Best New Vegan Foods This Year

As a food producer, you can’t afford to ignore the dietary shift that is the vegan movement. Whether it’s a reaction to animal processing practices, an attempt to get healthier, or a preference of taste, more people are ditching animals and their byproducts to subscribe to a vegan lifestyle.


Just ten years ago, “going vegan” meant subjecting oneself to the confines of the produce section. Since the diet disallows butter, eggs, and honey, even packaged items that seemed vegan-friendly weren’t. Producers began to provide vegan alternatives to their best-selling products, but the first generation of specialized food was a flop: beautifully packaged food delivered glorified cardboard with bland flavors and dry textures. The unappealing food was unpalatable, and many found it impossible to let go of their favorite foods permanently. Food producers hadn’t figured out how to make a shift to mirror the tastes of an evolving market.


With a new diet craze circulating the internet weekly, veganism has risen as a practical and eco-friendly pro-health alternative to meat-laden diets overwhelmed by cholesterol and saturated fats. In response, food producers are developing tantalizing products that fit within the confines of veganism. Recently, major companies such as Reddi-Whip and Starbucks began selling vegan versions of their classic store-bought products. Reddi-Whip now comes with a coconut cream base, while Starbucks’ bottled Frappuccinos made with almond milk are making their way onto local shelves.


Using Flavor to Enhance Vegan Foods

While producers reformulate their products to eliminate animal byproducts, many still sacrifice taste. Flavor extracts act as taste enhancers. They are used to attribute flavor to an otherwise low-flavor item (think tofu), or to intensify a natural flavor that gets diluted or fades during the packaging and shelf-stabilization process.


Activated charcoal has been used as a response to poison ingestion for years. It works by trapping toxins and allowing them to pass safely from the body. Additionally, charcoal has been linked to easing gastrointestinal problems and has been found safe to use during pregnancy. It’s currently being used in vegan ice cream and smoothies. Often derived from coconut, it creates unique black food with a subtle vanilla taste. Vegan-friendly flavor extracts can turn this budding food trend into a multi-flavor summer phenomenon.


Veggie chips are a healthy snack for vegans and non-vegans alike. Some vegetables lose most of their taste during the drying process. Enhanced with high-quality natural flavoring sourced from raw materials around the world, veggie chips become enticing again. The right organic flavoring enhancers in vegan offerings create yum instead of humdrum.