Life

Grocery Store Snacks You Need To Pick Up On Your Next Market Run

Leaves are changing, the temperatures are dipping, it can only mean one thing — it’s time for a new grocery store snack roundup! Every few weeks, your favorite food brands will drop a grip of new products designed to fill you with anxiety when you’re doing your weekend grocery shopping. You probably know the moment well, you think you’re picking up a fresh pack of Oreos when all of a sudden they drop a new flavor on your dome.

In a perfect world, sure, there can never be too many snacks, so you might as well get both flavors. But in the real world? As much as we want to, we’re not about to fill up a whole shopping cart up with Oreos. Or any other snack, for that matter.

That means choosing between the new flavor of the week or standing by the old standards. So let us take those risks for you. Once a month we’re rounding up all our favorite new (and occasionally just “new to us”) market snacks that our team believes are grabbing the next time you find yourself scanning the aisles.

Let’s dive into the new grocery products you need to snack on this weekend!

Famous Amos Wonders From The World (Dane Rivera)

Famous Amos

Average Retail Price: $4.19 (7 oz Pouch)

If you had to choose a single cookie to eat for the rest of your life, you’re probably going chocolate chip. It’s a near-perfect cookie, and while you can never go wrong picking up a pack of your favorite brand, Famous Amos has given us an excuse to mix things up a little bit with their Wonders From The World collection.

The three cookie collection features Famous Amos chocolate chip cookies in three different styles: Belgian Chocolate, which has a sweeter and more pronounced chocolate flavor than their original, Mediterranean Hazelnut, which features chunks of Mediterranean grown hazelnuts embedded into the cookie, and the biggest departure, Philippine Coconut, which features flakes of sweetened coconut alongside chunks of white chocolate.

All three are pretty good, but if you really want to walk on the wild side scoop up that Philippine Coconut. It’s a little more intensely sweet than your average chocolate chip cookie, but it offers an experience that few grocery store cookies give you, while tasting reminiscent enough of the OG choc chip that you won’t miss your old standard cookie choice.

The Bottom Line:

In order from least essential to most: Belgian Chocolate, Meditteranean Hazelnut, and Philippine Coconut. But just order all three and you’ll be able to take a journey of global flavors, making this the cheapest vacation you’ll experience all year.

Cheez-It Extra Toasty Collection (Dane Rivera)

Cheez-It

Average Retail Price $4.09

With the Extra Toasty collection, Cheez-It has fixed the biggest issue with the brand’s crackers. Don’t get me wrong, I love Cheez-Its, but I can eat at most 5-10 before the sharp cheesiness becomes too intense. That sharpness is balanced here with a subtle burnt toast flavor that helps to make each cracker all the more addicting, whether you’re grabbing the traditional Extra Toasty flavor, or exploring the more interesting flavors like Cheddar Jack or Spicy.

If giving up the intense cheesiness is something you’re not willing to take a risk on, start with the Extra Cheesy version, which gives you the best of both worlds.

The Bottom Line:

I know Spicy feels like the most worthwhile departure, and while they’re good, they aren’t spicy enough to win the hearts of those addicted to spicy snacks. So we’re going to strongly suggest you opt for the Cheddar Jack which has a sweeter and rounder character to it than the Cheez-It stock flavor and pairs perfectly with that extra toasted flavor.

Good Good Belgian Choco Hazel With Stevia (Dane Rivera)

Good Good

Average Retail Price $12.99 (One Jar)

If you’re a big fan of Nutella, you’re no doubt aware that the reason the chocolate hazelnut spread is so addicting and delicious is that it’s packed to the brim with sugar. It’s the sort of indulgence you can only enjoy in small servings. Luckily, we have the masters of sugar-free pantry staples, Good Good, looking for a solution to that problem and they’ve found it, with their unappetizingly named Belgian Choco Hazel With Stevia.

When you open a jar of this hazelnut spread prepare yourself because by sight alone you won’t be convinced. It looks watery and like it could use a good mix. Give it one and be ready to be surprised — because a spoonful of this almost tastes exactly like Nutella. If you eat Nutella daily, you’re going to notice a difference (mostly in the texture), but if you’re occasionally spreading chocolate hazelnut on a homemade dessert crepe, or as a topping for your ice cream, this more than gets the job done.

The Bottom Line:

Sweetened with hazelnut, cocoa powder, and natural sweeteners like Stevia and Maltitol, Good Good’s Choco Hazel with Stevia is the best hazelnut spread you’ll find with a fraction of the sugar content of the original.

Salt & Straw Ice SCREAM Series (Dane Rivera)

Salt & Straw

Average Retail Price $65 (For All 5 Pints)

Ice cream and weather go hand-in-hand. We know the prime season for ice cream is the summer, but it would be impossible for us, true ice cream aficionados, to ignore Salt & Straw’s spooky-themed Ice Scream series. Featuring five flavors including The Great Candycopia, which attempts to mash all of your favorite Halloween candies (Kit Kats, Reeses, Snickers) into a single tastebud tingling butterscotch-based ice cream, Jack o’ Lantern Pumpkin Bread, Black Cat Licorice, and Lavender, the vegan-friendly bubble gum flavored Double Bubble Toil & Trouble, and finally, the most stomach-turning flavor of all, Don Bugito’s Creepy Crawly Critters, which feature mealworms and chocolate crickets embedded in a grassy matcha ice cream base.

You could write off that bug-infused flavor as simple stunt food, but if you can get past the sight of mealworms in your ice cream, it’s actually really delicious and rich. I can handle at most a spoonful, then for me, it’s on to the Black Cat Licorice and Lavender, which delivers a lot of flavorful herbal character delivered via a soothing and refreshing lavender base.

The Bottom Line:

In order of most delicious: Black Cat Licorice and Lavender, The Great Candycopia, Jack o’ Lantern Pumpkin Bread, Don Bugito’s Creepy Crawly Critters, and Double Bubble Toil and Trouble. Sorry, vegans.

Bachan’s Original Japanese Barbecue Sauce/Hot And Spicy Japanese Barbecue Sauce (Dane Rivera)

Bachan

Average Retail Price: $23.99 (two pack) $13.99 (single bottle)

Ever since trying a bottle of Bachan’s BBQ sauce, this has become my go-to. Whether used as a grilling marinade, a heavy sauce, or something to dip home fries in, Bachan’s BBQ is remarkably versatile, with a flavor that recalls savory teriyaki sauce much more than the heavily sweetened molasses-based Texas BBQ that has become the sauce’s standard.

That probably has to do with sharing some of the same key ingredients as teriyaki, including fresh ginger, garlic, soy sauce and Mirin, which are combined with tomato paste to make that BBQ base. To take things to a spicier level, definitely give Bachan’s Hot and Spicy version a try which adds a considerable amount of pureed Jalapeño into the mix, giving the sauce a lingering spicy flavor that tickles the tongue.

The Bottom Line:

Not as heavy and thick as your average BBQ sauce, but this little bottle is packed with flavor and perfect for slathering on any meat you’re grilling up.

Oreos Pokemon Edition (Dane Rivera)

Oreo

Average Retail Price: $4.19

Ahh, the infamous Pokemon Oreos. What the heck are these things? Why was everyone obsessed with them a few weeks back? And what should you do if you come across a pack chilling on the shelves of your local grocery store?

We’re sorry to say that the Pokemon Oreos are just Double Stuffed Oreos with little Pokemon portraits on the surface of the cracker, so consider this a public service announcement!

They are in no way special, and they certainly aren’t something you should fill your cart up thinking you just struck gold. Despite their collectible quality, the Pokemon Oreo packs aren’t actually worth that much money, unless of course, you open a pack and find a cookie featuring the Pokemon Mew. Cookies of Mew are being sold on eBay for hugely inflated prices, so if you’re lucky enough to buy a pack and find Mew, list it on eBay and then figure out how the hell you’re going to safely ship a cookie to a very serious collector willing to spend double digits on a stale Oreo.

Or you can just eat it and enjoy your life.

The Bottom Line:

They’re just Double Stuffed Oreos but they’re delicious and deliciously nostalgic. If you grew up on Pokemon that’s reason enough for grabbing a pack if you see them in the wild. But don’t hold on to them hoping they rise in value, they’re still just Oreos and best enjoyed if you eat them.

Soon Foods — Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Sweet Tahini (Steve Bramucci)

Soom

Average Price: $16.99 (Two Pack)

Two chocolate spreads in one roundup? Dare we? Indeed, we dare.
I really only buy tahini — sesame seed spread — when I make hummus from scratch. Also, I’ve tried chocolate hummus and not liked it. So I was… curious-bordering-on-concerned with this one.

And then… Oh my, I like this miles better than Nutella, which is actually a cultural product from my home nation. It’s got a better, creamier mouthfeel, it features a lovely salty layer, and the nutty-sesame note is *just* noticeable as the backbone. Truly a gem and one I’ll be buying often.

Pro Tip: Once the jar was half empty, I mixed it with peanut butter and cinnamon to make a combo spread to put in my coffee smoothies. It lasted only a few days, but wow — that was a special few days for my tastebuds.
The Bottom Line:

I like this better than Nutella. And I have one hell of a palate if I do say so myself.

Psychedelic Water (Steve Bramucci)

Psychedelic Water

Average Price: $33 (Variety Six Pack)

This is tricky. Is it psychedelic? It is not.

Does branding yourself “psychedelic” to hook into a craze/movement that has real medical implications feel a little cheesy? It does.

Should this company probably rebrand? I mean… I don’t run the company. But calling yourself psychedelic and then not being psychedelic seems to invite a whole lot of commentary like mine, rather than just people excited about the fact that…

Wait for it…

This is actually a very solid, really enjoyable product. The key herbal ingredients are kava, green tea, and damiana extracts (none. of. which. are. psychedelic. plants), blended together to give a potential buzz and some soothing. Do they have that effect?

I’m not sure. I felt chill but it was evening and I’m a pretty chill dude. I felt a little vitamin high, perhaps. I was mostly just impressed with the flavor, especially the Blackberry + Yuzu. It tasted great and there wasn’t a ton of sugar. The flavor was spot on (heavier on the palate than La Croix but far lighter than soda) and the drink was bright and effervescent. I added a little vodka to a few cans the next night and enjoyed that immensely.

The Bottom Line:

Want psychedelics? Do psychedelics.

Want a tasty, herb-rich flavored water? Here you go.

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