The Ultimate Guide to Current 711 Slurpee Flavors

As a self-proclaimed Slurpee aficionado and retail industry expert, I‘ve made it my mission to taste-test and analyze every Slurpee flavor on the market. With ever-changing varieties and fierce competition among convenience stores, staying on top of the current Slurpee landscape is no small feat. But fear not – I‘ve done the hard work so you can make informed Slurpee decisions on your next 711 run.

Slurpee 101: A Brief History

First, some quick background for the uninitiated. Slurpees were invented by accident in the late 1950s by Omar Knedlik, a Kansas Dairy Queen owner. When his soda fountain broke down, he started serving partially frozen sodas that proved surprisingly popular. A few years later, 711 licensed the concept, coined the term "Slurpee," and the rest is history.

Over 7.4 billion Slurpees have been sold since then, or almost enough for every person on Earth. They‘re now available at over 60,000 711 locations across the globe, with wild flavor variations in different countries like Durian (in Southeast Asia) and Lamington (in Australia). But today we‘re focused on current offerings in the U.S. market.

The Taste Test: Ranking Current Slurpee Flavors

To keep things scientific, I conducted a blind taste test of all available Slurpee flavors at my local 711. Slurpees were rated on a scale of 1-10 based on overall taste, texture, and "Slurpability" (i.e. how easy and enjoyable they are to consume). Here are the results, ranked from my least to most favorite:

Flavor Taste Texture Slurpability Overall
Banana 3 4 5 4
Piña Colada 5 4 6 5
Sour Patch Watermelon 6 7 5 6
Vanilla Iced Coffee 7 6 6 6.3
Wild Cherry 6 7 7 6.7
Mountain Dew 7 7 7 7
Pepsi 7 8 7 7.3
Blue Raspberry 8 8 8 8
Coca-Cola 9 8 8 8.3

As you can see, the classic Coca-Cola reigns supreme with its perfect balance of taste and texture. Blue Raspberry pulls ahead of other fruit flavors with its sweet, tangy, icy bite. Banana, on the other hand, falls flat (pun intended) with an artificial aftertaste that lingers unpleasantly.

Interestingly, Slurpee flavors tend to be sweeter and more intensely flavored compared to their soda counterparts. This is due to the colder temperature – our taste buds perceive flavors differently when they‘re extremely chilled. The semi-frozen Slurpee consistency also slows down flavor release, so the sweetness builds as it melts on your tongue.

Surprising Slurpee Stats

Think you know everything about America‘s favorite frozen beverage? Think again. Here are some wild Slurpee statistics that might surprise you:

  • The average 711 store sells around 200 Slurpees per day, which can spike to 1,000 during a hot summer day.
  • Slurpee‘s "brain freeze" effect is triggered when the cold hits the roof of your mouth, causing blood vessels to swell and triggering pain receptors. The medical term for this is sphenopalatine ganglioneuralgia.
  • Winnipeg, Canada has been crowned the "Slurpee Capital of the World" for 20 years running, with the highest Slurpee sales per capita across the globe. The city even has Slurpee-themed public buses.
  • In 2007, a 7-Eleven in Kennewick, WA created the world‘s largest Slurpee using a 7,000 gallon tank. The flavor? Coca-Cola, of course.
  • Slurpees are surprisingly popular during the winter months. Around 46% of all Slurpee sales occur between November and February.

The Science Behind Slurpee Flavors

So what exactly goes into creating a new Slurpee flavor? I spoke with John Rossi, 711‘s Director of Slurpee Product Development, to get the scoop.

"The process starts with identifying a promising flavor concept, whether that‘s an existing soda variety, a seasonal fruit, or a trending food item," Rossi explains. "We work with our suppliers to create a concentrated syrup formula that contains both natural and artificial flavors."

The goal is to design a syrup that will taste balanced and appealing when combined with the Slurpee base (a mix of water, sugars, and stabilizers) and flash-frozen at a chilly 28°F. Achieving the ideal "rateability" (the percentage of syrup to base) is crucial. Too much syrup and the Slurpee will taste cloying; not enough and the flavor will be muted.

"We‘ll go through anywhere from 20 to 200 versions to perfect the formula," Rossi says. "Once we land on a winner, it goes to our quality assurance team for thorough sensory and food safety testing before it‘s approved for market."

The whole process can take up to a year from concept to cup, and multiple new flavors are always in the pipeline. So next time you‘re pondering the rainbow of Slurpee options, know that each one is the result of rigorous testing and painstaking attention to detail.

The Health Conscious Slurper‘s Guide

Now for the not-so-sweet truth: Slurpees are a delicious indulgence, but they‘re not exactly a health food. A typical 12 oz Slurpee contains around 36 grams of sugar, which is 9 teaspoons‘ worth. For context, the American Heart Association recommends no more than 8 teaspoons per day for most adults.

That said, some Slurpee choices are better than others if you‘re keeping tabs on sugar intake. The Vitaminwater Zero Slurpee has no sugar and uses sucralose and erythritol instead. Diet soda Slurpees (like Diet Pepsi) will also be sugar-free. If you prefer fruity flavors, more tart options like sugar-free Lemonade will have less added sugars than the syrupy-sweet Cherry or Blue Raspberry.

You can also modify your serving size for better portion control. 711 offers Slurpees in 12 oz, 16 oz, 22 oz, and 32 oz cups. Stick with the small for an occasional treat and skip the upsell.

Penny Pincher Pro Tips

Speaking of sizes, let‘s talk Slurpee pricing strategy. A typical small Slurpee goes for around $1.29, while a large costs $1.69. But since the larger size is almost triple the volume, it‘s a much better value ounce-for-ounce. Of course, the healthier choice is to get the small and avoid overconsuming, but if you‘re watching your wallet, go big (and maybe share with a friend).

Now for a few insider tricks for the savvy Slurper:

  1. Get the 711 app for Slurpee-specific coupons and promotions. You‘ll often find deals like $1 off any size or buy-one-get-one offers.

  2. Never pay for a Slurpee on 7/11 (aka 711 Day). The chain gives out millions of free small Slurpees every July 11th as a customer appreciation event.

  3. Ask for a free "courtesy cup" of water and use it to dilute an overly sweet Slurpee or jazz up a bland flavor.

  4. Hit up 711 between 2-5 pm, especially on weekdays. There tends to be less of a line, and the Slurpee machines will be freshly refilled from the lunchtime rush.

  5. Check your local 711 for the Slurpee Fiftee promotion during the summer months. If the temperature hits above a certain threshold, Slurpees are 50% off. The hotter it gets, the better the deal!

How to Hack Your Own Slurpees at Home

If you‘re craving a Slurpee but can‘t make it to a 711, you can create a pretty close copycat version at home with a good blender and some basic ingredients. Start with about 3 cups of crushed ice, add 1/3 cup of your syrup or juice of choice, and blend until smooth. The key is to work in small batches and add more liquid as needed to get that perfect consistency.

Some fun flavors to try:

  • Frozen lemonade: 2 cups ice, ½ cup lemon juice, ½ cup sugar, 1 cup water
  • Mocha freeze: 1 cup ice, 1 cup milk, 2 tbsp instant coffee, 2 tbsp chocolate syrup
  • Mango madness: 2 cups frozen mango chunks, 1 cup coconut water, ½ cup lime juice

For an authentic Slurpee experience, use a Slurpee straw or spoon straw to slurp up your creation. And don‘t forget the domed lid for maximum brain freeze potential.

Final Thoughts

Whether you‘re a cherry purist, a cola diehard, or a fearless flavor explorer, there‘s a Slurpee out there for you. These humble frozen beverages have become a cultural icon, a symbol of youthful nostalgia and carefree summer vibes. And with an ever-expanding roster of creative (and sometimes crazy) flavors, the Slurpee shows no signs of melting away.

So the next time you find yourself at a 711, take a moment to really savor that Slurpee. Appreciate the artistry and innovation that went into crafting each icy sip. And most importantly, have fun with your flavor choice. Because life‘s too short to drink the same old Slurpee every time.