The buying and eating of Girl Scout Cookies is undoubtedly an American pastime. We've been doing it since 1917, when Girl Scouts first sold boxes of cookies to raise money for their troops.
The earliest Girl Scout Cookie recipes were simple short breads and sugar cookies, all baked in the homes of the girls themselves. Over the years, the recipes have gotten more elaborate and everything from cheddar crackers to granola cookies have come and gone from the official roster. Now millions of the cookies are sold every year, and big commercial bakeries like Little Brownie Bakers and ABC Smart Cookies produce the Girl Scout Cookie stock.
Ever worry if your beloved Samoas or Lemonades will be sold this year? Here's the deal—the licensed bakeries can produce up to 8 varieties of cookie, though that must include 3 staple types: Thin Mints, Do-Si-Dos, and Trefoils. The Girl Scout troupes must also sell the standard three. They can choose their additional flavors from the 11 current varieties of Girl Scout Cookie: Thin Mints, Samoas (Caramel deLites), Do-Si-Dos (Peanut Butter Sandwiches), Trefoils (Shortbread), Tagalongs (Peanut Butter Patties), Savannah Smiles, Dulce de Leche, Thank You Berry Munch, Lemonades and Shout-Outs!
Ever wonder what differentiates a Do-Si-Do from a Tagalong? Always heard of Shout Outs! but never tried them for yourself? Take a peek at our guide to Girl Scout Cookies to learn about the entire line.
- Thin Mints
- Samoas (also known as Caramel deLites)
- Do-Si-Dos (also known as Peanut Butter Sandwiches)
- Trefoils (also known as Shortbread)
- Tagalongs (also known as Peanut Butter Patties)
- Savannah Smiles
- Dulce de Leches
- Thank U Berry Munch
- Shout Outs!
Thin Mints are definitely the most popular member of the Girl Scout Cookie troupe. Their success lies in a combination of flavor and texture—a thin, circular mint cookie is encased in a glossy robe of dark chocolate. The result is an almost refreshing mint-chocolate flavor: the cookie cousin of an After Eight. Thin Mint’s lighter-than-air texture becomes particularly crisp after a short stay in the freezer. During the Girl Scout Cookie high season, Little Brownie (and that’s just one of the two Girl Scout Cookie baking companies) bakes over 4.5 million Thin Mints every day.
Samoas (also known as Caramel deLites)
Samoas are the second most popular cookie, yet they couldn’t be more different than their troupe leader, Thin Mints. Rather than refreshing and light, these cookies are delightfully decadent. A ring-shaped vanilla cookie base is covered with a layer of Twix-like caramel, then rolled in shreds of toasted coconut and striped with melted chocolate. Samoas are the Girl Scout Cookie of choice for chewy cookie lovers: the caramel actually has a little viscosity and the cookie bends under your teeth.
Do-Si-Dos (also known as Peanut Butter Sandwiches)
Do-Si-Do’s are a double whammy of childhood treats: oatmeal cookies and peanut butter sandwiches. The oatmeal cookies are on the sweeter, less rustic side of their breed, but fans of Do-Si-Dos appreciate the cookie's crisp contrast to their soft peanut butter interior. We like to think of them like an intended-to-be-healthy Oreo gone rogue.
Trefoils (also known as Shortbread)
Simple, classic: Trefoils are the building block of many of the other Girl Scout Cookies. The crunchy, mildly buttery shortbread is made special with an embossed design of the Girl Scout trefoil logo.
Tagalongs (also known as Peanut Butter Patties)
Peanut butter lovers tend to stake their loyalty between these cookies and Do-Si-Dos. The deciding factor for members of the Tagalong camp is usually chocolate—Tagalongs have a thin dark chocolate shell that covers a layer of soft peanut butter and a crunchy short bread base.
The newest member of the Troupe, Savannah Smiles were introduced to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts. These half-moon shaped cookies have an extremely crunchy interior with an intense, if artificial, lemon flavor. A dusting of powdered sugar makes them very similar to the discontinued Lemon Cooler cookie.
Dulce de Leches
The Girl Scout Cookie website says that these hard, crunchy cookies scattered with milk caramel chips are “inspired by the classic confections of Latin America.” Perhaps the original version felt more authentic: the cookies initially came with a caramel topping. It was removed because it contained too much trans fat.
Thank U Berry Munch
With their pieces of dried cranberry, these are the only current cookies to use real pieces of fruit. The combination of the fruit with white fudge chips makes Thank U Berry Munch feel like the most daring of the line. Indeed, the super sweet berries and cream flavor isn’t to everyone’s taste, but the cookies have held on since their introduction in 2009.
Lemonades are essentially just Trefoil cookies with a thin layer of lemon icing that have been stamped in the shape of a flower lemon. They replaced Lemon Coolers, Lemon Chalet Cremes, and Lemon Drops as the de facto lemon cookie of the troupe.
Shout Outs! are intended to be a Belgian-style caramelized cookie, similar to Biscoff cookies. They have the typical, crunchy texture of most Girl Scout Cookies and a lightly spiced flavor. Shout Outs! responded to a growing demand to cut trans fat in Girl Scout Cookies, and these contain zero grams of trans fat per serving, no artificial colors or preservatives, and no high fructose corn syrup.
Another twist on Trefoils, these cookies take a shortbread base and coat them with chocolate. Taste-wise, they’re almost identical to the discontinued Animal Treasures. Each cookie has the phrase “Thank You” stamped into its face in English, French, Spanish, Swahili, or Chinese.