I Tried Dozens of New Groceries Hitting Shelves This February — These Are the 11 I’m Most Excited About

published Feb 17, 2022
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Credit: Photos: Snow Days, Ben & Jerry's, Lacolombe; Design: Kitchn

February is a short month, but that doesn’t mean the list of new groceries hitting shelves this month is equally short! In fact, it seems to be the opposite. Manufacturers are kicking it into high gear. Some are launching overdue items that were delayed by those pesky supply chain issues (this winter’s coldest received hot topic). Others are right on target (and in Target).

Credit: Photo: Su-Jit Lin; Design: Kitchn

There’s so much to be excited about: dairy kings and non-dairy queens, cereal that’s taking its cue from another breakfast fave, oh-so-many granolas, and more gluten-free and flavor-full selections. I got the goods — and sampled them. And now I’m showing you my absolute favorites. These are the best new products to hit grocery store shelves this month.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

1. Alter Eco Organic Granolas

The problem I have with a lot of low-sugar granola is an either/or situation: Either it’s not sweet enough, or there’s an artificiality to the sweetness that lingers for too long. Alter Eco has figured it out with its new line of granola, sweetened naturally with a balanced blend of date powder and monkfruit. The sweetness hits well on initial impression and lasts without overstaying its welcome. Dark Chocolate is exceptional, very deep and robust with 100% cacao. Cashew Butter also steers into satisfying richness, its subtle saltiness providing a savory option in this aisle. And the layered flavors of the Cinnamon Raisin; you’ll never reach for an iced oatmeal raisin cookie again with these medium-crunchy clusters around. All are made with USDA certified organic ingredients and, more notably, ones that support regenerative agriculture. 

Buy: Alter Eco Dark Chocolate Organic Granola, $4.49 for 8 ounces at Whole Foods Market

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

2. La Colombe Coffee Bowery Blend

Famous for their canned nitro blends, cold brews, and draft lattes, this brand is heating things up this month, quite literally. The new Bowery Blend, named after the location of their first-ever roastery in New York City’s — you guessed it — Bowery neighborhood is exclusively available at Whole Foods Market. According to the coffee connoisseurs at La Colombe, its flavor notes consist of baker’s chocolate, almond butter, and seemingly incongruous golden kiwi. According to me, it’s just pretty darn good coffee, and an easier score than the limited XOXO blend, which features candied almond, chocolate ganache, and cherries.

Buy: La Colombe Coffee Bowery Blend Medium Roast, $15 for 12 ounces at La Colombe

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

3. Banza Cascatelli Made from Chickpeas

If the name Cascatelli sounds familiar, chances are you remember The Sporkful’s Dan Pashman, whose Mission: ImPASTAble series turned the world upside down with the launch of the brand-new pasta shape with a weeks-long waitlist. Lauded as the perfect pasta, methodically developed over three years to maximize “sauceability, forkability, and toothsinkability,” the shape is now available to those looking for more protein, more fiber, and no gluten. Banza Cascatelli is beautiful and able to hold rivers of sauce in its undulating ruffled ribbons, just as its waterfall-inspired name promises.

Find it in stores: Banza Cascatelli, $22.49 for a 6-pack case at Whole Foods

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4. RightRice Mediterranean

For those unfamiliar, this brand has taken everything I love about rice and made it more nutritionally rich, using a gluten-free blend of lentil, chickpea, pea, and rice flour to more than double the (complete!) protein per serving and add five grams of fiber. They look like rice, act like rice, and taste like pilafs and risottos in a time-crunching 12 minutes, giving us time back we all so desperately need. This month the thyme, basil, and lemony Mediterranean flavor that will be available at Whole Foods Market, along with a Roasted Garlic Risotto, is putting new spins on the company’s already revolutionary line.

Find it in stores: RightRice Mediterranean, $3.99 for 7 ounces at Whole Foods

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5. NuTrail Birthday Cake Nut Granola

Whole Foods Market isn’t the only grocery brand nailing down those VIP exclusive appearances: Sam’s Club has one of their own this month with NuTrail’s Birthday Cake Nut Granola, which really does taste like a nutty birthday cake! The flavor manifests as a quick, cooling treat of icing to your mouth, which melts down quickly as you crunch on big chunks of coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, and hazelnuts, which are all clustered together with sugar-free sprinkles.

Buy: NuTrail Birthday Cake Granola, $12.78 for 22 ounces at Sam’s Club

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

6. Snow Days Buffalo Chicken Pizza Bites

It was only a matter of time before the bites that have changed the nutritional profile possibilities of poppable pizza snacks delved into Buffalo territory. Brand new to the gluten-free, grain-free, organic line is a hot new flavor, but with the same grass-fed mozzarella, olive oil, cassava flour, and hidden veggies. Now with chicken and a Buffalo sauce that’s packed full of carrots, sweet potatoes, and red bell peppers along with the zippy vinegar and cayenne pepper you’d expect, it’s the perfect game day (or night!) snack.

Buy: Snow Days Buffalo Chicken Pizza Bites, $34.99 for a 2 (12-ounce) packs at Snow Days

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7. Sumo Citrus Mandarins

Back for its sweet (but always too short) season, what makes these Japanese natives special — other than the wrestlers they resemble! — is that they’re easy to peel, seedless, and are surprisingly non-GMO despite their distinctive look and extra-sweet flavor. Available only through April, they peak right now, and are for sale in select markets. Plus, as everyone is looking to ramp up immunity during the winter sniffle season (yep, colds are back!), they’re a tasty way to get in 163% of your daily vitamin C, and three grams of fiber to boot.

Buy: Sumo Citrus Mandarins, $7.99 for 2 pounds at Instacart

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8. Kashi Maple Waffle Crisp

Butter meets syrup in a bowl. That’s Kashi’s latest, inspired by pearl sugar-crusted Belgian Liege waffles, specifically. The new cereal recalls the classic flavor combo, but with more smokiness, more crunch, more fiber (4 grams), and less sugar (9 grams, with real maple syrup!). It’s sustainably made, with certified transitional corn accompanying whole wheat, whole oat, and chickpea flours — all of which make it a wee bit puffy and keep it light. This is just the latest in a slew of new products that channel Sunday mornings (hi, Jeni’s new Maple Soaked Pancakes ice cream and Belgian Boys’ Target exclusive French Toast).

Buy: Kashi Maple Waffle Crisp, $4.39 for 9.5 ounces at Kroger

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9. Ben & Jerry’s Topped Ice Creams and Cookie Dough Mixes

The cold winter chill has certainly not iced over any brains in Vermont, because Ben & Jerry’s is on a creative hot streak. This month, the company has four newcomers, including two edible cookie dough mixes: Peanut Butter (chocolate chip cookie dough, complete with mini peanut butter cups) and S’mores (which is made of graham cracker dough and has marshmallow truffles).

The two new Topped ice cream pints are going to be hard to top in any sense. Each container is filled to the brim with crumbles that are apt to go flying. Open with care, because you won’t want to lose a single piece. Choose between Chocolate Milk & Cookies (milk chocolate ganache with fudge chips over lots and lots of chocolate) and the outstanding Dirt Cake (chocolate ganache and chocolate cookie crumbles over custardy vanilla pudding ice cream, chocolate sandwich cookies, and chocolate cookie swirls). Or don’t, and get both!

Find it in stores: Ben & Jerry’s Topped Dirt Cake, $5.49 for 16 ounces

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

10. Evolve Chocolate Caramel Plant-Based Protein Shake

If you like your protein shakes extra thick, creamy, plant-based, and reminiscent of a candy bar, you’re in luck. Evolve just added a new flavor to its ready-to-drink line. Chocolate Caramel joins Double Chocolate, Vanilla Bean, Café Mocha, and Berry Medley in eco-friendly Tetra Paks. Personally, I need to water it down, but there’s a reason it’s as thick as a concentrate; this bevvie comes with a bevy of bennies. A big 20 grams of pea-based protein, 10 grams of fiber, and 100 mg of omega-3s are in every shelf-stable, sip-able, single-serve carton.

Buy: Evolve Chocolate Caramel Plant-Based Protein Shake, $25.99 for 12 (11-ounce) shakes

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

11. Cheez-It Puff’d

The cheese cracker champion, Cheez-It, is launching a brand new puffy, airy, crunchy, melty, and — most importantly — real-cheese baked snack. Double Cheese, White Cheddar, and Scorchin’ Hot Cheddar are bringing their flavor-intensive cracker vibes to the bagged snacks aisle, and I am very much here for it. They’re a little softer than the classic Doodle texture, but infinitely more pop-able in this iconic square form. I’d say more, but my fingers are too covered in cheesy deliciousness to go on. 

Buy: Cheez-It Puff’d, Scorchin’ Hot Cheddar, $2.98 for 5.75 ounces at Walmart

Which of these are you most excited about? Tell us in the comments below.