5 Vegan Treats Worth Trying
5 Vegan Treats Worth Trying
I've tasted my share of awful "healthy" snacks and desserts. I can't even count the number of times I've purchased something that health and fitness Instagrammers raved about, only to find myself sorely disappointed and stuck with a growing pile of treats I will never eat again.
This made me want to be as honest as I could about which healthy snacks are actually worth spending money on and which are not worth your time of day (I'll never share them on my Instagram or write about them here).
Keep scrolling to see my top 5 picks that I have personally purchased and love:
I've been a huge fan of Purely Elizabeth since 2014, when I would devour Ancient Grain Oatmeal to brace myself for the long, cold New York winter days. The Cranberry Pumpkin Seed Ancient Grain Oatmeal tastes incredible. It's not bland like some other brands tend to be and fill you up without making you feel bloated or lethargic.
I've tried almost all of Purely Elizabeth's granolas (Ancient Grain, Grain-Free, Probiotic) and think they taste fantastic on top of oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies or as part of a homemade trail mix. My favorite flavor is their Chocolate Sea Salt Probiotic Granola, which is sweetened with coconut sugar, a low-glycemic, unrefined sweetener, making it a great treat on its own if you craving something sweet but don't want to indulge in a chocolate bar. It's perfectly crunchy, not too soft that it borders on soggy and not too hard that you feel like you're goiong to chip your tooth.
I also love that some of their granola flavors come in mini 2oz packs. They are great for traveling or throwing in your bag in case hunger strikes while you're on the go.
2. GT's CocoYo
I started exploring yogurt alternatives when I grew intolerant to dairy. I was at my local neighborhood grocery store when I spotted GT's CocoYo on the shelf. I was a bit skeptical at first given my ambivalence towards coconut yogurt. But I knew there was only one way to find out.
CocoYo is something of an acquired taste. It took several bites for me to get used to the new, tangy texture but once I did, I really loved it! I can't really compare it to anything else I've tasted, but if I had to describe it in three words, it would be: light, effervescent, sweet. It tastes surprisingly good alone or with some fresh, cut berries.
CocoYo is made from organic Thai coconuts. The extracted coconut meat and coconut water is mixed with vanilla, stevia and vegan cultures. CocoYo contains 15-30 billion active probiotics per serving and has no gums, fillers, emulsifiers, stabilizers or preservatives.
I met Watt Sriboonruang, the founder and chef of Rawsome Treats a few months ago at a workshop we both attended. I honestly didn't know what to expect but kept an open mind as I tasted her treats. Much to my taste buds delight, her treats tasted amazing. The crust really tastes like crust! If I did a blind taste test, I doubt I'd be able to tell her vegan tart from a regular tart. If you're craving something chocolatey and rich, her Fourbidden Layer Cake is an absolute must! The four layers comprise of coffee, chocolate, caramel and vanilla and are so rich and decadent! If you're craving something light and refreshing, then the Chocolate Mango is it. You'll taste her fresh fruits and high quality ingredients with every bite.
Fun fact: Watt originally founded Rawsome Treats in 2013 as a way to indulge in sweet treats without her sweet tooth hindering her athletic performance or affecting her weight loss (Watt is a Muay Thai contender!). Not only did Watt discover that eating plant-based treats allowed her to stay satiated and healthy, she was also able to lose weight effortlessly!
4. Van Leeuwen
Some people cringe when they hear the words "vegan ice-cream", but trust me, Van Leeuwen's vegan chocolate ice-cream is so rich and creamy that you won't be able to resist devouring the entire cone. I always step into their store when I'm in West Village or end up buying at least one pint when I'm in Whole Foods.
What makes Van Leeuwen's vegan chocolate ice-cream so delectable is their high quality chocolate sourced from Michel Cluizel, a small family-run French company that produces all their chocolates and cocoa powders without soy lecithin. If this treat isn't guilt-free, I don't know what is!
5. Eat Chic
I found out about Eat Chic earlier this year when I was mindlessly scrolling through the "Discover" feed on my Instagram. I was immediately drawn to Eat Chic's black and white packaging and felt compelled to find out more about the company. Founder Lotta Andonian was working at a luxury e-commerce website in London when she started selling her handmade chocolate peanut butter cups on the side in 2014. Her nut butter cups were so amazing that they were immediately picked up by Selfridges and Fortnum & Mason. As orders grew quickly, Lotta decided to quit her full-time job in 2015 and relocate her business to Brooklyn in 2016.
I admired Lotta's transition so much that I cold emailed her earlier this year to see if there was any way I could be a part of her business. I ended up helping her out for a few months, where I got to witness firsthand how her delicious chocolate nut butter cups are made. Eat Chic has so many unique, eclectic flavors in addition to the standard peanut butter cups. She uses Raaka's bean-to-bar vegan chocolate, which complement her nut butters amazingly well. My three favorites flavors are Espresso, Lemon Poppy and Maple Pecan Butter. You can find Eat Chic at cafes, retail locations and weekend markets in in New York and Brooklyn.
Want to share a favorite vegan treat? Leave me a recommendation in the comments below!
- Ling (@pretty_balanced)