Packaging Waste: Like most other Crystal Light powdered products, as well as other drink mix manufacturers for that matter, the exterior packaging for the canisters and On The Go packs (#5 plastic and cardboard respectively) is fully recyclable but the interior packaging (unnumbered foil-plastic) is a crapshoot as far as recyclability goes. (+.5)

Value: On average and regardless of size, this flavor of Crystal Light is priced fairly in comparison to similarly sized products from competitors; the 8-quart canisters are in a price class of their own and considerably cheaper than the 12-quart counterparts. No problems in the value category. (+1)

Health Factor: Nothing stands out as particularly unhealthy in the ingredients and I'm glad to see tocopherols (vitamin E) used as a preservative rather than something unnatural or controversial. However, I do have a small issue with the choice of aspartame as the main sweetener. Most of the population has no problem with this sweetener but there is that small percentage of people with Phenylketonuria (PKU) which can't safely consume this product due to the aspartame content. There are less restrictive sweeteners available, like stevia extract, and it would be a relief to see Kraft start using some of the alternative sweeteners in products as popular as Crystal Light even though other sweeteners might be a touch more expensive to use. Since aspartame is used, there's a deduction of one quarter of a point. (+.75)

Overall Rating: 3.25 out of 4 for the canisters and the On The Go packets. A decent score and with flavor this good Crystal Light Raspberry Lemonade should be on your list of powdered drink mixes to try.

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