New in the Market: Almondina Toastees, Soulfully Sweet Cookies, Element Rice & Corn Cakes

by Jo-Ann Heslin, MA, RD, CDN on June 9, 2014 · 1 comment

We love to try new foods. Some are great. Some don’t measure up and some become staples in our kitchen. See what you think.

Almondina-Toastees-Cran-300Almondina Toastees are a brand extension of the well-known Almondina Almond Biscuit line. Toastees are considered a snack and they are somewhere between a cookie and a cracker and would make a great base for cheese and fruit.

Toastees are made with egg whites and have no added fat or salt. They are dairy free, preservative free, and kosher certified (OU). Toastees come in 4 flavors with a similar nutrition profile: 4 pieces have 70 calories, 2 or less grams of fat (mostly from the almonds added), no cholesterol, saturated fat or trans fat, and only 10 milligrams of sodium. The flavors are:

  • Coconut Orange Almond
  • Cranberry Almond
  • Lemon Poppy Almond
  • Sesame Almond

Soulfully Sweet cookies are gluten-free, and nonGMO (no genetically modified ingredients). To achieve a good cookie texture, depending on the variety, each flavor is made from a combination of navy bean flour, brown rice flour, potato starch, gluten-free oats, sorghum flour or sweet rice flour. The texture of the 3 samples we tried was remarkably similar to traditional cookies. The company recommends keeping the cookies refrigerated or frozen, because they are additive and preservative free, and bringing the cookies to room temperature before eating. We heated the cookies for a few seconds in the microwave and achieved a just-from-oven taste.

CookieBag-300Soulfully Sweet makes 9 different cookies flavors. We tried three. One cookie equals a 1.5 ounce serving.

  • Chocolate Chip has 180 calories, 9 grams of fat (5 of which are saturated), 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 3 grams of protein, 25 grams of carb (15 of which are sugar and 3 fiber) and 120 milligrams of sodium.
  • Chocolate  Chocolate Chip has 220 calories, 12 grams of fat (7 of which are saturated), 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 3 grams of protein, 28 grams of carb (19 of which are sugar and 3 fiber) and 130 milligrams of sodium.
  • Oatmeal Cherry Chocolate Chip has 200 calories, 9 grams of fat (5 of which are saturated), 30 milligrams of cholesterol, 3 grams of protein, 27 grams of carb (16 of which are sugar and 4 fiber) and 125 milligrams of sodium.

Because Soulfully Sweet is a small company, presently, they do not bake in a gluten-free certified facility. They do, however, use only their equipment in this shared commercial kitchen and every effort is made to prevent gluten cross-contamination. The company’s goal is to have a dedicated gluten-free facility in the future.

Looking for a cookie substitute that satisfies with sweetness and offers a lot of crunch and chewing for just 80 calories, you should try Element Rice & Corn Cakes. They are made in Italy and follow EU (European Union) food regulations. Element Rice & Corn Cakes are non-GMO (no genetically modified ingredients) gluten-free, vegan, and have no preservatives, artificial flavors or trans fat.

ELEMENT_6-PACKS-300Each rice or corn cake is topped either with chocolate or a yogurt fruit icing. They are available in five varieties – Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Sweet Vanilla Orange, and Strawberry’n’Cream Rice Cakes and Dark Chocolate Corn Cakes. Each is slightly thinner than a traditional rice cake which may add to the crunch. We tasted the Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate and Sweet Vanilla Orange Rice Cakes. We were pleasantly surprised to find the Sweet Vanilla Orange our favorite. It had a mild, orange flavor that was not overly sweet. Each rice cake has only 5 grams of sugar.




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