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Health Plant-Based Products

These are the Best Plant-Based Food Alternatives of 2022

With each passing year there’s a new plant-based brand that hits the shelves. Some of these newer products fall flat, while others are truly pushing the flavor envelope forward and achieving surprising results. 

For some time, before Beyond Burger and Impossible Foods changed the game, the plant-based burger occupied a bland landscape. Similarly, new plant-based alternatives are making a mark and showing what’s truly possible with the right amount of passion, palate and plants. 

Below is a list of what we consider the best plant-based brands that make faithful alternatives to many of our favorite foods. 

BEST PLANT-BASED BURGER

Photo: Impossible Foods

Impossible Burger 2.0

Photo: Beyond Meat

Beyond Burger

Kicking the list off with these two hugely popular plant-based burgers. Whether you rep OG beef flavored Impossible patties or Beyond Burger’s unique approach to flavor, you’re in for a great patty. Each of these patties are juicy, take well to seasoning and are easy alternatives for plant-based newcomers.

BEST PLANT-BASED SAUSAGE

Photo: Morning Star Farms

Morning Star Farms Hot & Spicy Sausage Patties

Morning Star Farms mastered the plant-based sausage game a long time ago. Their Griller Burgers were legendary way before Impossible or Beyond were household names. Today, they continue to offer healthy and tasty plant-based proteins with the Hot & Spicy Sausage Patties being no exception. 

BEST PLANT-BASED CHORIZO

Photo: Abbot’s Butcher

Abbot’s Butcher

If you enjoy your savory protein with a subtle kick, Abbot’s Butcher Spanish Smoked Chorizo delivers just the right amount of flavor. Made from pea protein with garlic, chipotle peppers and an imported Spanish smoked paprika, it’s a zesty and appetizing compliment for a wide array of dishes. 

BEST PLANT-BASED BACON

Photo: Sweet Earth Enlightened Foods

Sweet Earth Benevolent Bacon

Bacon is a favorite of meat-lovers worldwide. It’s also incredibly challenging to recreate. While many contenders have put forth admirable attempts, none successfully stuck the landing. Thankfully, Sweet Earth’s Benevolent Bacon has done just that. It’s generously flavored with hickory, sage and garlic. Unlike others, it can be cooked crispy or tender. Make sure to grab some next time you have a hankering for a BLT.

BEST PLANT-BASED MEAL KIT

Photo: Foodbeast

Nona Lim Dan Dan Noodles Bowl w/ Beyond Meat

In our ever-busy lives, having delicious on-the-go food options is essential. The Bay Area-based Nona Lim brand specializes in classic Asian street foods without MSG, artificial ingredients, preservatives or lots of sodium. The Dan Dan Noodles Bowl with Beyond Meat is a delicious marriage of savory broth and chewy Beyond Meat crumbles that can be ready to enjoy in 30 seconds. 

BEST PLANT-BASED CHICKEN TENDERS

Photo: Gardein

Gardein Ultimate Plant-Based Chicken Tenders

Gardein has been making plant-based alternatives for some time now, providing a range of classics that help preparing dinner easier. Found in the frozen section, Gardein’s chicken tenders are great for salads, sandwich wraps and as an easy snack for kids.

BEST PLANT-BASED CHICKEN FOR STIR FRY

Photo: Daring

Daring Original Pieces

This company focuses solely on making the best plant-based chicken possible. Managing to overcome the stringy, often sponge-like consistency that most chicken alternatives have, Daring’s plant-based chicken sizzles, shreds and serves just like the real thing. It goes great with Asian dishes like stir fry and fried rice. Aside from their Original flavor, they also offer Lemon & Herb, Breaded and Cajun.

BEST PLANT-BASED SPICY NUGGETS

Photo: Morning Star Farms

Morning Star Farms Veggie Buffalo Wings

Plant-based buffalo wings is one area with a high hit-or-miss average. As one of the pioneers in the plant-based space, Morning Star Farms has been making tasty alternatives for more than a decade. Their spicy nuggets have a great buffalo sauce flavor and chewy consistency that is perfect for dipping.

BEST PLANT-BASED FISH FOR COOKING

Photo: Omni

Omni Foods Golden Fish Filets

Omni Foods is truly doing special things with plant-based seafood. Using magic or something, they’ve managed to closely recreate the texture, taste and consistency of actual fish. Their Golden Fish Filets can be fried and baked to be the perfect plant-based centerpiece to your meal.

BEST PLANT-BASED FISH FOR SUSHI

Photo: Current Foods

Current Foods Original Tuna Filet

Also doing amazing things with plant-based seafood is San Francisco upstart Current Foods. Their resident scientists managed to create a plant-based seafood alternative that rivals the taste, texture and nutritional density of actual seafood. With Current Foods Original Tuna Filet, you can make tasty sushi at home and help support ocean restoration. 

BEST PLANT-BASED SHRIMP

Photo: Facebook

New Wave Foods

New Wave Foods was one of the first to market with a plant-based shrimp substitute, and it still stands out as the gold standard. Made from algae, their vegan replica is nearly identical from a texture standpoint, and the sweetness and flavor are a close match too. It’s exceptional as a fried shrimp substitute.

BEST PLANT-BASED EGGS

Photo: JUST

JUST Egg

The road to the perfect plant-based scramble has been a bumpy one. That’s not surprising considering yolk is an interesting consistency that changes once cooked. Thankfully, our innate desire to achieve the impossible has resulted in JUST Egg liquid mix. With super simple ingredients and a great egg-like taste, this is the closest you’ll get to the real deal.

BEST PLANT-BASED CHEESE SLICES

Photo: Violife

Violife “Just Like” Slices

In the beginning, plant-based cheeses were bland and refused to do that thing we love cheese most for doing — melt. But thankfully, over the past few years things have improved considerably. With a cheesier taste, chewy consistency and satisfying melt game, Violife “Just Like” slices are the best dairy-free pick that’ll give you the experience you’re looking for. 

BEST PLANT-BASED SHREDDED CHEESE

Photo: Violife

Violife “Just Like” Shreds

If you prefer a shred over a slice, Violife also makes excellent, melt-happy shredded cheese too. With four types of shreds to enjoy from Colby Jack to Mozzarella, Violife has your meal plans covered.

BEST PLANT-BASED CREAM CHEESE

Photo: Kite Hill

Kite Hill Foods Chive Cream Cheese

Kite Hill’s almond-based dairy products are well renowned, and it’s pretty hard to find a tub of this stuff ‘cause it keeps flying off the shelves. When you do score one, though, the combination of chive with the slightly tangy, rich plant-based cream cheese will be a taste bagels won’t be the same without. 

BEST PLANT-BASED MAC AND CHEESE

Photo: Freezer Meal Frenzy

Trader Joe’s Vegan Mac

Easy to prepare and great for those on the go, Trader Joe’s Vegan Mac is the creamy plant-based alternative you’re looking for. It comes in a microwavable plastic container and includes two hearty servings of dairy-free deliciousness. The taste isn’t quite cheesy, yet is richer and more filling than what you’d expect from vegan mac. It also has a dash of cayenne pepper for a subtle kick.

BEST PLANT-BASED MILK

Photo: Oatly

Oatly Oat Milk

I’m totally unsure who discovered that you could squeeze milk from oats, but they deserve a medal or something. Oatly comes in as our top pick as best plant-based milk with its well rounded yet subtle oat flavor. While not exactly dairy-esque, the oat-y flavor compliments all the usuals from cereal to smoothies, or simply drink it straight up.

BEST PLANT-BASED ICE CREAM

Photo: Van Leeuwen

Best Overall: Van Leeuwen Vegan Ice Cream

Many brands are trying their hand at plant-based ice cream hoping to achieve the rich and creamy roundness the dessert is known for. From brand to brand, experimenting with a range of base ingredients like almonds, cashews and even avocado means results may indeed vary. Van Leeuwen began with only an ice cream truck before expanding nationwide. With a good selection of plant-based flavors, you’re sure to find something for your sweet tooth. I definitely recommend their super delectable pistachio flavor.

Photo: SO Delicious

Best Cookies & Cream Ice CrèmeSo Delicious Wondermilk

But wait there’s more! In my experience, most plant-based brands miss the mark with Cookies & Créme. They either lack the creamy consistency, an authentic flavor or only use small cookie bits. Basically, there’s always something off. While Van Leeuwen has great Cookies & Créme adjacent flavors, they do not offer the traditional mix. Thankfully, well known plant-based brand So Delicious has answered our Cookies & Créme dreams with their new Wondermilk series, which features a crazy combination of ingredients like coconut, organic cane sugar and sunflower.

BEST PLANT-BASED YOGURT 

Photo: Silk

Silk Almondmilk Yogurt Alternative

Landing as our top plant-based yogurt pick is Silk Almondmilk Yogurt Alternative. The popular brand has successfully sidestepped the often chalky, liquid consistency of most plant-based yogurts. Available in several flavors, each bite is a creamy and sweet treat for your taste buds. 

BEST PLANT-BASED BUTTER

Photo: Earth Balance

Earth Balance Original Buttery Spread

Creamy and rich, Earth Balance makes plant-based butter that spreads, melts and tastes like the real thing. In addition to their Original Buttery Spread, they have a wide selection of butters that perfectly compliment your preferred slice of bread. 

Besides the health benefits that eating plant-based foods have, many of these brands also support great causes. The awesome thing about it all is that plant-based food is only going to get better. Next time you’re looking to add more plants to your plate, try one of these.

Categories
Grocery Packaged Food Sweets

Trader Joe’s Brings Back Pumpkin Ice Cream

Photo: @traderjoeslist

Spotted by @traderjoeslist is Trader Joe’s super premium Pumpkin Ice Cream. Fall season is in high gear and that means all pumpkin everything and everywhere. The seasonal treat is a big hit with Trader Joe’s shoppers, especially at only $3.99, so it only makes sense to comeback in time for the fall festivities.

Besides that, Trader Joe’s also has Pumpkin Spread, Pumpkin Body Butter, and Gluten Free Pumpkin Pancake Mix, so make sure to hit up your local one to get in on Pumpkinpalooza.

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Grocery Packaged Food What's New

Trader Joe’s Selling Everything And The Elote Greek Yogurt Style Dip

Though we may question the actual inspo behind all of Trader Joe’s unlikely food products and the combos that make them so appealing, it’s pretty much guaranteed that they’re going to taste good. Take for instance this potential banger called Everything and the Elote Greek Style Yogurt Dip.

This unlikely dip does set off a light bulb on some Eureka type shit, considering the fact that dipping your chips in something elote flavored really would be fire. Trader Joe’s site says the Greek Style Yogurt Dip is spiced up with the brand’s popular Everything But the Elote Seasoning Blend along with a bold squad of garlic, Parmesan cheese, chipotle pepper powder, and kernels of sweet yellow corn.

Crazy as it seems on paper, a scoop of this on your chip really would set off an ideal bite. An 80z. tub is now on sale at Trader Joe’s locations for $3.49.

Categories
Grocery

Viral TikTok Clip Brings Up Hilarious Theory On Trader Joe’s Unique Products

@cowbabyzee

trader joe’s is the twilight zone of grocery stores

♬ original sound – z (she/they)

In the hilarious TikTok clip above from @cowbabyzee, she brings up a funny possibility on just why Trader Joe’s items are so damn unique, even borderline wacky.

“So my hot take of today is that I don’t think Trader Joe’s is real. I think Trader Joe’s dropped in from an alternate reality. And I think that if we all just took a little bit more time to stare at Trader Joe’s products, we would realize that it looks like aliens trying to interpret human grocery items.”

I mean, it’s a funny premise, sure. Until you suddenly realize that a tub of Nashville Hot Cream Cheese with Everything Bagel Seasoning really would look right at home on a Trader Joe’s grocery aisle.

Categories
Grocery Packaged Food Plant-Based

Plant-Based Pork Rinds Spotted at Trader Joe’s

Vegan Foodbeasts and partakers in plant-based products rejoice! Recently potted by @traderjoesaficionado a couple days ago were bags of plant-based chicharones labeled as Spicy Porkless Plant-Based Snack Rinds.

According to TraderJoes.com, this new product is “made from rice meal, pea protein, and pea flour and seasoned with paprika, cayenne, and a pinch of habanero pepper powder, TJ’s Spicy Porkless Plant-Based Snack Rinds are vegan, gluten free, and kosher-certified.”

Categories
Packaged Food What's New

Trader Joe’s Is Now Selling Dill Pickle Mustard

Summer’s right at our doorstop and with that comes grilling season and all our favorite summer flavors. Trader Joe’s, always with their finger on the pulse and their creative minds constantly brainstorming, is ringing in that scenario with an exciting new condiment: Dill Pickle Mustard.

Spotted by @traderjoesinsider, the Dill Pickle Mustard is a new item that channels the piquant utility of mustard and the tart zest of a dill pickle. This season-appropriate sauce is now available and will make for the perfect squirt onto your summer meal.

Categories
Packaged Food

Trader Joe’s Turns Real Onions Into New ONION CHIPS

Photo courtesy of @pham_bot

I’ve spent the better part of my life enjoying onion-flavored chips. It’s even gotten to the point where I’d eat so much; my breath would taste as if I had downed an actual onion itself.

To my delight, Trader Joe’s newest snack bridges the gap between chips and pure unadulterated onion in their new Crispy Onion Chips.

The chips are made with actual onion slices, rice bran oil, and salt and are probably the closest thing you can get to snacking on real onions.

You can find them in the What’s New section of your local Trader Joe’s stores.

Wonder how they’ll pair with Bloomin’ Onion sauce?

Categories
Grocery Packaged Food Sweets

Trader Joe’s Launches Their Version Of TIM TAMS, An Iconic Aussie Snack

One of Australia’s most iconic snacks, the Tim Tam, is getting a tasty tribute from Trader Joe’s.

The grocery store’s newest in-house product is Aussie-Style Chocolate Creme Sandwich Cookies, which, according to the product label, are inspired by a popular snack from Australia. A Trader Joe’s associate confirmed to Foodbeast that their inspiration is the iconic Tim Tam.

For those not in the know, Tim Tams were created in Australia by biscuit company Arnott’s. They consist of a chocolate creme filling, chocolate sandwich cookies, and an encasing of more chocolate on top.

Trader Joe’s version hits all of the marks when it comes to matching that cookie. It also has a slightly sweeter taste, and a little richer chocolate flavor, upon trying them.

The best things to do with these Tim Tam replicas is to bite off part of the end on either side, then drink through the cookie sandwich as if it were a straw. The “Tim Tam Slam,” as it’s called, goes best with coffee or hot chocolate.

With Trader Joe’s making their own version, a lot more people are gonna to get know the Slam and transform their coffee drinking experience.