Sunday, February 25, 2024

Miscellaneous product reviews

 Hebel & Co’s peanut butter chocolate crisp halva, which they made in collaboration with Molly Yeh, is fantastic. 10/10, no notes, go buy some and thank me later.

I really like these new protein granolas: Nature Valley Protein Granola (I tried Oats & Honey as well as Oats & Dark Chocolate) and Sola granola (I tried the Maple Pecan Chocolate and the Double Chocolate). They are very good, and one serving of granola plus one serving of Greek yogurt gets me to about 30 grams of protein, which my nutritionist told me is what I should aim for at breakfast. It does help me get to lunch without hunger pangs!

I tried some ramen noodles from immi – the black garlic “chicken” flavor, which I found in a brick-and-mortar store. They are vegan and made from pumpkin seeds, so they are high in protein and low in carbs. As you can see, I did not “get creative” with toppings, but I should have! It was a bit plain on its own (I was expecting something more like a Cup-a-Noodles, which doesn’t need add-ins). That being said, the noodles were good, and this would be a great substitute if I planned it out better!

I also tried IQ Bars, after getting a discount code on a podcast. I originally got a sampler of all their protein bars, and while the Little Prince liked them, I wasn’t crazy about some of the flavors. I’ve since reordered a chocolate lovers variety box, which has peanut butter chip, almond butter chip, and chocolate sea salt. They now have new packaging, too! So, the ingredients overall are good for someone with a metabolic disorder like mine, even though I don’t really enjoy pea protein. Obviously, they contain nuts, so I never put them in the Little Prince’s lunch box, but he has them at home on occasion. It’s probably my favorite protein bar, to be honest, and I like them much more than No Cow.

Trader Joe’s chocolate passport was absolutely delightful! It’s essentially a flight of single-origin dark chocolate bars, and what’s not to love? 10/10, would buy again.

I finally got around to trying Egg Life Wraps, which are made with egg whites and are gluten-free. They are a really great substitute for tortillas! I enjoyed the plain ones with chicken breakfast sausage and sharp cheddar cheese, while the cinnamon ones were good with chocolate hummus. I’ll buy them more often!

Cacao & Cardamom’s Lunar New Year chocolate selection was superb! I just love this company’s confections. The flavors in that box included strawberry Szechuan and black sesame ginger – I unfortunately don’t have a record of the others, because the company stopped printing out the flavors and just sends a QR code now, and since that box was seasonal, there’s no way to access that info anymore. I believe there was a sesame brittle and a green matcha in there. On the bright side, they changed the glue they use for their stickers to make them more easily removable, so the boxes are now reusable! Also, the chocolates were as delicious as ever.

Finally, and this is more of a public service announcement than a recommendation: Cornerstone Wellness has whey protein shakes that are lactose-free, because the whey is micronized! I didn’t really believe it at first, but it turns out I can have them without discomfort. (It is actually normal to have some discomfort the first time you try a new type of protein, but everything should be fine the second time.) This is very convenient for me, since I don’t like the taste of most vegan protein shakes! I tried the Dutch cocoa and the vanilla, and have since bought a small canister of the latter.

[Updated later the same day to add: I forgot to mention Bokksu! My sister gave me the Kawaii Gift Box for my birthday, and it was glorious! What a great way to eat delicious snacks I wouldn’t have encountered otherwise!]

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