Natural Products Expo West weekend is virtually like Christmas for a foodie & healthy product junkie like me! The expo is so big that it really does take about three full days to check out every booth. There is a natural, healthy and/or green product for virtually everything you can think of. Tons of great product launches, new companies and even old favorites. I get to taste and try lots of incredible goodies but only a few (out of the thousands of products there) make my highlights list. It's a tough gig, but someone's got to do it) Here are some of the products that rocked my world, products that you should be looking out for soon! In no particular order:
Food & Beverage
Daiya Cheese Retail Package - I've raved about them for the last year and now, this phenomenal, allergen free, vegan cheese will be available nationwide for consumers! Finally, a retail package of the yummiest, meltiest cheese around ; )
Tofurky Vegan Pizza -Yep, you heard right! Tofurky is launching it's frozen vegan pizza line, featuring none other than Daiya cheese! A plain cheese option as well as "The Works" (veggies and Tofurky sausage) will be available in natural food retailer freezers very soon. be on the look out because they are dang good!
Gardein Meals - Here is another one of my faves adding to their already awesome line. The people who brought you vegan Beef Tips and vegan Chicken Scallopini have now come out with complete meals. Each meal comes as a trio of chicken or beef, rice & veggies. Look for the Thai trio, Burgundy trio or Sicilian trio. No excuses anymore for a quick and healthy dinner that tastes great! Also check out their new Crispy Mandarin Chicken!
Amy's Kitchen Vegan Mac & Cheese w/Daiya Cheese -Hands down, one of the best mac n' cheese dishes around. Not only is their new recipe gluten free, it features Daiya cheese (of course) for the creamiest, cheesiest, mac n' cheese jubilee ever. A must for kids and adults of all ages ; )
So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt - Growing up, I loved yogurt and when I became vegan 11 years ago, I never found a vegan yogurt that knocked my socks off. But now I have. This coconut milk yogurt is so light and flavorful, it really does feel sinful! In plain, vanilla, blueberry, and passionate mango, your snack time will once again be a happy time. Soy free and an excellent source of B12, you can't go wrong.
Tempt Ice Cream - I love vegan ice cream and it's gotten so much better over the years. So much so that Tempt made me think twice about what I had just eaten! My choice of chocolate biscotti was so creamy, I thought for sure I had been duped! But no, not only is it vegan, this hemp ice cream is pretty much allergen free!
Field Roast Meatloaf - Grazing is what you prep for at Expo West. And grazing was what I did at the Field Roast booth. I sampled their insanely delicious vegan sausages well more then once and probably downed and entire vegan meatloaf, new to their tasty line. I also sampled a phenomenal vegan cheese and am hoping to get it down in LA as for now, it is a specialty food item available in the Seattle area only. Do yourself a favor and stock up on some Field Roast grain meats!
Organic Mashups by Revolution Foods - Talk about traveling healthy, Revolution Foods has it nailed! Offering snack items for healthy on the go and school time snacks, their organic mashups are the perfect choice for youngsters. Guilt free, nutritional snacking that is convenient and fun? Yes please!
Picabi - As you can imagine, walking around a gargantuan convention hall and chatting for hours can render you quite thirsty. I had plenty of water and other tasty beverages but my unquenchable thirst was instantly refreshed with a swig of Apple Picabi. 100% sparkling apple juice, Picabi uses the entire apple, including the rind, so that 1 an the nutritional equivalent to eating 8 apples. And it's super thirst quenching too! Coming soon to a store near you ; )
Magic Pop - This booth drew me in with their neat popping machine. What I first thought to be a popcorn maker was actually a disc popper. In the popping dish they add brown rice, wheat and corn, top it and pop it! Out pops a light as air, Frisbee sized snack with virtually no calories. A great alternative to chips, this is a wholesome way to dip -- so ditch the chip!
Carrot Cake Rice Divine Ice Cream - I would say this is one of the most innovative vegan ice creams I have had in a while. Vegan or not, I had never had carrot cake ice cream before I tried Rice Divine at Expo. OMG! Not only is it soy free, it's gluten free AND has chunks of carrot cake in the creamy goodness. This organic, frozen bit of heaven is a must have in your freezer!
Sweet Leaf Tea - I'm a sucker for a good Arnold Palmer but not so much for chemicals, preservatives and high fructose corn syrup. Lucky for me Sweet Leaf Tea makes an all natural version of it called Half & Half! Until now, you could only find these tasty libations at natural markets. But soon you will be able to find canned Sweet Leaf Tea at convenience stores nation wide. That is great news for a road tripper like me who had a lack of healthy beverage options before Sweet Leaf came along and took over the rest stop fridge!
Chocolatl - Who knew raw cacao superfood energy could be so tasty! Chocolatl offers three varieties of raw, fair-trade chocolates. Each cacao square is an energizing snack between meals or an after dinner delicacy. With flavors like Goji-Maca, Cordyceps-Maca, Mystic Mint & Chocolate Maca Sauce, you just might die by raw chocolate ; )
Pure Bars - With their rockin' new packaging and yummalicious flavors, I really like the light yet satisfying snackability of Pure! Raw, vegan and certified organic -- it's the smart way to snack.
Health, Beauty & Lifestyle
Life Factory Bottles - For some time, I have been singing the praises of glass bottles. Over bpa-free, over aluminum, glass is king for all sorts of food and beverage storage. Life Factory ahs a great line of baby bottles, silicin teaching rings and wide mouthed beverage bottles for adults. They are large but lightweight and come with a great silicon grip cover so you don't drop your precious drink!
Better Life Floor Cleaner - I'm sure we can all agree that mopping is a pain. Filling the pail with cleaning solution and water, mopping, rinsing the pail, mopping with water, repeat. Or worse, swiffering ourselves into a giant landfill. Better Life floor cleaning product, Simply Floored, not only takes all the steps out of the equation, but it's also all-natural. All you need to do is squirt and mop with this essential oil rich solution and voila, sparkling floors!
Kids Konserve Ware - Sure, it's called "Kids Konserve" but this product line is great for all ages. Eco friendly and super convenient, this line is great for sack lunches, road trips and even food prep. They've got everything from thermoses to eco-snack wrappy things called the Kozy. Start stocking up for road trip season and get extras for back-to-school!
Feelgoodz Flip Flops - I was drawn to this booth because I dug the story behind the brand. A kid goes backpacking in Thailand, breaks his flip flops, gets a new pair at a market, loves the new pair, finds out it's natural rubber that comes from that region and brings the line to the states. Since then, he's grown his brand and hasn't forgotten the people and the land that helped him get here. Feelgoodz starts in Thailand, and their areas of focus are Environmentalism (Planet), Fair Trade (People), and Community Development/Micro-Finance (Phitsanulok, Thailand). The y feel good on your feet and you feel good giving back. Rock a pair this summer ; )
Acai Energy Chews by ToGoBrands - If you've followed me for a while, you know I'm a big fan of To Go Brands. Their Go Greens powders join me on every trip I have been on since I discovered the company at Expo West last year. Their new Acai chews are a great alternative to candy with all the sweet taste but full of B vitamins and natural energy boosters. Toss these in your bag and when you need something sweet, go for a To Go Brands treat ; )
Booda Organics -This booth caight my eye cause I love me some buddha cartoons and Booda Organics has a cute one as their logo ; ) In addition to their cute marketing, I really enjoyed their vegan products. Their yummy booda butter and booda balm is a nice addition to your beauty regimen because it's full of good stuff for your body!
I could go on for ages but I figured I would just share a few of my faves. Be sure to look out for more Expo product recommendations in upcoming posts .This year's expo was a lot of fun and I'm already excited for next year!!
For more information, visit www.healthyvoyager.com
Follow Carolyn Scott on Twitter: www.twitter.com/HealthyVoyager