As 2019 comes to a close, we’re taking a look back at the superstar brands that captured our attention this year. These innovative trendsetters are leading the way in their markets and quickly winning the hearts of consumers everywhere (including us). We’re giving you a roundup of the Sampler team’s top picks of 2019.
Toasted almonds and pink Himalayan salt enrobed in dark chocolate. Need we say more? Seattle-based chocolatier, Theo Chocolate not only produces some of the most indulgent confections, but also commits to sourcing fair trade and organic ingredients that support farmers and their families. Making the world better through delicious chocolate? Sign us up!
We’re all about cozy holiday vibes, but we’d be lying if we said we didn’t daydream of summer once in a while. Just one whiff of this favourite of ours and we’re instantly transported to a sunny tropical island. An even bigger reason we love it? It’s 70% certified organic ingredients, rich in antioxidants, and reef-friendly.
You’ve heard of roasted cashews and raw cashews, but have you ever heard of wrapped cashews? Karma Nuts, a family-owned business created this line of minimally processed cashews that are dry roasted in their natural skin without added oil. This means they have twice the fiber and antioxidants than unwrapped cashews. The result? A delicious superfood snack we can’t get enough of.
Talk about a superstar brand. From salad dressings, to protein bars, pasta sauces, and collagen powders, Primal Kitchen does it all. This brand is on a mission to create uncompromisingly delicious pantry staples without processed or artificial ingredients. So say hello to our new obsession: avocado ranch dressing. Made with avocado oil and organic cage-free eggs, our favourite party dressing got a real-food makeover bumping it up to the Sampler team’s top picks of 2019.
At Sampler, we’re always on the lookout for innovative products that help us reduce our impact on global waste – and this next favourite does not disappoint. Abeego followed nature’s lead and created an all-natural reusable beeswax food wrap that preserves food for longer eliminating the need for disposable plastic alternatives. What’s more, it’s biodegradable and compostable – so we never have a hard time saying goodbye to this baby.
It’s no secret that we love our sweets at Sampler HQ, but let’s face it, we’ve had to cut back on the sugar bombs around here. So we’ve collectively been tasked with finding a snack that’s delicious enough to satisfy the kid in us and healthy enough to keep us on track with our goals. Cue our go-to healthy treat: Love Good Fats’ Peanut Butter Chocolatey bar – a keto friendly, gluten-free protein bar made with all-natural ingredients like peanut butter, coconut oil, and cocoa. It’s like a good-for-you peanut butter cup. Our prayers have been answered.
Now that we’re on the topic of cutting back on unhealthy sugars, what if we told you the average bottle of ketchup is made up of 20-30% added sugar. That means that every tablespoon of our beloved condiment has the same amount of sugar as three gummy bears. Our next favourite is challenging the status quo and introducing a ketchup-style sauce that is sweetened with one date per bottle. Good Food For Good not only made our lives better with their famous ketchup, but is on track to improve the lives of 250,000 others with its Buy One Feed One promise. If you haven’t noticed by now, we’re big fans of mission-driven brands around here.
We come across samples on the daily, so we know the struggle of finding good natural skincare that checks all our boxes. With alpine rose stem cells, this satin-soft CC cream quickly became the best addition to our daily skincare regimen. It’s lightweight, hydrating, has SPF protection and to top it off it smells, ah-mazing. The natural tint is just enough for a healthy, your-skin-but-better glow. New Sampler holy grail product? We think so.
What’s better than a delicious and refreshing sparkling juice? Easy: sparkling juice turned gummy snacks. IZZE Bursts comes in three yummy flavours that wake up every one of our taste buds. Sassy clementine and feisty mango are good, but boldly blackberry takes the cake. This fun little snack is our juiciest and best-kept secret of 2019.
If it weren’t for the fact there’s chocolate inside, we’d think twice about opening this beautiful little package. Deemed the “couture” of chocolate, jcoco not only makes some of the most beautifully packaged treats (which make for great gifts by the way) but it’s created some of the best-tasting indulgences. What makes it even more gift-worthy, is that for every gift you buy, you’re also donating fresh servings of food to someone in need through organizations such as Northwest Harvest, The Food Back for NYC and Hopelink. Aah chocolate, it’s like the gift that keeps on giving.
And there you have it, the Sampler team’s top picks of 2019. This year introduced us to some incredible brands committed to not only creating great products, but doing good in the world while they’re at it. 2020, we’re ready for you!