17 Best & Worst New Grocery Store Snacks, According to a Dietitian
Isn't it amazing how the simple act of snacking can make a boring day at the office or a seemingly never-ending flight a bit more pleasant? And what is a movie-watching sesh without having both sweet and savory snacks on-hand to nosh on while you are watching? The fact of the matter is that snacks are awesome, and enjoying them during the day can help you avoid those pesky hunger pangs if you didn't eat enough at mealtime and give you a boost of energy when you hit that 3 p.m. slump.
About three-quarters of Americans reported that they snack at least once a day in 2022, a 15% increase from the previous year, highlighting how popular snacking is. If you are a snacker, eating food in between meals may help you meet the recommended intake of food groups (like fruit) and nutrients (like fiber), as long as you are choosing the right snacks and you are enjoying them in appropriate quantities and as a part of an overall healthy and balanced diet.
2023 has already brought us a wide variety of new snacks, with some being incredibly nutrient-packed and others having some rather questionable ingredients. Among the new options that have graced our grocery shelves, here are some that deserve to earn a spot in your snack drawer and others that are better off being reserved for an occasional treat if you are trying to support your overall health.
Best New Snacks
Wonderful Pistachios, No Shells, Salt & Pepper
Wonderful Pistachios are one of the highest-protein snack nuts, with six grams of plant protein per serving that help fuel your body with essential amino acids. About 90% of the fats found in pistachios are unsaturated. Plus, they provide a good source of plant protein and fiber, for a trio of nutrients that may help keep you fuller longer.
This new addition to the Wonderful Pistachio line are loaded with salt, spicy black pepper, and a dash of garlic. And since they are provided with no shells, they are easy to add to snack recipes, too.
Whisps Baked Cheese Bites—Cheddar
Whisps Baked Cheese Bites are the newest addition to the Whisps family. Available in Cheddar and Parmesan, Whisps Baked Cheese Bites pack bold flavor and 10 grams or more of protein from 100% real cheese. These single-ingredient poppable, bite-sized pieces contain no added sugar and only one gram of carbs. They are also an excellent source of calcium and provide at least 10 grams of protein per serving.
KIND Cereal Bars—Cinnamon with Almonds
For a mid-morning snack that is perfect when you are on the go, these oat-packed bars give you a boost of whole grains (17 grams per bar) with a delicious plant-based oat milk drizzle.
Cedar's Topped Organic Grecian Golden House Hommus
If you are looking for a dippable snack addition, this new hommus features flavors like lemon and oregano. Made with quality ingredients, this dip pairs well with whole-grain pita triangles or veggie sticks.
Sunsweet Probiotic + Prunes
Probiotics+ Prunes are pitted prunes with the addition of Bacillus coagulans probiotics, plus prebiotic fiber to support digestive health and overall wellness. These prunes have some extra juicy elderberry flavor included in the mix, too. Since most Americans are not eating the recommended servings of fruit every day, having a portable fruit solution can help people actually meet their needs.
Triple Berry Halo Top
Icelandic-Style Skyr Yogurt Pops are packed with flavor and goodness. And at 110 calories per pop, they are a great on-the-go treat, including creamy yogurt, crunchy granola, and real fruit.
Dave's Killer Snack Bars – Trail Mix Crumble/Cocoa Brownie Blitz/Oat-Rageous Honey Almond
Many of us already love Dave's Bread. And now that the producers are breaking into the bar category, we are here for it. Made with ingredients like whole grain flour, organic rolled oats, and organic sunflower kernels, these snacks are a nourishing nosh for people who love the idea of a snack bar, but they don't love the idea of snacking on a glorified candy bar, which so many other options on the market actually are.
Soley Organic Mango and Orange Whole Fruit Gummies
Organic Mango is the first ingredient in these tasty little cubes. For gummy lovers, these snacks certainly check the box, but with no added sugars.
12 Tides Puffed Kelp Chips
Kelp is an underrated superfood, and it is the star ingredient of these snacks. For crunchy snack lovers, these Puffed Kelp Chips fit the bill. But instead of chowing down on empty calories, snacking on these chips fuels you with micronutrients that you wouldn't get otherwise, like iodine.
Mariani's Dried Mango Chips
Chip lovers who want something more sweet than savory will love these mango chips. They have zero grams of added sugar and they are made with real mango, giving each bite a boost of vitamins and minerals that naturally occur in this popular fruit. Since dried fruit can be just as nutritious as fresh, this snack can help people avoid nutrition gaps just as eating a fresh mango would.
Chloe's Oat Milk Mini Cookie Sandwiches
A dairy-, gluten-, and soy-free oat milk-based frozen sandwich checks all of the boxes among those following restrictive diets. And having a single frozen cookie allows for an easier attempt for portion control—certainly a bonus in many books.
Bobo's PB&Js Oat Snack
This new snack take on the classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich and makes it a bit more nutritious, thanks to the oat crust that Bobo's uses. Each snack provides 17 grams of whole grain oats and is packed with flavors that kids and adults love.
Worst New Snacks
Reese's Plant-Based Peanut Butter Cups
Plant-based snacks may sound like a healthier choice. But these cups provide more saturated fat and total fat than the OG version. It also has a whopping 13 grams of added sugar and doesn't provide any more fiber than the non-plant-based variety. While these snacks can satisfy a sweet tooth among the plant-based crowd, it is important to remember that it should still be treated like a treat.
Jack Link's Doritos Spicy Sweet Chili Flavored Beef Jerky
The sodium provided in this snack alone should make anyone who is trying to support a healthy blood pressure run for the hills. While this mash-up may tantalize taste buds, it is packed with ingredients like fructose, sugar, and sodium nitrate—additions that we should be eating in very limited amounts.
Snack Pack Starburst All Pink Strawberry
This is basically a snack of empty calories but made with artificial flavors and colors. If you want to eat something that is strawberry-flavored, you are better off enjoying a bowl of real strawberries instead.
Old El Paso Fiesta Twists, Cinnamon Churro, Crispy Corn Snacks
While these snacks aren't the worst thing for your health, they aren't the best, either. They don't offer much when it comes to nutrition, and with only one gram of fiber, snackers may feel less satisfied when they opt for this choice, thanks to the lack of satiety that they offer.
Trader Joe's Triple Ginger Pretzels
Trader Joe's snacks are typically delish, and these candied pretzel snacks are no exception. But, when it comes to nutrition, they aren't a top choice, as they are relatively low in micronutrients and they contain a significant amount of saturated fat and added sugar.