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Top Ten Tasty Food Discoveries at the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo

Posted on by Alisa Fleming in News, Nutrition Headlines with 7 Comments

Gluten and Allergen Free ExpoAlisa Fleming ~ Last weekend I attended the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo in San Francisco. Though I was working for most of the event, with Tony’s help (scouting out good foods and bringing me samples) we discovered some great new products. To give you a taste of these delicious dairy-free and gluten-free foods, I’ve put together our top ten favorites from the show (in no particular order – it would take me too long to decide!).

You’ll notice a heavy focus on snack foods. This particular Gluten-Free Allergen Free Expo (they have others in Chicago, Dallas, Des Moines, and Secaucus) had a lot of gluten-free breads, baked goodies, and other “carb-like” foods. There were some great dairy-free companies there, too, but not many with new products out … yet. I’ll keep you posted!

All of the products I’ve selected are of course dairy-free, but they are also gluten-free. I’ve included other “free-from” notes as relevant. Note that products listed as “vegan” are naturally dairy-free and egg-free. Have you tried any of them? Feel free to comment on your thoughts …

Hail Merry Macaroons – New Caramel Sea Salt and Strawberry

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

I’ve always been a fan of Hail Merry, but these new product flavors just bumped them up a notch in my most loved companies. I expected to love the Caramel Sea Salt Macaroons, but the Strawberry were surprisingly delightful, too. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, and Soy-Free.

Second Helping – Mama’s Meatballs and Corn Puppies

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

Second Helping was just about the only “meal-worthy” product at the show, so their table was swamped! They couldn’t churn out their Corn Puppies and Meatballs fast enough. All of the reviews were positive, and no one even blinked an eye about their gluten-free nature. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free.

Natural Decadence Cookie Dough

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

Yes, Natural Decadence was sampling out spoonfuls of cookie dough. We were in heaven. They are working on getting this product into stores nationally, and we have our fingers crossed for them. Gluten-free or not, it tasted just like the cookie dough of my youth. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free.

I Heart Keenwah Snacks

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

I Heart Keenwah is like a wholesome brittle. They use quinoa, nuts, and natural sweeteners to make an energy-style treat. My palate couldn’t decide if it was dessert or a very crunchy energy bar, but it was happy either way. I jumped on the Chocolate Sea Salt and Ginger Peanut flavors, but I’m sure the cranberry cashew and almond varieties are yummy, too. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Gluten-Free, and Soy-Free.

Bio-K Plus Dairy-Free Probiotics – Rice or Soy

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

These Bio-K Plus products are like little kefir (drinkable yogurt) shots that pack in a good dose of probiotics. I liked that they were lower in sugar than most dairy-free yogurts, but even lower would be great. The soy variety was mango-flavored, and definitely a bigger hit than the rice. But  the rice is a good option for those seeking soy-free and something organic. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free (rice version only).

Kettel Krakkers

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

Though many attendees were busy lining up for brownie bites and pizza slices, those who popped by the Kettel Krakkers table were rewarded with some rather tasty crackers. Hearty, yet still with a true cracker vibe, I truly enjoyed this savory and seedy option with or without a dairy-free dip. They are currently available in four flavors: Rosemary, Garlic, Caraway, and Rye. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free.

Coco-Roons

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

You might be thinking, “Another raw macaroon?” But Coco-Roons have their own special flare. What caught me most about these wholesome treats is their amazing scents. I even told Tony he had to smell the Apple Pie Coco-Roon because it was that scrumptious. Fortunately, they tasted just as wonderful – each bite was full of so much genuine flavor. I sampled (and loved) just the two flavors pictured above, but they have four other flavors, including Brownie and Lemon Pie, to choose from. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, and Soy-Free.

Cheecha Gluten-Free Puffs

 

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

Cheecha Puffs have this interesting pretzel shape, but are flat and somewhat puffed for a light and crispy flavor. I liked them and found them rather addicting. Only the gluten-free varieties are dairy-free, but they do have quite a few to choose from. I sampled the two flavors pictured, but they also offer Original Potato, Luscious Lime, Sea Salt & Spiced Pepper, and Mediterranean Ginger. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, and Nut-Free.

The Good Bean Chickpea Snacks

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

The Good Bean is another roasted chickpea snack company, and they do a pretty good job. The simple Sea Salt variety was a little too salty for my tastes, but the Sweet Cinnamon was spot on. I didn’t sample the Cracked Pepper and Smoky Chili & Lime, but I’m betting those bold flavors are delicious with these ultra-crunchy beans. By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free.

Kind Bars – New Cashew & Ginger Spice and Madagascar Vanilla Almond

GFAF Expo San Francisco - New Product Finds

In an attempt to ward off the cookies and cakes at 10am, Tony turned to these new KIND Bar flavors on both days. I didn’t sample them at first, but once I finally had a taste, I understood his addiction. This is a great, hearty option that you can find just about anywhere – even drugstores! By ingredients (check on manufacturing processes if potential cross-contamination is a concern) this product is: Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, and Gluten-Free.

More New Dairy-Free Products in 2013:

About Alisa Fleming

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Senior Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

View all posts by Alisa Fleming →

Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living

7 Comments

  1. Erica D.February 16, 2013 at 12:02 pmReply

    AWESOME REVIEW! I totally forgot about the danish crackers – those were SO GOOD! :) I also bought a bag of CoCo Roons for myself :) My little treat…

  2. SuebeedooFebruary 16, 2013 at 1:38 pmReply

    I thought Kinnikinnicks soft white and multigrain breads were among the top new products. Also Blackbird Bakery’s choux pastry Blend and Bella GF all purpose baking mix were great products for sale there. Can’t wait to find some GF puff pastry!!!

  3. Kim CottrellFebruary 18, 2013 at 8:56 amReply

    I am in LOVE with Daiya cheese and mu little girls and hubby do as well!

    • Alisa FlemingFebruary 18, 2013 at 9:37 amReplyAuthor

      Hi Kim, unfortunately, Daiya wasn’t at the event to check out, but hopefully they will be at Expo West. I’ll be there scouting out what they come up with next!

  4. MaureenFebruary 22, 2013 at 8:56 amReply

    Thanks Alisa for sharing your recap of the San Fran GFAF Expo! It was fantastic meeting you and Tony :)

    • Alisa FlemingFebruary 22, 2013 at 4:19 pmReplyAuthor

      Thanks Maureen, you did a great job! See you in Chicago :)

  5. CheeCha Puffs Makes the Top Ten Foods from the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo | CheeCha PuffsMarch 20, 2013 at 9:43 pmReply

    […] We are proud to announce that CheeCha Puffs have made the short list of the ten best products form the Gluten and Allergen Free Expo over at the DairyFree.org website.  Alisa Flemming’s review highlights the addictive nature of our low calorie and gluten free snacks.  She also mentions that our gluten free line is vegen, nut-free, and dairy free which is important to our fans with dietary preferences and allergies.   Click to see the complete list of gluten and allergy free products. […]

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