I Tried Dozens of New Groceries Hitting Shelves This June — These Are the 14 I’m Most Excited About

published Jun 16, 2022
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A collage of groceries
Credit: Photo: Su-Jit Lin; Design: Kitchn

Summer may mean “break” for some, but in grocery development the season of outdoor get-togethers means launches are going into overdrive. And we’re not just talking about backyard barbecue treats. In fact, many of late spring’s best launches aren’t even in the cookout family! Easy pick-me-ups, quick and convenient snacks, meals that come together in a pinch, and more are hitting shelves this June to help you make the most of the long days and fast-approaching (yet too-short!) season of summer.

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

I tried dozens of new groceries and these are the 14 items I’m most excited about.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

1. Porter Road Beef Sticks

If you’ve never ordered meat from Porter Road, reset your navigation and turn down this lane, because this brand is amazing. The butcher shop is finally hitting third-party retailers with the launch of Beef Sticks in Sweet Heat and Butcher’s Original. Both are made with dry-aged, pasture-raised beef. The spicy one is refreshing with mango, jalapeño, brown sugar, and red pepper, while the original recipe is familiar, with garlic and peppercorn. They’re snappy, tender, and toothsome all at once — and perfect for on-the-go snacking.

Buy: Porter Road Beef Sticks, $42 for a 20-pack on PorterRoad.com or $2.29 per 1.15-oz. stick at Twice Daily

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

2. FILLO’S Refried Mild Cranberry Beans

Bring that “rosé all day” type of energy into your side dishes with these pink-speckled Colombian cranberry beans. Pre-seasoned with sofrito — a signature of the FILLO’s brand — these shelf-stable, microwaveable pouches are ready in a minute. They’re creamy and nutty, making them great for dips and as mix-ins.

Find it in stores: FILLO’S Refried Mild Cranberry Beans, $3.29 for 10 ounces at Whole Foods

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

3. Vlasic Pickle Chips

I’ve been waiting months for fast-food chains to deliver a properly pickled spicy chicken sandwich, which is why I’m very excited about the launch of Sweet Heat and Xtreme Heat pickle chips from my childhood favorite brand. Crunchy, zesty, sour, and hot, these are fantastic on burgers off the grill, a more intense Chicago dog, or — you guessed it — on a homemade chicken sandwich. 

Find it in stores: Vlasic Pickle Chips, $2.99 for 24 ounces at Target, Kroger, Amazon, and other grocery stores and mass retailers nationwide

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

4. Challenge Butter Snack Spreads

Challenge somehow made butter even better by giving it a prominent placement in spreads and toppings, including Vanilla Fudge, Chocolate, Salted Caramel, Buffalo, Everything, and Garlic Parmesan and Herb. Try the sweet versions on a toasted croissant, pancakes, popcorn, or pretzels, and use the savory ones on wings, quesadillas, and obviously, breads, sandwiches, or even pasta and meats.

Find it in stores: Challenge Butter Snack Spreads, $3.99 for 6.5 ounces at Albertsons, Meijer, Spartan Nash, Harris Teeter, SaveMart, Lucky’s, Lowe’s Foods, and Woodman’s Markets

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

5. Litehouse Dips

My favorite Greek yogurt salad dressing brand is dipping into dips this summer, with five bold flavors — perfect for crudité or pita chips. Choose from Homestyle Ranch, rife with aromatics; Avocado Ranch with real avocado and a jolt of jalapeño; Southwest Ranch with chipotle; Dilly Dip, the summer’s hottest flavor (Hi, Trader Joe’s!); and Spinach Parmesan with cheese. 

Find it in stores: Litehouse Dips, $3.99 for 12 ounces at Kroger and Walmart

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

6. Kraft Deluxe Dressings

For those who can spare the fridge space for deluxe dressings, Kraft just came out with a new line of amped-up flavors for your summer salads. Classic creamy flavors, such as Ultimate Ranch and Bold Caesar get amplified with more allium, as does Robust Garlic & Parmesan, giving your raw veggies and wings a kick in the pants. Rounding them out is the Supreme Italian, the herbiest rendition yet.

Find it in stores: Kraft Deluxe Dressings, $3.49 for 16 ounces at Walmart, Harris Teeter, Publix, Hy-Vee, and Food Lion

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

7. Bird’s Eye Grains & Veggies

This brand’s freezer-to-sauté recipes are a go-to for me when it comes to quick, easy, veggie-forward meals in a pinch. And now, they’re adding even more choice to the lineup with a new Grains & Veggies collection. All four flavors — Creamy Pesto, Green Goddess, Buddha, and Harvest — feature whole grains and cook up in minutes.

Find it in stores: Bird’s Eye Grains & Veggies, starting at $4.79 for 13 ounces at Target, Kroger, Amazon, and other grocery stores and mass retailers nationwide.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

8. Tasty Bite Organic Chickpeas

This brand’s line of organic, vegan, Indian-inspired microwaveable pulses grew by two this month, with Coconut Chickpea & Turmeric Curry and Chickpea Tikka Masala. Just microwave in the pouch for office-friendly, spatter-free cooking and pour over rice for a fast fix. I recommend batch-cooking basmati with some cumin and garlic and grabbing a pouch for effortless meal-prep.

Find it in stores: Tasty Bite Organic Chickpeas, $3.99 for 10 ounces at Sprouts and Meijer; also available in bulk at Amazon

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

9. Real Good Foods Crispy Chicken Shell Tacos

When Real Good Foods came out with chicken wrapped in chicken via flavorful, saucy enchiladas and rollatini, the company blew carb-avoidant, keto minds. And it’s done it again, turning our favorite lean bird into hard-shell tacos, with nary a grain in sight. By mixing antibiotic-free chicken with cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese, the folks at Real Good Foods somehow managed to make crunchy taco shell magic.

Buy: Real Good Foods Crispy Chicken Shell Tacos, $6.99 for 2 (7-ounce) packs at Walmart

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

10. KIND Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

There are few pairings as perfect as peanuts and chocolate … and one is love and equality. The KIND PRIDE bars combine all of these in the latest, Milk Chocolate and Peanut Butter, which is newly out this month, but will be available all year. And to make you feel even better about chowing down on a flavor combo you already love, the brand is donating $125,000 to the Ali Forney Center, the nation’s largest non-profit providing vital support to homeless LGBTQ+ youth, with $25,000 already earmarked for LGBTQ+ youth in Florida. 

Buy: KIND Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars, starting at $15for a 12-pack, available at Amazon, retailers nationwide, and online

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

11. Brainiac Foods Pouches, Butters, and Bars

Another brand doing good, this one focuses more on your noggin. The new chewy bars offer omega-3 ALA, choline, prebiotics, and — despite their bright orange appearance — as much lutein as a cup of spinach, courtesy of marigolds. They’re nicely crunchy and available in apple cinnamon, peanut butter, and a very nicely chocolatey chocolate chip. Launched in tandem are the applesauce fruit pouches, an indiscernible way to sneak fish oil into the diets of little ones (and picky adults like me). These come in Apple Apple, with strawberry or cinnamon. Coming later this month to Whole Foods: honey peanut almond and chocolate peanut almond Brain Butter. 

Buy: Brainiac Foods, $6.98 for 10 (3.2-ounce) applesauce pouches, $4.99 for a 5 (1.16-ounce) bars, both available at Walmart, Albertson’s, Safeway, Tops, Kings, Roche Brothers, Acme, and Gelson’s

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

12. Quaker Oat Flour

All these ready-to-go snack options sound great, but if you’re not looking to lose those hard-won baking skills learned at the height of the pandemic, America’s oat experts are adding 100% whole-grain oat flour to the shelves. This sweet and nutty grain is delicious in muffins and pancakes, and I’m loving that I no longer have to grind my own rolled oats to make them. Professional milling makes the results lighter, smoother, and fluffier, with none of the grittiness that I get when I try to DIY.

Find it in stores: Quaker Oat Flour, $4.49 for 20 ounces, available at Walmarts and Kroger

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

13. Señor John Cold Brew Latte

While other coffee companies are racing to introduce new takes on cold brew, this brand goes in the opposite direction. Señor John (as in Castellón, an agricultural engineer) is tapping into his family’s history to offer shelf-stable cold brew lattes so single-origin, they pick, roast, brew, steep, and package it on the third-generation farm estate. The Rainforest Alliance-certified multipacks feature a regular latte, of course, but also Mocha Mint and — for the more adventurous — Vanilla Cherry and Mango Berries. All are ultra-concentrated and very sweet; I add more milk to mine.

Find it in stores: Señor John Cold Brew Latte, $18.98 for 12 (11.16-ounce) drinks at Sam’s Club 

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

14. Simply Spiked Lemonades

If you, like me, wished you could reduce the artificiality in all the still-going-strong spiked sippers, you’re going to be happy to hear this. Just in time for summer, the Simply brand is launching a sweet lemonade with 5% ABV and 5% juice. With versions featuring jammy strawberry, ripe blueberries, and seasonal fave watermelon, this line is bringing a new spectrum of fizzy flavor to this space.

Find it in stores: Simply Spiked Lemonades, $17.99 for a variety pack of 12 (12-ounce) cans, available at retailers nationwide selling alcoholic beverages

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