Wednesday, April 8, 2020

15 New, Fun and Mostly Healthy Snack Recommendations

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There is never a time of year when it does not pay to be eating with healthy habits in mind. However, healthy foods can also have a great taste to them. In turn, there is no shortage of interesting new food and beverage options that manage to be nutritious and delicious – and often fun, too.

Here are 15 of my most recent food and drink discoveries that fall on the Kosher and Kosher-ish spectrum.

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OH SNAP! / Photo courtesy of Blue Frog Communications

OH SNAP! is a line of tasty pickles and pickled veggies in convenient, single serve packaging. Its innovative pickling line includes four pickle varieties featuring best-selling Dilly Bites and Hottie Bites, complemented by whole pickle options Gone Dilly and Hottie. Also offered are four pickled veggies: Cool Beans, Carrot Cuties, Pretty Peas, and Hoppin’ Jalapeños. Packaged with no added brine, all eight OH SNAP! varieties are also gluten-free and fat free. I like it because they’re low-calorie and their saltiness keep me from eating chips.

2) Hippeas
HIPPEAS is a line of delicious chickpea puffs that are organic, non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan, in addition to being baked (not fried). Per each one-ounce serving, they have four grams of (plant) protein, three grams of fiber and only 130 calories. The snacks come in delicious flavors such as Vegan White Cheddar, Bohemian Barbecue, Sriracha Sunrise, Pepper Power and Far Out Fajita. HIPPEAS also recently released a six-pack of Vegan White Cheddar, as available at select Stop & Shop and CVS stores. My favorite of the batch is White Cheddar, which has the appeal of a great cheese-doodle, only without the guilt.

3) From The Ground Up
From The Ground Up makes cauliflower-based pretzels and crackers that have a serving of veggies in each one-ounce serving. These award-winning snacks are Non-GMO Project Verified, certified gluten-free and made with vegan ingredients. The brand is new to the retail market, only debuting last year, and is already making waves. In turn, this snack manages to be new, healthy and fun. I like this snack a lot because it’s crunchy and salty like a traditional pretzel, yet still healthy.

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4) CeCe’s Veggie Co.
Cece’s Veggie Co. is a hot start-up out of Austin that is really shaking up the produce section with “simple but twisted” product lines of spiralized and riced veggies. CeCe’s offerings are 100 percent organic spiralized noodles and riced veggies that can go from pan to table in eight minutes or less, making it easy to add fresh vegetables to every meal. Cece’s veggies are responsibly-sourced, USDA certified organic and Non-GMO Project verified in addition to being gluten-free, vegan and paleo-friendly with no added preservatives, sugars or salts. I have recently started substituting vegetable-based pasta dishes for traditional wheat-based pasta on a regular basis, and CeCe’s is a great option for that.

5) Moon Cheese
With cheese as its only ingredient, Moon Cheese is naturally keto-friendly. These poppable cheese balls are delicious on their own yet make for fantastic protein-packed additions to any salad, soup, chili, or pasta. They are available in the following delicious varieties: Gouda, Pepper Jack, Cheddar and Sriracha. In addition, Moon Cheese is non-perishable, gluten-free, and a good source of calcium. It is available at Whole Foods, Publix, Starbucks and Rite-Aid, to new a few key retailers. I have never tasted a cheese snack that is so addictive before trying Moon Cheese.

6) B.Nutty
Looking to enjoy flavors like pumpkin spice, salted caramel and toffee in a healthy and nutritious way? Well, with B.Nutty you can do just that. B.Nutty is a healthy, gluten-free, trans-fat-free and kosher peanut butter snack perfect, made to satisfy your cravings without all of the empty calories. S’More Dreams was my favorite of the varieties I had the opportunity to try. Its Blissful Blueberry (with Honey Roasted Peanuts and Blueberries and Milk Chocolate) and Totally Toffee (with Honey Roasted Peanuts and Toffee, Milk Chocolate and Almonds) flavors are new to the market. B.Nutty has evolved into being my flavor peanut butter as its flavors help me with my sweet-tooth while still filling my peanut butter craving.

7) Abbey Specialty Foods Cheese
The Alvis family has produced handmade cheeses since 1952 at Lye Cross Farm, in the heart of the West Country in Somerset, United Kingdom. Located in an area of extraordinary natural beauty, Lye Cross Farm has been a pioneer in cheese production for over 65 years. The company sources milk from AGW-certified dairy cows – as raised on pasture, not treated with routine antibiotics or hormones — which are fed a non-GMO, organic, 100 percent grass and pasture diet. Its organic cheeses have a rich, buttery flavor and strong yellow color, owing to the beta-carotene in the cows’ aforementioned diet. The artisanal British cheesemaker recently announced its U.S. launch, and the dairies supplying Lye Cross Farm’s new States-bound cheeses are now Certified Animal Welfare Approved by A Greener World (AGW) and Certified Grassfed by AGW. This is high-quality cheese, and it fills all of my cheese-related home-cooking needs.


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Just the Cheese / Photo courtesy of Pollock Communications

8) Just The Cheese
Reportedly the #1 cheese snack on Amazon, Just The Cheese is made of 100 percent pure cheese — nothing else. It is a baked cheese snack that is crunchy and delicious, with only 75 calories per bag. Its cheese is oven baked, resulting in a caramelization of flavors, which truly makes it one-of-a-kind. Available flavors include Aged Cheddar, Jalapeno Cheese, Grilled Cheese and Wisconsin Cheddar. Excellent taste aside, I especially like this snack because of its smart portioning.

9) Divine Chocolate
The only Fairtrade chocolate company in the world owned by cocoa farmers, Divine Chocolate launched a new organic line this month. This is Divine’s first organic line, and its first time sourcing cocoa from CECAQ-11, a co-operative of farmers on the island of São Tomé. As located off the coast of West Africa. São Tomé – often nicknamed “Chocolate Island” – is where some of the finest cocoa in the world originates. The new organic line is made with a higher cocoa content (85 percent), which means less sugar content and a rich, smooth flavor. Not only is the new line Fairtrade Certified, certified organic by the USDA, Non-GMO Project Verified, and vegan, but it is made without palm oil, soy or artificial flavors. The new line includes four bars: 85% Dark Chocolate with Refreshing Lemon, 85% Dark Chocolate with Turmeric and Ginger, 85% Dark Chocolate with Blueberry and Popped Quinoa, and 85% Dark Chocolate with Cocoa Nibs. So while the chocolate tastes excellent, you also know you’re supporting a great Certified B Corporation when buying from Divine Chocolate.

Fiddlestix / Courtesy of Fiddlestix Candy Company

10) Fiddlestix
The Fiddlestix Candy Company creates handcrafted, small batch lollipops with something extra sweet: an edible image inside. The lollipops are customizable so you can choose just the right message for your special someone (or something). The candy company’s products are free of GMOs and high fructose corn syrup, instead made with pure cane sugar, organic flavors and locally sourced ingredients. I especially like how long one of these pops will last you, as its pure cane sugar is thick.

Liquid-Based Products:

11) Baahtcha Tea
Baahtcha Tea aims to sustain steady energy, boost metabolism to burn fat, support immune system with antioxidants and improve memory and concentration while providing great taste. It contains chlorophyll, which is believed to rejuvenate and detoxify skin. Baahtcha is available on Amazon beyond its own website, baatcha.com. This was the most impressive tea I have tried in a while.

12) Voke Tabs
If you are looking for convenient, effective and healthy nourishment for a healthy brain, improved concentration, attention, positive mood, memory and mental energy, you may want to grab a Voke superfood tab. It is a twice-daily plant-based chewable tablet, as supported by over 25 independent studies that show it can boost your whole-body health and give you more mental productivity. Voke’s chewable tabs include Natural Red Beetroot, Organic Raw Guarana Seed, Organic Acerola Cherry and Natural Green Tea Leaf Caffeine. Voke Tabs are proudly made in the USA and the company partners with “1% for the Planet” to support environmental solutions. I like this supplement for both its taste and its purpose.

13) Coconut Collaborative
Coconut Collaborative, #1 premium coconut yogurt brand in Europe, launched in the States last year. The sustainable packagaing of its line of plant-based, dairy-free yogurts, and desserts is produced in Los Angeles. Using high-quality ingredients that are better tasting, better-for-you, and the planet, Coconut Collaborative’s products offer dairy-free alternatives that are both vegan and gluten-free, with less sugar than leading competitor brands. Its dairy-free yogurt varieties include Plain, Vanilla, Blueberry, and Mango & Passionfruit. Its single-serving dessert option, Decadent Dessert Cups, contain 100 calories and are available in Chocolate, Salted Caramel, and Lemon Cream. Both products are found in retailers nationwide, including Wegmans, Safeway Norcal, Earth Fare, The Fresh Market, New Seasons, Kings, Bristol Farms, Nugget Markets, Erewhon, Lassens, Mother’s Market, Haggen, Metropolitan Market and the online retailer Mylk Guys. This is the best-tasting coconut yogurt I have ever tried.

14) HP Hood Cottage Cheese
HP Hood has found recent success with Planet Oat Milk, a new plant-based milk offering that is slightly-sweet while also dairy-free, peanut-free, soy-free and gluten-free. Also on the market from HP Hood is flavored cottage cheeses. Its new “4% Cottage Cheese” has pineapple added. A half-cup of this snack has only 130 calories yet 10 grams of protein. I am not normally a fan of cottage cheese, yet HP Hood’s offering is the most palatable cottage cheese I have ever tried.

15) The Worthy Company’s Blendie Bowl
Worthy’s Blendy Bowl is a tasty, ready-to-eat bowl, filled with fruit, veggies, protein, fiber, antioxidants and more. It is helping to revolutionize plant-based eating and is designed to fuel today’s busybodies with the quality, clean, delicious goodness we all deserve. The Blendie Bowl currently comes in the following flavors: Strawberries & Greens, Dark Cocoa Cherry, Vanilla Orange and Green Tropics. Each bowl contains two servings of vegetables and fruits, eight grams of fiber, eights grams of protein, and 250 mg of Omega 3 and 6s. Clocking in at only 150 calories, the bowls are also non-dairy, soy-free, gluten-free and nut-free. I especially enjoy the texture of the bowls beyond the flavoring, making it a filling and nutritious snack.

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