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Grocery News: 2010 Snack-tacular

by Katy Killilea

Some Grocery News-worthy, wholesome snacks have come through these parts recently and it would be wrong for us to keep them to ourselves. Many who’d spend their grocery dollars on these upstanding treats are the very same who grind their own nut butters and bake their own granola bars. But the goodies here have wider appeal. Almost every family pantry can welcome ready-made snacks from the middle of the spectrum that runs from M&Ms to chia seeds. The items featured here have three traits in common: the ingredients are recognizable and homey. They are meant to be enjoyed as treats. And they’re totally addictive, so beware.

cocoa-webCreated with active adults in mind, but equally appealing to kids and simply adorable, Somersault Snacks are available in both sweet and savory varieties. They say they supply more protein and less fat than an equivalent amount of almonds. About the size of the world’s tiniest cookies and with sunflower and sesame seeds as top ingredients, there’s no room for gunk. Each Somersault variety is crisp and flavorful. It took my not-so-keen-on-seeds eaters a full bag and some idle reading time to realize they had just enjoyed a seed snack. Available online and at Peet’s Coffee shops in Massachusetts, this is a snack worthy of a spot in every stroller’s back pocket or car’s cupholder. If said car has been vacuumed recently, please note that Somersault Snacks are small enough to be delightfully crumb-free; only the Very Hungry Caterpillar would nibble instead of chomping whole. (12 single-serving packets, $6.)

Falafel Chips from Flamous Brands are made from organic beans, vegetables, corn, and spices. The crispy, mildly spicy (also available in “Spicy,” which is not too dramatically spicy) chips do taste very much like falafel and the Flamous company recommends them as hummus dippers. That’s one too many simultaneous forms of chickpea for us–we enjoy them plain or with thin slices of cheddar cheese for that before-dinner chow down period, replacing longstanding B-DCDP titleholders Cheez-Its and Goldfish. The chips are available at the Alternative Food Coop and Belmont’s in Wakefield, Food for Thought in Narragansett, and at Dave’s Marketplace locations all over Rhode Island. ($5 for an 8 ounce bag.)JustinsChocolateFamilyShot

Justin’s Nutbutters have the kind of dedicated following usually reserved for preachers and massage therapists. Sold in jars (such that you might spread the butter on a crepe or sandwich) and squeezable single-serving packets (for application directly in mouth), the Chocolate Almond and Chocolate Hazelnut varieties are what have captured my heart. Less sweet and way more nutty than Nutella, these are perfect on a banana, rice cake, crepe, or index finger. Other flavors include Maple Almond and Honey Peanut. Find the complete array of Justin’s in Rhode Island at Whole Foods Markets (where they need to be restocked more often) and little packets at REI. (16 ounce jar, $6-$10 depending on nut.)

Somersault Snacks, Flamous Foods, and Justin’s Nutbutters sent samples for review. Kidoinfo never accepts payment for reviews, and we only feature things we have tried and loved.

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