Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Foods and an Oil Sprayer

Every so often, I like to do a blog post on new food finds.  I like to switch things up, try new things and I am constantly on the prowl for new foods.  This keeps things lively.  I think when you are eating healthy and trying to be very mindful of food and nutrition, it can be easy to get stuck in a rut.  Sometimes we gravitate towards foods that we know are easy, will keep us full, or for other reasons.  I am starting to feel this way about peanut flour.  I eat it everyday because it’s high in protein, it’s fast and I really like it.  I am not sick of it yet, but it still wouldn’t hurt me to switch it up a bit.  I have plans to make the peanut butter spread from the Happy Herbivore cookbook next week and see what I think about that.  I love regular peanut butter, but I just find it’s not as filling as what I would like.  1-2 TBSP of peanut butter is kind of a joke to me.  Anyway, the point of this blog post is about new food finds and a new oil sprayer that I am using. 

I discovered these while at my brother’s house over spring break.  My brother is pretty obsessive about not eating carbs.  We really couldn’t be any more different from each other.  He eats tons of meat, cheese and eggs and I am a vegan.  Anyway, he had these cocoa almonds that caught me off guard while I was there.  I thought these were like most chocolate almonds and full of sugar and I that threw me off because my brother doesn’t eat any extra sugar.  So I looked at the label and not only are they very low in sugar, but they are also vegan!  He buys them in the jar but I discovered that they also sell them in 100 calorie packs.  This is what I buy for portion control.  The individual packages are a much better choice for me because it could get out of hand quick for me if I just ate them out of the jar.  They sell these on Amazon if you are into buying larger quantities of things for a better price but they also sell them at most regular grocery stores. 

I purchased a deal on the Daily Gourmet website for 6 Lulu’s raw chocolate bars for $13.  It was a sampler pack that included some very different flavors.  I will have to be honest and say that the ones with Maca and Spirulina didn’t really do it for me.  But the plain raw chocolate and the raw chocolate with coconut were AMAZING!!  I probably won’t purchase these online unless I find another great deal, but I will definitely keep my eyes open for these chocolate bars at health food stores.  The nutritional information for these bars are great too!  The chocolate bars are pretty small, but they are substantial.  You can eat the entire chocolate bar for only 118 calories and it’s very satisfying!  If you know of a store that carries these, definitely give them a try!

Trader Joe’s Semi-Sweet Mini Chocolate Bars
Small, portion-controlled chocolate bars.  Perfect.  What makes them even better is that they are CHEAP!  You get 12 of these little chocolate bars in a package for 99 cents!  It’s hard to stop at just one but if you do, that’s less than 70 calories!  Make sure to buy the semi-sweet variety because the other kind is not vegan.  It’s good to have one of these when I want just a taste of chocolate. 

Trader Joe’s Sprouted Organic Tofu
I have heard that this is actually Wildwood brand tofu with the Trader Joe’s private label packaging.  If that’s the case, no wonder I like it.  I love Wildwood brand anything!  They are a great company.  The sprouted tofu comes in two small containers attached to each other rather than one tub of tofu.  This works great when you only want to use ½ the container of tofu.  The other half will stay fresh and you don’t have to worry about it going bad as quickly.  Also, the protein is higher in the sprouted tofu than with the other tofu options available.  Give it a try…I love it!

Chia Seeds
(Photo Source: Christina Cooks)

I have been reading about chia seeds for awhile now on different blogs.  At first, I would just skip over recipes that called for chia seeds but eventually I got curious enough to buy some.  I have been adding them to my oatmeal and it’s great because they thicken my oatmeal up and makes it healthier.  There a few blogs that use chia seeds quite a bit:

I have actually had these sweetener packets for awhile and I forgot about them.  I mostly use Truvia, organic stevia from Trader Joe’s and Organic Zero.  But it takes so much of the Organic Zero to sweeten my coffee and I ran out of Truvia and the organic stevia from Trader Joe’s.  So I started digging around my cupboards and found the Stevita that I bought awhile back.  It’s absolutely PERFECT for my coffee!  It’s very, very sweet so it just takes one packet to sweeten a very big cup of coffee.  I also like the taste of it in my coffee.  I recently bought another package on Amazon the other day.  That’s all I bought-one package of it for just under $2.50 and I still got free shipping.  Because you don’t have to pay shipping charges, it’s definitely worth giving a try if you like to sweeten your coffee a bit.  NOTE***I was just looking at the Stevita on Amazon and I did not see the same free shipping deal I got.  However, if you spend over $25, you get free shipping. 

Plant Fusion Protein Powder and Trader Joe’s Soy Protein Powder
(Photo Source:
I don’t use protein powder a whole lot, but I love to add it to my smoothies to make them a more substantial breakfast.  I typically eat a smoothie on the mornings that I work out.  I need something that will fuel me for a workout.  Usually what I will do is add ½ of a serving of protein powder to my kale smoothie and I am in business.  That gives me enough energy to push through my workout and then get ready for work.  I try to keep the calories of my smoothies fairly low (around 200 calories) so I can have another small breakfast after I shower and get ready for work.  There are a lot of brands of vegan protein powder out on the market, but these are the two I have tried.  I like both of them and will continue to use them for my smoothies. 

This is more of a product than a food, but I am going to add it because I think it’s great!  I was tired of buying spray cans of oil that have all kinds of chemicals added to them.  It felt gross and unhealthy.  I knew that oil spray bottles existed, but I didn’t know they were like this.  I did a search on Amazon and the Misto oil sprayer is what came up.  There’s even a little video on Amazon when you check out the product.  You just add your oil to the bottle.  You give it several pumps and then you spray.  You can use it over and over again.  You don’t have the crazy chemicals in the spray bottle and you don’t have to keep throwing away bottle of Pam or whatever brand you buy.  I recently bought a second bottle so I can have one for olive oil and one for canola oil.  They are fairly cheap too.  One bottle is less than $10 on Amazon (that’s not too expensive considering you can use it over and over again). 

Have you discovered anything new lately?!  Let me know!


  1. Hey follower here !

    Thanks for sharing all this wonderful information. I especially like the Cocoa Roast Almonds.

  2. Thanks for the tips! I'm excited about the cocoa almonds.