A few weeks ago I had a chance to go through and test out some upcoming products that are hitting the market in the health and wellness world. So far, these are my favorites (but I’m still working through them all so I’m hoping the list continues to grow!)
So, hear me out on this. I really don’t like packaged anything. But, when you’re not the only person in the house and the only person in the house who will cook up her own popcorn snack with kernel (on the stove – remember this), then pre-portioned, pre-packaged snacks are kind of a necessity. I try to keep them out, but honestly, this brand did a great job of combining no crap (yes, that’s a technical) term, with organic ingredients. It’s organic, gluten-free, kosher, with absolutely no artificial flavors or colors. Oh, and the popcorn inside is actually really good too without that powdery cheese sticking on your tongue. (Your kids will also love it because lovable Mickey Mouse is on the box).
Back to popcorn once more and then we’ll move on. If you’re not already aware of how horrible those popcorn bags are that you stuff in your microwave, then you should probably just read this first. It’s not the popcorn that’s unhealthy, it’s the bag that it’s being cooked in as well as the number of artificial flavors and colors that are added into the mix. Instead of letting popcorn get a bad wrap, Popzup Popper created a reusable microwave popcorn popper. It’s plastic and chemical free, made in America, and comes with non-GMO and gluten-free kernels. I confess… I don’t have a microwave so I had to use a friends, but when I did, we both agreed – it’s delicious. Go out and buy one of these for yourself and a bunch for your friends and family. You’ll be keeping them healthy and they won’t even realize it!
We all are guilty of wanting that PB&J once in a while, knowing full well that that jam is just packed full of sugar. Enter the World of Chia. These fruit spreads are the perfect alternative to those jams hiding in your fridge. Packed full of chia seeds that add in tons of omega 3 and fiber to your serving, it’s one of my favorite discoveries. Yes, you can make it yourself, but when the craving strikes, it’s super easy to just pull it out of your fridge. Bonus: My kid LOVES it. What does suck is trying to get all the sticky chia seeds out of his hair…
Ok, I’m going to reiterate what I said before – I do not like things that come prepackaged. I’m much more of a do-it-yourself kind of gal, but there are just some nights where you’re trying to figure out what the heck you’re going to do for dinner and on a night like that is where I grabbed this meatball mix. I had some ground beef in the fridge, some tomato sauce in the freezer, and a box of pasta. I was ready.
Looking at the ingredients, I decided to half the recipe amount of the mix needed and was delightfully surprised at the outcome. Without having to go through my spice cabinet, or soak some bread, etc. I made meatballs that are pretty close to what your beloved Nonna might make for Sunday supper. Like I said, I went light on the mixture, because I’m weird like that, and the flavors came through loud and clear – in a good way. As for the ingredients, the only negative I would say is that lovely “flavour” at the end of the line. Other than that, I’ll give them a B+!
As someone who makes soups quite often and probably doesn’t make stock often enough, this product saved my sanity, time, and my dishes quite a few times. It’s extremely simple – just add it to a cup of water and mix it into your soup – extremely easy to store – tiny little individual packets fit perfectly in the spice cabinet – oh and the best part – there’s absolutely nothing crappy in it (yes, I’m using that word a lot in this post.) Instead of flavorings that you can’t pronounce, you’ll find tomato, mushroom, onion, carrot, and celery extracts, a bit of sugar, salt, yeast extract, and maltodextrin, which is used as a preservative. So, even though there’s no substitute for the real deal broth that you make on your own stove, this is a great alternative for when you’re running low in the kitchen and need some big flavor.
This was my husband’s favorite – probably because I used the sauce with baked chicken wings. First, let me talk about the ingredients. It’s exactly what you would put in a marinade at home: water, tamari soy sauce, sugar, rice vinegar, onions, garlic, sesame oil, canola oil, green onions, ginger, sesame seeds, cornstarch, crushed red peppers. That is all folks! Seriously. I landed up marinating with the sauce, then baking with it, reserving some of the sauce for an extra coating after baking. It was delicious and honestly, I was really surprise just how much I enjoyed it.
Check out some of these products yourself and see what you and your family think of them. Again, I am a gung-ho make everything yourself girl, but honestly, sometimes I’m just tired and I need some pantry heroes to turn dinner into a reality (instead of a call to takeout).