Girl Scout Cookies Season – What to Do

Girl Scouts and Cookies. An inseparable American duo. Chances are if you haven’t already bought some, you will be asked to soon by your daughter or your friends’ daughter, or the neighbor’s daughter.

Here’s the thing: Girl Scout cookies are a tradition that needs to get healthier or get gone. We’re not talking about the high amount of sugar or butter – those are to be expected in cookies – it’s the quality of ingredients that are of concern:

sugar, enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), vegetable shortening (palm oil, hydrogenated coconut and soybean oils, and partially hydrogenated palm kernel oil), corn syrup, coconut, sweetened condensed milk (milk, sugar), high fructose corn syrup, contains less than 2% of: sorbitol, dextrose, cocoa (processed with alkali), whey, glycerine, salt, leavening (baking soda, ammonium bicarbonate, monocalcium phosphate), soy lecithin, natural and artificial flavors.

These Caramel deLites cookies, aka Samoas, are the worst of the bunch – graded D+ on Fooducate:

But let’s not disappoint the neighbors kids, your kids and your co-workers. There are Girl Scout cookies which manage to get a better grade – C+:

The Trefoils Old Fashioned Shortbread have more calories, but rate better because their ingredients are better. Not healthy, not necessarily good, but better:

enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate (vitamin b1), riboflavin (vitamin b2), folic acid), vegetable oil (soybean and palm oil), sugar, contains two percent of less of brown sugar (sugar, molasses), sweetened condensed milk (condensed milk, sugar), dried buttermilk, salt, natural and artificial flavor, baking soda, soy lecithin.

Fooducate’s Girl Scout Cookie Advice:

  1. Don’t feel guilty, no matter how you deal with Girl Scout cookies. Whether you refuse to buy them or make it a small indulgence, it’s YOUR choice. Don’t feel bullied into buying or not buying.  Or selling or not for that matter.
  2. If you do buy cookies, skip the Samoas and go for the Trefoils. Partially hydrogenated oil (trans fats) isn’t something to be had in “moderation” or on occasion.
  3. Instead of buying cookies, consider donating money directly to your local chapter. Only 10-20% of the cookie purchase price goes to the Girl Scout troop. You can give an outright donation or donate for a specific activity.
  • The Candid RD

    Oh ugh, we still have Girl Scout cookies in our freezer from LAST season!! ha! Yeah, our nieces are just so cute and we can’t say no. It’s fine, we eat a couple then toss them or put them in homemade ice cream if we don’t want to waste money (or..let them sit in our freezer for a year!)

  • Kathy Fitz

    You don’t have to order for yourself. The first column on the sheet my daughter had is ‘cookies for a cause’ which donates cookies to military personnel. Ask if the seller’s troop has that option.

    • James Cooper

      So we can fatten up our troops?

  • Nancy- The Frugal Dietitian

    I just donate to the troop – that way they get 100% profit. The individual troop makes very little profit on each box sold.

  • Jill

    Actually – I think it may depend which of the two official bakeries s given GS council is choosing to use. My “cookie manual” says our baker (little brownies) has eliminated the HFCS -a step in the right direction and is trying to replace the palm oils (so far 3 of our 6 flavors are) The “chocolate” cookies ( thin mints Samoas and Tagalogs) are the only ones with palm oils.

  • erinmtn

    My daughter was a girl scout for a number of years. If you don’t want the cookies filled with lousy ingredients, offer to donate money to the troop! The troops make very little money on the cookies they sell, VERY little, and they use the money for programs locally. If you donate a dollar for a box you were going to buy, you’d be doing them a favor.

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  • Diana_Reeves

    We contacted the Girl Scouts and asked if they are using genetically modified ingredients in their cookies. We were told that GMOs are safe, and yes they are using them. It’s not just corn syrup, it’s corn syrup derived from corn that has been genetically engineered in a lab by a chemical company by forcing foreign genes into its DNA so that every cell of the corn plant produces its own pesticide. To make it more toxic, they spray these GMOs with Round Up. The pesticide is known as Bt toxin. They don’t call it toxin for nothing. If you have any doubt, google EPA Pesticide Reg. #524-581 and 68467-7. The corn itself is an EPA registered pesticide. When rootworms bite into it, their stomachs explode. When people eat it? The companies that patent these GMOs won’t allow independent safety testing – we are their lab rats. Make a donation. Don’t buy the cookies. If you’d like more info about GMOs, you’ll find a great group of 10,000 people sharing it at Request to join this closed FB group, like our FB page and sign up for email alerts at

  • Pingback: Girl Scout Cookies Season – What to Do? Our advice ? Don’t buy -instead donate money to their chapter

  • VanessaElizebeth

    Even though the cookie program has ended you ca still make a purchase online to support this effort.

  • Jordan

    I buy Thin Mints and give them to my dog and neighbors’ dogs. They love ‘em! I wouldn’t eat those myself anymore, now that I know what all is in them. Disgusting!

  • Margaret Fuller

    As a Certified Health Educator, I’m totally disgusted that the Girl Scouts are still pushing such an unhealthy product. I refuse to buy such trash and don’t hesitate to tell others how serious this issue is. Not only do they have PHO’s in them, they are loaded with chemical “flavorings”. The Girl Scouts need to find another manufacturing company that has a CLUE about making healthy cookies, and no doubt they could have a tremendous increase in sales.