I just can’t get enough

Maybe it’s just me, but I find it exciting seeing what new (to me) products are available in different areas.  I have been seriously enjoying browsing the shelves of our local co-op and grocery stores (Nugget, Whole Foods).  The prepared foods sections have all kinds of different stuff and there are tons of hippie friendly companies with local distribution!  I love it.  I’m sure it’ll eventually get old – or at least less wondrous – because I was just as enchanted when we first moved to Santa Monica and I had 6 Whole Foods stores within a 10 mile radius (not joking).  But for now I’m just soaking it up.

I could peruse gawk at the bulk bins section at the Co-op for days.  I’m tempted to write a love post for all the ways that our Co-op is awesome.  Self serve maple syrups and olive oils from a dispenser?  It makes the grind-your-own nut butter station seem soooo 2006. 

Here are a few of my latest obsessions.


Vega Farms eggs.  Usually I buy exclusively organic, but the fact that these eggs came from a few miles away (and are antibiotic/hormone free) sold me.  They are a family business (3 generations deep) right here in Davis.  I’m considering their home delivery programs since we go through eggs like crazy.  I’m waiting to see what the egg situation is through either the farmer’s market and/or a CSA before I commit to anything.


This tofu cashew spread.  It’s almost always in the Co-op’s deli section.  It reminds me of my beloved WF tempeh salad.  It’s sooo good (although I could do without the red onions if I’m being picky).  I took a photo of the ingredients so I could recreate it and for the life of me, I can’t figure out why it says it contains wheat.  Someone let me know what I’m missing?

IMG_1425 IMG_1443

It’s good as a dip with crackers or raw veggies, or mixed into a salad.  The above has greens, carrots, brown rice, and the tofu cashew spread. 


Beyond Meat.  I mentioned this product before, but have only seen it in pre-made salads at Whole Foods thus far.  I know they are planning to sell it plain though, I just have to find out where.  I think WF is their exclusive retailer at this point, but I’m not totally sure.  The above is the Sonoma “chickn” salad and the below is the Curry “chickn” salad. 


I haven’t been going to the Davis WF really because we joined the Co-op and they have awesome deals.  But the other week I saw it in the salad bar section at the Whole Foods near my parents’ house.  So I filled up a salad bar box to bring home and cook with.


I made a combo of the above two salads.  Recipe coming!


Bolani.  I am obsessed with their pumpkin bolani.  I stumbled across them over a year ago when I was home for the holidays.  And every time I come home I go to Whole Foods to get one.  Their distribution is still mostly in Nor Cal (they’re based in Concord), so I’m happy that I can now enjoy them as often as I want. 


All our local health foods stores carry them (WF, Co-op, Nugget, etc.) and I’m not exaggerating when I say that for the first two weeks I had a pumpkin bolani every other day.


Sadly it is made with wheat (and isn’t FODMAPs friendly) so I have to closely monitor the rest of my FODMAPs throughout the day.

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Recently I decided to branch out (ever so slightly) and try another one of their products (they have sauces, dips, and spreads too).  I don’t normally like pesto (I hated it growing up and have only recently come around since I discovered it can be made raw and dairy free with nuts), but it looked good and so I just went with it.  As you can see from the ingredients, it’s vegan and made with almonds rather than pine nuts. 


It was much lighter than what I was expecting, and had a pretty dominant lemon flavor, so I didn’t love it.  But it was still good.  I treated it like a dip for the carrots, and since I still have half of the container left I’m thinking I’ll use it in a GF pasta dish and add more fat to it.

Anyway, those are my Davis loves right now. 

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Comments (33)

  1. Missy

    About two weeks ago my WF got the stand alone Beyond Meat strips.
    I am a protein gal, so these are like crack to me. Straight up – dipped in veganaisse. I die.
    I like the “grilled” variety best.
    They need to send you samples for the blog dontcha think?

  2. Missy

    PS I found them in the section by the Tofurkey, Yves veggie slices, etc.

  3. Meghan

    Re: the “contains wheat” thing, that might be their space-saving way of saying it’s made on equipment that also processes wheat?

    I am incandescently jealous of you for being able to shop at the Co-op–I left Davis almost ten years ago and I *still* miss that place!

  4. Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries

    This may be a ridiculous question, but what is FODMOPs?

  5. Brigid

    They sell Bolani at te Hollywood Farmers Market, and if I wasn’t such a penny-pinching miser, I could live off it. The cilantro pesto is my favorite of their sauces. It’s really great to flavor veggies and beans, too. Now I’m craving it spread on a pumpkin Bolani!

  6. Sami

    BOLANIIII — MY girl. I love the spinach & lentil, too, but you’re right… pumpkin takes the cake. If these were distributed close to me, I don’t know that’d I’d be so “gluten-free” strong willed.

    So weird about the cashew tofu spread… the only thing I can think of is sometimes the soy protein could be compromised if it’s made in the same facility and cross contaminated with wheat? it even says soy-free tamari, though so you’d think if they went to that effort, they would’ve gone with a certified gf soy protein producer…


  7. Elise (Post author)

    if you read my side bar and faq you can find out more but its the way i eat to manage ibs.

  8. Elise (Post author)

    gracias missy!
    and yes, i think they SHOULD send me stuff, hahaha 🙂

  9. Kim @ Wonderings

    Love the bolani!! We had them at a Food and Wine fest last summer. It was so good and so were all of their spreads!

  10. Emily

    To the “contains wheat” question: could it be that those label is automated or a human error occurred when someone scanned the ingredients and saw the word wheat? Although it says “wheat free” it’s not hyphenated.

  11. Sarah

    The WFs in the San Diego area just started carrying the plain Beyond Meat strips too but they stock them in the freezer section with the other frozen faux meats, so you may want to check there too!

  12. Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl

    That pumpkin bolani sounds awesome!! Now if only I could find it here in the Midwest :(.

  13. Jessica

    You guys in the US are so fortunate to have all these products available. Over here you can’t buy any pre made vegan or whole food products (and everything vegetarian is loaded with cheese). There is no market for it: most Aussies are meat and three veg eaters and if you offered them things like that delicious looking tofu cashew dip they wouldn’t want to even try it! About all we have available to buy premade is plain tofutti cream cheese and some meat analogs like ‘soysages’ which are REALLY expensive. The solution is to make everything from scratch which is great for knowing the ingredients etc, but not always convenient to whip up in a pinch! I’m longing to try Daiya cheese 🙂

  14. Katie @ Peace Love & Oats

    Oh my goodness, I LOVE checking out new grocery stores and especially Coops and similar places! They always have the most interesting stuff, especially the further and further west I go!

  15. Elise (Post author)

    im sorry jessica. youre right, we are so lucky to have this kind of selection. its an embarrassment of riches really. hopefully one day you can come visit and try it all (and bring an empty suitcase to bring lots back w you!).

  16. Elise (Post author)

    i SOOOO wish you had visited SF when i was here. come back!?!?!

  17. Elise (Post author)

    maybe some day!?!

  18. Elise (Post author)

    could be human error…i just wonder which side its on, the labeling or the actual salad?

  19. Elise (Post author)

    any recs on which spreads were your faves?

  20. Elise (Post author)

    oh good call. im guessing youre right and they dont want to risk a reaction due to potential cross contamination. isnt tamari by nature wheat free? i mean thats the key difference btwn it and soy sauce right?

  21. Elise (Post author)

    ps i accidentally denied your IG request so ask me again and ill accept 🙂

  22. Elise (Post author)

    oooo cilantro pesto is next on the list then!

  23. Elise (Post author)

    i think youre right. probs dont wanna risk cross contamination reactions.

  24. Elise (Post author)

    got it. thx sarah!

  25. Kim @ wonderings

    We loved the eggplant spread!

  26. BroccoliHut

    I feel the same way about eggs! I used to buy only organic, but then I found a wonderful local farm with really great free-range eggs.
    You all on the west coast sure do have lots of options–as you might imagine, our WFs in the South don’t have nearly the selection of vegan/vegetarian products!

  27. Ttrockwood

    Many smaller producers and farmers actually qualify and are organic, however it is a very expensive and very intense process to become certified, so at farmers markets and with local vendors that may be the case.
    My sister went to UC Davis and the few times i visited from nyc i swear i lived off pumpkin bolani, cherry tomatoes and strawberries from the farmers market the whole trip!

  28. Sarah

    Normally I just get sad when I see these posts since we can’t get any of the stuff you can here in Oz, but I’ve been paying attention since I’m going to San Fran in July! That bolani looks delicious, and though my GI system might hate it, I’d bet my husband would love it!

  29. Elise (Post author)

    thats exactly what i suspect which is why i was just going to ask them at the farmer’s market (im assuming they’ll have a stand there).

  30. Wendy

    Elise, I’m shocked that you don’t have your own chickens! Get a coop! Even Costco is selling them now, haha….anyways, warms my heart to see your loyalty to the Davis Food Co-op already, especially over WF. When I went to Davis in 95-99 there was no shopping center where Whole Food is now, no Trader Joe’s, it was The Nug or Co-Op (two great choices!). Davis is an awesome place. I’m just finishing off a one year contract at UCD and I’ll be sad to not be there. I tried my first kombucha from WF the other day…truthfully felt like I wasn’t “Davis Enough” since I hadn’t been there or tried kombucha yet, haha….oh, and if you are in Sac, I suggest checking out Sprouts in Land Park. I live in the area and that’s where I frequent these days- I’m obsessed with it!

  31. Katie @ Peace Love & Oats

    I will definitely let you know when I do!!!!

  32. Pingback: Elise Lately [V]

  33. Ingrid Rajith Skysong

    Hi — Re the Tofu Cashew spread and wheat issue. It’s the tamari soy sauce that is made with wheat. If you only have a food sensitivity to wheat this will not be an issue. If you have to totally stay away from wheat you can use wheat free soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or the Coconut Aminos in its place. Hi — Re the Tofu Cashew spread and wheat issue. It’s the tamari soy sauce that is made with wheat. If you only have a food sensitivity to wheat this will not be an issue. If you have to totally stay away from wheat you can use wheat free soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or the Coconut Aminos in its place.

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