Innocent almond, hazelnut and oat milks, £1.99 per 750ml, from all major supermarkets
Prolific purveyors of all things juicy and smoothie, Innocent has rolled out its challenge to the alternative dairy category with a trio of nut and oat 'milks.' The company has joined the party with three varieties, which are the result of over a year’s development. The bottles are fully recyclable and, true to Innocent form, each flavour contains only minimal ingredients – namely the nut, spring water and salt.
Nestlé Lindahls Kvarg, from £0.95 for 150g, from Asda, Waitrose and Ocado
A bit of an acquired taste – but a taste that’s coming back in a big way – quark is strained, curdled, soured milk that is packed full of protein and vitamins. It’s basically a cross between yoghurt and cheese – and sales are currently increasing year on year by 22%. Nestlé Lindahls Kvarg is Sweden’s number-one quark product and is now here due to the increase of sales over in the UK. The range is three pronged and consists of Nestlé Lindahls Kvarg Single Pots, Nestlé Lindahls Kvarg Natural and Nestlé Lindahls Kvarg Drinks.
Prewett’s Minis gluten-free cookies, £1.99 for 140g, from Asda
Coming out of Northumbrian Fine Foods-owned biscuit company Prewett’s is a new range of gluten-free cookies to add to the ever-expanding Minis armada. In January, the group unleashed its cheese biscuit salvo, ‘Oaty Bites,’ while their ‘Chocoful’ range also expanded last November. The gluten-free cookies are aimed at lunchboxes or as an on-the-go treat.
Quorn vegan Cumberland sausages, £2.50 per 250g, from Tesco
Meat-substitute giant Quorn is making a concerted push to bulk up its vegan range and, having arrived at the end of March, the latest sausage is looking to be a big hit. Containing its trademarked version of mycoprotein made with fungi/mould, Quorn’s new banger is the latest in an expansion that has seen sales rise by 16% over the past year.
Muscle Food: Easy Cook curry kits, £3.25 per 259g
“Low fat, high in protein and possible to prepare in under 10 minutes.” Sound pretty good? Welcome to the new Easy Cook curry kit range from online retailer Muscle Food. With meal kits very much becoming a thing, Muscle Food has wasted no time in adding to its existing options with chicken tikka masala, chicken balti, Thai beef massaman and Chinese-style chicken.
Bepps black-eyed-pea puffs, £1.09 per 22g
The latest in the long line of vegan-friendly alternatives to fried potato snacks, Bepps black-eyed-pea puffs come in three different flavours – sweet chilli, sea salt & black pepper and cheese – and contain no more than 418 calories per 100g. They also boast 15.1g of protein and no more than 16.7g of fat. Available for delivery from May 14th from the Bepps website, the snack company are planning for a consummate roll out of the range across supermarkets throughout the year.
Nescafé Azera Nitro, £1.99 per 192ml, from all major retailers
Coinciding with the 80th anniversary of Nescafé, the Azera range welcomes its first chilled coffee can: the Nitro. Available in Americano and latte flavours, the Azera Nitro has been infused with nitrogen to give a “smoother taste.” The cans also boast a “refreshing sound” when opened. Hold the phone!
Warburtons pulses and seeds loaf, from £1.14 per 400g, from Asda
Chock-full of 11 pulses, seeds and grains, including black beans, yellow lentils, sesame seeds and oats, Warburtons’ latest is the result of a marked increase in the popularity of pulses, with consumption of the plant-based protein rising 17% in the last three years. The new loaf starts exclusively in Asda, but will appear across major supermarkets periodically throughout the year.
Sainsbury’s vegan iced dessert, £3.50 per 500ml, from Sainsbury’s
Sainsbury’s has released three new flavours to its pre-existing Deliciously Free From range: coconut-oil-based vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry. A dairy-free version of ice cream, the iced desserts are also egg-free, wheat-free, gluten-free and soya-free. They’re also made in dedicated free-from factories to ensure there’s no chance of contamination.
Nestlé Milkybar Wowsomes, price TBC, from all major retailers
One of the most exciting-sounding confectionary items to arrive for a good few years, the busy bees at Nestlé have announced their latest chocolate bar, which is said to be a world first in terms of sugar-reduction technology. Boasting 30% less sugar than a standard chocolate bar, Wowsomes are made using new tech inspired by candyfloss: particles of sugar that dissolve quicker in the mouth trick the taste buds into missing the fact that there’s considerably less sugar in the bar. Coming in two flavours – white and milk chocolate – milk is the number-one ingredient in Wowsomes, though cereal pieces also abound.
Plantifull Food Co vegan ready meals, from £20 per four-meal starter pack, from Planet Organic
Jumping on the vegan bandwagon with a varied range of chilled ready meals, Plantifull Food Co are a 100% vegan operation with a range free of preservatives, additives and palm oil. Founding couple Adam and Becca are pretty clear with their mission statement: "We wanted to show our non-vegan friends that we don’t just eat salads." Meals include Creamy Mac, Shroomy Risotto and Three-Bean Chilli (pictured at top).
Daiya cheeses, price TBC, from Whole Foods and Sainsbury’s
April will mark the arrival of the award-winning, plant-based cheese Daiya into UK supermarkets. Fans of the Canadian product are said to have been petitioning for Daiya’s entry into the UK scene for years, and they’re finally to get their wish. The available range will include Daiya Cutting Board Collection Shreds, along with Slices, Blocks, Cream Cheeze Style Spreads, Cheezy Macs and dressings. Daiya, whose products are free from dairy, gluten, soy and eggs, added pizzas, burritos and some desserts to their expanding range last year, but these remain, for now, across the pond.
Oumph!, £3.49 per 280g, from Tesco
Straight out of Sweden comes Oumph!: a meat alternative made with soya protein. Now available in 400 Tesco stores nationwide, Oumph! comes in three styles: Pulled Oumph!, Kebab Spiced and The Chunk. All are rich in protein and fibre and contain sources of iron and folic acid. In a world where plant-based meat alternatives are becoming the norm rather than a new fad, it’s starting to become all about flavour and texture to set products apart from others. Oumph! claims to have a product that’s “completely unique [in] structure and texture [and] unlike anything else from the plant kingdom.”
Ben & Jerry’s: Pretzel Palooza, £5.49 per 470ml, all major supermarkets
Rounding us off this month is a new Ben & Jerry’s flavour that arrived at the back end of March. The Pretzel Palooza is the latest addition to their Topped range, which already includes Topped Salted Caramel Brownie and Topped Chocolate Caramel Cookie Dough. We’re talking vanilla malt ice cream with a chocolatey hazelnut swirl, chocolatey covered pretzel chunks and chocolatey chunks. Talk about embracing the anti-trend, could this tub get more indulgent?
Müller: Alpine-style quark yoghurt, £0.50 per 150g, Asda
Another one for the quark lovers: dairy titan Müller is releasing its first ever UK version of the dairy superfood. The Alpine-style quark yoghurt is the German company’s opening assault on the expanding trend and comes in three flavours: vanilla, plain and strawberry. They will be available exclusively in Asda until September (when the other major retailers will get involved). It was a busy March for Müller, as they also released their first ever lactose-free range and a new Greek-yoghurt range.