I just returned from an invigorating dietitian conference in Houston, Texas: the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo offered by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Just like shopping at the supermarket forces you to scan the thousands of foods available, I too, scanned the hundreds of expo booths for new products moms might love. Here are a few of my favorites:
You won’t believe how good these two canned vegetables are: Southwest Corn with Poblano and Red Peppers and French Style Green Beans with Roasted Garlic. I tried them both, they have exceptional flavor and could be easily used in your favorite recipes (think Green Bean Casserole for Thanksgiving) and when you drain the liquid out of the can, you lower sodium content by 40% – it’s even printed on their nutrition facts. I love Del Monte’s commitment to health for families by showing how easy it is to lower sodium. And vegetables go from field to can within 24 hours capturing peak ripeness, nutrition and flavor.
Minute Rice is making it easier for your family to get whole grains with their new Multi-Grain Medley. Made up of brown rice, red rice, wild rice and quinoa, it cooks in only 10 minutes making meals a breeze at night with sports practices. It also happens to be gluten-free for those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. It was nutty, slightly crunchy and can take on flavors easily. I can’t wait to try the Cranberry Pecan Multi-Grain Stuffing recipe featuring Multi-Grain Medley.
With the holidays fast approaching, I stock up on canned pumpkin frequently. The problem? Most of my recipes only call for one cup of pumpkin, leaving remaining pumpkin in the frig and I seem to never use it up. Nestle has delivered the solution to this problem by now featuring Libby’s 100% Pure Canned Pumpkin in 8-ounce cans (1 cup). I can’t wait to make one of my favorite recipes, Pumpkin Chicken Chili.
There are certain times I’m craving something sweet – specifically chocolate. And I stumbled upon this little treat from Dole. Banana Dippers are frozen slices of bananas dipped in dark chocolate. (I hear strawberry halves dipped in chocolate are coming out soon.) I will certainly be picking these up to store in my freezer not only for me, but I have a feeling, my kids will love them too.
Chobani is my favorite brand of Greek yogurt. And they are making it so easy for kids to love it too with Chobani Champions Tubes. This company is committed to quality, safety and I love their attention to what families want. My son loves the Chobani Flips as well (but he thinks they should be called “Bendy”s”). Me? I LOVE Chobani Bites – it’s a 100 calorie snack of flavored Greek yogurt and a mixed-in ingredient for crunch. It’s the perfect afternoon pick-me-up.
Have you laughed today? Instead of laughing when I tried the Cinnamon Cream Laughing Cow wedge, all I could do is say “mmmm”. Spreading this on my bagel was pure delight, and it was even recommended to try it in oatmeal for a creamy twist. Plus, it’s a 1/3 less fat than cream cheese. Store it in the refrigerator. Kids (and moms) will love it.
Barramundi – ever heard of it? Known as the sustainable sea bass, Australis Barramundi is a fish that you can cook in less than 10 minutes with a little lemon pepper seasoning and olive oil in the skillet on the stove top. It was moist, light in flavor and had a soft, flaky texture. I will definitely be looking for this for a future speedy supper I know my family will love.
Dried fruits are becoming more and more popular and Sunsweet Amazin Berry Blends is certainly part of that trend. You can use them as a snack on their own, combine them with nuts for a fast trail mix, top oatmeal, throw them on a salad or even make them part of a dessert. The Berry Blend contains cranberries, blueberries, cherries and Amazin Diced Plums and can really boost your fiber helping you achieve a healthy digestive tract. I will be packing these in lunchboxes for sure.
Looking for a heart-healthy buttery spread that tastes just like butter? Look no more! Unilever brands has made two types of spreads that are creamy and have a buttery taste and texture. Both Deliciously Simple from I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter and Simply Delicious from Country Crock spread easily and add flavor to breads, vegetables and so much more. Simply made from yogurt, canola oil and salt, these spreads are an excellent source of omega-3 fats (plant form of omega-3) and are made without hydrogenated oils. I look forward to trying it on sautéed vegetables. Check out their websites in the links for a coupon and a song that makes me want to sit back and swing.
Aren’t these cute? If there is one food I love at some point during the day, it’s eggs. I think these egg pops would make a tasty snack after school, help me make a quick egg salad sandwich or be a great addition to a salad. Each hard-cooked egg from Eggland’s Best is ready-to-eat (or poke a popsicle stick into) and features six grams of protein. No need to peel and having the package be resealable with a long shelf life, it can’t get any easier to incorporate this high quality protein into your day.
Wow, who knew Kimchi flavored chips could be so good? I was able to try these varieties of Food Should Taste Good chips and I was impressed with the Kimchi flavor. Crunchy, lively flavor filled my mouth and would perfectly pair with an egg salad sandwich.
I have been a supporter of Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods for a while now. And I was happy to hear about Gluten-Free Pie Crust for my friends with celiac disease. Around the holidays, pies are a mainstay and it has been difficult in the past to help moms that just want to bake a pumpkin pie for their kids at Thanksgiving. Talking with representatives of the company (no, I didn’t get to meet Bob, but would love to some day), I clearly noticed a sense of compassion for not only customers who buy their products but also for fellow employees. It’s definitely a friendly place committed to high quality foods.
And last, but not least, I had to stop for a peanut butter cup – Justin’s Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup. The were so good, I had to take two samples. Need I say more?
It’s a snapshot of what I experienced at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo and I wanted to share that with you to help make grocery shopping an exciting experience. Leave a comment with your thoughts, I would love to hear if you found this helpful!