Review: Cave Shake: Food or Beverage?

Posted: Oct 31, 2016 at 2:19 PM (Last Updated: Nov 01, 2016 at 12:44 PM)

Covers Products: Chocolate, Coffee, Vanilla

Cave Shake is a vegan meal replacement shake that uses coconut milk as its base ingredient. Calling itself a shake as well as a dessert (and using the term “ready-to-eat”), this product seems to straddle the lines between food and beverage.

Positioning relative to that line even depends on how fresh and at what temperature you consume the product.  The closer it is to room temperature, the more liquid it is. As it chills, the product becomes thick,almost to the point of a pudding. We honestly found it enjoyable both ways.

For something that brands itself as vegan and paleo (which is still not synonymous with “great taste”), these products are really quite good. The flavors that we sampled, Chocolate, Coconut, and Vanilla, all use a coconut milk base and some natural sugars, while added stevia, salt, and guar gum round out the list of ingredients that are consistent across the line. The flavorings come from real ingredients, including cocoa, espresso, and vanilla bean, which translates into really accurate and great tasting flavor profiles. Plus, between the salt, the coconut, and the proper dose of flavor, they’ve done a nice job of masking the stevia.

Nutritionally, these products have almost 450 calories per container (8 oz. labeled with a 6 oz. serving size) and almost 45g of fat per container. While they have clearly stated that this is for the keto, paleo, and vegan diet, this does seem like something that’s going to create some label shock for some of the consumers who pick it up. If you consider it as something that’s a dessert that’s going to be consumed in small portions, perhaps this is less of an issue.

The product’s packaging is an 8 oz. jar that looks like a miniaturized version of a peanut butter jar. While it looks cool and the Cave Shake branding catches the eye, this format does make it unclear as to whether the product is  trying to be a beverage or a food. We really think it’s somewhat important that they focus in on one usage versus the other.

Overall, Cave Shake is a very unique product that delivers really enjoyable flavor using a vegan formulation. While we feel as though the product needs to really hone in on what it wants to be, the foundation, both in flavor and branding, are certainly something worth the effort.

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