Gone are the days of boring health food. Packaged products have come a long way in recent years, but the healthiest options deserve some special recognition. That's why, in its fifth year, the Eat This, Not That! Food Awards will spotlight the healthiest new products from the past year that are editor-tasted and dietitian-approved for being the most delicious, nutritious, and made with the best ingredients. 

Working with the Eat This, Not That! Medical Expert Board of registered dietitians, who developed a strict set of nutritional and ingredient guidelines, Eat This, Not That! Editors will narrow a list of hundreds of new products down to 70 winners total (10 in each category).

Here are more details on the categories, rules for nominations, submission process, and timeline.

Eat This, Not That! Food Awards 2022 Categories

This year's food awards will be broken down into 8 categories:

  • Best Breakfast Foods
  • Best Healthy Snacks
  • Best Plant-Based Options
  • Best Frozen Foods
  • Best Meal-Prep Foods (i.e. minute rice)
  • Best Beverages
  • Best Healthy Desserts
  • Best Chain Restaurant Menu Items

Eat This, Not That! Food Awards 2022 Rules & Criteria

  • Products must fall into the "new product window" of January 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021, meaning that they became available to purchase online or in major retail locations for the first time in that date range.
  • The product must be available in major retail locations nationwide, or available for online ordering and shipping, by October 2021.
  • Companies or PR representatives must be able to send at least five (5) samples for testing. Please do not send samples now. We will request samples in June or July if your product is being considered.
  • Products eligible for the 2022 awards must meet nutrition criteria below.

How to submit nominations for the Food Awards.

Please send an email to foodawards @ eatthis.com with:

  • Product name
  • Brief description
  • Nutrition panel with ingredients (attached image, text, or a combination of the two is fine)
  • Product launch date
  • Link to the product online
  • Hi-res product image (as an attachment)

The subject line can be formatted as "[Food Awards Category]: [PRODUCT NAME HERE]". For example: "Healthy Snacks: [Brand Granola Bars]"*

PR reps with multiple clients: To make it easier, you can send one email per category with products from all the brands you represent. Subject line: [Healthy Snacks Nominations]

Submissions and nutrition panels are due by July 30, 2021.

Products that do not meet the nutrition guidelines and other eligibility criteria will not be considered, so please do not submit them.

*This is a suggested subject line. Your products will not be disqualified if you don't format your email like this.

What are the nutrition criteria for the Eat This, Not That! Food Awards?

  • Fat: Any product that uses artificial trans fats are disqualified. Limit fat to equal to or less than 13 grams, which is 20% of your daily recommended value (DRV) of fat. Exceptions will be made for products whose main source of fat (according to order on the ingredients list) comes from nuts & seeds, extra virgin olive oil, grass-fed beef, coconut oil, avocado, chocolate, fish, eggs, and cheese.
  • Saturated fat should be limited to 4 grams per serving, which is 20% of your DRV of saturated fat. Exceptions will be made for products whose main sources of fat come from the same ingredients listed above.
  • Sodium: Sodium should be limited to less than 1,000 mg (43% DRV) per serving.
  • Carbs: Preference will be given to products with more than 1 gram of fiber. (The FDA recommends consuming at least 28 grams of fiber a day on a 2,000 calorie diet.) Whole grain sources of carbs will be preferred over refined carbs.
  • Sugar: Products should not exceed 15 grams of added sugar per serving. Sugar alcohols should be limited to 10 grams per serving.
  • Protein: Preference will be given to products with quality protein sources—such as vegetarian (nuts, seeds, legumes) or from organic, grass-fed whey—over products whose protein boost is derived from soy protein isolate or conventional dairy.
  • Ingredients: We believe that the food we eat should be made with ingredients we can find in our own pantries at home. Foods that contain any of the following ingredients (ingredients which research has shown to confer negative health effects) will be disqualified for a spot on our list: ultra-processed fats such as monoglycerides, diglycerides, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, interesterified vegetable oil, DATEM; any artificial ingredient like a sweetener, color (including caramel coloring), or flavor; preservatives such as TBHQ or potassium sorbate; additives like disodium dihydrogen pyrophosphate, monosodium glutamate, disodium inosinate, disodium guanylate.

What is the process for selecting the winners?

  1. We will compile lists of all the new products that are submitted to us.
  2. Then, we'll send that list of new products to our registered dietitian judges so they can narrow down the list by selecting the products with nutritional and ingredient information that they approve of.
  3. With this nutrition-approved list of 20 products per category, we will reach out to brands for samples that will be sent to one editor for a taste test.
  4. The winners will be the top 10 brands that meet nutritional guidelines, are approved of by dietitians, and those that we think are the best-tasting.

If you have any questions, please send them to the email listed above: foodawards @ eatthis.com