We always advocate for fresh and unpackaged food for both health and environmental reasons, but, snacks in packages that are well labeled and full of good, healthy ingredients can ensure everyone’s safety and health, and satisfy our occasional cravings, too.
“If it came from a plant, eat it. If it was made in a plant, don’t.” is one of the many Food Rules by Michael Pollan we should all be following. And, although we can all agree that it’s a good rule, and that we should be eating real food that we made ourselves above all else, rules are also meant to be bent and even broken.
An acceptable packaged product stands on their own goodness, not on a self-proclaimed claim, and offers FULL DISCLOSURE of all ingredients and activity. Please judge your food by what’s IN the box, not by what’s promised across the outside in big, fabulous exciting words. The bigger the claim, the more healthwashed the product typically is. Of course, the snack stuff that doesn’t have packaging and labels is the best — like an organic apple!
In a day and age where allergies are increasing, it is even more important to have clear labeling, and to trust companies that know where their ingredients come from and care about them being good for your health. In this list are some of my favourite packaged snacks that my family enjoys. Most are vegan, gluten-free, and organic, all of them taste great, are gmo-free, and are nut-free (but some are “may contain traces of nuts.” Please read the label each and every time you purchase if you have severe allergies, or are serving someone who does).
If you have some (or all) of the products in this guide in your pantry at all times, you’ll be able to accommodate any guests with allergies, nutritional requirements, dietary restrictions and lifestyle choices, even if it’s a last minute playdate, picnic or dinner date.
Happy, healthy snacking!