Working off the Girl Scout cookies
February 17th, 2011
05:11 PM ET

Working off the Girl Scout cookies

We don’t mean to be killjoys here.

After all, there is nothing sweeter than coconut, chocolate and caramel cookies delivered by adorable Girl Scouts accompanied by a handwritten thank you note.

The brightly colored boxes of  Girl Scout cookies are popping up everywhere - in offices, your pantry and neighborhood. Here's what you might want to know about working off those cookies.

The best seller by far is Thin Mints, raking in a quarter of the cookies’ sales. These dark chocolate-covered, mint flavored cookies are one of the lowest calorie treats you can get from the Girl Scouts at 40 calories apiece.

If you eat four of the cookies at 160 calories, you could burn off that energy with approximately half an hour of bicycling at a leisurely pace.

The second-most popular cookies are Samoas (also called Caramel Delites), coated in coconut and caramel with chocolate stripes.

Sorry, folks, but their chewy consistency and sweet flavor pack the most calories of the Girl Scout cookies with 70 a piece.  That’s more than non-Girl Scout cookies like Oreos (60 calories), Chips Ahoys (48 calories) – but less than Pepperidge Farm’s Sausalito cookies (130 calories).

You could burn that Samoa with about half an hour of walking leisurely on a treadmill. Samoas are pictured at the top of the blog post.

The third most popular cookies are Tagalongs (also known as Peanut Butter Patties), which are peanut butter and shortbread partnerships enveloped in chocolate.  It takes in 13 percent of the sales. One cookie is 70 calories, much like its cousin - the Samoas.  You could burn off eating two of these Tagalongs with a half hour of water aerobics.  For more exercise activities, check here.

The fourth most popular cookies are Trefoils (also called ShortBreads),  shaped like the Girl Scouts logo.  These contain 32 calories per cookie.

Happy eating!

soundoff (340 Responses)
  1. Chris

    those girl scouts are pretty annoying...why dont they listen to Mrs Obama and start selling vegetables...no i dont want your cookies

    February 17, 2011 at 17:33 | Report abuse | Reply
    • John Galt

      They are annoying? Someone didn't take their Xanax today hmm?

      February 17, 2011 at 17:41 | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      Actually they are Evil. But I buy their cookies. You can have your old vegetables.

      February 17, 2011 at 17:52 | Report abuse |
    • ceeteebee

      Vegatables? There are some great nutrients In veggies; I just don't like the bad things On them as we receive them from non-USA producers (ie: the little, miniscule parasites).. Some from here too.....

      Don't respond by "just wash them"....

      February 17, 2011 at 17:57 | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      OK. Then just microwave them.

      February 17, 2011 at 17:59 | Report abuse |
    • ceeteebee

      G. S. cookies are way better microwaved than veggies..

      February 17, 2011 at 18:02 | Report abuse |
    • Rita

      You be quiet Chris....my daughter is a girl scout and I'm proud of her!!!

      February 17, 2011 at 18:12 | Report abuse |
    • Nicole

      Dear dear Chris...The Grinch of Girl Scout cookie season.

      February 17, 2011 at 18:58 | Report abuse |
    • MiMi

      I have to agree. They are a bit annoying. And they could chose maybe not veggies, but a healthier option. Seriously, cookies is the best they can do? It's just so bad for you.

      February 17, 2011 at 19:34 | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      The girls don't get to choose what they sell.

      February 17, 2011 at 21:21 | Report abuse |
    • I wonder

      Only a WRETCHED old bag would say something like this. gross.

      Support the kid's cause, I love Caramel Delights. AWESOME cookies!!!

      February 17, 2011 at 21:22 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      In my town, there's a public pea patch garden where you can lease a small plot for $50/yr, and the pea patches have been expanded twice by Girl Scouts in pursuit of their Gold Awards. So if you think all that Girl Scouts care about is cookies, you're quiet mistaken.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:17 | Report abuse |
    • lance corporal

      poe's law in action people

      February 18, 2011 at 01:05 | Report abuse |
    • krysta

      lighten up. I am a brownie leader and we rely on these sales so we can do fun things with the girls. we only get 1 or 2.00 a week in dues and that pays for crafts and snack, anything else we have to come up with the money. Obviously your not a kid person!!!!

      February 18, 2011 at 19:54 | Report abuse |
  2. ceeteebee

    Oh No... This can't be happening! Girl Scout cookies are as American as Apple Pie. What's left in the USA to enjoy?
    An early Baby Boomer with fond memories of all things that mattered in the 1950's and 1960's.. Two of the best decades for America.

    February 17, 2011 at 17:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mamabee

      Two of the most consumer-driven, materialistic, me-me-me decades that have gotten us into half the mess we're in.

      February 17, 2011 at 18:50 | Report abuse |
    • IceT

      mamabee ... are you kidding!? Do you remember the 80's, 'cause you obviously weren't around for the 50's or 60's. Having cheap good times are completely different than the out of control consumerism of the 80's & 90's.

      February 17, 2011 at 20:26 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      Dang, I miss the 90s. The 90s were goooood times.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:14 | Report abuse |
    • dcn8v

      Apple pie has a lot of calories too...

      February 18, 2011 at 07:38 | Report abuse |
  3. Grayson23

    Ef them yungins b, the game's all about dem dam cookies ju heard? Signed Wee Bey

    February 17, 2011 at 17:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Ciiku

    Funny, I just finished a whole box of Samoas YUM! (sorry hubby 🙁
    I will take me a whole month to burn them off! URGH!

    February 17, 2011 at 17:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. kpl11464

    They are for charity, therefore, they have no calories (said the fat girl)

    February 17, 2011 at 18:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Belle

      Too many comilpmnets too little space, thanks!

      October 9, 2011 at 19:37 | Report abuse |
    • rphkgtdhr

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      October 10, 2011 at 04:35 | Report abuse |
    • spmucv

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      October 12, 2011 at 06:59 | Report abuse |
  6. Jason

    How absolutely humorous! How can anyone be honestly 'annoyed' by a cookie? Whatever happened to personal responsibility and self control? Do whatever you want and eat as many as you want it's called 'freedom of choice'!!!!!
    Better be thankful you are able to choose 'to eat or not to eat'! Many people don't have food at all.
    I'm sure Mrs. Obama also eats them, and I heard her preaching moderation the other day on the news. She ate wings at the super bowl party c'mon! It's the parents and children's responsibility to eat properly and pass along good habits.....along with proper education. Not the government through taxation or making happy meal toys illegal~

    February 17, 2011 at 18:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • MiMi

      It's the girls that are annoying, not the cookies. Also, if there is a freedom of choice, why not offer cookies AND a healthier option to chose from? Why is it a choice of 'bad for you' or 'worse for you', not 'bad' or 'healthy'. If they had something better I would probably want to buy it. But cookies and nothing but the cookies?

      February 17, 2011 at 19:38 | Report abuse |
    • Bren

      I guarantee ms obama is scarfing cookies. have you seen the size of her caboose? Classic case of do as I say, not as I do.

      February 17, 2011 at 20:31 | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      Mimi: They have another fundraiser in the fall where they sell things like greeting cards, calendars, bowls, etc.

      February 17, 2011 at 21:25 | Report abuse |
    • Wuv Woo

      Oink, OINK

      How do I stop eating, oink oink.

      February 17, 2011 at 21:25 | Report abuse |
  7. Joe

    While I enjoy the taste of the cookies, I have stopped eating a lot of garbage. I mainly stick with raw foods now, and occasional pizza / wings / beer when I want to relax and hang. I didn't want to be rude, so I took the Girl Scout option of donating to the needy, instead. Everyone wins!

    February 17, 2011 at 18:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • LEB

      If you want to support the Girl Scouts during cookie season, just donate money at their cookie booths instead of buying cookies. A lot of people do that, and the troop always appreciates it because they get to keep 100% of the donations.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:13 | Report abuse |
  8. Mindy

    Ick. These cookies are made with high fructose corn syrup and taste fake. I'd rather have home made cookies made from honey or sugar.

    February 17, 2011 at 18:33 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ceeteebee

      Then bake them yourself; no need to comment further.

      February 17, 2011 at 18:54 | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      Then shut up and go make some homemade cookies. Jeez- they are around for about 2 weeks a year. Take it easy killjoy

      February 17, 2011 at 20:04 | Report abuse |
  9. JG

    Sorry, but Chips Ahoy cookies are 32 calories a piece.....I know I check and love them.

    Also love Girl Scout cookies....off to the tread mill!

    February 17, 2011 at 18:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Lina

    Go to the gym on a regular basis and call it a day. If they're annoying, don't look them in the eye ..and keep it moving.

    February 17, 2011 at 18:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Karalynn

    I think the issue isn't the cookies themselves, it's how many you eat. If you have 2-3 cookies once or twice a week, you've got nothing to worry about. If you find yourself polishing off a box, however, you might need to fix your relationship with food. Just my humble opinion 😉

    February 17, 2011 at 18:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bren

      Oh what the heck. They are small boxes.

      February 17, 2011 at 20:33 | Report abuse |
  12. David

    I ate a whole box of Somoa's last night... Yummy!!!

    February 17, 2011 at 18:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Nebu John

    What is CNN's message to the people. Anything good about Girls Scout? Oh, that side is blinded.

    February 17, 2011 at 18:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. James

    Freeze them–They are all great frozen–Yummy–

    February 17, 2011 at 18:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Cookielovescompany

    After 4 boxes, I have my work cut out for me.....if sedentary stay away from the cookies......or keep growing sideways.....

    February 17, 2011 at 18:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. ceeteebee


    You are responsible for your own generation; no sacrifices made from your generation, especially you as garnered from your arsane comment..
    Take Responsibility for once !!! Did you ever have to work at your first job on a farm?
    Don't answer unless you tell us the truth..

    February 17, 2011 at 19:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. cory

    I pounded down a whole box of samoas myself yesterday... oops...

    February 17, 2011 at 19:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Matt

      yes- they are awesome

      February 17, 2011 at 20:13 | Report abuse |
  18. Calvin Hobbes

    Oh Yeah! Cookies, cookies, cookies! I can't control a munchie attack with Girl Scout cookies in front of me.

    February 17, 2011 at 19:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Scott

    I steer clear of the GS cookies because their made with genetically altered ingredients which can have rather severe allergic health effects.

    February 17, 2011 at 19:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ceeteebee

      Oh S**t, here they come.. Go eat some more "Greens"..... Pollins included....

      February 17, 2011 at 20:05 | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      go hug a tree and eat some whole grain, organic, free-range, gluten free bark. At least while you are chewing it will shut you up for 10 seconds

      February 17, 2011 at 20:12 | Report abuse |
  20. ash

    I'd rather be a killjoy. They should seriously consider selling healhy food- how about small whole grain cereal boxes, whole grain-low calorie muffins and bread, natural fruit, sugarless jam etc.

    February 17, 2011 at 19:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Scarlett

      The cookie sales are for fund raising. If they sold such healthy options, they wouldn't sell as much. Perhaps we will get to a point in this nation where the healthy options would sell more, but we certainly aren't there yet!

      February 17, 2011 at 20:08 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      The cookies are a tradition of the Girl Scouts, and to this day are a huge source of revenue for the organization. However, individual Girl Scout troops often hold bake sales, and some troop leaders to make an effort to teach the girls about healthy eating by encouraging the sale of healthier snacks at bake sales.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:10 | Report abuse |
    • seriously

      you suck

      February 18, 2011 at 12:16 | Report abuse |
    • M

      The hilarious thing is you think a whole-grain muffin is healthy....

      February 18, 2011 at 14:28 | Report abuse |
    • Gabriela

      I would so buy some if I lived near you. It is hard to find the girls at the stores nourad here selling cookies, and I have never had one come to my door to sell them.

      April 9, 2012 at 18:43 | Report abuse |
  21. NM

    What about the hydrogenated oils, aka trans fats they use to make them? They are a heart attack in a box!

    February 17, 2011 at 19:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Matt

      don't eat em

      February 17, 2011 at 20:10 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      No one said you had to live on Girl Scout cookies exclusively. It's called moderation.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:02 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      Oh, and Girl Scout cookies no longer have trans fats. Most of the cookies made by Little Brownie Bakers (one of the two companies that makes the cookies) do not have hydrogenated oil in them. They also do not contain preservatives, and amusingly enough, are kosher.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:08 | Report abuse |
  22. Matt

    People on this thread are miserable. They sell cookies because it is a fundraiser- people love them and they make money. If they were selling organic free-range, dirt tasting grain bars- they would sell about 20 of them- most likely only to the 10 losers who are posting negative comments on this site. If you don't like them- don't buy them.
    we live in America- there is still free choice. The girl scouts choose to sell great tasting cookies 2 weeks per year. And guess what- millions love them. Wow- what a hard concept to understand

    February 17, 2011 at 20:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bren

      This thread is a riot! And Matt, you rock.

      February 17, 2011 at 20:38 | Report abuse |
  23. DrRational

    As long as they have a sugar free variety, I'll buy some.

    Sure, they're bad for me, but moderation will take care of that.

    Moderation is good. As long as you don't over do it.

    February 17, 2011 at 20:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Population Control

      ASPARTAME (Nutrasweet) is poison!!!

      Gives me the WORST migraines.

      February 17, 2011 at 21:29 | Report abuse |
    • seriously

      dr. rational...isn't that the definition of moderation....LOL

      February 18, 2011 at 12:18 | Report abuse |
  24. loulia

    Do Girl Scouts make the cookies or fund the making of the cookies? If not, why are they called Girl Scout cookies?

    February 17, 2011 at 20:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bren

      They are called Girl Scout Cookies because....wait for it.... Girl Scouts sell them. What a concept. duhhhhh

      February 17, 2011 at 20:39 | Report abuse |
    • loulia

      So if I buy a bag of Oreos and resell it for a profit, I could slap my name on it?

      I don't mean to be snarky, but as a foreigner, I always imagined Girl Scout cookies to actually be made by Girl Scouts. I was very surprised to find out how things worked when I moved here. I still buy and enjoy them though (Lemonades ahoy!)

      February 17, 2011 at 20:42 | Report abuse |
    • LEB

      Girls Scout cookies are made by two companies that have exclusive rights to producing the cookies... Little Brownie Bakers (they make the cookies with the real names: Samoa, Tagalong, etc), and ABC Bakers (they make the cookies with the fake names: Caramel deLites, Peanut Butter Patties, etc). As far as I know, both companies make Girl Scout cookies exclusively, but they are probably owned by larger parent companies that produce other foods.

      A little less than 1/3 of the proceeds go to the bakers. The rest stays in the pockets of the Girl Scout organization - some to the councils, some to the individual troops. How much the individual troops get depends on the councils they are under and that council's bylaws.

      And just for fun, an insider tip from an ex-Girl Scout... try to buy the cookies made by Little Brownie Bakers. They taste better.

      February 18, 2011 at 00:00 | Report abuse |
  25. Johanna

    I dont want 2 be rude but wateva those cookies are delicous

    February 17, 2011 at 20:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Amunaka

    Ohh ..what I wouldn't do for a box of those Thin Mints right now...

    February 17, 2011 at 22:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. runner920

    nom nom nom..... show us a blown up picture of the cookies and then tell us something we never would have guessed–cookies make us fat if we eat too many.

    February 18, 2011 at 00:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. lance corporal

    to solve the national debt crisis
    1. legalize pot
    2. have the Gov't start selling girl scout cookies year round

    February 18, 2011 at 00:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rins

      lol! I love that idea.

      February 18, 2011 at 10:47 | Report abuse |
  29. lance corporal

    yes but do they contain %100 real girl scouts??

    February 18, 2011 at 00:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. getagrip

    my daughter was a girl scout and we faithful sold the cookies and brought several boxes of our own. before selling the cookies the troop was informed of the new changes made to the cookies such as the sugar free cookies that turned out to be a huge hit for our troop. i agree if you don't like the cookies don't buy them. if you want to supoort just make a donation. and to add alcohol and tobacco is bad and i don't see any healthier options being offered all that's being offered is moderation or don't use. self control is the key

    February 18, 2011 at 07:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. dcn8v

    I haven't bought Girl Scout cookies in years, and every year I feel terrible turning away the little neighbor kids. If they sold healthy snack options in addition to the cookies, it would work out better for all of us! As for donations, sorry Scouts- I only donate to causes that meet people's immediate physical needs. Funding your troop's camping trip is way lower on my list than fighting hunger in my area. But good luck with your cookie sale!

    February 18, 2011 at 07:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Josh

      Then you must be buying the Boy Scout popcorn in very large amounts, correct?

      February 18, 2011 at 11:16 | Report abuse |
    • krysta

      their not talking about donating to the girlscout troop, you donate and they send cookies to either the charity of their choice if they chose that or the council sends to the soliders!!!!

      February 18, 2011 at 20:00 | Report abuse |
  32. Kristen

    The cookies are not the problem. The problem is that people don't know how to limit themselves to a couple cookies per day rather than a whole box in one sitting. Don't take a tradition away because of a nation's inability eat proper portions. People need to take responsibility for their own actions before everything enjoyable is taken away.

    February 18, 2011 at 08:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Josh

      Very true. There are far fewer calories in a box of their cookies, if you eat them only two at a time.

      February 18, 2011 at 11:14 | Report abuse |
  33. ace

    They are way better than the cub scout popcorn/chocolate covered eww! I always bought a case of the regular popcorn from them. GS cookies are never a problem. Get a few boxes and divide them among 4 people..a nice little treat. Everything in moderation.

    February 18, 2011 at 08:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Josh

    Wow, I am so very glad that my favorite, the peanut butter sandwich cookies, didn't make it onto their "too fattening" list.

    February 18, 2011 at 11:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Microwavin Maven

    Samosas are the best! Support our troops! girl scout troops that is...


    February 18, 2011 at 11:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Jag

    For those who count on calories, girl scout cookies are lot better than the treats you eat Thanksgiving thru New Year eve. If you buy them eat a piece at tea/coffee time. That will be fine.

    February 18, 2011 at 13:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Susie

    Chris, I understand you're against unhealthy items like GS Cookies. They're not good for you. Why don't girl scouts start selling nutritious snacks like Gudernoobs made by WooHoo Foods? They're real food plus omega-3s and they're wrapped to look like candy. Give them a try; definitely healthier than hydrogenated fats!

    February 18, 2011 at 14:36 | Report abuse | Reply
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  39. Marteus

    Chris: I'd tell you where you can stick your vegetables. But, you'd probably enjoy it.

    February 24, 2011 at 20:20 | Report abuse | Reply
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